Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Why snowflake is leader ?

                  Do you know why snowflake is one of the leading cloud data warehouse platforms available in the current market? Are you also aware that how Snowflake has evolved over the period of time and still evolving and replacing traditional data warehouses? We are going to understand all these things in this article.


                  In this article, we are going to see the golden age in which we are living. we will also see the design for the traditional data warehouse. Then we will see how snowflake evolved over the number of years and then finally we will see what's making snowflake a leader in the cloud data warehouse market.

Golden Age:

                 Let's start with the Golden age. Currently, we live in the golden age of distributed computing. The public cloud platforms such as Amazon web services, Google cloud platform, or Microsoft Azure provides unlimited storage and compute resources and these resources are available on demand. Because of that only end-user can Enterprise-class experience for systems or applications with help of software as a service or SAAS model. For this experience, we do not have to spend a lot of money. These services are cost-efficient and perform well. Cloud Dataware leverages these features but not the traditional data warehouse.

                  Before going to see what are the drawbacks of the traditional data warehouse implementation. Let's have a look into the design of the traditional data warehouse. As we can see in this screen, the traditional data warehouse has multiple layers, Those are the data source layer, staging layer, warehouse layer, data mart layer, and client layer.

                  The data source layer brings the data from various sources such as Salesforce, CRM, Human Resources, etc. such data is stored in a traditional database or flat-file format, The ETL i.e. Extract transform, the load is implemented to pull data from source systems and push to staging layer. After performing cleansing standardization data is then loaded from the staging layer to the data warehouse. Along with Raw data, we also store metadata and a summary of data in the data warehouse. Finally, this data is published to the data mart. The data mart night be for sales, inventory, or for purchasing. On top of this layer data mart, the client layer will be present. The business users or business analysts will perform various operations in order to carry out in-depth data analysts, prepare the reports and perform data mining. All these users will connect to multiple data marts for their needs.

                   As we can see this traditional data warehouse model is complex and resource extensive traditional data ware model is designed considering the fact that it will deal with fixed resources. That was true earlier but with evolution technologies, social media, and advancement in the sector fixed resources design is no more relevant. We deal with a variety of data coming with different speeds and formats. Traditional data warehouses face challenges in managing all these aspects of data.

                 Another aspect of a traditional data warehouse is investment cost. we need to invest a big chunk of money in the early stages of data warehouse implement which is not the case with the cloud data warehouse.

                Complex ETL pipelines are another drawback of the traditional data warehouse. As we can see we need to build multiple pipelines to push data from data source to staging layer, staging layer to the data warehouse, and data warehouse to data mart. Adding flexibility to this flow is a very challenging thing for the traditional data warehouse. Hence snowflake comes into the picture. 

Snowflake Evolution:

We are going to see various things about snowflakes but before going to see features and the advancement in the snowflake, let's understand a few things related to snowflakes. currently, snowflake supports three cloud platforms. And those are amazon web services, google cloud platform and Microsoft azure snowflake supports various regions across the world and those are north America, Europe, Asia specific. Each of these regions is supported by respect cloud platforms i.e. Amazon web services, google cloud platform and Microsoft azure.

                Let's have look at how snowflake evolved over the period of time snowflake was founded in the year 2012 and was published in Oct 2014. In the same year, it come with the Amazon S3 platform once it become more stable, it introduced Microsoft azure cloud in 2018, and in this year 2019 Google cloud platform was introduced. As we can see, within a short period of time this product has evolved a lot. It will support three major cloud service providers, i.e. Amazon, Google, and Microsoft. As it progresses, it will support many more cloud providers in the future. Snowflake was number one rank in cloud 100 in this year 2019. Snowflake is one of the leading tools in the cloud data warehouse market.

                So, what makes snowflake a leading platform? The critical aspect about snowflake is it segregated storage and compute layer traditional data warehouse either support shared-nothing architecture or shared disk architecture. On other hard snowflake brought a hybrid approach on the table with benefits from both shared-nothing & shared disk approach. Apart from it, the snowflake is a pure software as a service, product .i.e users don't have to worry about software installation, administration, product upgrades, etc. It also supports ASSI SQL and ACID transactions. semi-structured data which is difficult to manage with a traditional data warehouse is easily managed & maintained using a snowflake cloud data warehouse. The Elastic storage of computing resources can be scaled independently and seamlessly. That's a very critical aspect brought by a snowflake. It is highly available and it is durable. And of course, it is cost-efficient snowflake is also working on improving cost efficiency furthermore. Last but not least snowflake is secure and comes with end-to-end encryption.

              Because of all those features snowflake is the leader in the cloud data warehouse.

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