When timing tells as much as the news
Caring for orphans of the 3000

Reorg module opens new windows on maintenance

Some of the largest databases in the HP 3000 community now have a new path to dramatic performance improvements. This year’s add-on module for Bradmark’s DBGeneral software enables partial dataset reorganizations — a way for companies who “race to daylight” with IMAGE/SQL maintenance to break their race into multiple heats.

Bradmark’s founder Brad Tashenberg came up with the fundamental technology concept, according to the MPE and HP 3000 R&D leader Jerry Fochtman. “About six to eight months ago we came upon the concept to move forward with this enhancement,” he said. Enhancements like Partial Reorg are part of Bradmark's 3000 plan, he added. “When HP made its announcement about leaving the market in 2001, we said we’d stay with the users as long as they needed us.”

BradmarkreorgThere’s more to being a 3000 vendor than just staying in the market. Products that can improve performance need to continue to evolve, particularly in a community where hardware upgrade funding can be hard to justify.

Many HP 3000 vendors have remained in the community since 2001. Fewer continue to enhance products for their customers. DBGeneral’s new Partial Reorg, offered as an separate-cost module, reduces processing time by more than 90 percent according to Bradmark’s test results.

The software went into beta testing in November, then rolled into general release at the end of 2005. Customers who can’t reorganize their databases inside a single maintenance window — third shift hours, for example, or a weekend — can have DBGeneral work on segments of the database, one at a time, to fit inside the available maintenance window.

Figures from Bradmark’s tests show that a 60-million-entry database with 50,000 keys saw its reorg time drop from 130 hours to 4.5 hours. The DBGeneral software module clusters records together by key value while maintaining chronological sequence on all chains. Fochtman said that improvements to MPE/iX filespace structures and other OS enhancements made the new optimization possible.