DatAllegro – The New Microsoft DW Appliance?

Why is it every time I take a week off on holiday something major happens in the BI market? I am of course talking about Microsoft’s Announcement to acquire the data warehouse appliance vendor DatAllegro. The message on this is certainly obvious, the scaling of SQL Server. It’s a very interesting announcement. With the exception of Netezza who have done well here in the UK and in Europe, many of the DW appliance vendors have been struggling. Almost all of them have been chasing business in the same vertical industries that have high volumes of data (e.g. Telco, Retail, Financial Services). Now the one giant that people were wondering about in terms of parallel DBMS scalability, has moved. However we are clearly going to have to wait to see how well SQL Server scales in this kind of setup. Even prior to this announcement the myth that SQL Server would not scale beyond 1 Terabyte has long been proved incorrect however. I have certainly had clients running single instance SQL Server BI system databases at around 13-15 terabytes for a number of years now. No doubt there are larger configurations than that out there. However this announcement will certainly lift Microsoft customer confidence that Redmond are serious about offering a scalable SQL Server option on non-proprietary hardware that starts to compete with the parallel DBMS offerings of IBM, Oracle and Teradata as well as other DW Appliance offerings. Time will tell what will happen and how competitive this will be. SQL Server Integration Services (the Microsoft ETL tool that ships with SQL Server) will also have to scale however to get larger data volumes on to a parallel SQL Server. So we have to see what Microsoft will do here. This announcement also offers up an interesting option for Kalido who recently announced support to generate for Microsoft SQL Server.


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