Database management has become easy with the use of open source. There are plenty of solutions available in the market, which are backed by the community. Jagmeet Singh of OSFY talked with Pradeep Chandru, founder and CEO of Mafiree, to know about the latest developments in the world of database management. Chandru is a certified MySQL DBA and MySQL Cluster certified professional, and his team has over eight years of experience in database management. Here are edited excerpts from the interaction.
Q How are you exploring the capabilities of open source to support enterprises in India?
We come with ample expertise in MySQL. This has helped us fulfil the migration requirements of a large number of enterprise customers in India, with ease. We have shown our customers, through benchmarking, the improved performance a well-tuned open source solution can give them. We also leverage these use cases when we pitch for new enterprise customers.
Q Do you feel that open source has moved beyond just giving those starting a business a kickstart—that it has become a big movement, which is growing in the market?
Yes. In the current scenario, almost all types of industries have started exploring open source technologies to meet different needs. This includes even government bodies and PSUs. This is mainly due to the wide variety of options available in open source technologies, and besides, the requirements of today’s industries have also expanded to a great extent. The demand-supply balance in today’s world cannot be met only with proprietary technologies. Open source plays a critical role here.
Q Why did you choose MySQL to kickstart your database management operations?
Before becoming one of the founders of Mafiree, I had ventured into the MySQL world for more than half a decade. Hence, there was a natural affinity towards that technology. Being an open source platform, MySQL has scaled up to a level that no other contemporary open source RDBMS solution has been able to. Therefore, we were able to predict the enormous potential that MySQL possessed and wanted to help other open source enthusiasts in harvesting its benefits. We started by cracking a big deal with Sun Microsystems involving a migration from Oracle to MySQL. This was hugely successful for us and helped us start on this journey on a positive note.
Q Is it easy to opt for an open source solution like MySQL or PostgreSQL over Oracle and SAP to manage large data logs?
We were able to successfully migrate quite huge systems from Oracle to MySQL/Postgres. We have migrated systems that had more than 10TB of data and 4,500 concurrent users from an Oracle environment to MySQL, without degrading the performance. This is because we took advantage of many architectural features that were available in MySQL, which proved to be better than Oracle.
Q What are the challenges in migrating a database from a proprietary solution such as Oracle and SAP to an open source one like MySQL?
In old legacy systems, we have seen people use packages which may not have a direct equivalent in MySQL and we may have to use a workaround to manage this migration. But nowadays, it has become easier to migrate applications that use inline queries compared to a legacy application that uses stored processes, in which case we might need changes to be done in stored procedures.
Q How is open source helping database management nowadays?
Open source offers a lot of flexibility in customising alerts and managing a database system effectively. We can get to all the internals and look into detailed trace information to get more analysis on the alerts that we receive in MySQL and Postgres. Additionally, the collection of all the required statistics from an open source system helps in speedy identification and resolution of some of the major database issues.
Q Why would there be a need to reach out to Mafiree for deploying a database solution?
At Mafiree, we come with vast MySQL and Postgres expertise across verticals like e-commerce, logistics, travel and VAS, among others. We also manage the environments of leading e-commerce clients who require high uptime and faster response times. Mainly, we use our open source expertise to help the clients in scaling up their systems and ensuring that they get better throughput and response times, even during peak times.
We help clients implement the latest features that will benefit their current and future data requirements. We provide managed services for MySQL database server solutions such as community versions of MySQL, MariaDB, Percona (XtraDB engine) and TokuDB. Also, we manage large farms of NoSQL databases like MongoDB, CouchDB and Cassandra.
Mafiree comes with eight years of experience in implementing and managing database solutions and has the capability of managing hundreds of database servers across various technologies. We also possess very strong skill sets, with the average work experience of our employees being over eight years in database management.
Q Apart from database management, you also provide open source operating system support. What are the parameters you finetune on Linux platforms like Red Hat, CentOS or SUSE?
Our team is capable of performing any kind of performance improvement activities on Linux platforms. To be very specific, we do kernel tuning, TCP stats tuning and disk optimisation. Apart from these processes, we can bring in best practices in patching, upgrade and audit cycles. We also perform orchestration, as well as the recent advancements in arranging, managing and coordinating of systems, middleware and services.
Q What is the USP of Mafiree in the world of IT solutions providers?
Managing an in-house database team comes with a lot of practical difficulties. You need to ensure there are sufficient team members when there is an issue or during peak traffic times and also address attrition issues. However, working with Mafiree helps in eradicating these difficulties by ensuring that the required expert resources are available for different types of issues. We ensure that there is business continuity for the customers, and they can put their effort into improving their services or products, leaving the infrastructure and database management to us.
Q How does Mafiree effectively scale up the overall business architecture?
Mafiree plays an important role in getting the right kind of architecture in place for its clients. We can provide a fault-proof, scalable, consistent and high-performing IT solution for our clients. We also possess a young and enthusiastic team, with a keenness to learn and implement new technologies to improve the business operational efficiencies of our clients. We have done lots of reengineering activities that have resulted in performance gains for our customers.
Q Which part of the globe do you serve the most?
Most of our customers are from Delhi, Gurgaon, Noida, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Mumbai. We also have some clients from Australia, Dubai, UK and the US.
Q Last of all, do you plan to stick to open source solutions for future growth as well?
Yes, of course. Open source solutions are gearing up, and there are huge deployments being made on open source platforms. Big companies like Oracle and Microsoft are also venturing into this space, which shows the inevitable need for open source. We are increasing our strengths in the open source stack to ensure that we can cater to all the needs of our customers.