Press Release

High-Performance Membase NoSQL Database Now Available

NorthScale, the company behind the Membase key-value database, debuts as Membase, Inc.; name change reflects growing market momentum behind Membase

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – October 11, 2010 – Membase, Inc., (formerly NorthScale), today delivered the first generally available release of Membase Server, the distributed NoSQL database that manages the data behind some of the most demanding interactive web applications, including FarmVille, the popular social game from Zynga played by millions of users daily. Simple, fast, and elastic, Membase Server fills a gap in the NoSQL market by providing a bridge from relational database technology to a scale-out data management model for interactive web applications. Working alongside relational database systems, Membase allows organizations to start where they are with existing technology and expertise and gradually evolve toward an elastic data layer.

Optimized for storing data behind interactive web applications, Membase scales out far more efficiently and cost effectively than a relational database, offering substantial cost, performance and scalability benefits. Built by the developers behind the Memcached project, who subsequently founded the Membase open source project, the Membase API is a superset of Memcached, the most widely deployed distributed key-value caching technology for web applications; as such, it inherits a thriving developer support community and mature, production-proven libraries for virtually every programming language and application.

News Highlights

  • Membase, the simple, fast, elastic NoSQL database, is generally available today:
    • Membase Server Enterprise Edition is a certified distribution of Membase, available for download and purchase at Annual product subscriptions start at $999 per node, granting a software use license and access to the Membase Network, which delivers software upgrades, hot fixes, maintenance releases and product support.
    • Membase Server Community Edition is a community binary, downloadable at, where developers can also access and contribute to the source code.
  • Membase has expanded its services offerings with a QuickStart package and other consulting services options for customers seeking assistance with design and implementation of scale-out data solutions.
  • Membase is currently in production behind web applications at Zynga, NHN and Loggly, serving millions of users daily, and it is available through cloud service providers such as RightScale and Heroku
  • Membase announced its sponsorship of local community Membase meetups for technical education and training.
    • The first meetup will be held in Zynga’s San Francisco offices on Thursday, October 28, 2010 from 6-9pm and will feature leaders of the Membase open source project, as well as a speaker from Zynga. Participants must register to attend.
    • Registration is also open for local Membase meetups in New York City, Boston  and Silicon Valley in early November, with other cities to follow.

Product Highlights

  • Membase is simple
    • Takes five minutes or less to build a working cluster. Users can start with a single node and join nodes to a cluster with a single button press or REST call.
    • Key-value approach means no need to create and manage schemas, normalize, shard or tune the database before storing data.
    • 100% compatible with Memcached, inheriting its simplicity and ease of use.
  • Membase is fast
    • The lowest latency, highest throughput NoSQL database technology available, providing predictable performance.
    • Quasi-deterministic latency and high sustained throughput ensure web applications get the data they need, when they need it.
    • Auto-migration of hot data to lowest latency storage technology (RAM, SSD, disk); multi-threaded; low lock contention.
  • Membase is elastic
    • Scale-out architecture with auto-sharding enables customers to spread I/O and data across commodity servers or virtual machines, maintaining performance and growing costs linearly with increases in capacity.
    • Add and remove nodes from a live cluster, and even perform software upgrades, with zero application downtime and with sustained data operation throughput.
    • Highly extensible with plug pointsfor external systems such as full-text search indexing, data analytics and archiving.

Supporting Quotes

“As longtime users of Memcached, our team was excited about Membase as the logical next-step in data management, giving us a highly elastic database for scaling our user-tracking system while maintaining the simplicity and speed we’ve come to rely on with Memcached. Moreover, the switch to Membase was very simple, requiring minimal changes to code and infrastructure.”
— Manu Mukerji, Architect, ShareThis

“Our business is web-driven, and our success is rooted in the IT organization’s ability to connect health insurance companies with health care providers in real-time, without interruption of service. Membase gives us the ability to dynamically scale-out the data layer of our web-based application while ensuring high availability, which means we can consistently provide the levels of service our users expect.”
— Paul Vienneau, CTO and VP Engineering, NaviNet

“Loggly uses Membase NoSQL technology to drive real-time collection of logging traffic to facilitate aggregation and statistical analysis; it stores and tracks the amount of logging activity by user, by time, and by server. Membase is a great fit for our team because it is Memcached-compatible, making it easy to setup and use – it just works!”
— Jon Gifford, Chief Technology Officer, Loggly

“We’ve seen a swell in demand for Membase Server, even during beta, and we are thrilled to release Membase Server for general availability, and offer subscriptions and services that provide customers with the support they need for running Membase in production. From consumer web properties to more traditional enterprises, we are encountering growing numbers of companies that want to take advantage of the simplicity, speed, and scalability our technology offers for managing the data behind their interactive web applications.”
— Bob Wiederhold, President and CEO, Membase

About Couchbase

At Couchbase, we believe data is at the heart of the enterprise. We empower developers and architects to build, deploy, and run their most mission-critical applications. Couchbase delivers a high-performance, flexible, and scalable modern database that runs across the data center and any cloud. Many of the world’s largest enterprises rely on Couchbase to power the core applications their businesses depend on. For more information, visit

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