Important SSD changes coming to Oracle servers

Last week Sun Microsystems made the stunning announcement that virtually all of their new servers will come with 32 gigabytes of super-fast solid-state disk (SSD).  Sun notes that their internal SSD consumes one-fifth the power and is a hundred times faster than the magnetic-coated spinning platter disk.  They note that SSD is perfect for I/O intensive systems like Oracle applications.  Sun notes:

"The majority of enterprises building I/O-intensive applications will use some amount of flash within a year, Fowler predicted. Databases like Oracle, MySQL and IBM DB2 are ideal candidates, he says."

Today, 99.99% of all Oracle data is stored on the ancient spinning platter disks that were introduced in the 1970's, but disk technology is rapidly being displaced with RAM-based SSD which is hundreds of time faster than magnetic-coated spinning platter disks.

In the 1980's, platter disks was very expensive, and a 1.2 gigabyte 3380 disk sold for more than $200k.  Today, you can buy high-speed SSD for Oracle for under $1k per gigabyte.  For terabyte sized Oracle shops, SSD is being selectively used for redo and other tablespaces where I/O is a bottleneck.

Following Sun's lead, several other major hardware providers are following suit and hundreds of hardware vendors will be providing SSD for use by Oracle systems.

Oracle benchmarks have shown that SSD can be up to 600 times faster for some operations, and SSD does not experience platter or controller latency, leading to far faster throughput.

As prices continue to fall, SSD will replace platter disks for all mission critical Oracle databases, and this will lead to some fundamental changes in Oracle administration, especially within the SGA.  Because all data is stored on RAM, the data buffer cache size becomes far less important.

Read more about the huge benefits  of Solid State Oracle here:


2008 Survey of rack-mount SSD vendors:

SSD clobbers disk speed for Oracle:

Using RAC with SSD:


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