Great Bridge LLC is
launching the first enhanced distribution of the PostgreSQL open
source database and accompanying support services for the
enterprise business market. Backed by Landmark Communications Inc.,
whose chairman Frank Batten, Jr., was the angel investor and former
director of Red Hat Inc., Great Bridge aims to do to the big
commercial database vendors what Red Hat Linux did to Microsoft,
give businesses an open source alternative to high-priced
The Norfolk, Va.-based Great Bridge PostgreSQL is freely
available and its open source license allows users to modify the
source code to fit their specific needs. While Great Bridge
software will be widely distributed at no cost, the company will
make money by selling value-added support services such as
technical support, consulting and training. Great Bridge offers a
suite of technical support packages for corporate end-users.
Its premium support package provides one year of unlimited,
24-hour e-mail and telephone support from an engineering team while
its standard support deal provides unlimited e-mail and limited
telephone support. All Great Bridge support packages include the
company's enhanced release of the PostgreSQL database management
system and over 500 pages of documentation.
According to Bill Claybrook, research director at Aberdeen
Group, the Boston-based technology market research firm, Great
Bridge PostgreSQL has the potential to grab market share away from
the database giants.
"Great Bridge offers a mature, fully functional, competitive
database product at a fraction of the cost of Oracle 8i," said
Claybrook, adding that Great Bridge passes lower development costs
on to customers. "The company's greatest challenge will be to
retain and grow the independent developer community that creates
and enhances open source software. Great Bridge has taken steps to
do this by providing sufficient infrastructure to manage the
collaborative nature of the open source development model."
Great Bridge PostgreSQL, a distribution of the open source
object-relational database that originated at the University of
California at Berkeley in the mid-1980's, is professionally tested
for security and reliability in the Great Bridge lab and enhanced
by an automated graphical installer for quick and easy
"The PostgreSQL development community has created an open source
object-relational database capable of handling the heaviest demands
of e-commerce and enterprise businesses, and they continue to
improve it at a rate that proprietary applications cannot match,"
said Robert Gilbert, Great Bridge president and chief executive
officer. "Great Bridge believes that open source communities
produce the best software, and we are committed to providing the
exceptional levels of service and support that will encourage more
businesses to reap the benefits of open source technologies."