Learn about Hardware partitioning in SQL Server, why you should do it, how does it help
If you want to make it easier for yourself to make sense of your SQL Server databases along with easing down its maintenance process, then it is advisable that you partition your SQL Server databases. It is important to note that partitioning and splitting in SQL Server are two different processes, and for partitioning a database, you do not have to split it. Partitioning can be done by simply putting different tables on different drives. By partitioning your SQL Server database, you cannot only increase the speed of operations but also improve overall query performance, as the queries are now supposed to scan fewer amounts of data.
Partitioning in SQL Server involves making a large table smaller by either splitting it or by putting one given table on one drive, and other related tables on different drives. If queries with table joins are being run then the data is read by multiple disk heads. To specify which disk should contain the tables, you can make use of SQL Server filegroups. There are different types of partitioning the SQL users are allowed to perform, one of them is the Hardware Partitioning, which we will attempt to understand through this article.
As the name suggests, this is the kind of partitioning technique that involves making the best use of hardware architecture that is already available. In hardware partitioning the database is designed in a way that it is able to make the best possible use of existing hardware architecture. Given below are a few examples of what counts as hardware partitioning.
- Multiprocessors that activate numerous operation threads allowing multiple queries simultaneously are one of the best examples. Here, one after the other query might be able to optimize by running on different processors and allowing its different components to run simultaneously.
- With the use of Redundant Array of Independent Disks (RAID), you can make use of devices that allow for striping data over multiple disk drives. This allows for getting quicker access to data, this becomes possible because a greater number of read and write heads have been assigned simultaneously. Once a given table has been striped to multiple drives, its scanning becomes quicker than the similar table that has been stored on one drive. Similarly, if you make use of separate drives for storing tables, the performance of queries that are used for joining those tables also gets improved. That apart a proper RAID implementation goes a long way in reducing risks associated with corrupt SQL
Apart from Hardware Partitioning, SQL Server also allows for horizontal partitioning and vertical partitioning. The former allows for partitioning the table into fewer rows, with an equal number of columns, and the latter for partitioning the table into fewer columns with an equal number of rows. One of the main reasons why you should make use of partitioning in your SQL Server database is to improve query performance by allowing queries to scan fewer amounts of data. This can be possible only when you store data in different drives, allowing queries to scan only the relevant data.
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