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Things to know before you Migrate your data warehouse to Amazon Redshift

Updated: Dec 21, 2023


Amazon Redshift

Since a number of years ago, data warehouses have been crucial to analytics and corporate decision-making, collecting data and powering dashboards and visualizations for management, marketing, finance, operations, and pretty much every other department in a data-driven firm.

Maximizing the value you obtain from your data should be high on your list of goals as you evaluate your organization's digital transformation and transfer your apps to the cloud. The cloud has accelerated data warehousing. Data warehouse migration becomes crucial at this point.


Why switch to Amazon Redshift from your data warehouse?

AWS's Amazon Redshift is a fully managed and very scalable cloud-based data warehousing solution. Why would you select it over alternative options? Here are 5 reasons why:

1. High Performance

For applications requiring high compute capacity, Amazon Redshift RA3 instances provide maximum performance. This guarantees that Redshift offers very high performance along with Advanced Query Accelerator (AQUA), a distributed and hardware-accelerated cache that enhances particular query types.

2. Auto Scaling

To scale your Redshift data warehouse dynamically, you can change the number of nodes in your warehouse with just one API call or a few mouse clicks on the console. For workloads as large as 8 PB, managed storage enables the automated increase of capacity.

3. Serverless

With infrastructure management handled automatically by Amazon Redshift Serverless, running and scaling your warehouse is made simple. This indicates that it is simple to load data and query it to learn more.

4. Lake-House Architecture

It is feasible to combine your data lake and data warehouse into a Lake House architecture using Redshift and its Amazon Redshift Spectrum service. This allows for scalable data lakes, streamlined migration, a single point of control, and cost-effectiveness.

5. Separation of Compute and Storage

With Amazon Redshift RA3 instances, you can scale and pay for the number of nodes you need for your compute workloads, while the cost of your managed storage is based on the amount of space you need for your data warehouse.


Factors to consider when migrating to Amazon Redshift

Here are some crucial factors for you to bear in mind now that we've established why you should think about moving your data warehouse to the cloud, and more especially to Amazon Redshift.

1. How large is your data warehouse?

It's crucial to know the size of your source data warehouse before you begin planning your migration so that you can setup your Redshift warehouse optimally. Make sure to include every data source, database, table, and object that will connect to your Redshift warehouse when estimating the size of your Redshift warehouse.

2. How will you move your data?

Typically, Amazon Redshift is best suited for storing enormous amounts of data, on the scale of petabytes. However, it's crucial to take into account how you'll actually move such large amounts of data to AWS. Either networks using software like AWS Direct Connect or hardware devices offered by AWS using their Snow service can be used for this.

3. Do you have specific data security requirements?

Security and privacy are always important factors when dealing with huge amounts of data; this is addressed through cloud infrastructure security, application security, and data encryption. Your control over these applications' security remains. AWS provides robust security right out of the box for infra. Additionally, Redshift offers you the option to implement data encryption wherever it is necessary, enhancing data security.

4. What is the extent of data transformation and remapping required?

Your data will need to be changed to meet the setup of the target warehouse because Amazon Redshift is a different platform from your source data warehouse. To appropriately reorganize the data and map it to its destination, be sure to account for the amount of work and time this process will demand. Your decision about an ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) solution will also play a part in this.

5. What tools will you use for the migration?

Consider whether there are AWS-native tools that are more appropriate for your cloud environment that you might employ in place of the legacy tools you are presently utilizing for more efficient operations. However, keep in mind that Redshift does not force you to use only Amazon's tools, so pick the option that suits you best. Redshift is also compatible with all SQL queries because it is based on PostgreSQL.

6. How frequently do changes occur on your existing warehouse?

The frequency of updates to your current data warehouse, which will determine how frequently you need to sync your source warehouse and your Redshift instance, is a crucial consideration when planning your migration to Redshift. Additionally, to ensure that the new Redshift-based data warehouse gets launched without any data loss, this cutover from your current system to Redshift must be finished within one such interval period.

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