Wednesday, September 28, 2016

ODA X6 -- S(small) and M(medium), NVMe & Standard Edition support & Capacity on Demand licensing

In June of 2016, Oracle announced the new generation ODA machines, ODA X6-2S and ODA X6-2M.
The ODA Machines we have dealed with so far is now called as ODA HA.
The new term describes the classic 4U ODA Machines as High Available ODA environments.
The new HA term comes in to play for ODA, as with the release of ODA X6-2, there are new ODA model introduced.
ODA X6-2 M and S are the first released models in this concept.
So with this M and S machines, ODA now have more hardware options. You can think like the small is for small environments and the medium is for the medium environments. Probably, there will be other configurations like (ODA X6-2 L and ODA X6-2 HA), but now we are focused on these two small and medium ODA X6-2 configurations as they are the first released ODA X6-2 environments at the moment.

We will walk through the introduction of ODA X6-2 M, as the ODA X6-2 S is just a small version of it. (less CPU, less memory etc.)
So, knowing ODA X6-2 M, you can also guess what the ODA X6-2 S is about.

ODA X6-2 M is a 1U machine.
It has one server for serving both the compute and storage services.
ODA X6 M has a built in 6.2 TB High Speed NVME .
It supports Oracle Database SE, SE one, SE 2 or EE . (earlier ODA environments ODA X5 and so on, could only supported Oracle Database EE -- unless they are deployed with Virutalized environment option)
ODA X6-' M can not be expanded horizontally and it can not be virtualized at the moment.

The ODA X6-2 M machine specifications are as follows;

CPU: 2x10 core (2.2 GHZ Intel Xeon E5-2630 V4)
Memory:  256 GB ( 8x32GB)
Storage: 6.4 TB(2x3.2TB) NVMe
Boot Disk : 2x480GB SSD (mirrored)
Ethernet : 4x10GBase-T
Fiber : 2x10GbE SFP+

Note: ODA X6-2 S is almost the same machine. The difference between the ODAX6-2 S and M is , that ODA X6-2 S has 1 x 10 cores and 128GB Ram installed. Also ODAX6-2 S has 2 x10GBase -T port.


This configuration can be expanded as well. As for the expansion options; we have 512GB(16x32GB) memory and 6.4TB(2x3.2TB) NVMe.

The real benefit of this machine comes with the NVM Express(NVMe) Flash Storage. It improves thdatabase scability and performance.
->NVMe is the new standard for PCI Express (PCIe) SSDs
->Architected for Flash Storage with minimal CPU overhead
->Works directly with PCIe interface
->No SCSI protocol overhead resulting in very fast response
->5x to 10x IOPS improvement over SAS based SSDs
->Low latency of 100s of micro seconds

The ODA X6-2M is optimized for the database.
As mentioned earlier, it supports Database Standard Edition, Standard Edition One and Two, as well as the Enterprise Edition.
The host OS used in this new ODA is Oracle Linux 6.7. Appliance Manager is the tool used for the management.
Both 12.1.0.2 and 11.2.0.4 RDBMS is supported for the Enterprise Edition.
As for now; 11.2.0.4 RDBMS is the only database version supported for Standard Edition and Standard Edition One.
12.1.0.2 is the only supported version for Standard Edition Two.

With this new ODA machine, the management activities are done using Appliance Manager. It has both a webconsole and command cli. The name of the cli is now ODACLI (it was OAKCLI in the past)

With the simple ODACLI commands , the following can be done ;
–Database creation
–Patching
–Management
–Support

Another important feature of this new ODA machine is capacity on demand. So there is a capacity on demand licensing for ODA X6-2M. (The idea here is License as You Grow only the needed cores and save significantly")
Capacity on demand is only for Enterprise Edition databases and the licensed core can be multiple of 2. (2,4,6,8,10,12,14,16,18,20)

The deployment of the machine is quite straight forward.
It has 7 steps and takes approximately 40 minutes;

The steps are as follows;

1.Rack, Cable and Connect the Network and Power
2.Start Up the System
3.Plumb the Network
4.Copy the Oracle Database Appliance (SIB)
5.Update the Oracle Database Appliance Image
6.Deploy the Oracle Database Appliance
7.Monitor Deployment Progress

Another feature of ODA X6-2M is the ability to use Oracle ASR. ASR(Automatic Service Request) comes builtin with this release. So, if you want to use ASR, you can just configure it using Web GUI of Appliance Manager.

Lastly, when we compare ODA X6-2 M with a traditional general purpose X86 System, we  can say that;
ODA is better becasue;
  • ODA is Simple, Optimized, Affordable
  • It is Oracle :)
  • ODA has built-in automation and best practices
  • The Hardware and software engineered, tested, and supported to work together.
  • ODA X6 has High performance NVMe Storage
  • The environment comes built in with ODA is optimized for database workloads.
  • ODA X6 has high performance and reliable OS storage 
  • Because the Hardware and Software is provided by Oracle, there is a single vendor support.
Conclusion,

The new ODA and its S and M models provides the simplicity, optimization, and affordability for the customers who want to avoid complexity and tuning requirements and also want to have an optimal database performance for their single instance databases.
Capacity on demand and the support for Standard Edition databases are the keys and the most significant power of the new ODA X6-2S and ODA X6-2M, for being the choice of the relevant customers.
It is actually good to have Engineered systems in this level. The release of these new small but optimized ODA machines seems promising and  I guess we will see more ODA deployed in the data centers in the following days. 

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