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Aaron Ploetz

Aaron is a software development professional specializing in database back-end service and database model development. He is a Cassandra MVP, and has over 20 years of experience working for international brands as a software developer/technical architect.

Getting Started with Apache Cassandra

Instructor: Aaron Ploetz

Learn how to work with Apache Cassandra

  • Learn by doing with the help of projects, exercises, quizzes and demos
  • Over 9 hours of lecture content
  • Instructor has over 20 years of experience serving as a technical architect for multiple international brands

Course Description

Understand how Apache Cassandra works, how its architecture is structured, how to implement security measures, and work on a large spectrum of projects ranging from cluster operations to data modeling, and building applications with Cassandra.

What am I going to get from this course?
  • Understand Cassandra Architecture.
  • Implement security measures.
  • Build their own local cluster.
  • Understand data modeling.
  • Build Cassandra applications with Java.
  • Perform basic operations such as running repairs, checking cluster health, and database user administration.

Prerequisites and Target Audience

What will students need to know or do before starting this course?
  • Familiarity with Java.
  • Understanding of distributed systems.
  • Familiarity with the Linux command line.
  • Understanding of databases.
  • Familiarity with Git.
Who should take this course? Who should not?
  • This course is designed for developers and architects who will be building and maintaining Cassandra clusters as well as for developers who will be building Cassandra client applications.


Module 1: Overview of Cassandra
Lecture 1 Overview of Cassandra

A brief introduction to Cassandra, including discussion on its key features, use cases, brief history, as well as contrasting its differences with relational databases.

Quiz 1 End of Module Quiz
Module 2: Understanding Cassandra Architecture
Lecture 2 Understanding the Cassandra Architecture

This lecture discusses the basic pieces of Cassandra's Architecture, illustrates how they work together, and conveys an understanding of Cassandra's behaviors, and how they affect upstream applications.

Quiz 2 End of Module Quiz

Module 3: Securing Cassandra
Lecture 3 Securing Cassandra

A quick introduction to Cassandra's security tools and features, as well as required firewall ports, and a walk-through on enabling basic security on in a single-node cluster.

Quiz 3 End of Module Quiz

Module 4: Building Your Local Dev Environment
Lecture 4 Building Your Local Dev Environment - Presentation

This module will be geared toward getting your own local Cassandra node up-and-running. This module is important, as you will need an environment on which to compete the hands-on exercises in the later modules.

Lecture 5 Building Your Local Dev Environment - Demo

Demonstration of how to put the steps from the presentation into use.

Quiz 4 End of Module Quiz
Module 5: cqlsh/CQL
Lecture 6 cqlsh/CQL

After a quick exercise in tightening-up user security on our new development node, we will discuss creating keyspaces and tables, importing and exporting data, and running queries. We will also discuss some of the behaviors of Cassandra and CQL.

Quiz 5 End of Module Quiz

Module 6: Data Modeling - Part 1
Lecture 7 Data Modeling - Part 1

Learn about the importance and basics of data modeling in Cassandra. We will look at several techniques on how to leverage certain features within Cassandra to get the most out of our data models. There will also be some discussion on the unintuitive traps that can cause queries to perform poorly.

Quiz 6 End of Module Quiz
Module 7: Data Modeling - Part 2
Lecture 8 Data Modeling - Part 2

A more advanced look at Cassandra data modeling. In this module, we will look at managing time series data, and how to effectively combat the problem of unbound row growth.

Quiz 7 End of Module Quiz

Module 8: Using the cassandra-stress tool
Lecture 9 Using the cassandra-stress tool

Learn how to utilize the cassandra-stress tool to test your models and query changes. The exercise will demonstrate how to use the tool, as well as a quick primer on interpreting the results.

Quiz 8 End of Module Quiz

Module 9: Building a Cassandra Application in Java
Lecture 10 Building a Cassandra Application in Java - Presentation

This module introduces how to work with Cassandra via the DataStax Java Driver. It features many hands-on exercises designed to acclimate students to performing routine Cassandra operations from within Java, as well as how to process the results.

Lecture 11 Building a Cassandra Application in Java - Demo

Quiz 9 End of Module Quiz
Module 10: Operations
Lecture 12 Operations

This module will introduce some of Cassandra's operational concepts, tasks, and tools. We will cover nodetool quite extensively, including how to use it to take a snapshot, run a repair, and query gossip/cluster information.

Quiz 10 End of Module Quiz
Module 11: Recommendations for Success
Lecture 13 Recommendations for Success

Tips and tricks about hardware, configuration, operations, development, and some extra resources to take a look at.

Quiz 11 End of Module Quiz
Module 12: Final Project
Lecture 14 Final Project

A description of the capstone project, and some recommendations.


1 Review

Empty user
John W

December, 2016

I came to this course knowing nothing about Apache Cassandra. I am pleased to say that I learned a lot and am currently working on the final project for the course. Course was a life saver for a job interview. I really liked the hands-on approach of building a local dev environment. Gave me tons of confidence. My favorite section was the module on building a Cassandra app in Java. While I found the instructor to be engaging, I would have liked to have seen shorter videos.