Oracle Exalytics X3-4 Doubles RAM and Introduces Flash

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The latest version of Oracle’s Exalytics In-Memory Machine, version X3-4, features software enhancements and hardware updates to improve the capabilities of the high-speed engineered system for business analytics. The new Exalytics X3-4 system doubles RAM to 2TB, and now features 2.4TB of flash storage, and 5.4TB of hard disk.

Oracle Exalytics features business intelligence and in-memory database software configured for hardware designed, built and supported by Oracle. The software foundation for Oracle Exalytics X3-4 includes Oracle Business Intelligence Foundation Suite, Oracle Endeca Information Discovery, Oracle Essbase, and Oracle TimesTen In-Memory Database – all of which have been integrated and certified to run on Oracle Exalytics.

Specific optimizations have been made in X3-4 to accelerate the platform’s ability to handle strategic business questions in the areas of advanced planning, data discovery, scenario modeling, burst reporting and what-if analysis.

“This new model doubles the amount of on-board RAM to 2TB and with compression that can go farther of course. And what that means is that you can have more users, more applications, larger cached in-memory results sets - all running on Exalytics,” said Paul Rodwick, vice president of product management at Oracle, in a recent interview. This is especially important as more companies use Exalytics as part of their enterprise business analytics standard and seek to go beyond simple query reporting and analysis to add capabilities such as unstructured analytics with Endeca Information Discovery, or Hyperion Planning, or scenario modeling or planning applications - all running on the same box, he says. “There is also now 2.4 terabytes of flash storage as well and that particularly helps applications like Hyperion Planning or Essbase custom planning applications or scenario modeling, what-if analysis – these more read/write-oriented applications that people use for analytics. The flash memory is also something new that delivers greater performance.” While flash was not in the original machines, it was also made available as an option for upgrading the X2-4 machines, noted Rodwick.

Oracle Exalytics is an optimized system pre-integrated to reduce the cost and complexity of an organization’s IT infrastructure, while increasing productivity and performance. First introduced over a year ago, the Exalytics In-Memory Machine has had the "fastest uptake of all the Oracle engineered systems," says Rodwick. The rapid acceptance, says Rodwick, can be attributed to the success customers have experienced with Exadata and other engineered systems as well as the immediate benefit Exalytics provides to existing Oracle customers.  Customers can take an existing Oracle application and move it to Exalytics to experience better visualizations, faster performance, better scale, and more responsive mobile BI capabilities, said Rodwick.

Oracle Business Intelligence Foundation Suite delivers more than 200 enhancements across the suite and many features targeted exclusively for Oracle Exalytics.  These include new visualizations, improved end user interactivity, new native connection into Hadoop as a data source supported by Oracle BI Foundation Suite, enhancements to the Essbase component of BI Foundation Suite, and significant new capabilities across the board, Rodwick pointed out.  

“It is worth noting that existing Exalytics customers can benefit from all the upgraded software and there are two hardware options – either to add the flash memory to their existing machine or to add the 2.4TB of flash storage and also upgrade their RAM to 2TB,” Rodwick added. “That is an option for existing customers.”

More information about the Oracle Exalytics In-Memory Machine is available.