Amazon DynamoDB Accelerator Reaches Preview
Amazon DynamoDB Accelerator Reaches Preview
Written by Kay Ewbank   
Tuesday, 23 May 2017

An accelerator for Amazon DynamoDB has been released in a public preview. The accelerator, called DAX, is a fully managed caching service that sits in front of your DynamoDB table to improve the performance on read-intensive workloads, so long as your app fits with eventually-consistent results. 

DynamoDB is a managed NoSQL database thatcan be used for both document and key-value data storage. Amazon says some DynamoDB customers are storing more than 100 terabytes in a single DynamoDB table and making millions of read or write requests per second. The Amazon retail site relies on DynamoDB and uses it to withstand the traffic surges associated with brief, high-intensity events such as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

The DAX accelerator is API-compatible with DynamoDB, though this preview version only has support for the Java SDK, and you'll need to use the specific DAX SDK for Java to communicate with DAX. This SDK communicates with your cluster using a low-level TCP interface that is fine-tuned for low latency and high throughput. Support for other languages is being promised 'as soon as possible'.

DAX is used as a managed service, so you just create a DAX cluster and use it as the target for your existing reads and writes. Administration aspects such as patching, cluster maintenance, replication, and fault management are managed for you. Clusters run within a VPC, with nodes spread across Availability Zones.

dax dash 1

Each DAX cluster can contain 1 to 10 nodes, and you can add nodes to increase overall read throughput. The cache size is based on the node size that you choose when you create the cluster.

The developer documentation says that DAX addresses three core scenarios:

  1. As an in-memory cache, DAX reduces the response times of eventually-consistent read workloads by an order of magnitude, from single-digit milliseconds to microseconds.

  2. DAX reduces operational and application complexity by providing a managed service that is API-compatible with Amazon DynamoDB, and thus requires only minimal functional changes to use with an existing application.

  3. For read-heavy or bursty workloads, DAX provides increased throughput and potential operational cost savings by reducing the need to over-provision read capacity units. This is especially beneficial for applications that require repeated reads for individual keys.

The public preview of DAX is available now in the US East (Northern Virginia), US West (Oregon), and EU (Ireland) Regions and you can use the public preview at no charge.


More Information


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