Oracle Introduces New Release of Oracle Coherence

Oracle has released a new version of Oracle Coherence, a distributed in-memory data grid solution. A component of Oracle Fusion Middleware, Oracle Coherence 3.5 now provides tera-scale support to in-memory data grids through configurable off-heap storage.

Cameron Purdy, vice president of Development, Oracle, tells 5 Minute Briefing, that Coherence is "a continuously available system that dynamically scales with the hardware to provide more and more data management capability both in terms of how much information you can manage and how much horsepower it has to manage it with."

Customers are increasingly requesting support for multi terabytes of information, according to Purdy. "In one recent case I can think of, it was 30 terabytes that they wanted in-memory," he notes. "What we have done with Coherence 3.5 is introduced the ability not just to manage more information in terms of terabytes but to do so with a dramatically simplified approach to managing that system."

This is accomplished by managing large amounts of information outside of the Java heap, explains Purdy. "We have actually separated out the information so that it lives in-memory but outside of where Java automatically manages memory. By doing so we have eliminated the cost of what is called Java garbage collection on that data and we have also been able to take advantage of very large amounts of RAM on those servers, so now, for example, we could use tens of gigabytes easily per server off this Java heap to manage our data."

According to Purdy, "On a server that has 64 gigabytes of RAM, we may be able to store 60 gigabytes of data outside of the Java heap and the result is that a single process running on that server can consume the entire amount of physical memory that the server has. And if you have 50, 60 to 100 gigabytes per server you can imagine very quickly that you can add that up into the multiple terabytes."

This latest version of Coherence also introduces Coherence Guardian, a safeguard that automatically detects and corrects service disruptions. "This is a capability that is a lot like the way a cluster works, where each of the servers is monitoring the health of the other servers in the environment but instead of monitoring between servers, we take that concept and we actually put it inside a server." The Guardian does the same thing that a cluster does where each server is watching the others, but does it inside the server on the threads, so each thread is monitoring other threads and making sure that they are not getting locked up, or going into an infinite loop or running out of memory, notes Purdy. "It is an internal guardian, a guardian that watches the health inside of a server to make sure that if anything does go wrong that is not corrected, that server is taken out of the cluster so that it won't affect the health of the rest of the cluster."

Oracle Coherence 3.5 provides native integration with Oracle WebLogic Server and Oracle WebLogic Portal, boosting the performance and scalability of applications deployed on these products. In addition, Oracle Coherence 3.5 also includes a significant performance boost in the Coherence*Web session management module. For more details, go here.