Nutanix Era: One-click Database Operations

Oct 5, 2020

Dan Fallon
Sr. Director, Systems Engineering – Public Sector

Traditional database operations are complex and inefficient. Engineers typically leverage multiple solutions for database operations such as provisioning, cloning, and refreshing. This results in a complex environment that slows agility and efficiency. When working with enterprise databases, for example, DBAs do not just clone a production instance exactly as-is but also must ensure the ability to create these clones from any point in time.

In frustration, many organizations are turning to cloud-hosted solutions which, while more agile, introduce significant operational changes and often much higher (and sometimes hidden) costs. Now organizations have an on-premises alternative; Nutanix Era provides the agility and simplicity of public cloud solutions, but at a much lower cost.

Nutanix Era gives organizations a Database-as-a-Service (DBaaS) model for managing and operating their databases, enabling standardization across the database estate while introducing efficiency, agility, scalability, and cost savings. Most importantly, Era enables the same type of simplicity and operating efficiency that you would expect from a public cloud while allowing DBAs to maintain control. This is all provided through a simple-to-use and intuitive interface— regardless of the database.

Why Nutanix Era?

Nutanix Era is a software suite that automates and simplifies database administration, bringing one-click simplicity and invisible operations to database provisioning and lifecycle management. With one-click database provisioning and copy data management as its first services, Nutanix Era allows DBAs to provision, clone, refresh, and backup their databases to any point in time.

The rich and straightforward UI, CLI enable DBAs to clone their environments to the latest application-consistent transaction. The API-first Era architecture allows you to easily integrate with your preferred self-service tools or even automate the entire stack. Every operation has a unique ID and is fully visible for auditing.

Shift DBA Focus to High-Value Activities

Nutanix Era brings a new approach to database administration that changes the nature of the DBA role. DBAs no longer need to spend the majority of their time on common tasks of database administration such as provisioning, patching, and lifecycle management. Era automates and simplifies these burdens. Copying a database becomes as easy as copy and paste operations on your computer.

For example, one of Nutanix’s enterprise customer’s application development team was under constant pressure to add new functionalities required by the line of business. The lone Oracle DBA struggled just to keep up with provisioning, tuning, and cloning existing databases—let alone handling new requests. Less than one-quarter of her time was spent on more forward-looking and higher-value activities. The customer was still trying to find the specialized Oracle skill sets required to fill two open DBA positions after 18 months.

Nutanix showed them how Era could enable the single DBA to meet the organization’s database requests while saving $2.6M in TCO over five years—savings resulting from labor efficiency, lower third-party technology costs, and reduced storage costs.

Era removed the complexity of common database operations through one-click automation, shrinking the amount of time spent on these common activities by approximately 87%. Because the single DBA could now handle the new project requests, the customer realized an annual savings of $400K, and the DBA could shift focus to higher-value, forward-looking activities such capacity planning, performance tuning, security compliance, and new projects.

Reduce Costs

An investment in Nutanix Era can allow customers to reduce the cost associated with database administration tool sets. In addition to the TCO saved through operational efficiencies, reduction in storage and management technology costs, and improved time to deployment, additional significant savings can result from a reduced need for Oracle licensing due to use of Nutanix Enterprise Cloud features.

Our customer was paying $116,622 in annual support costs for Oracle Lifecycle Management, Cloud Management Pack, and Advanced Compression. Era empowered the customer to reduce the organization’s reliance on specialized skill sets, custom scripting, and technology support costs.

Era also reduced the time required for projects. We determined the annual cost associated with project delays was $67,600; with Era automation, the customer expected to reduce DBA-related process cycles by 50%, resulting in a $33,800 annual opportunity cost savings.

Shrink Storage Requirement for Clones and Backups

DBAs handle many requests for database copies and backups during development, upgrade, and testing cycles. These complete database copies often result in high storage costs and lengthy backup and recovery times. For our customer study, we calculated an annual copy storage cost of $172,800.

Nutanix Era copy data management services provide for zero-byte database clones recoverable to any point in time. This results in a 6x reduction in data storage requirements or $28,800 annually for that specific customer. With Era, copy data management operations for databases that are terabytes in size are just as easy as copy and paste operations on your personal computer.

Nutanix Era copy data management services include:

  • Time Machine enforcement for database retention of Service Level Agreements (SLAs): Powers one-click database copy and paste operations from any point in time while retaining consistent backups as defined by your SLAs.
  • One-click cloning and refresh: Zero-byte database clones to any point in time with the option of inserting pre- or post-masking scripts.
  • One-click backup: Consumer-grade database operations for backing up any size database in a full database consistent manner within a matter of minutes.
  • Database catalog: Customizable database profiles for software, computer, networking, and database parameters.

Download Our Free Resource to learn more about how Nutanix ERA can transform your database administration.