Vertica Review

Its speed differentiates it from other columnars, and works on commodity hardware

What is our primary use case?

When I have a business need for a few pieces of information, and I need to process it quickly, that's when I use Vertica.

How has it helped my organization?

We got something like a six-times improvement using Vertica.

What is most valuable?

The feature of the product that is most important is the speed. I needed a columnar database, and its speed is what it's built to do, and so that's what really does differentiate Vertica from its competitors.

 I think what also draws me to it is that I don't need any special hardware. So I can use commodity hardware, which is nice to have in a commercial solution.

What needs improvement?

I think it's starting to get a little expensive. Open source products are starting to get more robust, so I think that's something that they need to start looking at in terms of licensing.

For how long have I used the solution?

More than five years.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

Absolutely stable. It's supported. The stability is one thing, the support is the other thing.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No scalability issues. Like I said, in its competitive set it is just faster, better, depending on how you use it, because it is columnar.

How are customer service and technical support?

We don't need them that much, but when we do need them, we use the virtual tech support, and that's fine. It works, and it's responsive. Within 24 hours, we get resolution.

We didn't pay for a higher tier of service, but we generally just have questions for support.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

We've used Greenplum, Teradata, and then Vertica. We used the big data open source solutions as well that are getting better. So those are the four that I can think of off the top of my head. Greenplum and Teradata are just getting too expensive. 

Particularly compared against its open source set, I think that's really the one key piece where Vertica might have a little bit more ladder room. It was always the leader in terms of pricing against Greenplum and Teradata, so that's why Vertica turned up again for us, but now that the open source solutions are trying to compete a little bit better in terms of stability, that's where we sometimes consider change.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

I evaluated Teradata, and another, but I didn't like either of them, not for what we needed.

What other advice do I have?

The pros are, if you have columnar processing, then this is in your top three solutions. I think the con is the software pricing, and licensing needs to start getting more competitive with the open source solutions, or they need to market their stability a lot more.

Test out the solution. Most people who test it buy it. So that's the biggest draw that it has, you can test in a day.

**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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