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orionOrion Letizi gave taudienan interesting talk on Terracotta at the SDForum SAMsig tonight.  His example on the deployment of Terracotta to solve a database scaling problem was especially compelling:

 Examinator example

Before

After

Concurrent web-based tests

5K

10K

Main database server utilization

75%

30%

Additional hardware

Additional commodity servers

Software changes

Management of session transient data from main database server to Terracotta networked memory

By moving the processing of various transient data used in the web service from the main Oracle database to Terracotta’s network attached memory model, with minimal changes to the Java code.  There were some additional hardware added to support the Terracotta servers, but these were low cost commodity hardware. 

This examples shows that often web/app/database architectures tend to rely on the backend database servers to manage the transactions, but also the transient data for sessions.  Transient session information includes data like tracking the page the user is on, the data that he has entered, etc.  Terracotta can manage the transient data in place of the main database.  The resulting system is much more efficient than having the entire web service architecture relying on the main database to maintain all the states in the system.

Terracotta is open source and works with Java based systems.  Orion mentioned that other languages can be supported, such as Ruby via jruby.

Copyright (c) 2009 by Waiming Mok

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