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Teradata Universe 17: IntelliFlex 2.0 vaunted as emblem of flexibility

At its Universe conference in Nice, Teradata announces an upgrade to its MPP IntelliFlex platform in line with what it says is a fresh flexibility towards customers

Teradata has upgraded the IntelliFlex platform it announced at 2016’s version of its customer conference, Universe.

At this year’s conference, held in Nice, it also announced “IntelliBase”, billed as a system “capable of delivering a complete logical data warehouse in a solitary cabinet”.

Both developments are said to be part of an intensification of customer focus on the part of the supplier. 

In a media briefing on the eve of the conference, Victor Lund, chief executive officer, said Teradata had lost focus on the customer in recent years. “It seemed like we were afraid of [open source big data technology] Hadoop, while our customers have been using it,” he said.

Chris Twogood, vice-president of solutions and product marketing, added that Teradata does not “lead with technology when going into customers. We look to help them find business outcomes”.

He gave the example of a “vessel manufacturer that was looking to do predictive maintenance, and we went in with [programming language] R, Hadoop, SAS, and Teradata in combination”.

Nevertheless, the supplier has announced an all-memory update to its own IntelliFlex platform that it said delivers extreme performance and storage density in a single, ultra-efficient cabinet.

“The upgrades are empowered by a move to all solid state drives (SSD), which makes it possible to reduce required data centre space while delivering a massive increase in processing power for mission-critical analytics,” the supplier added.

In 2016, in a similar eve-of-conference media briefing, Oliver Ratzesberger, then president of Teradata Labs, said Intelliflex – which was the name of its massively parallel processing (MPP) software – broke the “drawback” link between storage and compute.

Read more about Teradata Universe

“Our customers have been asking us about scaling processing and storage independently. MPP platforms have traditionally had the limitation that compute and storage come together. However, sometimes you need more storage, and sometimes more compute,” he said.

The novelty of the IntelliBase cabinet is said to be its enablement of companies “to architect their analytic ecosystems to match their needs today, but also provides the versatility to repurpose hardware to meet tomorrow’s changing business requirements. For example, a compute node used for Hadoop can later be converted to run Teradata database,” said the supplier.

Both products are offered on-premises, with Teradata IntelliCloud availability said to be coming.

Tony Baer, principal analyst at Ovum, said in a Teradata press statement: “Customers are demanding flexibility. The emergence of Hadoop and big data analytics doesn’t replace traditional data warehousing, it complements them.

“Teradata is taking advantage of advances in commodity infrastructure and combining it with its own value-add to deliver an engineered platform”.

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