Four years ago, well before starting DataStax, I evaluated the then-current crop of distributed databases and explained why I chose Cassandra. In a lot of ways, Cassandra was the least mature of the options, but I chose to take a long view and wanted to work on a project that got the fundamentals right; things like documentation and distributed testscould come later.
2012 saw that validated in a big way, as the most comprehensive NoSQL benchmark to date was published at the VLDB conference by researchers at the University of Toronto. They concluded,
In terms of scalability, there is a clear winner throughout our experiments. Cassandra achieves the highest throughput for the maximum number of nodes in all experiments with a linear in- creasing throughput from 1 to 12 nodes.
As a sample, here’s the throughput results from the mixed reads, writes, and (sequential) scans:
I encourage you to take a few minutes to skim the full results.
There are both architectural and implentation reasons for Cassandra’s dominating performance here. Let’s get down into the weeds and see what those are.
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