MapR Distribution Now Ships with Apache Drill 1.0 - Industry’s First Schema-Free SQL Engine for Big Data

May 19, 2015

Ushers in IOT analytics with self-service data exploration

MapR Technologies, Inc., provider of the top-ranked distribution for Apache™ Hadoop®, today announced the general availability of Apache Drill 1.0 in the MapR Distribution. Drill uniquely delivers self-service SQL analytics without requiring pre-defined schema definitions, dramatically reducing the time required for business analysts to explore and understand data. Drill enables interactivity with data from both legacy transactional systems and new data sources, such as Internet of Things (IOT) sensors, web click-streams, and other semi-structured data, along with support for popular business intelligence (BI) and data visualization tools. Drill provides reliability and performance at Hadoop scale with integrated granular security and governance capabilities required for multi-tenant data lakes or enterprise data hubs.

“Backed by a vibrant open source community, Apache Drill combines on-the-fly schema discovery with the familiarity of ANSI SQL so analysts can interactively explore any type of data in a self-service fashion,” said Anil Gadre, senior vice president, product management, MapR Technologies. “We believe features such as the new Drill Explorer are instrumental in defining new use cases for big data and speeding time-to-value. For the first time, users do not need to know the schema before analyzing data, which enables a much larger group within organizations to derive value from their big data much faster.”

Drill enables users to perform self-service data exploration on a wide variety of data types including complex JSON formats without having to depend on IT for data preparation. The scale, cost-effectiveness and schema-free writes that Hadoop provides are now complemented by Drill’s equally scalable, cost-effective and schema-free reads, providing low-latency SQL queries and flexibility for BI and analytics.

“The availability of Apache Drill in the MapR Distribution is a major milestone for the SQL-on-Hadoop project, which is significant in delivering real-time insights from complex data formats without requiring any data preparation," said Matt Aslett, research director, data platforms and analytics, 451 Research. "Apache Drill is an example of MapR collaborating with others as part of the Apache development process on new technologies to expand the Hadoop portfolio."

Drill also ushers in a new era of IOT analytics. IOT data typically has large volumes of complex/semi-structured data (such as JSON) and is highly dynamic as data sources could be from hundreds and thousands of devices, with each dataset potentially having a different format. Drill is designed to effectively handle such datasets.

The partner ecosystem is actively embracing the power of Apache Drill. Leading companies, such as Information Builders, JReport (Jinfonet Software), MicroStrategy, Qlik®, SAP, Simba, Tableau and TIBCO, are working closely with MapR and the Drill community to interoperate BI tools with Drill through standard ODBC/JDBC connectivity. This collaboration enables end users to explore data by leveraging sophisticated visualization tools and advanced analytics. Drill Explorer, which sits inside the ODBC driver, browses data available via Drill and exposes a transparent view into schema, enabling seamless and extremely fast self-service data exploration on big data. With granular, easy-to-deploy, SQL views-based security, Drill provides de-centralized consumption through modern self-service BI tools, without compromising on centralized IT governance model when required.


“Cardlytics is innovating how enterprises can leverage consumer spend behavior,” said Michael Fabacher, VP data architecture/development, Cardlytics. “Apache Drill will enable us to efficiently analyze large amounts of data quickly and provide perishable relevant information to our customers in massive volumes. Apache Drill on the MapR Distribution helps to deliver those capabilities cost effectively on our Hadoop platform, along with the scale and performance we require for our growing data insights capabilities.”

“We are building an advanced Hadoop platform at Cisco IT that enables hundreds of Cisco internal users to analyze big data. Drill 1.0 raises the bar for secure, reliable and scalable SQL-on-Hadoop, while integrating with existing data virtualization and visualization tools,” said Piyush Bhargava, distinguished engineer, IT, Cisco Systems. “We expect Drill to improve adoption of self-service data exploration and large-scale BI queries on Hadoop at Cisco.”

“We are very excited about the capabilities that Drill will bring into the Hadoop ecosystem. Having the ability to process trillions of rows of structured and unstructured data with low latency response times will allow us to provide new and exciting analytics to our clients when they need them,” said Will Duckworth, SVP, technology, comScore.


“Information Builders is pleased to continue to support MapR and their new Drill capabilities,” said Gerald Cohen, president and CEO, Information Builders. “Our software fuels proactive business analytics using more raw complex/multi-structured data at a significantly low cost and rapid time to market while being completely extensible for future MapR innovations, IT architecture, and organizational growth.”

“We are excited to support JReport as an embeddable BI platform for access to the MapR Distribution through Apache Drill,” said Dean Yao, director of marketing, Jinfonet Software. “The MapR and Drill solution set empowers our customers with self-service ad hoc reporting, dashboards, and data analysis for agile, on-the-fly decision-making.”

“We are glad to be one of the first analytic platforms to certify with Drill on our product,” said Tim Lang, senior executive vice president and chief technology officer, MicroStrategy. “With a minimal learning curve, Drill opens up more complex data sets to the end user who can instantly visualize and analyze new information using our advanced capabilities.”

“We believe that Apache Drill closes a major gap around self-service SQL queries in Hadoop, especially on complex, constantly evolving NoSQL data types,” said Mike Foster, strategic alliances technology officer, Qlik. “With these significant performance advances to accessing data in Hadoop, combined with the Qlik associative experience, we will enable our customers to continue discovering business value from their data – regardless of the variety or volume.”

“Using SAP Lumira® and SAP® Predictive Analytics software together with Apache Drill brings Hadoop data into the hands of business users to help analyze, visualize and predict outcomes with outstanding performance and speed,” said Jayne Landry, global vice president and general manager, business intelligence, SAP. “Customers can explore rapidly evolving, big-data sources, mash and merge them with other data, and quickly understand the impact on their business.”

“MapR adoption of Apache Drill epitomizes its commitment to providing SQL-on-Hadoop innovation to its customers,” said Amyn Rajan, CEO, Simba Technologies. “Here at Simba, we're proud to have developed the ODBC connectivity delivering Drill's self-service SQL analytics capabilities to MapR customers' BI tools of choice.”

“Drill gives people the power to access data that is traditionally hard to work with,” said Jeff Feng, product manager, Tableau. “The ability to do this directly within a centralized data repository and without pre-generating metadata definitions helps to promote data democracy which is central to data-driven organizations. Instant and secure access to complex data formats, such as JSON, opens up extended analytical opportunities for our joint customers.”

“Congratulations to the Apache Drill community on achieving 1.0," said Karl Van den Bergh, vice president, products and cloud, TIBCO. "TIBCO customers know the value of F​ast D​ata analysis; we expect them to welcome the innovation Drill brings with low-latency access to data stored in Hadoop and HBase via standard SQL semantics.”


  • Take advantage of free MapR On-Demand Hadoop training to get started on Drill
  • To learn more about the Drill 1.0 product and its key features, visit here
  • To experience Drill in action by downloading the software or to find more information, visit here.

Drill graduated to become an Apache top-level project in Dec 2014. Apache Drill 1.0 with the MapR Distribution including Hadoop is currently available.

Tweet this: Revolutionizing SQL on #BigData - Apache Drill 1.0 available now


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