Oracle rolls out 'Big Data' appliance

The newest member of Oracle's appliances includes support for the open-source Hadoop and R frameworks

Oracle unveiled the Big Data Appliance, the newest addition to its line of products that combine software and hardware, during the OpenWorld conference in San Francisco on Monday.

"Big data" is an industry buzzword that refers generally to the massive amounts of information generated by websites, sensors and other sources apart from traditional enterprise applications.

The new appliance includes a distribution of the open-source Hadoop programming framework, data-integration and loading tools, a distribution of the R open-source statistical analysis software, and the Oracle NoSQL database, according to a statement.

NoSQL refers to a growing set of database technologies that can be defined by what they omit, such as "SQL, joins, strong analytic alternatives to those, and some forms of database integrity," analyst Curt Monash previously told IDG News Service. "If you leave all four out, and you have a strong scale-out story, you're in the NoSQL mainstream."

The Oracle NoSQL database is a "distributed, highly scalable, key-value database" that is "easy to install, configure and manage, supports a broad set of workloads and delivers enterprise-class reliability backed by enterprise-class Oracle support," according to an Oracle statement. It wasn't immediately clear Monday whether it is based on existing Oracle technologies such as the Berkeley DB database.

Oracle's R distribution is integrated with its 11g database, allowing R applications to tap data within those systems, Oracle said.

Oracle is also planning to offer the software products in standalone form, according to a statement.

Pricing and a release date for the machine weren't immediately available on Monday. When available, it will compete with products such as Aster Data, Netezza and Greenplum.

On Sunday, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced another new appliance, the Exalytics Business Intelligence machine. That product leverages in-memory processing along with Oracle's BI (business intelligence) software stack.

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris's e-mail address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com

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Chris Kanaracus

IDG News Service
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