Oracle Database Appliance X6-2S and X6-2M, filling the gap

Oracle introduced the ODA X6-2S and ODA X6-2M. And no, they are not the successor of the quite popular ODA X5-2, which we installed and configured quite a number of times lately. These 2 new machines are the in-between ODA’s, entry level machines for small business. Single node with flash storage, also suitable for Oracle Database Standard Edition 2. But…. commodity hardware is also single node and suitable for all Oracle database Editions, so what’s the gap Oracle is filling between commodity hardware and an ODA X5-2? This post will handle the characteristics of the new ODA X6-2 machines and the differences between commodity hardware and the range of Oracle Database Appliances.

In the past it was not always easy to conduct a solid business case for the ODA X5-2. Although a wonderful machine with high availability features and agile licensing, the price and the fact that only the Enterprise Edition of the database was allowed on the bare metal version weren’t always in favor of the business cases for an ODA.

So what kind of machines Oracle introduced this time?

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ODA X6-2S.

In short the ODA X6-2S is an entry-level machine with the following characteristics:

  • 1 x 10-core CPU (Xeon E5-2630 V4)
  • 128 GB memory, expandable with 256 GB
  • 2 x 3.2 TB SSD (NVMe – Non-Volatile Memory Express) Storage, expandable with 2 x 3.2 TB.
  • 2 x 480 GB SSD (Mirrored) boot disk
  • 2 x 10GBase-T Ethernet
  • 2 x 10GbE SFP+ Fiber
  • Support for Oracle Database Standard Edition 2 and Enterprise Edition
  • Capacity on demand licensing
  • Listprice: from $18,000

So… what’s the number 2 doing in ODA X6-2?

This is not a 2-node machine, but it’s related to a 2-socket node!

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ODA X6-2M.

The ODA X6-2M is an upgraded version of the S with the following characteristics:

  • 2 x 10-core CPU (Xeon E5-2630 V4)
  • 256 GB memory, expandable with 512 GB
  • 2 x 3.2 TB SSD (NVMe) Storage, expandable with 2 x 3.2 TB.
  • 2 x 480 GB SSD (Mirrored) boot disk
  • 4 x 10GBase-T Ethernet
  • 2 x 10GbE SFP+ Fiber
  • Support for Oracle Database Standard Edition 2 and Enterprise Edition
  • Capacity on demand licensing
  • Listprice: from $24,000

 

So now we’ve got a range of Oracle Database Appliances from where to choose :

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Remarkable features worth mentioning and probably also coming available in the full-grown, yet to come ODA X6-2:

  • New command line interface for operations : ODACLI. Commands like create-database, create-dbhome, create-network. Seemed not complete by the way at the time of writing.
  • New command line interface for maintenance: ODAADMCLI. In this version the commands are quite restricted to show and locate commands: e.g. show disk, show diskgroup, show server.
  • A web interface for deploying the Database Appliance.
  • Faster storage by using NVMe. This is a communications interface/protocol developed specially for SSDs, bypassing the SAS controller.

Possible future releases:

  • Virtualization.
  • Managing more dan 1 ODA through the webconsole.
  • More closely integration with backup cloud.

IO-performance characteristics of these new SSD-storage – slide and numbers from Oracle – are mentioned below. I won’t dare to compare these figures with the existing ODA X5-2. The best way to compare these ODA’s is to run the same test as in this document, time will tell.

 

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What are the differences between the different Oracle Database Appliances (‘+’ means that this feature is extensible):

 

Feature ODA X6-2S ODA X6-2M ODA X5-2
CPU 1 x 10 core 2 x 10 core 4 x 18 cores
Memory 128 GB + 256 GB + 2 x 256GB +
Storage (also see below) 2 x 3.2 TB +, only normal redundancy possible.
Boot disk: 2x480GB SSD (mirrored)
2 x 3.2 TB +, , only normal redundancy possible.
Boot disk: 2x480GB SSD (mirrored)
128 TB raw = 64 TB mirrored = 42.7 TB triple-mirrored
SSD NVMe NVMe SAS
Nodes 1 x 1 x 2 x
Ethernet 2 x 4 x 4 x
Fiber 2 x 2 x optional, replacement of Infiniband
Capacity on Demand yes – 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 cores yes -2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16,18, 20 cores yes -2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 30, 32, 34, or 36 per server
Oracle Database Enterprise Edition yes – 11.2.0.3.15, 11.2.0.4, 12.1.0.2 yes – 11.2.0.3.15, 11.2.0.4, 12.1.0.2 yes –
Oracle Database Standard Edition 2 yes – 12.1.0.2
(1 socket license or minimum of 10 NUPS for this server)
yes – 12.1.0.2
(2 socket license or minimum of 10 NUP for this server)
no
Standardized deployment databases yes yes yes
Virtualized by Oracle VM no no yes
RAC no no yes
Web Interface yes yes no
Command line ODACLI / ODAADMCLI ODACLI / ODAADMCLI OAKCLI

 

A quick note about the storage. There’s default 3.2TB present (extendable with another 3.2TB), and there are a few ways to split this, depending if you are backing up externally or internally.

The out-of-the-box raw storage can only be configured with normal redundancy.

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When doubling this storage the following split is possible. And here you’ve got the choice between double or triple mirroring.

image

 

Why choose for an ODA X6-2S or ODA X6-2M instead of buying the same stuff as – probably cheaper – commodity hardware. Beside the fact that these two ODA’s are probably very well performing machines with a lot of storage and technical capabilities, there are – I think – a few distinctive features delivered with these machines:

– Capacity on Demand. For databases you don’t have to use Oracle VM to limit the use of cores for license reasons. Made it easier with a new command: # configure-core-count <cpu_number> . Nice principle of Keep It Simple.

– Standardized deployment of databases by using the included deployment software and templates, accessible by a web-based interface.

– As of all ODA’s : integrated / automated patch management, and of course ASR, the Auto Service Request functionality.

 

Regards…

 

Resources:

Evaluating and comparing Oracle Database Appliance Performance:

http://www.oracle.com/technetwork/database/database-appliance/documentation/oda-eval-comparing-performance-1895230.pdf

By | 2016-06-22T09:27:05+00:00 June 22nd, 2016|Categories: Architecture|Tags: , , |0 Comments

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