ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair) is a key-value pair cloud cache service. This edition is developed based on Tair used by Alibaba Group. ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair) has been officially used as the cache service of Alibaba Group since 2009 and has proven its outstanding performance in various scenarios, such as Double 11, Youku Spring Festival Gala, Cainiao, and AMAP.

Emergence of Tair

In 2004, Taobao started using cache-based technologies to support its business operations. The first cache-based technology that was adopted is frontend page caching. This technology uses Edge Side Includes (ESI) to identify web content segments that can or cannot be accelerated. Frontend page caching provides effective methods to reduce the number of times that entire pages are fetched from the server.

The rapid growth of network traffic to Taobao has exerted more pressure on databases. To reduce the load on databases, backend caching becomes an effective countermeasure. Backend caching evolved over many iterations from Tbstore to TDBM. Tbstore provides services such as Taobao details and verification codes. TDBM was initially used in Taobao User Center. In 2009, the large-scale and high-speed Tair was released. This solution is developed based on the success of previous systems and technical experience.

Tair is one of the most popular systems of Alibaba Group and has provided core access acceleration during the Double 11 event for many years. Tair can handle hundreds of millions of calls per second.

Milestones of Tair

Date Event
July 2021 New series were released:
  • Persistent memory-optimized instances: Persistent memory-optimized instances adopt Intel® Optane™ DC persistent memory (AEP) to provide you with in-memory databases that have a large capacity and are compatible with open source Redis. A persistent memory-optimized instance does not use disks to implement data persistence. It saves up to 30% of costs compared with an ApsaraDB for Redis Community Edition instance and provides almost the same performance in terms of throughput and latency. This helps improve the reliability of business data.
  • Storage-optimized instances: Storage-optimized instances are developed based on ESSDs and compatible with core data structures and interfaces of open source Redis. These instances can provide large-capacity, low-cost, and persistent database services.

In the future, ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair) will focus on cloud-native capabilities, such as hardware-software integration, intelligent data distribution, and integration of data storage and processing.

November 2019 Tair 3.0, or ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition, was officially released.
April 2019 The KVStore team was recognized as one of the top three contributors in the Redis open source community and delivered a public speech at RedisConf 2019.
August 2018 KVStore started to offer hybrid-storage instances in China to separate cold data from hot data and reduce costs for key customers.
November 2017 Tair dynamic hashing provided support for the 2017 Double 11 event and was able to fix several critical cache issues within the industry.
April 2017 Tair 2.0 was released and started to provide services to the AMAP and Youku business units.

Open Cache Service (OCS) was upgraded to KVStore.

August 2016 Tair Smart O&M Platform was released. The release of the platform contributed to a significant boost in sales during the 2016 Double 11 event.
March 2015 Tair entered the cloud era with the release of KVStore.
May 2014 After OCS was released, Tair became one of basic Alibaba Cloud services and started to serve Memcache users.
April 2013 The Fastdump service was released. It can reduce import time and access latency.

Tair was implemented on a large scale in Alimama.

October 2012 The RDB cache engine was released with APIs that are similar to that used in Redis. This engine supports more flexible and complex data structures.
June 2011 The LDB persistence engine was released to meet key-value storage requirements on the Internet.
November 2009 The first year that Tair started to support high traffic during the Double 11 event.
April 2009 Tair 1.0 was released and used in business such as the Taobao core system, MDB cache, and User Center.

Types and features of Tair

The rapid development of the Internet makes business scenarios become more diverse and complicated. ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair) is a high-availability and high-performance NoSQL database service. It provides various series of instances based on storage media such as DRAM, NVM, and ESSDs to meet your requirements for low-latency access, persistence, and reduced overall cost. Tair provides you with higher performance, more data structures, and more flexible storage methods. This helps you meet business requirements in different scenarios.

Type Feature
Performance-enhanced instances
Persistent memory-optimized instances Persistent memory-optimized instances adopt Intel® Optane™ DC persistent memory (AEP) to provide you with in-memory databases that have a large capacity and are compatible with open source Redis. A persistent memory-optimized instance does not use disks to implement data persistence. It saves up to 30% of costs compared with an ApsaraDB for Redis Community Edition instance and provides almost the same performance in terms of throughput and latency. This helps improve the reliability of business data.
Storage-optimized instances Storage-optimized instances are developed based on ESSDs and compatible with core data structures and interfaces of open source Redis. These instances can provide large-capacity, low-cost, and persistent database services. Storage-optimized instances reduce costs and improve data reliability. In addition, storage-optimized instances reduce the amount of reserved memory that is required for the forks of native Redis databases. This instance type applies to scenarios that store warm and cold data, and require compatibility with Redis, large capacity, and high access performance.
Hybrid-storage instances Hybrid-storage instances store data in both memory and disks. During off-peak hours, hybrid-storage instances can separate hot data from cold data to ensure a high memory access speed. Hybrid-storage instances also provide a larger storage capacity than instances of ApsaraDB for Redis Community Edition to balance performance and cost.

Purchase guide

For more information about how to purchase an instance of ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair), see Step 1: Create an ApsaraDB for Redis instance.