Latest Release of Sybase IQ Columnar Database Aims to Boost Analytics Adoption Throughout Organizations

Sybase, an SAP company, has announced the general availability of Sybase IQ 15.3, which aims to help enterprise IT departments overcome the scalability limitations of many data warehouse approaches. By implementing a business analytics information platform that allows sharing of computing and data resources through the new Sybase IQ PlexQ technology, the company says enterprises can break down user and information silos to increase analytics adoption throughout their entire organization.

The PlexQ shared-everything MPP architecture can scale to support real-time access to thousands of users, multiple mixed workloads and massive data sets. With Sybase IQ PlexQ, IT departments can implement virtual data marts in order to optimize the experience for different applications and user communities. According to Sybase, PlexQ dynamically balances query workloads across nodes on the grid for massively parallel processing of complex analytics at speeds 10 to 100 times faster than traditional data warehouses. And, according to Sybase, unlike current shared-nothing MPP architectures that are optimized for certain workloads, the combination of Sybase IQ's columnar data store, shared-everything grid, and logical servers ensures high performance for any query, any workload over any dataset.

There is a lot of talk about big data, but how to manage it and analyze it is only half the problem, obsreves David Jonker, senior product marketing manager of Sybase IQ.  "The other half is how do you make it more pervasive throughout the enterprise and from our perspective that is where a lot of the existing data warehousing solutions fall down." Organizations, he says, struggle to scale, to support many users and many workloads on the system and Sybase IQ is designed to address that, and does so specifically in 15.3 with the PlexQ technology. That is the major theme for 15.3 - not only handling even bigger data within the PlexQ environment but also handling many more users in a scalable way, he explains

PlexQ builds upon what was Sybase's MultiPlex technology in the past, "but really takes it to the next level," says Jonker. It is a shared-everything architecture for dealing with massively parallel processing, and it is "fundamentally different" than what other vendors are putting out, Jonker says. Sybase, he says, believes that shared-everything rather than shared-nothing is the right approach for companies to adopt because it gives them the same level of performance with the ability to process queries in parallel but it is much more flexible. The challenge with a shared-nothing architecture is that it tends to be optimized for a particular kind of workload or a particular kind of query based on how the data is being distributed across machines, Jonker contends. With shared-everything because data is not being partitioned across each machine, there is flexibility to support many different kinds of workloads versus being optimized for a very particular type.

Sybase has also added distributed query processing so that individual queries can be executed across many machines in a PlexQ grid for MPP, yet automatically balance workloads across the grid during peak periods. And in addition to that, has added the concept of logical servers to the PlexQ grid, allowing customers to group physical servers in a PlexQ grid into virtual clusters in order to optimize analytics workloads, user needs, and applications.  

Sybase IQ 15.3 also continues to expand Sybase IQ's capacity to integrate business analytics into applications and business workflows, by delivering APIs for both popular and emerging programming languages as well as a new web services interface that simplifies integration for software developers. With Sybase IQ, enterprises can run complex analytical models and algorithms within the database, eliminating the need for data mining algorithms inside business logic and accelerating overall performance of complex queries.

Sybase IQ also supports the analysis of unstructured data often used in business workflows, such as proprietary document formats, emails, web content, and now, with the new 15.3 release, enables analysis of unstructured multimedia data such as images, audio, and video, Jonker notes.

To learn more about Sybase IQ and the additional features of version 15.3, visit