Thought Leadership

Autonomous Database for All

A new dedicated service and the latest developer tools let more go autonomous.

By Jeff Erickson

July/August 2019

Even for people eager to use Oracle Autonomous Database’s self-driving, self-repairing, and self-securing capabilities, the question always comes down to this: Is it right for my workload? So Oracle has expanded the types of autonomous database services it offers to cover more use cases and at the same time provide more developer tool choices for building apps using the cloud database.

A new deployment choice—Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated—means more high-volume, mission-critical workloads can take advantage of autonomous technology, because those workloads get their own isolated servers on Oracle Cloud. Plus, Oracle has added the most popular database developer tools to its autonomous services, including Oracle REST Data Services (REST Data Services), Oracle SQL Developer, and Oracle Application Express (Oracle APEX).

The autonomous database is part of Oracle Cloud Infrastructure’s “compelling array of advanced technology features,” says Oracle Executive Chairman and CTO Larry Ellison. The self-driving database “automatically encrypts all your data, backs itself up, tunes itself, upgrades itself, and patches itself when a security threat is detected,” he says. “It does all of this autonomously—while running—without the need for any human intervention and without the need for any downtime. No other cloud infrastructure provides anything close to these autonomous features.”

Oracle Autonomous Database is also a boon for developers, who get a new level of freedom to deploy a powerful Oracle database instance at the moment their projects call for it, says Maria Colgan, a master product manager at Oracle. Now “they’ve got the most performant and functionally rich database platform at their fingertips for a fraction of the time and cost,” Colgan says.

What more do Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated and the new developer tools mean for developers and mission-critical workloads in the cloud? Oracle Magazine caught up with a couple of experts to find out more.

There’s the comfort of the isolation, of being on your own dedicated infrastructure. You get a higher level of control over database provisioning, software updates, and availability.”—Maria Colgan, Master Product Manager, Oracle

Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated “offers another deployment choice for autonomous databases” alongside the serverless options of Oracle Autonomous Transaction Processing and Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse, says Sachin Sathaye, senior director, Oracle Cloud. Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated offers a customizable private database instance running on dedicated Oracle Exadata (Exadata) infrastructure in Oracle Cloud. It’s designed to address the well-known concerns of enterprise customers about workload isolation, performance, security, and control over operational policies when moving to the cloud, says Sathaye.

Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated currently is hosted on a quarter rack of Exadata servers, with larger server allocations coming in future releases. “This is your completely dedicated hardware; it’s just for you,” says Sathaye. That means you keep the benefits of autonomous in terms of its self-driving, self-repairing, self-securing capabilities but gain new controls and visibility for your database, including being able to manage your dedicated autonomous database instances with Oracle Enterprise Manager.

“There’s the comfort of the isolation, of being on your own dedicated infrastructure,” says Colgan. “You get a higher level of control over database provisioning, software updates, and availability. Inside that Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated Exadata rack, you can create separate clusters, separate container databases, and finally individual databases for separate groups.”

The dedicated server means customers can also set the timing of software updates to better fit their business cycles. “Oracle is still going to patch and maintain that database for you, but you get to control when it happens,” says Colgan.

Coding Options for Autonomous

“Developers spinning up a self-driving, self-tuning database for projects is one of the top use cases for autonomous databases, because they get all of the database setup, maintenance, and even scaling without bugging the IT team,” says Manish Kapur, director, Oracle Cloud. Now, with a collection of popular developer tools available for all flavors of Oracle Autonomous Database, that trend is about to accelerate.

For example, Oracle APEX is a wildly popular low-code development tool in the Oracle Database community, and it comes with every on-premises Oracle Database and Oracle Database service in Oracle Cloud. Oracle APEX comes with Oracle Autonomous Database and lets you quickly build and deploy scalable, secure, data-centric applications. It can be used to import spreadsheets and develop a single source of truth for your data in minutes, or it can be used to build your next mission-critical data management applications with compelling data visualizations. Since a developer can easily spin up an Oracle Autonomous Database instance without any other IT support, “in a few minutes you’re up and running and building an app” using Oracle APEX, Kapur says.

Also available with Oracle Autonomous Database, REST Data Services supports developers building and deploying RESTful services. “REST Data Services gives you a way to build modern REST-enabled interfaces for relational data in Oracle Database,” he says.

Another popular tool, Oracle SQL Developer Web is a web interface for working with Oracle Database services in Oracle Cloud. Now available with Oracle Autonomous Database, Oracle SQL Developer Web lets developers easily run queries, create tables, and generate schema diagrams.

“Regardless of the flavor of Oracle Autonomous Database you’re using, these are all great options for both cloud native and low-code developers,” Kapur says.

Next Steps

LEARN more about Oracle Autonomous Database Dedicated.

TRY Oracle Autonomous Database.

READ more about
Oracle APEX on Oracle Autonomous Database.
Oracle SQL Developer Web for Oracle Autonomous Database.
Oracle REST Data Services for Oracle Autonomous Database.

Illustration by Wes Rowell