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Amazon Redshift now available

After an earlier announcement and limited preview period, Amazon Web Services' Redshift, a cloud-based data warehouse, is now widely available for the first time.

Redshift is expected to compete with offerings from a number of traditional data warehouse providers, including IBM, HP and Oracle, GigaOM noted. The AWS platform claims to offer high level data warehouse capabilities for as little as one-tenth the cost of more established solutions.

Infoworld noted that Redshift offers users significant flexibility concerning their data needs. Users can provision a single 2 terabyte data warehouse, 16 2TB node cluster or 16TB nodes by default, the news source stated. On-demand pricing is an hourly rate of $0.85 for an XL node and $6.80 per hour for an 8XL node.

The news source emphasized the importance of security for data warehouses, and noted that Redshift features a number of sophisticated features in this regard. Citing AWS, Infoworld reported that all data written to a specific Redshift cluster is automatically replicated to additional nodes and constantly backed up to the Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). This ensures a high degree of reliability for data stored in Redshift.

Leveraging Redshift
As these and other news organizations have noted, Redshift holds tremendous potential for firms looking to take advantage of the cloud for data warehousing. Until recently, companies had no choice but to rely on on-premise solutions for this purpose. This limited flexibility and scalability, resulting in suboptimal efficiency.

Cloud-based data warehouse solutions such as Redshift, on the other hand, ensure greater information access for employees, which can be vital for improved big data analytics and business intelligence (BI) operations. With a cloud-based data warehouse, all authorized users within the organization can access corporate big data from anywhere at any time.

This is vital, as on-premise warehouses often lead to difficulties concerning the sharing of raw data. If data is created and stored in one location, it can be challenging to share this information with other data centers in a quick, efficient manner. This can make real-time analytics an impossibility. Redshift avoids this issue.

To make the most of Redshift, however, firms must have tools in place to upload data from on-premise systems, where it is typically generated, and into the cloud environment. Without a dedicated solution, this may prove extremely difficult. If a company cannot easily move data to its cloud-based warehouse, many of the benefits of these solutions will be undercut.

That is why companies should invest in dedicated cloud replication systems. With these tools, firms can take full advantage of Redshift, easily moving data into and out of its cloud environment quickly and without risk of loss or unauthorized access.

One of the most effective of these solutions is Attunity CloudBeam. CloudBeam is a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) platform featuring replication and managed file transfer (MFT) tools specifically designed to work in conjunction with Redshift.