How MariaDB achieves global scale with Xpand

As information and processing needs have grown, pain points such as performance and resiliency have necessitated new solutions. Databases need to maintain ACID compliance and consistency, provide high availability and high performance, and handle massive workloads without becoming a drain on resources. Sharding has offered a solution, but for many companies sharding has reached its limits, due to its complexity and resource requirements. A better solution is distributed SQL.

In a distributed SQL implementation, the database is distributed across multiple physical systems, delivering transactions at a globally scalable level. MariaDB Platform X5, a major release that includes upgrades to every aspect of MariaDB Platform, provides distributed SQL and massive scalability through the addition of a new smart storage engine called Xpand. With a shared nothing architecture, fully distributed ACID transactions, and strong consistency, Xpand allows you to scale to millions of transactions per second.

Optimized pluggable smart engines

MariaDB Enterprise Server is architected to use pluggable storage engines (like Xpand) to optimize for particular workloads from a single platform. There is no need for specialized databases to handle specific workloads. MariaDB Xpand, our smart engine for distributed SQL, is the most recent addition to our lineup. Xpand adds massively scalable distributed transactional capabilities to the options provided by our other engines. Our other pluggable engines provide optimization for analytical (columnar), read-heavy workloads, and write-heavy workloads. You can mix and match replicated, distributed, and columnar tables to optimize every database for your specific requirements.

Adding MariaDB Xpand enables enterprise customers to gain all the benefits of distributed SQL – speed, availability, and scalability – while retaining the MariaDB benefits they are accustomed to.

Let’s take a high-level look at how MariaDB Xpand provides distributed SQL.

Distributed SQL down to the indexes

Xpand provides distributed SQL by slicing, replicating, and distributing data across nodes. What does this mean? We’ll use a very simple example with one table and three nodes to demonstrate the concepts. Not shown in this example is that all slices are replicated.

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