Chapter 1. Overview

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Chapter 1. Overview

1.1. What is VoltDB?

VoltDB is a revolutionary new database product. Designed from the ground up to be the best solution for high performance business-critical applications, the VoltDB architecture is able to achieve 45 times higher throughput than current database products. The architecture also allows VoltDB databases to scale easily by adding processors to the cluster as the data volume and transaction requirements grow.

Current commercial database products are designed as general-purpose data management solutions. They can be tweaked for specific application requirements. However, the one-size-fits-all architecture of traditional databases limits the extent to which they can be optimized.

Although the basic architecture of databases has not changed significantly in 30 years, computing has. As have the demands and expectations of business applications and the corporations that depend on them.

VoltDB is designed to take full advantage of the modern computing environment:

  • VoltDB uses in-memory storage to maximize throughput, avoiding costly disk access.

  • Further performance gains are achieved by serializing all data access, avoiding many of the time-consuming functions of traditional databases such as locking, latching, and maintaining transaction logs.

  • Scalability, reliability, and high availability are achieved through clustering and replication across multiple servers and server farms.

VoltDB is a fully ACID-compliant transactional database, relieving the application developer from having to develop code to perform transactions and manage rollbacks within their own application. By using a subset of ANSI standard SQL for the schema definition and data access, VoltDB also reduces the learning curve for experienced database designers.

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