Award for excellence: DENIC wins second prize in Database Award 2012

[news release] Today, it was granted for the second time, the Database Award of the German computer magazine “COMPUTERWOCHE” and its partner Oracle. Innovative spirit, strategic importance to the company and sophisticated technologies are the criteria to determine the winners. This year, DENIC is one of them. Participating for the first time, the registry immediately won the second place.
As the second-largest Internet registry in the world, DENIC administers the more than 15 million domain names of the German Top Level Domain .de. Accordingly, the requirements to be met by the database, the core applications, like the registration system and the whois lookup service, and the accounting system are very demanding. The data amount having grown to terabyte level, time had come to upgrade the old database and adapt it to today’s business needs. DENIC decided to carry out a complete redesign of the data model and launched the DB refactoring project. The aim of this project was improved data integrity at enhanced performance to thus create a database that facilitated future adaptations.

Database migration during ongoing operation to ensure uninterrupted availability of all DENIC services was the particular challenge of the project. To this end, two databases – the old one and a new one – were operated in parallel, so that service migration could be implemented step by step without disturbing operation. In the first step, data were entered and continually updated in the new database. This process was accompanied by repeated consistency checks of the old and the new database. Long-term parallel operation of the two databases made the last step, the shut-down of the old database on 27 December 2011, almost a formality.

All in all a tremendous challenge. The jury was impressed: “The project illustrated how sustainability can be achieved through an innovative data model,” reads the motivation of the jury’s choice. “Moreover, the new system was launched with a terabyte migration during ongoing operation, and the users did not even notice it.”

The result is a high-performance database that processes business transactions up to ten times quicker than before and that provides a future-proof data model. “Our staff has been greatly committed to implement this project successfully,” says Marcos Sanz Grossón, Head of DENIC’s Software Engineering Department. “I am very pleased about the recognition the project has received with the Database Award; it will be an incentive for our future work.”
In a video portrait created by COMPUTERWOCHE and commented by the jury, experts from DENIC provide background information and explicate the meaning of the


DENIC is responsible for managing .de, Germany’s top-level Internet domain and the world’s second largest Internet registry with 15,000,000+ domain names. Next to running a 17-site worldwide name server network, DENIC provides all domain database and registration system resources for .de and also operates the German ENUM domain (, along with all .de and ENUM related whois lookup services. Since its inception in 1996, as a private, not-for-profit cooperative, DENIC’s mission is to fulfil a public purpose by supporting a fast, secure and reliable access to German Internet pages and e-mail addresses, through the excellence of its extensive name server infrastructure and services, on a 24/7 basis. Today, 280+ registrars from the IT and telecommunications industry in Germany and abroad offer .de registration services and support the independent, self-regulatory approach of the Cooperative as active members. DENIC is also committed to be a leading force in shaping the continued development of the open, decentralized and secure Internet, in a close collaborative effort with international Internet bodies including ICANN, RIPE, IETF, and CENTR. Based in Frankfurt am Main, Germany, DENIC employs 120 staff and has an annual turnover of EUR15m.

This DENIC news release was sourced from:

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