By now the users and the Informix community must be aware of the Informix on Cloud offering in the IBM Bluemix catalog. It is one of the most successful and widely talked about offering that came out in 2016. Since it was announced, the adoption has grown steadily and has become a popular choice for many Informix customers.
There are many reasons for its popularity and growth:
In this post I want to bring to your attention one of the most overlooked advantage of this cloud offering! When you purchase the IBM Informix on Cloud service, you are actually being entitled to the Advanced Enterprise Edition (AEE) of Informix. This is the highest tier edition of the Informix server and it includes all the functionality of Informix without any limits.
Storage optimization, commonly known as compression, is either unavailable or available as an optional for-purchase feature in all but the AEE of Informix. This feature allows you to compress the data and the indexes resulting in reduced disk space usage recurring cost savings. Depending on the data, storage space savings of up to 80% is not uncommon – refer to this white paper and this IBM developerWorks article.
Having Informix AEE also means that you are entitled to set up and use the Informix Warehouse Accelerator (IWA)! IWA is patented IBM technology for improving data warehouse queries drastically. IWA keeps a copy of the data in-memory, in a compressed columnar format, and performs query processing on the compressed data all while being transparent to the application layer. While the Informix on Cloud offering entitles you for using IWA on the provisioned system, it is not installed or configured. However all the necessary product files are copied to the directory /opt/ibm/iwa and is ready for you to take full advantage of the advanced warehousing capabilities by following these instructions. In a future post, I’ll write a simplified getting started guide on how to install and set up IWA with Informix on Cloud.
Now that you know these lesser known “secrets” of the Informix on Cloud offering, go ahead and make the most of it!
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