What is Hadoop?

Hadoop and Distributed System

If you were a basketball player, all you need to is dribble and shooting. With those 2 skills, you can play basketball by yourself really well. But, if you were to play in a team, you are going to be suck. To have a successful basketball team, you will have to team up with other players. But then, you will also need to learn a new skill, passing. And a coach to coordinate everyone.

This is true with monolithic vs distributed system. In monolithic system, all you have is one giant supercomputer with large amount of memory, storage and compute power. In distributed system, you don’t have to have supercomputer, but you will have multiple, maybe less powerful, computers. Just like each player in a basketball team has to learn passing, each computer has to that talk to each other now and they will also have a software to coordinate them.

This is what Hadoop is for. It’s a system to coordinate and orchestrate a cluster of computers, called node, in a distributed system. Hadoop is like the coach for the basketball team.

Hadoop does a lot of heavy lifting, such as:

  • partition data
  • coordinate compute tasks
  • fault tolerance
  • allocate capacity to process / jobs, etc.
  • monitoring
  • security
  • API

The logical components of Hadoop, HDFS, MapReduce and YARN, are what Hadoop uses to do the heavy lifting. These components are essential the storage (HDFS), programming model (MapReduce) and resource manager (YARN).

In big data processing, some crucial requirements are to:

  • store
  • process and
  • scale

These reqs are to allow store, process and analyze data efficiently and in a timely manner. Hadoop is a perfect solution for big data processing.

And because Hadoop is handling most everything in cluster management for developers, we can focus on actually doing the work, building model, processing data, reporting, analyzing, etc. The details of cluster management is abstracted away.

What’s really cool about Hadoop is also its ecosystem. A lot of tools and technology have been created on top of Hadoop. Some of the popular ones are: Hive, HBase, Spark, Pig, Flume/Sqoop, Storm, Oozie, and many more. But, that’s for another day.

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