Feeds

Terracotta straps on Ehcache speed engine

A veritable Java cluster-fix

Top three mobile application threats

Terracotta bought Ehcache to get its hands on a widely distributed set of caching APIs to simplify deployment of clusters of servers running Java virtual machines on high-volume web sites.

Two months later the Terracotta JVM clustering and Ehcache caching programs are being delivered as an integrated product.

Amit Pandey, Terracotta's chief executive officer, says the Ehcache integration is bringing two main benefits to the Terracotta JVM clustering software, which had its own caching algorithms.

The first is significantly reduced response times on Java transactions, with response times on retrieving data for Java applications running inside of JVMs falling from 150 to 200 milliseconds as they go out to disks down to something on the order of one to two milliseconds as data is pulled out of main memory, where frequently used data is cached.

This speed is important, since in many cases it allows backend databases to be more lightly configured than they would otherwise be because the data requirements are being met by the cache, which saves lots of money on hardware and software licenses.

While speed and scale are certainly important - that is what the Terracotta JVM clustering software - what Ehcache has brought to Terracotta is a large number of customers who already have applications that have been written to take advantage of the open source caching tool for Java.

According to Pandey, Ehcache, which is distributed under the Apache open-source license, has several hundred thousand production applications already running in conjunction with it, and it has about a 70 per cent market share of Java caching software. Including a piddling amount from Terracotta's own product, which required customers to tweak their code to support it. Obviously, that sort of approach doesn't work well until you are dominant in your space.

This deal really came about, says Pandey, to get Ehcache and its APIs, now called Terracotta for Caching, woven into the Terracotta JVM clustering environment. Some customers had already integrated the two products themselves - which they can do because they are open source products - and were clamoring for tighter integration and official support.

Ehcache does the caching for a single server supporting JVMs in the new Terracotta setup, and the Terracotta clustering software does the same job it did before. That is, synchronizing the in-memory data for Java applications - using locking mechanisms so the data stays in synch across hundreds of server nodes running the cache software - and backing them up onto disk so as data changes, there is a hard copy out there on the iron.

Terracotta for Caching comes in three flavors. The Ehcache DX edition is for standalone and peer-to-peer replicated caches, and this one is distributed for free. The Ehcache EX edition puts the cache on a an array of Terracotta clustered servers and adds a bunch of system management features; support for the EX edition runs to $5,000 per node for a year of support.

The full-on Ehcache FX edition adds data striping to the Terracotta cluster to boost performance and partitioned caches for what Pandey calls "extreme scale." This runs at $8,000 per node per year, in a setup that includes multiple active-active Terracotta servers and spanning maybe 100 to 150 Java server nodes.

Pandey says Terracotta has stress-tested the combined Ehcache-Terracotta clustered Java caches at up to 150 server nodes, something it did at the request of one of its customers. The companies' biggest customers tend to have somewhere between 75 and 100 Java servers, and the average customers tends to have around 10 to 12, according to Pandey.

Having created a Java caching system that can scale to hundreds of nodes, what is next for Terracotta? Well, not PHP.

While Pandey said Terracotta could build a similar setup that would allow for the caching of data for PHP applications and the scaling of those PHP applications, the Java market is big enough for a startup.

The company has talked about revving the product to support Microsoft's .NET languages and their Common Language Runtime environment - something that Pandey said the company could put together in a few months time. ®

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

More from The Register

next story
NO MORE ALL CAPS and other pleasures of Visual Studio 14
Unpicking a packed preview that breaks down ASP.NET
Captain Kirk sets phaser to SLAUGHTER after trying new Facebook app
William Shatner less-than-impressed by Zuck's celebrity-only app
Apple fanbois SCREAM as update BRICKS their Macbook Airs
Ragegasm spills over as firmware upgrade kills machines
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
Mozilla fixes CRITICAL security holes in Firefox, urges v31 upgrade
Misc memory hazards 'could be exploited' - and guess what, one's a Javascript vuln
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
Google shows off new Chrome OS look
Athena springs full-grown from Chromium project's head
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.