At USPS, Houston and Atkins say data protection is one of the greatest challenges of using in-memory databases. USPS currently performs all its heavy processing in-memory, then feeds the relevant results back to a relational database. The Postal Service also maintains a checkpoint file of the transactions running in-memory, so some limited recovery may be performed should an outage occur.
"We have reasonable assurances that the most important data to us is protected," the officials say.
The task of recovering an in-memory system from the check point file, however, takes some doing.
"As you can imagine, reading back in 16TB can take considerable time from traditional storage media," Houston and Atkins note, referring to the size of the Postal Service's in-memory data store. "To address this issue, we are currently exploring adding flash card technology closer to processing in hopes of changing our reload time from hours to minutes."
John Moore has written on business and technology topics for more than 20 years. His areas of focus include mobile app development, health IT, cloud computing, government IT and distribution channels. Follow everything from CIO.com on TwitterTwitter @CIOonline, Facebook, Google + and LinkedIn. Alles zu Twitter auf CIO.de