October 18, 2022 By Miran Badzak
Keri Romanufa
Mike Springgay
3 min read

We’re excited to bring the general availability of the latest Db2 version update—11.5.8.

Built to run the world’s mission-critical workloads, IBM Db2 empowers the modern enterprise to run a highly performant, always-on database for low-latency transactions and real-time analytics that power your business. Db2 runs anywhere you deploy your apps, services and dashboards, be it in a traditional on-premises deployment or any cloud vendor of your choice. 

Today, we’re excited to announce the general availability of the latest Db2 version update—11.5.8—delivered cloud-first. While this marks a minor version release, it nevertheless incorporates over 50 updates, with highlights including improved performance and compression for loading columnar data, extended logical backup and restore to more topologies and AWS IaaS certifications for Db2 pureScale—all powered by the 11.5.8 engine.

Db2’s shift to a cloud-first release demonstrates IBM’s continued commitment to run mission-critical workloads available fully managed in the cloud, hybrid or on-premises. A few of the key innovations Db2 customers can start experiencing with 11.5.8 include the following:

1. Continuous availability with Db2 pureScale on AWS Marketplace

IBM Db2 pureScale is a continuously available deployment of the Db2 database, built to run mission-critical workloads at massive scale. It allows customers to achieve business continuity while mitigating data-related outages wherever your applications are deployed. Earlier this year, we made Db2 pureScale deployments available through the AWS Marketplace as a bring-your-own-license (BYOL) option. The AWS Marketplace option significantly simplifies the deployment of a pureScale cluster with a pre-packaged template and point/click interface. What could traditionally take weeks has been reduced to roughly 45 minutes. For seasoned Db2 pureScale users, the cluster on AWS has the same look and feel. 

As part of our cloud-first strategy, the AWS Marketplace listing has now been updated to coincide with the software release. In addition, we’ve added the capability to deploy Db2 pureScale in HADR configurations, further strengthening this option for mission-critical workloads on AWS. 

2. Up to 40% performance improvement with RDMA support for pureScale on RHEL 8

With Db2 11.5.8, we’ve added support for Remote Direct Memory Access (RDMA) for Db2 pureScale deployments on Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 8. Using RDMA for communication, as opposed to TCP/IP sockets, our customers see a net performance gain of up to 40%. We encourage all customers currently using Db2 pureScale on RHEL 8 to upgrade to Db2 11.5.8 to take advantage of this benefit.

3. Up to 1.5X improvement in LOAD times

Db2 continues to deliver on prior innovations to data loading with novel improvements in performance for columnar tables. Db2 11.5 focused on bulk INSERT operations through the delivery of a new optimized bulk INSERT technology that leverages vectorization and parallel processing. Later modification packs leveraged the bulk INSERT improvements to deliver on greater page compression for unencoded string values. The bulk INSERT improvements are brought to the Db2 LOAD utility with Db2 11.5.8, increasing the overall load performance by 1.5X.

4. Cut server power consumption and improve energy efficiency with 8X improvement in compression for strings

With Db2 11.5, we’ve made significant enhancements to page-based string compression, improving the amount of text we fit into a single page by up to 8X. Not only does this reduce your cost of storing massive quantities of data, but our efficient use of resources makes Db2 a more responsible steward of the environment. A reduction in infrastructure needs means a reduction in cooling requirements and less power consumption, both of which support sustainable IT operations. In addition to reducing your storage costs, improved compression also results in better overall performance. Since Db2 can operate on compressed data sets directly, more data can therefore fit into memory, making for a highly performant experience. 

5. Control costs with logical backup and restore, now extended to more operating systems

Another key item in this release is extended logical backup and restore for columnar tables to more operating systems. Db2 11.5.8 provides access to logical backup and restore through SQL routines extended to more Linux deployments and S3-compatible storage. For logical backups, you now have significantly more control over the contents of your backups. For example, you can choose to back up only a portion of the database for a specific customer, user or department, as opposed to the whole database. This helps you control the cost of managing backups. 

On the restore side, if a runaway ETL job alters or wipes out a table in your data warehouse, you can use logical backup to restore only the affected tables, leaving the rest of the database intact. This makes restores significantly less disruptive to the rest of your business, which may not have been affected. 

And finally, with logical backup, it is now significantly easier to backup/restore IBM Db2 Warehouse between different MPP topologies where the number of nodes/members changes between instances. This is particularly helpful for large scale-out operations or when shifting a Db2 deployment from old hardware to new—significantly cutting the cost of a hardware lift and shift.

Get started with IBM Db2 11.5.8 today

Get the latest from IBM Db2’s 11.5.8 release with our free trials available in the cloud or for download. 

More questions on the latest release? Talk to your IBM Db2 representative today or schedule a meeting to learn more about how Db2 11.5.8 can support your data management strategy. 

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