Actian Zen 16.0 Update Simplifies Delivery and Boosts Performance of Edge, IoT Apps

Actian is shipping an update to its popular Zen embedded database. Actian Zen 16.0 brings higher performance, bigger scale and ease-of use to the booming sector of intelligent apps.

Tags: Actian, analytics, database, edge, embedded, IoT, real-time, Zen,

Thanks to the latest update from Actian, edge app developers and data managers now have an arsenal of new tools and technologies to simplify delivery and boost performance of IoT and intelligent edge projects.


Actian Zen 16.0, the newest version of its embedded database, offers enhanced performance and flexibility for edge-to-cloud data management, allowing developers to build a wide range of scalable, intelligent apps more quickly.


"Actian Zen 16.0 is designed to meet the needs of modern embedded systems and edge computing," said Emma McGrattan, senior vice president of engineering and product at Actian. "Its secure and scalable design allows for easy data synchronization with Zero-ETL, making it perfect for developers creating intelligent applications that can deliver real-time decisioning from edge to cloud to give a business competitive advantage."


Actian Zen 16.0 delivers the small footprint with fast read and write access and automatic administration that resource-constrained environments require, according to Actian. Zen 16.0 ism specially engineered for apps that need frequent data update, such as for sensor data collection or asset management tracking, she added.

Actian Zen 16.0 Tackles Coming Edge Requirements as Analyst Predict Boom

The release of Actian Zen 16.0 comes as the market for edge computing solutions is set to explode. A recent 2024 from International Data Corp projects edge computing spending will hit $232 billion this year. As IoT and edge devices continue to proliferate, extracting actionable insights from the surge of data becomes a key differentiator for businesses.


Cloud and hybrid app developers can now build more responsive and efficient applications, even when dealing with massive datasets, thanks to the latest update to the Actian Zen embedded database. Actian Zen 16.0 offers enhanced performance and flexibility, empowering developers to create faster, smarter applications for resource-constrained environments.


"Actian Zen 16.0 is designed to meet the needs of modern embedded systems and edge computing," McGrattan added, noting  “Zen simplifies edge-to-cloud data management with secure, scalable storage and seamless cloud synchronization. We listened to customer feedback and looked at market trends to ensure Zen continues to deliver new and sustainable value for your IoT and edge devices.”  


In specific, Actian Zen 16.0 looks to optimize developer experience and edge-to-cloud data management with these new features:


Data Scale and Performance: Zen 16.0 sports improved L2 cache sizing and page preload capabilities for large data files significantly boost query performance. This enhancement is particularly beneficial for applications requiring immediate insights from edge devices, such as high-speed material handling systems processing up to 10,000 items per hour.


Edge-to-Cloud Synchronization: A new pre-built data synchronization utility called EasySync saves time and effort compared to custom replication logic. McGrattan said in her blog.

“EasySync lets you move and copy data easier than ever,” she added, noting two key benefits:

  1. Data consistency and availability. Zen 16.0 offers robust replication that can ensure data is kept synchronized across multiple servers or geographically dispersed locations.
  2. Reduced development complexity. Thanks to a pre-built data synchronization solution, users won’t need to implement custom replication logic from scratch -- or even pay for a separate data sync solution.

Diving even deeper, Actian Zen 16.0 provides these specific improvements:   

Accelerated Query Processing: Zen 16.0 delivers up to 50% faster query execution, crucial for real-time data access and analytics at the edge. “Zen accesses frequently used data that’s stored in the L2 cache, speeding up results for queries using this data. Common queries, such as those for frequently used reports or analysis, will experience significantly faster results, McGrattan said.


Flexible Deployment Options: Zen 16.0 offers new containerization support, including Docker and Kubernetes to simplify deployment across on-prem, cloud and hybrid environments.  An Updated Zen Container SDK, which now supports ARM 32 and ARM 64 processors, expanding deployment options for a wider range of edge devices


Enhanced Developer Experience: A new Btrieve2 Python package and improved JSON support streamline development processes. Developers can leverage familiar Python syntax for database operations, reducing the learning curve and development time. Moreover, newly added SQL query logging reveals database interactions to aid in performance optimization and remove bottlenecks.


Real-time Data Streaming: Thanks to Actian Zen 16.0’s integration with Apache Kafka, users can more easily and efficiently build data pipelines from edge to cloud. “Combining Zen replication features with Apache Kafka can create a real-time data pipeline. Zen acts as the source database, replicating changes to a secondary database for analytical workloads,” McGrattan said. “Kafka serves as a high-throughput messaging system, efficiently streaming data updates to analytics engines for immediate processing and insights,” she added.

Actian Zen 16.0 Early Adopters Share Real-World Impact

One early Actian Zen 16.0 adopter has reported several benefits.   


“Actian Zen provides a high performance, lightweight, and self-managed embedded database for our business. Zen continues to deliver exactly what we need, and we're enthusiastic about the new capabilities of Zen 16.0 to empower our business operations even further,” said Trent Maynard, director of product & engineering at Global Shop Solutions, a provider of enterprise software and services to small to midsized manufacturers.


Readers can learn more about Actian Zen 16.0 here. A free trial and a personalized demo is available.