TimesTen In-Memory Database
for Extreme Performance

What is the best hardware for TimesTen Scaleout

Doug Hood
Evangelist for Oracle TimesTen, Oracle In-Memory and Oracle NoSQL


TimesTen Scaleout is Linux software that runs on x8664 hardware. The performance of TimesTen Scaleout is dependent on the performance of the hardware components - you get what you pay for.

Old vs new PCs

Given well balanced hardware, you can expect the performance of TimesTen Scaleout to be proportional to the performance of the hardware. For example even though TimesTen Scaleout performs well on older hardware or small VMs, it will tend to perform much better on the latest hardware, larger VMs or bare metal machines.

Well balanced hardware means that the critical components (ie CPU, network cards, persistent storage and DRAM) are equivalent. There is no point having really fast disk and a slow network or a really fast network and slow CPUs.




TimesTen Scaleout is an In-Memory database which ideally will be CPU bound, so the faster your CPU the better:

  • CPUs with higher core counts, faster clock speeds and large L3 caches perform the best
  • The number of CPU cores per machine and the number of machines determines the effective concurrency and throughout

Old vs new CPUs


Persistent Storage

TimesTen Scaleout databases still need to persist their data, so storage devices with high bandwidth and low latency are best:

  • Storage devices with non volatile memory are significantly faster than traditional spinning disks
  • The capacity of the storage devices needs to be approximately three times that of the DRAM used by the database

Olds vs new persistent storage


Network Cards

  • TimesTen Scaleout is a shared nothing database that passes messages over a TCP/IP Ethernet network
    • The lower the network latency and higher the bandwidth the better
    • Although 1G Ethernet works with TimesTen Scaleout, it is only suitable for development or test environments
    • For production environments you should use 10G Ethernet network cards
    • For improved performance, you can use two 10G Ethernet network cards as a single network card can become a bottleneck when the database is performing millions of transactions per second
    • Although 25G, 40G and 100G Ethernet network cards are 'better' than 10G Ethernet cards, they are not required based on current benchmarks
    • Under extreme load, multiple 10G Ether network cards are still better than one 25, 40 or 100G Ethernet card as the bottleneck tends to be context switches rather than bandwidth

Old vs new NICs




As TimesTen Scaleout is an in-memory database, you need to have sufficient DRAM to store all of your data
  • The capacity of a TimesTen Scaleout database is determined by the sum of the DRAM of each of the hosts
  • The more hosts that you use in your database, the larger the database that you can support
  • Currently DDR4 DRAM gives the best memory density and bandwidth

Old vs new DRAM


On Premise Hardware

You can choose whatever x8664 hardware that you want on premise. The following vendors all make good server class x8664 hardware:

Hardware Vendors


In the Cloud

In the Oracle Cloud, dedicated Bare Metal DenseIO systems give the best performance, eg BM.DenseIO1.36 or BM.DenseIO2.52

Oracle Sun X7-2

For other clouds, you will tend to get optimal performance based on dedicated shapes with a good balance of memory density, CPU cores, disk and network performance.

Cloud Vendors

You can run TimesTen Scaleout using multipe small VMs in your favorite cloud (eg VM.Standard1.1), however you will be limited by the CPU, DRAM, disk IO and networking of those VMs. You get what you pay for!



Disclaimer: These are my personal thoughts and do not represent Oracle's official viewpoint in any way, shape, or form.

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