Archive for June, 2009

By Mayank Bawa in Blogroll on June 29, 2009

We are announcing the availability of an Enterprise-Ready MapReduce Data Warehouse Appliance.

The appliance is powered by Dell hardware and Aster’s nCluster SQL/ MR database, with optional software for BI platform from Microstrategy and data modeling software from Aqua Data Studio.

Our product portfolio now allows our customers to get the benefits of our flagship Aster nCluster SQL/MR database in the packaging that they are most comfortable with - on-premise software, in-cloud service, or pre-packaged appliance.

The appliance offering packs a lot of punch compared to other data warehousing appliances in the market - it has the highest ratio of compute & memory to data sizes, allowing you to run rich queries on the appliance without breaking a sweat.

We are especially proud of the open nature of our appliance - the hardware is from Dell built from industry-standard components, the BI server is from Microstrategy, and the data modeling tool is from AquaFold (Aqua Data Studio). The appliance brings together industry-leading components of a full data warehouse stack together - all pre-tested and configured for optimal performance.

Even the programming of our appliance is open - our SQL/MR framework allows applications to push computation into the appliance using industry standard SQL augmented with MapReduce in the language of your choice (Java, C#, Perl, Python, etc.).

We have been approached by a number of customers seeking a get-started-quickly system, especially those groups of users and departments seeking a Hadoop framework to build their solutions upon.

In response to the requests, we are proud to announce an Express Edition of the appliance that is designed to work for upto 1TB of user data. And it comes in an even more attractive price - that of $50K only - complete with hardware and software!

Give us a call - we’ll get your warehouse setup on our appliance to ensure that the time-to-first-query is measured in hours, not months!

By rpai in Frontline data warehouse on June 19, 2009

I am excited to be announcing Aster’s Global Partner Program which will be singularly focused on empowering our software and service provider partners grow robust, profitable businesses solving rich, big data analytics challenges for end customers.

Aster is leading a revolution in frontline data warehousing and analytic solutions and has shown success with several marquee customers. Earlier this year we launched our channel efforts and as I look ahead channel partners will play a critical role in Aster’s strategy and success. Through industry domain expertise, specialized data management knowledge and experience, our partners extend Aster’s offerings helping our customers maximize their investment and benefit from innovative “Aster-powered” solutions.

In this blog, I want to focus on outlining the differentiating value Aster brings to partner service providers and independent software (application) vendors.

In a recent analyst briefing, after presenting Aster’s company and product differentiators, I was asked why a service provider (system integrator) gets excited about working with Aster.

I responded with my top 3 reasons:

- Gain access to new “big-data” (e.g. risk management, customer targeting, churn analysis, customer behavior analysis) projects at enterprises across vertical domains

- Deliver real economic benefits to enterprises by changing the business of enterprise data warehousing (challenging current norms of scale, performance and price)

- Opportunity to build a high margin, competitive, domain-specific services practice working w/ the world-class Aster product team

As we continue to push the envelope of technical innovation with our application-friendly relational database, we are witnessing a surge of interest from application software vendors (and developers) who realize analytics and big data management cannot be an after-thought.

Savvy application developers realize storing and analyzing structured and semi-structured user and usage data are critical to success. Being able to plan and provision a robust, proven internet-scale database for current and growing data needs is now a necessity.

With the rapid consolidation in the enterprise application market (thank you, Oracle) and constant pressure to harvest economic value of business data, we notice the shift in application development:

- Application developers and vendors want a data platform which scales elastically with business (and not held captive to proprietary hardware vendor lock-ins) while being flexible to be deployed on-premise or in the cloud

- Demand for a data platform which can seamlessly embrace the power of relational (SQL) with modern frameworks for big data processing (MapReduce) with overall lower total cost of ownership so developers can focus on applications (and not manageability, scalability, reliability of data)

To get more details check out or to join as a partner click on

By Peter Pawlowski in Blogroll on June 9, 2009

The Aster SQL/MapReduce framework allows developers to push analytics code for applications closer to the data in the database, without dealing with the headaches of extracting and analyzing data outside of the database. We’ve supported a variety of language from day one, including Java, Python, and Perl. Today we’re pleased to announce official support for the .NET family of languages via Mono, an excellent open source .NET implementation. This will allow developers who use .NET languages like C# and VB (and, of course, F#) to more easily leverage nCluster for massively parallel analytics.

Our .NET support is enabled through our Stream SQL/MR function, which allows users to process data via a simple streaming interface: provide a program that reads rows from the console (stdin) and writes rows back to the console (stdout). Let’s consider a simple C# program called Tokenize, which splits incoming rows into tokens, and then output each token (one per line):

To run this program over data stored in nCluster, a developer just needs to compile the above Tokenize.cs into Tokenize.exe with a C# compiler (in our case, the Mono C# compiler gmcs). With the compiled executable in hand, one command in our terminal client will install it in nCluster. The program can be then invoked from SQL. The below example will run the program over all the rows in the documents table, outputting a table with a single column (token). Each row in the result of the query will correspond to a single token in the input documents.

It’s as simple as that. We hope our new .NET support will enable an ever-broader group of developers take advantage of SQL/MR, our in-database analytics technology!If you’re interested in learning more, please check out a host of new resources around our implementation of MapReduce within Aster nCluster including example applications and code.

By Mayank Bawa in Blogroll on June 5, 2009

 Rajeev was a close friend and a cherished mentor. We were saddened to hear the news today and we will miss him dearly. Our thoughts are with his family.