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Ab Initio (company)

Ab Initio (company)
The Ab Initio software is a fourth generation data analysis, batch processing, data manipulation graphical user interface (GUI)-based parallel processing product which is commonly used to extract, transform, and load (ETL) data. The Ab Initio product also allows for processing of real-time data. Ab Initio has a Two Tier Architecture with a Graphical Development Environment(GDE) and the Co>Operating system coupled together to form a client-server like architecture. The Ab Initio software is a suite of products which together provide a platform for data processing applications. The core Ab Initio products are: Graphical Development Environment (GDE) Co>Operating System Enterprise Meta>Environment (EME) Conduct>It The Component Library Data Profiler Business Rules Environment (BRE)

Ab Initio Software Corporation was founded in the mid-1990s by the former CEO of Thinking Machines Corporation, Sheryl Handler, and several other former employees after the bankruptcy of that company.

The Co>Operating System

Co>Operating System layered on top of an operating system. It unites a network of computing resources CPUs, storage disks, programs, datasets into a data processing system with scalable performance. Co>Operating System runs on OS like IBM AIX, SUN SOLARIS, HP UX, Windows NT. It can be connected to high performance database like IBM DB2, ORACLE, Informix, SQL Server and other software packages like SAS, Trillium. It is the heart of the Ab Initio toolset. All the graphs developed in GDE run on Co>Operating System. Runs across a variety of operating systems and hardware platforms including OS/390, zOS on Mainframe, Unix, Linux, and Windows. Supports distributed and parallel execution. Can provide scalability proportional to the hardware resources provided. Supports platform independent data transport using the Ab Initio data manipulation language. The Co>Operating System is the underlying system of all parts of the product suite allowing communication and integration of all parts into the platform. It will also help the native operating system to understand the Ab Initio commands. Ab Initio boost due to its effective Parallel Runtime Environment, where some or all of the components of an application datasets and processing modules are replicated into a number of partitions, each spawning a process. Forms of Parallelism Component Parallelism Pipeline Parallelism (Inherent in Ab Initio) Data Parallelism (Inherent in Ab Initio) Data parallelism - When data is divided into segments or partitions and processes run simultaneously on each partition. During processing, each partition is processed in parallel. Component parallelism - When different instances of same component run on separate data sets. Components execute simultaneously on different branches of a graph. Pipeline parallelism - When multiple components run on same data set i.e. when a record is processed in one component and a previous record is being processed in another components. Operations like sorting and aggregation break pipeline parallelism.

Ab Initio (company)

The Graphical Development Environment

It is a GUI for building applications in Ab Initio and can talk (connect) to the Co>Operating System using several protocols like Telnet, Rexec, Ssh, DCOM and FTP(for file transfer). Is loosely bound to the Co>Operating System. The Co>Operating System have different release mechanisms, making Co>Operating System upgrade possible without change in the GDE release. Provides graphical interface for editing and executing Ab Initio computer programs. This development environment utilizes the available components from the library to enable various ETL activities to occur. The Co>Operating System can execute these programs directly. Allows for monitoring of running applications to quantify data volumes and execution times for performance estimation. An Ab Initio computer program is called a graph as it behaves similar to its math counterpart. A graph contains one or more components or vertices, each joined by a flow or edge through which data flows. Data flows only in one direction, which allows the graph to run in a parallel processing environment. Each graph is compiled by the GDE into a Korn Shell script (or batch file in Windows environment) which can be run by the Co>Operating System. Prior to evolution of GDE, developer used SDE - Shell Development Environment by which it was also possible to write Ab Initio programs (Graphs) using a common text editor (but that is extremely cumbersome so rarely done in practice now-a-days). Following statements hold true about a Graph. A Graph is the logical modular unit of an application. is a diagram that defines the various processing stages of a task and the streams of data as they move from one stage to another. consists of several components that forms the building blocks of an Ab Initio application. a Component (Used as re-usable sub-graph in another graph). is a program that does a specific type of job and can be controlled by its parameter settings.

The Component Library

Reusable software Modules for Sorting, Joining, Data Transformation, Database Loading, etc. The components adapt at runtime to the record formats and business rules controlling their behavior. Usually maximum of the components were shipped along with the GDE. Components also include various system "connectors" giving access to various storage engines.

Enterprise Meta>Environment
Enterprise Meta>Environment (EME) is an object oriented data storage system that version controls and manages various kinds of information associated with Ab Initio applications, which may range from design information to operational data. In simple terms, it is a repository, which contains data about data metadata. EME tracks changes in development of graphs, as well as metadata pertaining to the development, how data is used, and potential of other means of data classification. The storage of graph related Metadata allows for data impact analysis to occur, giving the user a visual sense of how the data is changing in a graph, and the impacts those changes have on another graph. Additionally the EME doubles up for config/change management allowing the latest version of a graph to reside past subsequent code changes thereby ensuring the latest code and data. It performs the following operations: 1. version controlling, 2. statistical analysis, 3. dependence analysis, and 4. metadata management.

Ab Initio (company)

Data Profiler
The Data Profiler is a graphical data analysis tool which runs on top of the Co>Operating system. It can be used to characterize data range, scope, distribution, variance, and quality.

Ab Initio Conduct>It is a high-volume data processing systems developing tool. It enables combining graphs from Graphical Development Environment with custom scripts and programs from other vendors.

Major Competitors
The Gartner Magic Quadrant for Data Integration Tools 2009 lists, IBM, Informatica, Oracle Corporation, and SAP Business Objects as the leading vendors followed by Microsoft as challenger. iWay Software, SAS Institute, Sybase, Pervasive Software and Talend are listed as visionaries. The 2009 report also includes newcomers such as expressor, CloverETL and Pentaho software. Gartner considers Ab Initio to not meet its analysis criteria due to a lack of information available. Due to this lack of information available, Ab Initio has had a particularly poor run over the latest Gartner Magic Quadrants, dropping from Visionary (2005) to Niche (2006) before falling off the grid entirely (2007).[1] Ab Initio has also been criticised for their extreme secrecy about their products. Anyone working with their product (even who work for organizations who use Ab Initio) operate under a non-disclosure agreement which prevents them from revealing Ab Initio technical information to the public. As its competitor started gaining marketshare, Ab Initio introduced a free feature-limited version known as Elementum in 2010. However, it is only available to customers who already purchased commercial license for Ab Initio. This version is only intended for desktop use.

[1] http:/ / www. destinationcrm. com/ Articles/ CRM-News/ Daily-News/ Gartner-Magic-Quadrant-Puts-Together-Data-Integration-Leaders-43476. aspx

External links The Rise and Fall of Thinking Machines (, Inc. Magazine, September 1995 Gartner Magic Quadrants as of 2004 Sep ( Data_Warehousing_Scenario.pdf)

Article Sources and Contributors

Article Sources and Contributors

Ab Initio (company) Source: Contributors: 1ForTheMoney, AlistairMcMillan, Bearingbreaker92, Bovineone, Cander0000, Charles.2345, ChrisGualtieri, David Eppstein, Davidtomdavid, Dawnseeker2000, Dckap, DePiep, Dpavlis, Everyking, Gazpacho, Ggoli, GregorB, Ihistand, J mareeswaran, JLaTondre, Jjaazz, Jpers36, Kirankumar31, KotetsuKat, Lectonar, Loadmaster, Marble11, MarkMLl, Mhchintoo, Mornock, MrOllie, Muhandes, Nshustov, Paul Thompson, Petiatil, Rasmus Faber, Rich Farmbrough, Saladpope, Sgoel.engg, ShelfSkewed, SpaceFlight89, Stephenpace, TAnthony, Techguy1955, Theo10011, Uncle G, VladTepes, Waclawiczek, Wbm1058, Will Beback Auto, Wsloand, 109 anonymous edits

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