This Summer, we’re hard at work on some exciting new features of Lily, while helping some customers to kick off their new Lily-based projects. It’s great to see our product being used in practice, a truly educational experience for ourselves as well. Let’s have a look at the new stuff.
1. Lily Test Framework
We’ve always said Lily is about developer conveniencing: making the hard bits easy. At the core of Lily, we’re solving the really hard problem of consistent index maintenance in between HBase and Solr. On the outside however, we also wanted to make it easy for enterprise devs to Get Things Done with Lily - as if it is just another database component they already know.
That means it should be easy to call Lily from inside unit tests, and that you don’t need half-a-cluster per developer to just use Lily and its API to program against. We wanted something that allows you to launch Lily and all of its constituents with a single call, embedable, “laptop-class”-compatible (i.e. not relying on virtualization tools to launch pre-made Linux images with Lily, just to run Lily on a developer workstation).
So we went off and created a Lily test framework, that launches Lily, HBase, Hadoop, Solr and friends quickly, easily and efficiently, with sane single-node preconfigurations and some hooks to cycle data initialization as well. It’s available from trunk since a couple of days. Some people will be really happy to learn that this Lily test framework supports Windows (except currently for map/reduce operations) as well. The Lily Test Framework allows you to call Lily from inside unit tests, either standalone or embedded. The standalone mode can also be used to quickly set up a single-node, single-process instance of Lily to play around with.
Adding onto that, there’s a Maven goal available now to quickly set up a fresh, empty Lily project.
All this might sound pretty mundane, and to some extend it is, but it's one of the babysteps we see necessary to emphasize that we're really serious about bringing Lily to the enterprise, not requiring PhD-level hackers to get started with Big Data.
2. Lily cluster installs
For Lily Enterprise customers, we’re currently preparing a Whirr-based cluster installation that supports both cloud-based installs (e.g. Amazon EC2) and "bring your own nodes" installations - on your own cluster. Whirr is an Apache project under incubation for installing, setting up and running cloud services in a platform-neutral way. We’ve been happily contributing a slew of patches and issue reports (221, 338, 339, 240 and 342) while working on Lily support for Whirr.
Using Whirr and our Lily Enterprise installation packages, setting up complex multi-node installs of Lily will be a breeze.
3. The Lily Adoption Program
As mentioned during our well-attended first Lily webinar, we've set up a Lily adoption roadmap helping enterprises to easily discover, explore, adopt, deploy and support Lily inside their organization. It's a multi-step, facilitated process with workshops, proof-of-concept support, training and implementation assistance based on our many years of project experience. The 2-day workshop is still available at a discounted rate (-20%) until end of September, so don't hesitate to get in touch with us.
It’s a long (temperature-wise not so hot unfortunately) Summer over here in Lily-land, and we’re making great progress whipping up some exciting new features. Stay tuned for more!