SAP this week showcased how the SAP HANA in-memory computing platform has the potential to radically transform the physical contours of the data center in a way that makes enterprise IT environments a lot easier to manage.
At the SAP TechEd && d-code conference this week, SAP announced a version 9 implementation of SAP HANA that supports instances of SAP Adaptive Server Enterprise and SAP IQ software databases running directly on top of HANA. In addition, SAP highlighted the ability to run event-driven middleware and extract, transform and load (ETL) software running directly on top of HANA.
As expected, SAP also showcased how IT environments can be made more efficient using database containers that allow instances of SAP HANA to be run in isolation on the same core infrastructure platform.
Finally, SAP has introduced an ability to tier data across different types of memory and traditional magnetic storage. Mike Eacrett, VP of product management for SAP HANA, says this approach gives IT organizations greater control over hot versus warm data stored in the SAP HANA platform.
Eacrett says that collectively these offerings highlight how SAP is reducing the number of servers in the data center required to run software infrastructure. To underscore that point, SAP is also offering free trials of SAP HANA both in and out of the cloud.
The end goal, of course, is to free up more of the IT budget to spend on applications by greatly reducing the total cost of deploying and managing software and hardware infrastructure. In fact, Eacrett says customers can mix and match any SAP HANA data management tool depending on which data management products they already have installed in their environment.
The implications of a much smaller stack of software and servers for enterprise database applications will affect just about every aspect of an IT environment. At the end of the day, more powerful compute capacity is about to be packed into a space that is several orders of magnitude smaller than what organizations currently have. How each organization makes use of that compute density will vary. But the one thing that is for certain is that the economics of enterprise IT as we once knew it will never be the same.