Selecting the right data storage for your business is not easy. In order to make an informed-decision, you should learn more about data lake solutions, their functionalities and benefits. Choose wisely. Read our article to learn more about the best data storage approach for your company.
Data lake solutions – what are they?
The data lake solutions on the market are great for companies which work with a variety of data (from various sources and of various types and sizes) in huge amounts. A data lake is a centralized repository, and it enables users to store all kinds of data in it:
- structured – in rows and columns,
- unstructured –
- semistructured – for example, flat text files or schema-embedded files.
Data lakes are often the first choice of enterprises and medium companies, as they allow rapid ingestion of large amounts of raw data in its native format. That means that an organization can quickly leverage collected data for analytics and other purposes.
The reason you may need a data lake
So, why a data lake and not, for example, a data warehouse? Comparing these two solutions is a topic for another article. In this one, let’s focus on the reasons why companies pick data lake solutions.
Organizations that produce business insights from gathered information, or offer services which strongly rely on data processing, require highly performative solutions in order to operate efficiently. Data lakes make it possible to store various types of useful data and have functionalities that make carrying out advanced analytics with AI and ML easier. This way, organizations are provided with the necessary scale and diversity of data to make truly data-driven decisions.
The ability to ingest all types of needed data in no time is also very important for organizations that pick data lake solutions. Time saving is crucial for companies that are building their competitive advantage and have to adjust to dynamically changing market conditions. Data ingestion can be time-consuming, so reducing the time required for that step helps companies to significantly reduce the time needed for data processing.
The benefits of enterprise data lake solutions
If you want to break your data silos and finally view your business data as a complete picture, a data lake may be the right solution for you. In this service, you can combine all your data together, no matter the size or source type.
The ability to store practically any type of data in a data lake also means that you don’t waste precious business resources due to the lack of proper data storage solutions. Imagine that instead of a data lake, you have to deal with less flexible storage. In order to store data in traditional systems, data engineers need to adjust it to a chosen schema. That usually means that a lot of data will be lost in processing. If you select a data lake as your data storage, you will not be forced to put your data in schemas; hence, you keep your data complete and your analytics results will be more accurate (and of course, you save time on processing and adjusting the gathered data).
Apart from what we’ve already described, there are some key features of data lake solutions that have to be mentioned:
- Diverse APIs, interfaces and endpoints – thanks to these, users are able to smoothly upload, access and move data whenever necessary. As data lakes have so many potential use cases, the capability to move them efficiently is crucial for many companies’ success.
- Advanced security solutions – data lakes allow administrators to manage access control by setting permissions for other users, but there is more of course. If you decide to work with data lakes, you will be able to leverage encryption and network security features that will help you ensure the safety of your business data.
- Search and cataloging – in data lakes, you have the capability to set your search features according to your individual business needs. Solutions you can apply to your data lakes include adding metadata, tagging or setting up tools for classifying subsets of all objects. Data lakes provide you with quite a lot of flexibility in choosing your solutions.
These are, of course, only some of the important features you will certainly find useful for your business. Data lakes are a great foundation for data science and advanced analytics. By picking your storage from among the best data lake solutions, you ensure that your company will learn about current and future trends and opportunities for growth earlier than the competition. Performing analytics in a data lake will also help you to improve your risk management, security and other business functions.
What are the leading data lake solution providers?
Both on-premises data lake solutions and open source data lake solutions are available. Both have their advantages and drawbacks. Nowadays, most organizations prefer cloud-based solutions. We’ll introduce you to some data lake platform providers you should consider when choosing your own data lake solutions.
AWS Data Lake
Probably everyone has heard about Amazon Web Services. An AWS data lake automatically configures core AWS services you may need for organizing your data lake and performing transformation, analytics, etc. You should consider their offer if you are already leveraging some AWS services. This way, you will have no problems integrating your systems.
Google Data Lake
Similarly to AWS, Google Cloud platform provides users with a suite of autoscaling tools and services that can be used for building your own data lake and integrating it with your existing infrastructure. Some of these tools are Dataflow for data ingestion, Cloud Storage for storing information and BigQuery for analytics.
Azure Data Lake
Azure Data Lake is a service from Microsoft with all the necessary solutions and tools for building a data lake, storing any types of data and performing advanced analytics. It supports integrations with operational storage and data warehouses, which allows you to extend your current data solutions. Azure Data Lake was designed for working in the cloud.
The Databricks Lakehouse Platform
This solution is meant for users that want to unify their data warehouses and AI projects on a single platform. The nice thing about this option is that you can test it for free, before you decide to switch to it permanently. You can break down your silos by combining all your important data and processes in the cloud.
Cloudera Data Platform
The data lake service from Cloudera gives you tools for creating your own data repositories and enables modern security solutions like access control and encryption. Its functionalities allow you to identify your data by using metadata, which significantly improves your data management efficiency and comfort.
To sum up
How do you make the right choice when it comes to data lake solutions when there are so many of them to choose from? We know that designing and developing your own cloud architecture may be challenging. You need a lot of knowledge and experience – and the right tools, of course. Before choosing your own data storage tools, you should first carefully analyze your current business needs, but also think about your future requirements. We can advise you on the best solutions for your business. Contact us to learn more.