Distributed Database Infrastructure Case Study

Database Distribution Strategy

Smart Homes, Inc. required a database distribution strategy for its exciting new home thermostat product. As part of initiatives to develop and establish this database, the firm has created its own Web-based system for registering, evaluation, and controlling a user’s thermostat through a mobile computing device. The database design must support a smart thermostat registration system that would support some customer service processes. For instance, when a customer installs and powers on the smart thermostat, the device links to his/her home network and sends distinctive device and environment information to the Smart Home, Inc. system. Moreover, the database must support the collection of smart thermostat data like current temperature, energy usage, humidity, thermostat location, and user-programmed temperature schedule.

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Distributed Database Infrastructure

This project is geared toward the development and implementation of a thermostat system that will facilitate many functions provided by Smart Homes, Inc. As part of achieving company objectives, it will not be a simple thermostat but a complex one in which users can connect to a local network through an Ethernet interface (Landoni, 2011). The thermostat will effectively support various functions such as energy usage, humidity, current temperature, thermostat location, and user-programmed temperature schedule. User-programmed temperature schedules will be measured at regular intervals through firmware and the state of the boiler.

The three major components of the distributed database are registration, monitoring, and controlling a user’s thermostat through a mobile computing device. The user registration system contains various devices that enable users be registered using a single customer account and establish customer Smart Thermostat account. The account will provide them with System Identification Number and necessary units through which confidential personal customer information is transferred. The sensitive personal information will be kept private through the company’s privacy policy. The monitoring system will record, store, and transmit recorded personal information to the company’s data center within the first 30 minutes of initial setup configuration. For authentication purposes, the user’s registration information will be uploaded every 12 hours as each device error is recorded and uploaded to promote product satisfaction and development.

Controlling a user’s thermostat through a mobile computing system will be carried out in the remote connection system. In this case, customers or users will have the option to remotely control Smart Thermostat using their mobile devices. This process will involve provision of a visual representation of every process for the users to better understand the functionality of the system. Moreover, the control process will entail validating user information, providing connection between the user’s mobile device and thermostat, and checking activity. If the validation processes, shows that customer or user information is invalid, the user will be automatically disconnection or no link will be established between mobile device and thermostat.

Implementing Distributed Database

This thermostat system for the company is a distributed system that comprises hardware and software components that are critical for the functionality of the system. Generally, a distributed database system consist hardware and software components that are not all linked to a common processing unit though it is controlled by a distributed database management system. These databases are commonly used for applications where data and access are intrinsically distributed (Bhargava, n.d.). For Smart Homes Inc., the implementation of this system requires performance of various steps including developing and implementing components that meet the minimum standards in relation to network and data security. This will be followed by establishing crucial links between marketing, operations, IT, and legal departments. Information technology should be aligned with the entire business operations and organizational departments. The company should also develop an organizational structure that promotes the link between these departments. The IT department will offer helpdesk support to users and product owners for hardware and software components and help operations department handle customer related issues and provide installation services.

Benefits and Challenges in Implementation Maintenance

Since the database system is not a simple thermostat but a complex structure with multiple hardware and software components, the implementation process is characterized with various benefits and challenges. The benefit of implementation maintenance process is that it will help the company ensure efficient and effective functionality of the system and providing excellent and high-quality customer service. Secondly, Smart Home, Inc. will successfully support and maintain its new product line, which will in turn ensure stability for future growth through implementation process. However, this process is characterized with challenges including emergence of new security risks brought by addition of mobile-based and web-based applications. Moreover, the lack of standards and standardized methodology imply that the firm will learn the hard way in safeguarding sensitive customer information.

Maintenance and Security Strategy

In light of the new security challenges and lack of standards and standardized methodology, Smart Homes, Inc. needs to develop an effective maintenance and security strategy. The maintenance and security strategy entails the implementation of strict authentication procedures that are established to ensure system integrity. The strict authentication procedures will involve implementing Information Assurance (IA) suite, which is an important software component that consist of a series of components designed to protect internal systems. Local applications to promote security will involve the use hardware firewalls, intrusion detection systems, and authentication servers.

Apart from this, the company should consider implementing a relational database security model in which security is handled based on multilevel classification. In this model, users can read and alter data in their view but are prohibited from accessing data in a higher classification level (Coy, 1996). This maintenance and security plan is suitable for Smart Homes, Inc. because it provides security based on a criterion that involves availability of data, acceptability of access, and assurance of authenticity. However, the model should be a centralized relational database where the view is not developed from local relations but from global relations of the system. The global view would be effective in suppression of data and interference protection, which is crucial to its effectiveness.

In conclusion, the development of a distributed database system is an important element of promoting the exciting new thermostat product manufactured by Smart Homes, Inc. This database system will support various customer functions and function based on the created Web-based system. The database system will be based on three major aspects i.e. registering, monitoring, and controlling a user’s thermostat through a mobile computing device. While this system is characterized with the emergence of new security challenges, these issues can be dealt with through developing and establishing a relational database security model.


Bhargava, B. (n.d.). Building Distributed Database Systems. Retrieved from Purdue University

website: https://www.cs.purdue.edu/homes/bb/cs542-06Spr-bb/building.pdf

Coy, S.P. (1996). Security Implications of the Choice of Distributed Database Management

System Model: Relational vs. Object-Oriented. Retrieved from National Institute of Standards and Technology website: http://csrc.nist.gov/nissc/1996/papers/NISSC96/paper072_073_074/SCO_.PDF

Landoni, B. (2011, May 4). Web Thermostat with Arduino. Retrieved September 14, 2014, from http://www.open-electronics.org/web-thermostat-with-arduino/2/

Registration, Remote Connection and Evaluation System

– User Registration Device

– Mobile Access

– Thermostat Monitoring

Monitoring System

Registered Customer



Customer Home Network

Wireless Network

Registered Smart Thermostat

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