How to Modernize Your Traditional Database in 2020
If your data center is like many others, you have several important applications that rely on traditional database implementations. For example, it’s not unusual for companies to have business-critical applications that use dataset-based file systems, such as VSAM, like databases. In this age, where having up-to-the-instant business intelligence (BI) information is a competitive necessity, that can be a significant disadvantage for your company.
Why Legacy Databases Need to be Modernized
Traditional database systems, many of which have been in use for decades, lack several features that are a practical necessity in the age of big data. For one thing, they were conceived in an era in which corporate databases were isolated islands of information with limited, strictly defined user bases. Modern databases, in contrast, are required to support a different set of applications and users by providing anywhere, anytime access to a single source of truth system of record for all the organization’s business data.
This means that the information stored in the database must be universally available in real-time within the organization (for authorized users) across multiple platforms such as mainframes, the cloud, and distributed processing and analysis systems such as Hadoop.
Another deficiency of traditional database systems is that they cannot be queried by what has become today’s database lingua franca, SQL. As IBM puts it, “When we talk about a modern database, SQL is a requirement.” SQL provides a standard, platform-independent language for retrieving and correlating stored data most efficiently.
Finally, most traditional database designs are deficient in terms of their scalability and flexibility in the face of exponential data growth and rapid changes in market conditions.
Does Modernization Require Migration to a New DBMS?
The most direct means of upgrading a traditional database is to transition to a modern relational database management system (RDBMS) such as DB2. This can be, however, a complex and time-consuming process that not every company is ready to undertake. If you do choose to migrate from VSAM or IMS to DB2, Syncsort provides an indispensable tool, called Elevate IMS, which substantially simplifies the process, and allows you to stage the migration at your own pace without the risks of manual conversion.
The alternative to migration is to use a change data capture (CDC) system to stream changes in your legacy database in real-time to a data lake, whether in the cloud or a distributed file system such as Hadoop, as well as to DB2 or another RDBMS that provides SQL query capability. Syncsort’s Connect CDC is designed to make that process as easy as possible.
How Connect CDC Can Help You Modernize Your Database
Connect CDC allows you to build streaming data pipelines that capture and distribute database changes in real-time. It instantly replicates data across a range of platforms, including cloud data stores, streaming frameworks like Apache Kafka, relational database management systems, and Hadoop data lakes, ensuring that they are always up to date.
And it’s highly fault-tolerant. If streaming is interrupted for any reason, Connect CDC automatically restarts at that exact point, ensuring that data is neither lost nor duplicated. No manual intervention is required.
Because Connect CDC only streams changes to your data rather than entire datasets, its impact on network bandwidth is minimal. Its change data capture functionality is log-based, so it won’t degrade the performance of your database. And its effect on CPU performance is similarly negligible.
With Connect CDC you can continue using your legacy databases, along with all the venerable but crucial applications that depend on them, while providing the real-time universal access, SQL compatibility, flexibility, and scalability that the are hallmarks of a modern database system.