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Project Details

John Deere Power Electronic Solutions (John Deere) uses IBM’s InfoSphere DataStage software for all of its ETL (Extract, Transform, Load) needs. This product is due for an update, but the company’s current level of usage doesn’t justify the resources an update would take. John Deere is considering SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) as the replacement product. The company has little experience with SSIS, so they would like our student team to explore the capabilities of the software and determine its viability as a replacement. In addition, the company is exploring options for hosting their replacement ETL tool on-premise. Their current setup uses virtual machines (VMs), but they are open to the idea of using Docker, a platform for hosting operating-system level virtualization, or containers. Time permitting, John Deere would like our student team to build two SSIS systems, one using VMs and one using Docker, and compare the two. John Deere would like the student team to first focus on building the SSIS system using VMs only, and if time is left over in the project, build the Docker version. --- The project will focus first on setting up an “ETL Lab”. An ETL Lab will host multiple databases and database servers in an attempt to simulate the different data sources that John Deere uses. Databases will be populated with mock data, either created by the student team or publicly available from a third-party, in a quantity similar to that of John Deere’s databases. The ETL Lab will also host the SSIS software itself. The ETL Lab setup and specifications will be documented and delivered in a final report. For the virtual machine option, the ETL Lab will be hosted on Microsoft Azure, a cloud computing platform. For the Docker option, a similar sort of ETL Lab would be set up using the Docker platform. Once an ETL Lab is set up, the focus of the project will shift to experimentation and demonstration. The student team will use SSIS to perform the wide range of functions required by John Deere and document pertinent observations. These observations will be compiled into a final report, which will be delivered to the company at the end of the project, along with the student team’s recommendations about SSIS. The student team will also demonstrate the working SSIS system to the company. If the Docker system is completed, the same experimentation and demonstration will be performed with it as well. The results of the project will have a real impact on the company. The student team’s work and recommendation will weigh heavily into the company’s decision for a replacement product, and this product will set the course of the company’s ETL technology for the next 5 - 10 years.