Caching SharePoint Data

July 17, 2012

StorageEdge lets you cache list data, BLOBs, and ASP.NET Session State to help you boost performance and scalability of SharePoint. Performance improvement comes because an in-memory cache is much faster than making expensive database trips over and over again. And, scalability comes because traffic to the database is reduced considerably and allows the database to handle more concurrent users.

Why Cache List Data?

Lists in SharePoint represent most of the structured data that the user sees. And, this list data is stored in SQL Server database. So, if you cache list data in an in-memory cache, you can access it much faster than going to the database. And, by reducing database trips, you’re no longer going to see the database becoming a scalability bottleneck when you increase the number of users. Here are some things you can do with list caching.

          • Keep list data fresh in the cache through expirations
          • Keep list data cache synchronized across all WFE servers in the farm
          • Use InProc/OutProc client cache along with a distributed cache
          • Mange all list caching from a centralized web based admin app
          • Monitor list cache activities in PerfMon

Why Cache BLOBs?

StorageEdge lets you externalize BLOBs to relieve pressure on the SQL Server database. Additionally, StorageEdge lets you cache frequently used BLOBs on WFE servers in an InProc/OutProc client cache to give your SharePoint app further boost and reduce traffic even to the external BLOB storage. This in-memory client cache is much faster than the disk based BLOB cache that SharePoint provides you. Here are some things you can do with BLOB caching.

            • Keep a subset of BLOBs in client cache on WFE servers
            • Specify max cache size and evict some BLOBs when cache is full
            • Keep BLOBs fresh by expiring them in the cache
            • Keep cache light by removing unreferenced BLOBs from cache
            • Manage all BLOB caching from a centralized web based admin app
            • Monitor BLOB cache activity in PerfMon

Why Store ASP.NET Session State in Cache?

A number of SharePoint features use ASP.NET Session state. This includes Forms Services, Project Server, and any custom applications and web parts you develop in SharePoint. However, by default, SharePoint stores Session State in SQL Server but that is not the best place to keep your sessions. Here are some reasons why you should store SharePoint Session State in a distributed cache rather than in SQL Server:

              • In-memory distributed cache much faster to access than SQL Server
              • Distributed cache replicates sessions to multiple servers
              • Add or remove cache servers at runtime without stopping the app
              • Keep cache light by removing unreferenced BLOBs from cache
              • Plug-in distributed cache storage through web.config as an SSP
              • Monitor Session State cache activity in PerfMon

Below is a diagram showing how caching fits into a typical SharePoint application. Please note that you don’t have to create a separate caching tier and can host the cache on your WFE servers. Separate caching tier is recommended (but not required) if you have 4 or more WFE servers.

SharePoint  with EBS Provider

SharePoint with EBS Provider

About Alachisoft:

Alachisoft, is located in San Francisco Bay Area, California, is a leading provider of NCache and StorageEdge. NCache is a high performance in-memory object caching solution for mission critical .NET and Java applications with real-time data access needs. While StorageEdge is an RBS provider for SharePoint and helps optimize storage and performance of SharePoint. It externalizes all BLOBs from SharePoint content database and reduces the database size by 95%.

Download Free Version of StorageEdge


Alachisoft in TechEd America and TechEd Europe

June 7, 2012

Alachisoft has announced its participation in TechEd America and TechEd Europe to be held in Orland from June 11-14,2012 and June 22-25, 2012 in Amsterdam respectively, according to the Alachisoft Newsletter. Alachisoft will showcase two of its premier products there, NCache and StorageEdge.

Iqbal Khan, The Technology Evangelist at Alachisoft, will demonstrate to the visitors how NCache reduces expensive database trips resulting in enhanced performance and extended scalability, especially since these qualities are now considered core requirements for a reliable and efficient enterprise application.

While StorageEdge promises to strengthen your SharePoint ROI by assisting in offloading BLOBs onto cheaper storage tiers with various filtering options to help improve user experience and bandwidth. Though I’ve discussed the benefits and features of StorageEdge in detail in my earlier post, below are some of the highlights,

    – RBS Filestream provider
    – BLOB Externalization
    – Archiving to multi-Tire Storage
    – Rational Archiving for Compliance
    – File Share linker
    – Database Mirroring
    – Asynchronous BLOB Writing

Visitors will witness these remarkable features and noticed the strength of StorageEdge and NCache via live demos and presentations at the booth, apart from the brochures.

The event, hosted by Microsoft, is the leading event for business and IT professionals from all over the world. TechEd is offering most comprehensive education across Microsoft current and soon-to –be –released suites of products, solutions, tools and services. This will be the 20th Annual TechEd North America this June in Orlando and it will deliver four days of hand –on training from Microsoft experts.

Alachisoft also participated in the Last year’s TechEd which was held in Atlanta, North America. “This helped us build confidence in our customers who see us there every year and projected our growing influence and strategic place among up and coming companies. Thank you to all who were part of it and made it a success” said by CTO Iqbal Khan at the end of the last year’s event.

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