How to Operate Snowflake More Effectively, Securely, and Efficiently
Nov 06, 2019 | 4 Min Read
Author: Ahmad Khan
How to Use Snowflake, Snowflake Technology
Companies of all sizes use Snowflake’s cloud-built data platform to achieve instant and infinite scalability. Because of its multi-cluster, shared data architecture, multiple users can simultaneously run workloads and queries while accessing a single copy of all structured and semi-structured data. That’s a necessity for businesses striving to compete in today’s fast-paced global environment.
Aside from its core capabilities, certain features of Snowflake can help enterprises achieve better performance, tighter security, and lower costs. Customized set-up of these features can help you meet specific security and compliance requirements, and optimize performance according to your own needs.
Here’s a few tips on how to operate if you’re part of a large-scale organization that has many Snowflake users working across teams running multiple workloads against your cloud-built data warehouse or data lake,
Snowflake provides all the tools necessary to deliver a performant cloud-built data warehouse. There are unique Snowflake performance features that you can optimize for smarter and more cost-effective query execution, and better end-user experiences. You can also customize these features according to the needs of your organization. First, establish criteria for when to create a new Snowflake virtual warehouse (compute cluster). Separate warehouses provide workload isolation, resulting in consistent user experience without impacting performance. Then, determine how to increase performance by scaling compute, clustering, and caching. Selecting the right method for data ingestion will complement common techniques for performance optimization.
Every IT organization prioritizes developing robust data security to minimize the risk of malicious or accidental loss of data. Snowflake provides a secure data environment with near-zero administration, but today’s cybersecurity threats often occur at the seams between tools and teams. Snowflake’s enterprise-grade security features such as user authentication, audit controls, and end-to-end data encryption help ensure the strongest security possible for potential areas of weakness. For example, all data stored in Snowflake is protected using AES-256 encryption. Organizations that require additional security measures can set up encryption key procedures and create auditing controls on top of Snowflake. Choosing from among different Snowflake Editions can also help you to satisfy the security and compliance requirements of your industry and region.
Snowflake’s cloud-built data warehouse offers many opportunities to save costs associated with legacy data warehouses. Features such as per-second pricing, auto-scaling, and zero-copy cloning help minimize spending. When warehouses are not in use, Snowflake uses auto-suspension and auto-resumption by default to preserve credits. You only pay for what you use – down to the second. Following best practices can reduce the risk of overspending by illustrating how to achieve oversight and insight into data warehouse usage. By practicing efficient warehouse scaling, creating resource monitors, paying attention to options such as table storage, and using cost chargebacks, you can take complete control over your expenditures.
For more information on these and other best practices and automation techniques that can assist you in operating Snowflake at enterprise scale, download our ebook How to Operate Snowflake at Enterprise Scale.