“At the beginning of this month, we released the first CTP of Velocity, an early preview of our distributed object cache solution. You can download it here. Notice it's a very early preview so things will definitely change moving forward. This post introduces how to install and use Velocity.
But first... what's in a name? Multi-tiered distributed applications are common-sense nowadays and with cloud computing within reach the need to build scalable distributed services has never been bigger. One of the core aspects in enabling those scenarios is to have intelligent caching of objects, not only to reduce the number of accesses to the underlying data source but also to boost availability by employing scale out techniques. Obviously, developers want to be able to do all of this without having to worry about the complexities that this brings, having to deal with load balancing and availability themselves. That's where Velocity comes into play.
The core idea is very straightforward: we have a cache that behind the scenes is distributed and replicated across a bunch of machines called the cluster. Storing data in the distributed cache is as easy as calling some Add or Put method, and retrieving it is as easy as calling Get. With some creative stealing from the documentation we end up with the following picture:
Bart De Smet provides a great level 100 guide to getting started with Velocity. What I found the most interesting is that the examples were simple .Net console apps. No ASP.Net, etc.
When I first heard of Velocity I didn’t think it would apply to me and my WinForm world all that much and thought it was mostly a web/ASP.Net thing. But now, after reading this, I’m having to adjust my thinking… I think this might coming in handy even for my projects.
BTW, sorry about the post title. Had to try to top Bart’s (but I still think his is better ;)