by • July 14, 2023
Your organization likely relies on stored procedures based on business logic that has worked well in the past. More recent evolutions in areas like application development, automation, open-source application code, workloads, and web services could mean that you need to reassess your stored procedures to find opportunities for improvement. Whether you want to optimize your SQL service procedures, embrace application modernization, or move more of your processes to the cloud, it’s a good time to explore database stored procedure modernization.
Here’s the key things to know about database modernization for stored procedures:
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Digital transformation trends always require an upfront investment. Many IT managers and CIOs don’t keep up with trends in technology because they worry about the cost of embracing new tools and standards.
It’s easy to understand their situation. No one wants to make themselves responsible for a huge investment. What if it doesn’t pay off?
While you want to make sure you compare technologies carefully before spending money on them, failing to evolve will probably cost more in the long run. Eventually, you will have to invest in keeping up with your competitors. By that time, you might find you need to get rid of legacy systems and applications you have relied on.
Moving toward database stored procedure modernization as soon as possible can actually help lower costs while streamlining workflows and lowering overhead.
Although some CIOs resist ongoing digitalization, embracing modernization could help save money by extending asset lifespans. Database stored procedure modernization often looks for ways to update existing assets.
For example, you might already have business logic that functions within your SQL server. If you wait long enough, emerging technologies could eclipse that approach, eventually meaning you need to spend money on new assets. Modernization looks for ways to update business logic within your relational database. Slightly adjusting SQL queries could prolong the lifespan of logic you rely on instead of forcing you to develop new tools today.
New technologies replace older ones because they work more efficiently and accurately. Modernization makes it easier for you to improve your database’s:
Further benefits could include reducing latency and preventing downtime, making it more likely that your organization can fulfill requests without delays.
Keep in mind that the precise benefits you get from stored procedure modernization will depend on what you already use. Your organization will likely run into issues if most of its processes are written in Java. Java is a great object-oriented programming language, but it contends with many more options these days. You likely need a database that can use procedures written in diverse languages capable of working with more applications and database servers.
Stored procedure modernization gives you an opportunity to review your database and resolve any bugs. Over time, your Oracle Cloud ERP might have developed some schema that doesn’t serve your organization’s approach to gathering and analyzing data. Similarly, your AWS Relational Database Service (RDS) might contain inaccurate legacy data that occasionally contributes to strategy mistakes.
While reviewing opportunities for stored procedure modernization, you can correct these and other issues. It will take some time, but it will give you a clearer path forward.
Your approach to database stored procedure modernization will depend on factors such as the technology you use currently, whether you want to keep using legacy assets, and how many databases you want in your IT ecosystem. You might even decide to use a combination of strategies that contribute to your specific goals.
APIs can connect diverse assets, including legacy systems you don’t want to get rid of yet. Additionally, APIs are reusable, so you can apply them to new technologies as you phase out older ones.
You can even call stored procedures from an API. DreamFactory lets you generate APIs for practically any type of database, including MongoDB, Oracle, MySQL, and Microcosmic SQL Server.
By routing stored procedures through an API, you gain greater control over the logic and results.
You can learn more about using APIs in this way by reading Calling a PostgreSQL Stored Procedure from an API.
Has your traditional approach to database stored procedures created data silos that potentially prevent other people within your organization from doing their jobs better? Taking a microservices architecture approach could solve that problem. Instead of embedding each procedure in a monolithic database, you can create domain-driven microservices.
Domain-driven microservices help eliminate data silos. They can also improve data quality by putting teams in charge of the information they collect or produce.
Instead of storing procedures in your database, move them to microservices. That way, you can update your business logic as needed.
Cloud-based applications and databases offer several potential benefits, such as rapidly scaling to meet workloads and an overall lower cost of ownership. While you might not want to move all of your data to the cloud (on-premises databases have some advantages, too), increasing your cloud computing should help modernize your technology.
Databases in the cloud could also let you take a more flexible approach to storing business logic procedures. Instead of embedding the process in the database, you would create microservices that interact with the cloud database.
By taking this approach, you can quickly customize stored procedures as microservices. Of course, you would want to reuse them as often as possible to save time and get consistent results. Still, the flexibility you get from establishing the procedure outside of the cloud database means teams can do unique work without interfering with each other.
Another strategy involves placing stored procedures in containers like Docker or Kubernetes. Instead of setting up your procedure as a microservice orchestrated via APIs, you would put the microservice in a container that can connect to your databases.
Your team might find this approach helpful because they can easily label and find the containers they want to use. For example, if you want to run a stored procedure that pulls this month’s sales numbers from the database, you would just search for that container and connect it to the appropriate source. It works much the same as a microservice, except the procedure exists inside a virtual environment.
Some companies will also find containerization helpful because they can develop sophisticated procedures that go beyond basic business logic. For example, you could make a container that uses machine learning to adapt over time. Depending on your goal, that approach could help your company stay ahead of competitors by taking advantage of trends emerging from the data.
By its nature, DevOps breaks down silos, speeds up iteration, and builds on previous successes. The tech stack that promotes DevOps does more than help teams build and deploy successful applications; it can also contribute to your infrastructure, including the stored procedures you would traditionally keep in your database.
You’ll want to pay particular attention to “infrastructure as code” and “configuration management.” With infrastructure as code, you can immediately deploy servers with standardized patterns. When you need to update your database or the stored procedures it uses, you add a new iteration to the DevOps process until you get the results you want.
You can make informed decisions about how you will use data in the future, but you can’t know precisely how you will store, access, and manipulate that data. Admitting that technology changes quickly could give you an advantage. When you recognize that today’s most advanced tools will look meek in the future, you start to grasp the benefits of modular service-oriented architecture (SOA).
SOA’s modular philosophy expects you to replace layers of technology over time. Currently, SOA has at least five layers:
When one of the layers doesn’t help you reach goals, you can replace it.
You might add stored procedures in a couple of places, including the business processes, service component, and operational systems layers. For example, you might add a procedure to your business processes layer that connects with a specific database to retrieve marketing numbers at the end of the day. If that approach falls short of your expectations, you could adjust the procedure to retrieve data more frequently, grab different numbers, or combine data from multiple sources.
The best thing is that you never need to commit to your current approach. Each day creates an opportunity for improvement, whether you want to fine-tune your procedure or replace it with completely new lines of code.
You will need a way to manage your SOA components. Instant API creation with server-side scripting makes that relatively easy.
You don’t need years of tech experience to create and manage APIs. DreamFactory gives you an easy way to generate low-code APIs that connect your enterprise data sources. Want to see how it works?
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Database stored procedure modernization refers to the process of updating and improving existing stored procedures within a relational database. It involves updating business logic, optimizing performance, and leveraging new technologies to enhance efficiency and flexibility.
Modernizing stored procedures helps extend asset lifespans, save costs, and streamline workflows. It allows organizations to access the benefits of newer technologies, improve data quality, resolve bugs, and adapt to evolving business requirements.
The benefits include lower costs by prolonging asset lifespans, improved efficiency through updated business logic, enhanced data access and provisioning, increased agility in adapting to changing requirements, and better overall performance and scalability.
Strategies include connecting assets with APIs for better control and reusability, adopting microservice patterns to eliminate data silos, increasing cloud computing for flexibility, embracing containerization for easy deployment, and leveraging modern DevOps practices.
Database stored procedure modernization is an integral part of digital transformation. It enables organizations to optimize their database systems, improve data-driven decision-making, enhance application performance, and align with emerging technologies to stay competitive in the digital landscape.
Terence Bennett, General Manager at DreamFactory, has a strong operational, business, and extensive experience in government IT systems and Google Cloud. He started his career as a U.S. Navy Intelligence Officer, then honed his skills on Google’s Red Team and later became the COO of Integrate.io.
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