Last week, SAS released a new LTS and stable version of the Viya platform, versions 2022.1 LTS and 2022.1.1 stable. We are happy to announce that this release is now available on SaasNow. You can deploy your Viya 2022.1 or 2022.1.1 environment through our portal.
Through our portal, you can deploy a SAS environment with your own license. Both Viya 3.5 as well as Viya 4 (version 2021.2.5 stable, 2021.2 LTS and later) are supported.
For pricing, visit our pricing page or contact our sales team!
At SaasNow we have deployed dozens of SAS Viya 4 environments since the initial release at the end of 2020. Whilst the underlying technology of SAS Viya 4 has radically changed from a microservices approach to a cloud-native Kubernetes deployment model, these changes are mostly invisible to end-users of the platform compared to Viya 3. The new deployment model, however, has quite some impact on how to size and scale your environment.
We have a lot of customers and partners that have questions about sizing their SAS Viya 4 environment. Therefore we decided to write this blog post about how we approach sizing of your SAS environment. Please note that for specific sizing, both SAS and SaasNow have specialized teams available to help you size your environment based on your exact requirements, but these guidelines should help you get started.
To start with some bad news; you will need more resources to run a minimal Viya 4 deployment than you needed to run a minimal Viya 3 deployment. While we could start and run a Viya 3 environment with SAS Visual Analytics on a 4 vCPU machine, as of today with the Viya 2021.2.5 stable release, you will need at least 16 vCPU to start an environment with SAS Visual Analytics, and 32 vCPU if you want to run a more extensive suite like SAS Visual Data Science Decisioning. Notable exception is SAS Analytics Pro, which can still start on a 4 vCPU environment.
While you will need more vCPUs to start a Viya 4 environment, the memory requirements have not increased. This is why we have introduced new machine types at SaasNow to better accommodate the new vCPU requirements of Viya 4. Whilst for Viya 3 we had extreme high-memory allocation per vCPU, for Viya 4 we`ve decided to double the amount of vCPUs per node. This means the new machine types better suit the new vCPU requirements of Viya 4, while still having the opportunity to use in-memory processing for analytics workloads.
SaasNow machine types, new machine types indicated in yellow
In our Amsterdam datacenter, all our machine types utilize extremely fast, local-only, SSD-only storage. All machine types can be combined according to your requirements, and additional disk space can be allocated to each machine type.
Analytics workloads and supporting services
In general, SAS makes a difference in the following workloads for Viya 4;
The most contained approach to sizing your SAS environment is to create dedicated node(pool)s for each of these workloads, but this leaves some headspace on every node. Our initial suggestion is therefore to combine services on a node where possible; combining stateful and stateless services on one ‘supporting services’ node and combining programming and CAS workloads on another ‘analytics’ node is a good starting point.
Use case and software selection matter
For SaasNow, every environment we host is considered a production environment. However, your use case for your environment may not be identical for every environment. You may want a small environment to test new features, that does not have the same (high availability) requirements as your production environment. At SaasNow you are flexible in deciding the nodes for your environment. Typically we see the following variations;
For proof-of-concept, test or smaller environments, we usually see a single server solution. Whilst large analytics workloads may influence other users’ experience in this kind of setup, this is the most cost effective way of giving Viya 4 a go.
For production environments, we usually see at least 2 nodes, splitting the supporting services from the analytics workloads. CAS and programming are combined on one node, with CAS running in Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) mode. This is a good balance between cost and performance
For environments with high analytics workloads, a single CAS node can be transformed into a multi-node setup, putting CAS in Massively Parallel Processing (MMP) mode for a distribution of analytics workloads over multiple nodes.
For high available environments, we see a more contained approach with nodepools for each workload type. This requires a significant amount of nodes, usually 8 or more.
Software selection also determines the minimal setup of your environment. When we take Viya 2021.2.5 – at time of writing this blog the latest available release – a deployment of SAS Visual Data Science Decisioning has 49 more pods than a deployment of SAS Visual Analytics. These pods of course need resources, hence a larger software deployment does result in a larger initial footprint.
T-Shirt sizing to start
When we released our new machine types last year, we`ve also introduced our t-shirt sizing recommendations for Viya 4, split between proof-of-concept setups (PoC-Small and PoC-Regular), production recommendations (from XS to XL) and a high available setup;
These t-shirt sizes should help you get started with sizing your environment. Which t-shirt size is right for you highly depends on the size of your datasets and the number of users that will use the environment at the same time. The t-shirt sized setups assume a mixed-use environment, with both visual as well as programming activity but no heavy programming or deep learning activity. Of course, we can still provide a tailored environment to your exact requirements, and we can scale your SaasNow environment on a monthly basis.
Scale when needed
Over time, you may need to scale your SAS environment. This may be incidental for a specific workload, or more permanent when usage of the environment increases over time. We have the following basic guidelines on when to scale which
Adding (a lot) more users that use the visual interfaces of SAS Viya, or are you adding a larger software order to your environment? Consider scaling up the supporting services node
Adding (a lot) more data, or onboarding (a lot) of users that use the programming capabilities of SAS? Consider scaling up the analytics node.
These guidelines should help you get started with sizing your SAS Viya 4 environment. As said, these guidelines do not replace a customized sizing by SAS or SaasNow, but should give you an idea on how to size your environment. If you have questions about sizing your environment, feel free to contact us!
We have added the option to deploy SAS Analytics Pro to SaasNow!
SAS Analytics Pro is an easy-to-use, yet powerful package for accessing, manipulating, analyzing and presenting information. SAS Analytics Pro combines Base SAS ® , SAS Studio, SAS/GRAPH®, and SAS/STAT® to create an analytics programming environment for data scientists and SAS programmers. The cloud-ready version adds the full SAS ® Viya ® set of SAS/ACCESS products, giving you access to many data sources.
Simply create an environment in the SaasNow portal using the new ‘SAS Analytics Pro (BYOL)‘ option and enter your license information.
Pricing is equal to our SAS Viya bring your own license offering, and SAS Analytics Pro can be deployed on any environment size, starting at 4 vCPU. For more information visit our pricing page or contact our sales team!
As an additional feature to the cloud version of SAS Customer Intelligence 360, SAS offers CI360 users the possibility to use SAS Visual Analytics for additional reporting and analysis as well. If you have a SAS Visual Analytics license as an addon to your CI360 environment, you can now use it to start a SAS Visual Analytics environment at SaasNow!
Simply create an environment in the SaasNow portal using the new ‘SAS Visual Analytics for CI360‘ option, upload your license and your environment will be started. As part of the deployment, the CI360 download client is available so you can setup access to your CI360 data in the cloud. You can easily download your detail, dbtReport, snapshot and CDM data to analyze in Visual Analytics.
Pricing is equal to our SAS Viya bring your own license offering. For more information visit our pricing page or contact our sales team!
Last week, SAS released a new LTS and stable version of the Viya platform, versions 2021.2 LTS and 2021.2.1 stable. Amongst other updates, 2021.2 allows you to import jobs from SAS Data Integration Studio to your Viya environment. We are happy to announce that this release is now available on SaasNow. You can deploy your Viya 2021.2 or 2021.2.1 environment through our portal.
Through our portal, you can deploy a SAS environment with your own license. Both Viya 3.5 as well as Viya 4 (version 2020.1 and later) are supported.
For pricing, visit our pricing page or contact our sales team!
September 21, 2021 – SaasNow, part of Notilyze and supplier of hosting-solutions for SAS-platforms, announces new pricing plans for SAS Viya 4. The new hosting options are available right away.
Colin Nugteren, CEO at SaasNow: “Viya 4 introduces a whole new architecture for SAS. We have been running Viya 4 since its initial release, and have been working with SAS customers and partners to give them the best Viya 4 experience at an affordable price point.”
After testing multiple versions of the Viya 4 software, the SaasNow team decided new bundles were better suited to accommodate the specific requirements for SAS Viya 4. Tom Dogger, CTO at SaasNow: “SAS Viya 4 comes with significant optimizations to the memory usage of SAS Viya. For Viya 3.5, we’ve always run extremely high memory configurations per core to give our customers the ultimate performance per licensed core. With Viya 4, SAS moves away from licensing cores, allowing us to add more cores to a single environment”
The new hosting plan for SAS Viya 4 has a new ratio between CPU, RAM and storage. Compared to the Viya 3.5 hosting plans, SaasNow doubles the number of CPUs for each pricing plan. SaasNow can run a SAS Viya environment on a single node, or multiple nodes can be combined into a single SAS Viya environment. The SaasNow team has put together sample environments for different types of organizations to start running Viya in a suitable way.
SaasNow offers Viya 4 hosting to SAS customers and partners in a fully managed setup. Not only infrastructure, but installation, backup, traffic, security and support are also included in a unique monthly model, creating a true SaaS experience for SAS Viya 4.
Viya 4 is available in the SaasNow dedicated European datacenter, located in Amsterdam (The Netherlands), and in multiple Azure regions around the world. New environments can be deployed autonomously in the SaasNow self-service portal, and are available within 2 business days. SaasNow is ISO27001 and NEN7510 certified.