Developing globally distributed applications can be challenging, as developers have to think about race conditions and complex combinations of events under geo-failovers and cross-region write conflicts. In Redis Enterprise Software (RS), Active-Active databases simplify developing such applications by directly using built-in smarts for handling conflicting writes based on the data type in use. Instead of depending on just simplistic “last-writer-wins” type conflict resolution, geo-distributed Active-Active databases (formerly known as CRDBs) combines techniques defined in CRDT (conflict-free replicated data types) research with Redis types to provide smart and automatic conflict resolution based on the data types intent.

An Active-Active database is a globally distributed database that spans multiple Redis Enterprise Software clusters. Each Active-Active database can have many Active-Active database instances that come with added smarts for handling globally distributed writes using the proven CRDT approach. CRDT research describes a set of techniques for creating systems that can handle conflicting writes. CRDBs are powered by Multi-Master Replication (MMR) provides a straightforward and effective way to replicate your data between regions and simplify development of complex applications that can maintain correctness under geo-failovers and concurrent cross-region writes to the same data.

geo replication worldmap

Active-Active databases replicate data between multiple Redis Enterprise Software clusters. Common uses for Active-Active databases include disaster recovery, geographically redundant applications, and keeping data closer to your user’s locations. MMR is always multi-directional amongst the clusters configured in the Active-Active database. For unidirectional replication, please see the Replica Of capabilities in Redis Enterprise Software.

Example of synchronization

In the example below, database writes are concurrent at the point in times t1 and t2 and happen before a sync can communicate the changes. However, writes at times t4 and t6 are not concurrent as a sync happened in between.

Time CRDB Instance1 CRDB Instance2
t1 SET key1 “a”
t2 SET key1 “b”
t3 — Sync — — Sync —
t4 SET key1 “c”
t5 — Sync — — Sync —
t6 SET key1 “d”

Learn more about synchronization for each supported data type and how to develop with them on Redis Enterprise Software.