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February 15, 2012

HP Breathes New Life into Real-Time Platform

Nicole Hemsoth

HP has been in the R&D kitchen with adoptee Vertica cooking up the freshest release of the Vertica analytics platform.

The new version, 5.1, comes with a number of ease of use and integration enhancements baked in and a snazzy counterargument against those who said it had an the out-of-date interface.

As Vertica stated today, the real-time big (like petabyte-big) platform is stepping out this week with a shiny new GUI that’s visually more in line with other competing GUI-style-conscious analytics products.

HP Vertica says this update provides the continued capability to analyze petabyte datasets in real time—a factor that is (arguably of course) the key point of differentiation of the platform. One can also argue that the real-time and large dataset-ready nature of Vertica were key components behind the HP purchase of the company last year, in addition to users’ capability to deploy across a number of environments (on-site, cloud, etc.).

Aside from these enhancements on the visual and core functionality front, there were a number of updates made to the overall integration and usability on the lower level. These enhancements include:

A new client framework with broad platform support and ODBC and JDBC drivers that have been completely rewritten and optimized for big data analytics use-cases. The new implementation greatly improves the drivers’ quality, standards compliance, compatibility with third-party tools, performance, and platform support.

Integration with the broader big data ecosystem, including with Hadoop distros based on Apache Commons Release 1.0.0, including Hortonworks Data Platform v1.  In addition, Vertica’s Informatica Plugin has been updated with several quality and performance improvements.

Integration with Autonomy IDOL 10, since the release is an important component of Autonomy IDOL 10, an information platform that delivers real-time contextual understanding of structured and unstructured data. IDOL 10 provides a single processing layer that enables organizations to extract meaning and act on all forms of information, including audio, video, social media, email, and web content, as well as structured data such as customer transaction logs and machine-based sensor data.

Colin Mahony, VP in the business development camp at the Mass.-based Vertica says the new console has a “cool” look and feel now. However, aside from the mere aesthetics of the update, “the process of creating a new Vertica cluster, adding nodes, dropping databases and keeping track of system performance is now as simple as dragging and dropping icons and watching a system health dashboard.”

Speaking of Colin, this is a pretty decent video that describes Vertica—not just from a technology perspective, but in terms of how it fits in with HP’s existing set of products.