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Byte.com: Linux Databases

Sep 13, 1999, 14:01 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Jon Udell)


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"It's fascinating to see database vendors lining up to support Linux, much as they did some years ago when Novell was pushing UnixWare. What's different, this time, is that the operating system platform is an open source project. Linux is the defining existence proof of the open source philosophy, which holds that broad collaboration can yield the highest-quality software."

"It's not the open source philosophy that now compels Oracle, Informix, and IBM to port their database engines to Linux, of course. It's business. Linux represents a large and growing share of the server market, a fact these companies would be foolish to ignore."

"Oracle, Informix, and IBM aren't confused about the business value of open source, and neither should you be. I concluded, a few years ago, that I preferred Linux to NT for a mission-critical Web-server-based application. I further concluded that a commercial Linux database made more sense than the available open source alternatives. As it turns out, the database I picked -- Solid -- evolved in ways that would have made that an uncomfortable choice. In retrospect, I probably still would have chosen Linux, but I ought to have thought harder about the availability of several robust and affordable Linux databases. Given the scarcity of these, back then, I perhaps ought better to have hooked my Linux/Apache/mod_perl Web server to a database running on commercial Unix, or on NT. Don't let ideology influence these kinds of decisions; it's all too easy to paint yourself into a corner."

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