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Data Warehouse Platform Distribution

Oracle Tips by Burleson Consulting

The Data Warehouse Development Life Cycle

Distributed Oracle Data Warehouses

Platform Distribution (Vertical Distribution)

Platform distribution refers to the existence of databases that reside on a diversity of hardware platforms (see Figure 9.2). An example would be a FoxPro system on a PC-LAN using DB2 to communicate with a mainframe. Platform distribution is often used with client/server software applications so shared databases can be distributed to PCs connected to wide area networks.

Figure 9.2 Platform database distribution.

Architectural Distribution

Architectural distribution, shown in Figure 9.3, refers to distributed databases that involve different databases, many of which are not relational databases. Examples of architectural distribution include an object-oriented database that communicates with a relational database or a CODASYL database that communicates with a hierarchical database.

Figure 9.3 Architectural database distribution.

Contrary to popular opinion, architectural distribution can be the simplest form of database distribution to implement. By using the language preprocessors that come with a database, it is simple to embed commands for each of the databases in an architecture into a single program. When the program is compiled, each preprocessor is invoked, and the database calls are replaced by native calls. Using this method, a programmer can write a batch program that simultaneously communicates with a relational database and a non-relational database. For example, a JCL job stream on MVS could easily make Oracle MVS communicate with IMS. This approach is commonly used in the "master-slave" distributed database model where a master database is updated and a daily batch COBOLl program reads this database and updates several query-only databases in a different architecture. Master-slave distributed databases are discussed in more detail later in this chapter.

This is an excerpt from "High Performance Data Warehousing", copyright 1997.
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