What’s new in IBM Netezza® release

This article describe the new features in IBM Netezza® release released on December 2014.

Database and SQL language changes
Release includes the following changes to the database operations and SQL language syntax and commands :

• Adds the min and max scalar functions to return the minimum value or the maximum value specified in a set of two or more values.
• Adds the hex_to_binary and hex_to_geometry functions that convert a hexadecimal character encoded string to its equivalent VARBINARY or ST_GEOMETRY value.
• Adds the string_to_int function to convert a hexadecimal, octal, decimal or binary string to a decimal value.
• Adds the int_to_string function to convert a decimal value to hexadecimal, octal, decimal or binary string.
• Adds a new external table option IncludeHeader that you can specify when unloading data to include the column names as a comment in the external table file.
• Adds a new system view _v_load_status that you can query to display more information about the progress of loads that are running on the system. The view provides details about the load operations such as the table name, database name, data file, number of processed rows, and number of rejected rows.

Command and CLI changes
Release includes the following changes to command-line utilities:

• The nzrestore command now supports multistream restore operations. If you created multistream backups using nzbackup, the system automatically use multistream restore. Restores could take less time to complete as a result, but performance will depend on the devices that support your filesystem locations.
• The nzcallhome command is new and replaces the nzOpenPmr command for management and configuration of the callhome services.
• The nznpssysrevs command is new and displays a summary of the installed software revisions on the appliance
• The nzsqa swapspace internal Support command is new and offers more information about the documented in this release as part of the System Health Check feature.
• The nzhw command now includes a Security column.

ODBC, JDBC, and OLE DB changes
Release includes the following changes to the ODBC, JDBC, and OLE DB data connectivity clients.

• The ODBC and JDBC drivers, and the OLE DB provider, now support the ability to connect to a schema within a database that has multiple schemas defined.
• The ODBC driver now offers the ability to bypass the data type conversions that it performs during SELECT queries. Skipping the data type checks and conversion can significantly reduce the processing time for the data retrieve and improve the performance for the SELECT() queries issued by applications that use the driver. With this change, users can set an option called FastSelect in the odbc.ini file or in the connection string to cause the DSN connection to skip the data conversion processing for the data types read from the NPS® system and which will be processed by the ODBC application. The ODBC application is responsible for ensuring that the retrieved data types match the expected return values, or the query will fail with data type errors.
• The JDBC driver has a new connection setting Ignore UpdateCount that you can use to override the JDBC specification for getUpdateCount(), which is an int value. If you use CREATE EXTERNAL TABLE to unload data and the row count exceeds the maximum value of an int (two billion), the command fails with the error NzSQLException: The update count exceeded Integer.MAX_VALUE. This setting can be helpful in cases where you are exporting data from an NPS table to an IBM® PureData™ System for Hadoop appliance.

IBM PureData System for Analytics N3001 appliances
Release 7.2 introduces support for the next generation of IBM PureData™ System for Analytics appliances with the N3001 family.

• The N3001 appliances improve the performance and capabilities of previous models. There are several models including a quarter-rack, half-rack, full rack, and two-rack models. A four-rack model (not shown) is also available. Each full-rack model supports up to 48 TB of user storage.
• The IBM PureData System for Analytics N3001-001 appliance is a smaller-scale member of the N3001 family. The N3001-001 uses a pair of System x3650 M4 HD hosts configured as highly available servers that you install within existing racks in your data center. The N3001-001 appliance includes the Netezza Platform Software and can hold up to 4TB (or 16 TB with 4x compression) of user data.

Kerberos authentication support
Starting in Release 7.2, if your environment uses Kerberos authentication to validate users, you can use Kerberos instead of local authentication or LDAP authentication to validate your Netezza database user accounts.

• With Kerberos authentication, users are first validated against the user name and password that is stored on the Kerberos server. After successful Kerberos authentication, the Netezza system then confirms that the user account is defined as a Netezza database user.
• The Netezza implementation of Kerberos support uses MIT Kerberos 5 Release 1.12.1.

Workload management changes
Release 7.2 introduces the following changes for the workload management (WLM) area.

Callhome support
In NPS Release 7.2, the call home support capability includes numerous changes and improvements for monitoring and sending notifications to IBM Support when problems occur on the IBM Netezza systems.

Load status improvements
Release 7.2 adds improvements that capture more progress information about active loads and load status information for the IBM PureData System for Analytics appliance.

GPFS support
If your environment has an IBM General Parallel File System (GPFS™) implementation, the IBM PureData System for Analytics appliances can be configured to mount external GPFS file system locations.

IBM Netezza Replication Services changes
Release also includes support for IBM Netezza Replication Services version 1.6.

System configuration and settings changes
Release 7.2 includes the following changes to the system configuration and configuration settings.

Entitled software
The IBM PureData System for Analytics N3001 appliances may include IBM software entitlements that you can assess and use with your N3001 appliance.


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