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Sybase Releases Free Enterprise Database on Linux 386

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the everyone's-favorite-price dept.
Tassach writes "Sybase announced today that they are releasing a free (as in beer) version of their flagship database for Linux. The free version is limited to 1 CPU, 2GB of RAM, and 5GB of data, which is more than adequate for all but the most demanding applications. This release provides a very attractive alternative to Microsoft SQL Server, and gives developers and DBAs an extremely powerful argument to use against the adoption of Microsoft-based solutions. For those who are unfamiliar with the product, Microsoft's version of Transact-SQL is nearly identical to Sybases's. This high degree of similarity makes porting applications between the two platforms very easy. Sybase is supported by numerous open-source projects, including sqsh (SQL shell), FreeTDS, and SybPerl."
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Sybase Releases Free Enterprise Database on Linux

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  • by pmsr (560617) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:43AM (#10198841)
    You are missing the point. It makes it easy to convert from Microsoft SQL. Imagine thousands of independent software developers with an alternative to MSQL within easy reach. Their entire solution cost is now reduced, and they will sell better. At least the ones that take the chance.

    /Pedro

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:45AM (#10198847)

    More free shit to play around with. It's great for them, I play around with it, I learn it.

    Soon they will have another tech that knows how to operate it. A small business may end up using it so they can ditch the MS SQL stuff and move to a more robust enviroment. They hire a admin, he needs a assistant? I am aviable, and I trained myself enough to be familar with it.

    Whoopie.

    Then as the company grows, so will it's need. If it's a decent product then they'd definatly pay for it after using it for year or two for free.

    Best damn advertising you can hope to get. Got to love it. Sure beats the snot out of ending up being another MS victom and another footnote in history:
    "So and so company had a product similar to the insanely popular MS Widget. Although widely considured superior to MS's solution by a large part of the industry, MS's continued dominace of the desktop arena gave the leverage nessicary too".... blab blah blah

    Did I mention I also get some free shit to play around with? (given a choice between free and Free, Free usually wins, but we'll see how it goes)
  • by protektor (63514) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:47AM (#10198855)
    The limited database size of 5 gig makes it worthless to just about every Open Source web site or developer other than the very very small guys who would rather use something like MySQL or PostgreSQL instead.

    How exactly is it helpful to release a free version that most people can't use in real world applications? The answer is, it isn't.

    Move along people nothing to see here.
  • Nearly Identical? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:50AM (#10198869)
    Microsoft's version of Transact-SQL is nearly identical to Sybases's.

    Just how nearly is it? I'd like to know in terms of things just broken enough to make finding them absolute hell.
  • by sr180 (700526) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:55AM (#10198887) Journal
    MSDE is only free if you have already bought one of their Operating Systems first...

  • by dotgain (630123) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:55AM (#10198890) Homepage Journal
    How exactly is it helpful to release a free version that most people can't use in real world applications? The answer is, it isn't.

    Hey, you're right. They should, like, ship it with no database size limit!. They everybody could use it, Slashdot, large enterprises, even banks!

    And nobody would have to buy it! How selfish of them to give away a database that wouldn't cut it in a large enterprise.

  • by ezzzD55J (697465) <slashdot5@scum.org> on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:57AM (#10198898) Homepage
    Anyone know if this database is any good at replication, with multiple-write replication slaves? or even a single-write machine, with automatic re-selection of the writing machine?

    anything to improve the current mysql replication situation..

  • Clever (Score:5, Insightful)

    by /ASCII (86998) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @04:59AM (#10198904) Homepage
    The database caps of the free version are high enogh for the product to be usefull for web applications and smaller projects, a market that is completely dominated by free alternatives such as Postgres and MySQL. Almost everyone who shelves out $$$ for a database server run much larger systems.

    I bet they are hoping that by giving away the product for free to people who would never buy it anyway, they get droves of people who are experienced at running their system who will eventually buy it for larger projects 'cause that's the system they know how to use.

    Kind of like how SUN sells computers to universitys dirt cheap.
  • Re:Smart move (Score:5, Insightful)

    by lennart78 (515598) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:03AM (#10198921)
    At our company, sybase is our main supplier for database software (ASE mostly). We are slowly changing to MS-SQL, because we're slowly becoming an all M$-shop. (And I'm slowly looking for another job...)
    We run Sybase on Alpha/Tru64. We've had our issues during the years, a lot of wich have been resolved by Unix-patches, so I guess Sybase as a DBMS is quite stable.
    Support by Sybase however is less cause for optimism, as they recently shut down their presence in .nl. We are now serviced from out of .uk.
    Sybase is, IMHO, rapidly losing their grip on the market. Existing implementations take years to rebuild on a new platform, but it is happening, and I think in a lot of places, and M$ is the main beneficiary.
    The way people are using databases is changing. People want multi-tier applications, and the Sybase portfolio can't compete with M$ .NET.
    Sybase should be looking at new markets, and I think this is a good move. The advantage of people being familiar with your product can work wonders, look for example at how WordPerfect got big years back.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:03AM (#10198922)
    MS-SQL was licensed FROM sybase. Then Gray came on board and fixed it in the 6-7 era.
  • by CmdrPuto (246448) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:10AM (#10198939) Homepage
    It's not. Your mind is a bit narrowed.

    These are lots of small busineses that do not have that much transactions. These companies are not willing to to buy a sophisticated db yet. So it would be nice that they will try it first.

    They will have the db up to 5GB of data for free. I am sure they can upgrade when it's needed.
  • BRAINWASHED (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:10AM (#10198941)
    my god. i've never seen anything so pathetic and obvious case of brainwashing in all my life.

    "...extremely strong argument against Microsoft solutions" a baseless and deliberate assumption like this in injected into what seems like 75% of slashdot stories. This is stupidity in the extreme. if MS makes the more appropriate solution, you damn better well pick them, for your own server-monkey sake

    if your motivation is just 'no microsoft at any cost', you are a tool of all these jerks riding high on the general sense of ill-will they cultivate and the work of those countless volunteers that built the friggin apps they are pimping (esr, i'm looking at you)

    It's as if slashdot's mission is more about indoctrinating the anti-MS mindset than championing free software.

    here's a good point to remember: use the right tool for the job. it's as simple as that. sometimes it's MS. Sometimes it's your favorite fanboy project founded on idealism and granola. sometimes it's also Redhat or IBM (think big $$$).

    having your ability to assess these tools tainted by such fervid invective, knee jerk hatred as slashdot gots to offer, well, you are going to reap what you sow.
  • Re:Too risky... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by dotgain (630123) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:11AM (#10198945) Homepage Journal
    Closed source
    Not all closed source is bad. It's not like you hear of people running Solaris, Oracle and Forte getting owned every day.

    no guarantees
    If you buy it, I'm sure they'll guarantee and support it. This is a free trial, that you can use for an unlimited period of time

    too many limitations
    The limitations are clearly stated and simple: you can try it out, for as long as you like. 5 gigs is plenty to test an application on, one cpu is still enough to run a database on.

    Some people actually do pay for their software. And I'm sure the same people will be more than happy to buy this DB if, after trying it out for FREE, find it satisfactory or better.

    I can't believe how many whingeing morons I've seen tonight saying "Argh! no source!! ev1l!!" and "aww, only five gigs! stingy bastards, I won't be able to run my eCommerce site on _that!_"

    Get real. There's plenty of free databases around that you can use, slashdot uses MySQL doesn't it? Piss off and use that.

    You probably wouldn't know a real database from a hole in the ground and continue to be bewildered at why some corps spend $50k + on real databases for years to come.

  • Linux only? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by News for nerds (448130) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:18AM (#10198962) Homepage
    postgresql officially supports Windows from version 8, then how can Sybase on Linux suddenly claim "a very attractive alternative to Microsoft SQL Server"?
  • by I confirm I'm not a (720413) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:33AM (#10198990) Journal

    I fact, I've been waiting for free-download Oracle/DB2 "personal database" or some limited opensource release of Oracle/DB2 for a while.

    I may be way off-base here, so apologies if I've missed the point, but Oracle have allowed free-downloads for at least a couple of years: Linux version of Oracle 10g [oracle.com].

    Not free-as-in-speech, and if you want to deploy it commercially it's not even free-as-in-beer, but it does seem to meet your "personal database" criteria: it's the reason I've more Oracle experience[1] that SQL Server experience (though MSDE briefly threatned to change that - to some extent).

    I'd need to check, but a few years back DB2 was also a free download, with the no-commercial-depolyment caveat. I'd be surpirsed if it still isn't; it's a neat trick to get developers hooked on cheap/free versions so that their organisations then migrate.

    [1] Twice as much - a whole extra week ;)

  • by advocate_one (662832) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:52AM (#10199036)
    does everything that runs on Linux have to come with the source and an oss license???
    I bought and paid for Textmaker for Linux and also Opera for Linux, both closed source programs. This Sybase move now means that I can download and play with a serious database. It's a smart move because it means that I will be gaining skills in programming for that database engine, skills which are seriously marketable.
  • by Lussarn (105276) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:52AM (#10199038)
    Most distributions can't ship the client libs for the closed source databased. Thats makes it's somewhat difficult if you like to use things like a distro shipped version of php.

    We use sybase at work and I try to use freetds as client lib ehenever possible because it's easier to maintain (The ebuilds are alreay there in gentoo).
  • by John_Allen_Mohammed (811050) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @05:57AM (#10199049)
    5 gigs is real pittance for the amount of data being collected these days, almost making this useless. What happens when the 5 gigs fills up ?
  • by Gopal.V (532678) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @06:13AM (#10199082) Homepage Journal
    > With Linux, you may have to buy some software, but most of the stuff you need can be found around the net, just couple of clicks away from being ready for you to use.

    I would say that's a very common mistake. I've spent a LOT more time downloading and building stuff and man it's hard.

    1) you download the tar ball,
    2) Oh it needs gtk2 gtkhtml3 and mysql4
    3) download and compile
    4) ./configure CFLAGS="-03 -Larry -Wall -fwith-everything-except-your-...." --with-fries-and-coke
    5) install everything , argh !
    6) broken totally !
    Bleh, nothing is a couple of clicks away except total destruction of your box :(.

    The fixed ABI has its own problems - see Opcode DB [metasploit.com]. (of course the problem's all due COM with the a.pVT->xhx() calls).

    Don't delude yourself about anything in Linux being a click away. Shareware you pay with cash, Free Software with your time - I've had to hack proxy support into at least half-dozen things that has crossed my path.

  • Oh stop moaning (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Viol8 (599362) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @06:20AM (#10199101)
    The thing is free whatever the motivation behind it. If you don't like it then don't use it so stop whining. What did you expect , them to say "Here , have our full database system for free, no restrictions! We've planted a money tree in our garden, we don't need sales anymore!".

    Wake up to the realities of commercial life , its what keeps the worlds economy running.
  • by X.25 (255792) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @06:51AM (#10199202)
    How exactly is it helpful to release a free version that most people can't use in real world applications? The answer is, it isn't.

    It seems like everyone here works at (or runs) huge company which works with terrabytes of data. I think it's crap, and reality is that small shop (4 people company, for example, as in my case) can have all their sales/product/tracking/etc. data in less than 100MB (MySQL). At least I do.

    I used Sybase (for some ebussines stuff) some 4 years ago, and I quite liked it, but never needed it for myself (expensive :). However, 1 CPU, 5 Gig database is WAY more than I need for my application and data storage. If my shop grows so much that it needs more than 5GB of db storage, I guess I'll have enough money to actually buy full featured version.

    Small businesses are the target for this offer, not uber-geeks who have way too much time on their hands, and want source for everything (although they'll, most likely, never look at it).
  • by zzabur (611866) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @06:55AM (#10199216)

    Someone please mod parent down. Free-downloads of all kinds of Oracle products (including their full RDBMS database, or the Lite version, or the personal version, or almost any of their products) have been available for about 20 years.

    I know -- I have a copy myself. I also have an evaluation CD of IBM DB2.

    But these products are positioned for evaluation of for the professionals. They are not positioned positioned to compete against SQL Server, MySQL or Postgre.

    But this is the whole point of SyBASE offering. And my point is that Oracle and IBM are soon forced to respond.

    They are not likely to offer their full product as GPL/OpenSource or even a free download, because it would be too risky and might cost them much of their software licensing business.

    But they are likely to produce a more limited version; either with a restrictive license -- or with less capabilities -- or a free download product with no source. But way or another, they must eventually respond.

  • by ZenFu (692407) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @07:35AM (#10199374)
    Where I'm working, we use MS SQL Server an awful lot. And we write an awful lot of code that uses it. We don't spend any time reading source, or trying to find holes / improvements to it. We're too busy.

    You might not be reading the source code, but others will and their interests are probably more closely aligned with yours than a for profit institution that is more concerned about customer lock-in. But hey, do what makes you happy.
  • by killmenow (184444) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @07:38AM (#10199388)
    This Sybase move now means that I can download and play with a serious database. It's a smart move because it means that I will be gaining skills in programming for that database engine, skills which are seriously marketable.
    Okay, I have to comment on this. First, You've been able to download and play with a *serious* database for some time now [ibm.com]. Second, Sybase...seriously marketable? Where? DB2, Oracle. Those are seriously marketable. Microsoft SQL Server to a lesser extent. Sybase to a lesser extent. More marketable than PostgreSQL and MySQL, probably in a commercial proprietary environment, yes. In the OSS world, no. Market share has a lot to do with the marketability of specific DMBS experience.

    There are highly capable DBMS available already. From the ubiquitous PostgreSQL [postgresql.org] and MySQL [mysql.org] to the less familiar Firebird [sourceforge.net], SAPDB [mysql.com], and Ingres [ca.com], I'd say there's again almost too much choice [columbia.edu] in the OSS world.

    This is a noteworthy announcement from Sybase, but nothing more than Score: 3, Interesting.

    All that being said, it would be different if Sybase literally were to open source their product. The reason for this being that while they have diverged since 6.x, Microsoft SQL Server and Sybase were once one-and-the-same. The divergence is, I'm willing to bet, still a minority of the codebase. Making Sybase a drop-in replacement for SQL Server in an OSS environment would be killer.

  • Re:BRAINWASHED (Score:5, Insightful)

    by stinky wizzleteats (552063) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @07:57AM (#10199478) Homepage Journal
    if MS makes the more appropriate solution, you damn better well pick them, for your own server-monkey sake

    If you are a server monkey, you aren't picking anything. None of the people I know who have to keep Microsoft shit running ever got to pick it, so it seems that IT in general tends to work even when the decision of what to use is divorced from the execution of actually using and maintaining it. As incredible as it may seem, I've even heard rumors of sysadmins keeping things running after some really stupid choices on the part of CIOs and CTOs.

    here's a good point to remember: use the right tool for the job. it's as simple as that.

    Nice idea. The reality is: this is what we have, make it work. People have been making it work ever since they pulled out their mainframes and put in PC servers with M$ shit on them. People Chose Microsoft because it was cheaper than mainframes. Microsoft will lose to Linux for the same reason. This idea you are suggesting of the all-important Choice really doesn't much matter. If it was ever about picking the right system, Microsoft would never have replaced mainframes. It has been and will always be about making it work for less money. No amount of marketing, not even astroturfing, will ever change that.
  • by Seahawk (70898) <{kd.egami} {ta} {stt}> on Thursday September 09, 2004 @08:08AM (#10199562)
    I run a community site with around 500 users.

    The most important thing is a ligtly used forum(200 threads now afair)

    DB size is just below 27MB.

    I think ALOT of sites looks like mine when it comes to database size...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @08:30AM (#10199740)
    except that Sybase used to run NYSE and scales well with a team of experts. whereas with a team of experts, it's much harder to get MS Sql Server to scale to the same level. For small projects, where the developers are not experts and have no desire to know the internal details about the database, sql server is easier. the problem is when you really need to support moderate concurrent use. When that happens, sql server falls flat on it's face with a 4 cpu box.
  • by programic (139404) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:04AM (#10200055)
    5 GB for an enterprise system, especially one that handles lots of blobs, is not enough.

    I expect this to be popular with hobbyists and those running simple websites. It might compete with MySQL and Postgresql in this area.

    Not in the enterprise though.
  • by shic (309152) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:10AM (#10200109)
    Does this mean that Sybase is not multi-threaded? If it were multi-threaded then surely linux would schedule different threads on diffierent CPUs?

    If Sybase is single-threaded then if it is limited to a single process (as the single engine explanation suggests) - does that mean it is a single user system? Does it mean that queries are executed sequentially from all users (damaging interactivity)?
  • by ultranova (717540) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:13AM (#10200137)

    Where I'm working, we use MS SQL Server an awful lot. And we write an awful lot of code that uses it. We don't spend any time reading source, or trying to find holes / improvements to it. We're too busy.

    And if MS ever makes a change into the SQL server that breaks some of your programs or discontinues the product, what will you do ? You either port an awful lot of code that you've written to the new version / alternative product, or get stuck with an aging database product which won't have any bugfixes anymore and will cease working with newer operating systems (and processors - was it the AMD or Intel 64-bit processor that can't run 16- and 64-bit code at the same time ?) eventually. And it's even worse if the code is for selling, as opposed to just internal use - then you won't have the option of staying in the older version, and definately have to rewrite at least parts of it.

    On the other hand, if you use PostgreSQL, you simply hire someone to maintain the old version and backport any helpfull new features. And if you want to sell your code, you just bundle your own version of PostgreSQL with it.

    Having the source code is like an insurance: unneccessary most of the time, but if you don't have it when you need it, you will be sorry.

    They're giving you the product for free, but you don't want it because you can't have the source.

    I'm sure they'll miss you.

    The article refuses to load, so I can't check to make sure; but this does have all the characteristics of a demo version. Get people used to using a certain product line, and they are more likely to choose it in the future. Also, the size of the installed base directly affects the likelihood of the third party tools supporting this database, which in turn directly affects the likelihood of this database being purchased over the competitors.

    Why did you think Sybase decided to release a free version anyway ? Corporations do nothing unless they think they will benefit from it; therefore, they tought they would benefit from releasing this version free. And the most obvious benefit is the one explained above.

    So yes, I'd say they will miss him.

  • by mobiGeek (201274) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:19AM (#10200191)
    I read somewhere the average database driven web site is an average of 10-20 gigs
    I'd love to know the source of that one. I find it hard to believe that there are more than a few thousand websites that are larger than 1 GB. The vast majority of websites are running on "virtual host" sites and are typically less than 20 MB in size. Most companies that have websites don't have the time, knowledge or money to do more than throw up some basic "brochures".

    BTW: what is an "OSS type site" ?

  • by LurkerXXX (667952) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:28AM (#10200305)
    On the other hand, if you use PostgreSQL, you simply hire someone to maintain the old version and backport any helpfull new features. And if you want to sell your code, you just bundle your own version of PostgreSQL with it.

    Most companies I know barely want to pay enough salaries for the guys to write the code to use the database, now you want to hire an additional guy just to keep the Database software itself up to date? Most companies will just pay the license fee. Much cheaper. That one guy is going to cost, because you need someone very very goood. Someone writing bad code into the database software is a *bad thing*.

  • by arivanov (12034) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:32AM (#10200357) Homepage
    Banks are nearly 100% sybase turf. You cannot get a job in a bank as a SA or developer if you do not know it.

    While at it, the people who will be interested in it will be the people who want to get into that sector and need a toy to play. The demand for sybase skills outstrips supply around 10 to 1. Sybase is releasing it for only one reason - so that PHBs do not start considering alternative databases because of lack of staff.

    Otherwise at least for me it is in the "not interesting" category until it gets a decent working DBI module compatible with the most recent version.
  • by _Sprocket_ (42527) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @09:51AM (#10200650)


    does everything that runs on Linux have to come with the source and an oss license???


    It's all personal and professional preference, of course. But for me... the answer is "no - but it helps."

    I'm no Free Software purist. I run Linux systems at home and work (right next to Windows and Solaris systems). I've bought proprietary Linux software for both home and work (mostly games and enterprise apps). But when making a choice, I tend to weight heavily on the side of FOSS. Why? Freedom.

    I've been bit plenty of times in the past by intentionaly induced limitations, technical incompatabilities, and agressive licensing. Some vendors are better than others. But with proprietary software, the more one becomes dependant on the product, the more risk one runs of being unable to migrate from it.

    Granted - there are no guarentees in IT. But an infrastructure designed on Open Source systems tends to allow a greater degree of freedom. Data formats are documented (if not in documentation itself, in the code - which makes migration possible if not easy). Functionality tends to be limited by technical issues rather than marketing. And if the primary developers of a particular project take a turn that conflicts with your environment, there is a good chance that there are others with the same view - migration utilities are developed or oft-maligned fork keeps the project in a favored direction.

    That doesn't make FOSS the magic bullet. There are certainly times where particular examples of proprietary software offer advantages that makes it attractive. And that's where this line of questioning comes in. Sybase's offering lacks the freedom that other FOSS databases offer. So what advantages does it have that would make it attractive?
  • by mingot (665080) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @10:50AM (#10201438)
    On the other hand, if you use PostgreSQL, you simply hire someone to maintain the old version and backport any helpfull new features. And if you want to sell your code, you just bundle your own version of PostgreSQL with it.

    Would it not be more cost effective to hire someone to convert the data to a new format? Getting relational data between different databases is mostly trival. Code changes not so much, but if the codebase accessing the database was written in house my guess is that it's much quicker to change that known code to adapt to the nuances of the new database than to port over unfamiliar database guts.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @12:24PM (#10202596)

    Sometimes I have to laugh at the mentality of some /. posters. This is the _real_ world people.

    Maybe you work at some rinky-dink little company where they don't care about the source but at many companys that have real IT departments access to the source is a great thing. I have worked at both Intel and at Motorala and am currently a tech-janitor at a large university and at all three places source code to many open source products was modified inhouse for our own usage.

    Just because your only IT experience is supporting windows boxes at the East Podunk Auto Glass Company HQ doesn't mean that the entire _real_world is a reflection of that.

    I am posting as an AC because I know that this post is going to sound pompous, elitest and arrogant but what I speak is the truth.
  • Is this important? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by joeykiller (119489) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @12:49PM (#10202959) Journal
    I'm one of the heretics that believe that free (as in beer) has helped spread Linux, Apache and MySQL more than free (as in speech), based on nothing more than the fact that the free beer part was what made me start using those products.

    But I don't think this announcement will be met by anything but a shrug from most Linux and open source DB users, whetever version of free they believe in. The thought of a product having limitations at all will stop them from even trying it.

    It can be relevant for some people, though, and that's for those who're evalutating commercial DB's in the first place and have the budget to buy them.

  • by soulhuntre (52742) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @01:43PM (#10203885) Homepage
    "On the other hand, if you use PostgreSQL, you simply hire someone to maintain the old version and backport any helpfull new features. And if you want to sell your code, you just bundle your own version of PostgreSQL with it."

    BEcause every company running a DB wants to additionally take on the burden of coding, testing and porting features to it all the while hoping they don't mess it up and can still remain competative.

    The kind of money you would have to pay, on an ongoing basis, to hire someone (or more) who can intelligently and correctly port to, tune, test and enhance something as complex as Postgress is shall we say "non trivial".

    Your money woudl be much better spent porting to a supported DB system.
  • by I_Love_Pocky! (751171) on Thursday September 09, 2004 @03:47PM (#10205716)
    I don't understand your logic. When you pay money, you are the customer of someone. What do you mean that students are not customers? They are the customers. They pay dearly for a service - education. Unfortunately, they are not at the top of the priority list for professors, their service provider. Smartest people don't necessarily mean great teachers. There is no direct relationship between a good researcher and a good teacher. You can't learn from the smartest mind if that mind can't communicate very well. Unfortunately for the student customers, they don't have a choice.

    Why is it unfortunate that students are not on the top priority list? Research benefits all of us. Teaching benefits a handful of students recieving the teaching.

    You are right on about the communication problem. Alot of professors aren't that proficient at teaching, but then that isn't what they are meant to be doing there. Most lower level classes are taught by graduate students anyway (even worse teachers in my oppinion, and I am one).

    Some are lucky to have a great advisor, some are lucky to have it figured out themselves, but most simply go through the system, parted with tons of money, in the hope that they may get their investment back sometime in their lives.

    That is why I think there should be more done to let students know ahead of time what they are buying, which is an opportunity for a self-motivated enriching educational experience. If they want teachers who are only there to teach, they should go to a community college, or a trade school.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday September 09, 2004 @10:36PM (#10209453)
    Sure, moving the raw data isn't too difficult. Porting the stored procedures, rules and triggers on the other hand is a real bastard. Adapting the app's SQL to the nuances of a new database is a hell of a lot of work, which you'd know if you had any actual experience. You'll also need to re-train your existing staff and probably hire on a consultant to do this in a reasonable timeframe. And then of course you've got to run a full QA cycle on the new system, figure out how to move the live data from your old database to the new one without shutting down the company for a week and spend a couple of months performance tuning.

    So unless your plan is to port from a very expensive proprietary database to Postgres and you're looking at budgetary numbers over about 5 years, it is NOT more cost effective to just change platforms.

The speed of anything depends on the flow of everything.

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