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Financial Data firm consolidates legacy Oracle databases into a single global CockroachDB deployment

A global financial data firm migrated off Oracle and modernized its infrastructure by migrating to CockroachDB and creating a single hybrid, geo-partitioned deployment.

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A large financial data firm with offices around the globe modernized its infrastructure by migrating to CockroachDB and creating a single hybrid, geo-partitioned deployment.

 

Overview

An American financial data firm was frustrated by its legacy Oracle database architecture
and decided to explore new solutions. The team sought to consolidate their numerous
databases around the globe into a single platform and migrate apps to the cloud. They
turned to CockroachDB for its ability to deploy across both on-premise machines and cloud
data centers, and they took advantage of the Enterprise geo-partitioned replicas feature to
achieve high read and write performance. After migrating its identity and access
management system, the firm plans to migrate more apps from Oracle to CockroachDB.

 

Challenge

A large financial and customer data firm headquartered in the United States was facing the
tasks of consolidating its legacy databases and migrating to public cloud infrastructure.
Over the years, the firm had grown in size through numerous acquisitions. It had
accumulated a multitude of Oracle databases and application platforms spread around the
globe, in the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Europe. The team decided they needed to simplify
and modernize their application architecture. They planned to migrate many of their
systems to Google Cloud Platform (GCP), while keeping some systems in traditional data
centers.

Their first priority was to modernize their identity and access management system,
followed by a user service that tracks application authorization. After that, there were
various additional applications they needed to modernize. The team ruled out direct lift-and-shift migration of their legacy database systems since their Oracle databases were inordinately expensive and poorly suited for multi-datacenter cloud deployments. They decided to explore new solutions.

 

Requirements

The team had several requirements for their replacement database. First and foremost,
they wanted a single solution that could span their nine physical and cloud regions around
the globe. Since they planned to keep some data on-prem and migrate other data to GCP,
their new database must achieve a hybrid cloud deployment. However, within this global
setting, the team needed low latency reads and writes.

 

Solution: A Hybrid, Multi-Region CockroachDB Deployment

The financial data firm evaluated multiple options, including Google Spanner, but they
found that Spanner couldn’t bridge both cloud and on-prem servers. They ultimately chose
CockroachDB because it offered them the flexibility and high performance they required.
CockroachDB’s architecture allows developers to deploy the same software across on-prem
servers and cloud regions, creating a single logical cluster that can address all data around
the globe and can be accessed from any node. With this characteristic, the financial data
firm could create the hybrid cloud deployment they needed.


CockroachDB also allowed the team to attain the high read and write performance they
required. The first application the firm migrated, their identity access management
microservice, was a compelling fit for CockroachDB’s geo-partitioning features because the
entities being authenticated are strongly tied to specific geographic regions. The team
initially deployed CockroachDB across four GCP regions and two on-prem datacenters.
Within each region, there are three different availability zones that each house one
CockroachDB node. CockroachDB’s Enterprise geo-partitioned replicas feature then
allowed the team to pin replicas of data to locations to minimize latency. By default,
CockroachDB replicates data and distributes the replicas in a way that maximizes
geographic diversity. This replication and distribution allows the database to remain
available in the event of an outage. With the geo-partitioned replicas feature, all replicas
are constrained to the region closest to the end-user, in order to reduce read and write
latency. The replicas are then pinned to different datacenters within that region so the data can survive availability zone failures. This pattern provides high availability without sacrificing performance.

 

Results and What’s Next

With CockroachDB, the financial data firm has found a solution for its new cloud-first
database strategy. As time goes on, the firm plans to continue consolidating its
datacenter footprint and move more services to the cloud. CockroachDB will support them
in this process by enabling them to scale and migrate their databases across physical
data centers and cloud regions, without causing any downtime or requiring application
changes.