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8/6/2007
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EnterpriseDB Seeks New Role As A Data Warehouse

By adding a multiserver, parallel-query capability, EnterpriseDB is trying to provide a low-cost alternative to other commercial database systems.

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EnterpriseDB, the commercial company based on the open source PostgreSQL database, said it's expanding beyond data storage and retrieval to make its EnterpriseDB Advanced Server function as a data warehouse software provider.

The move takes it out of the category of another low-cost database system into more of an enterprise player. Through an add-on, GridSQL -- released Tuesday in beta form -- EnterpriseDB Advanced Server database system can process complex queries in parallel, making use of multiple servers in a cluster. GridSQL is needed to give EnterpriseDB the horsepower needed to handle complex queries of the type launched by a business intelligence system against a data warehouse.

"This is designed purely as a performance release," said Derek Rodner, director of product strategy. GridSQL breaks a query down into several parts, which can be run concurrently in the database, with one set of results presented to the end user.

By adding a multiserver, parallel-query capability, EnterpriseDB is trying to provide a low-cost alternative to other commercial database systems. EnterpriseDB Advanced Server software sells for $5,000 per processor; a four-way system composed of dual core processors would be priced at $20,000. Pricing for the GridSQL add-on will be set in the fourth quarter when the product goes into general availability, Rodner said in an interview. It is available as a free download from the company's product page.

The Edison, N.J., startup is privately funded and claims 125 customers for its Oracle-compatible database system. EnterpriseDB Advanced Server is priced at $5,000 per CPU per year with premium support. Rodner said the company aims to keep its product line priced at 20% of Oracle's. It has revised the core PostgreSQL open source system to recognize Oracle's PL/SQL version of the standard data access language and run applications designed for the Oracle database.

In addition, EnterpriseDB is announcing at the LinuxWorld trade show this week that it will offer a version of PostgreSQL for enterprise use that includes several key add-ons to the core database system. Such things as full text search, XML support, and ODBC or JDBC database connections will be packaged together with PostgreSQL and made available as EnterpriseDB Postgres.

EnterpriseDB runs under Linux, Windows, or Solaris. Only the Linux version of the EnterpriseDB database will be available in the "professional grade" EnterpriseDB Postgres form.

Open source users of PostgreSQL typically retrieve ODBC and JDBC database drivers or add full text search through downloads from a variety of Web sites.

Rodner said EnterpriseDB Postgres is meant to mimic the distribution of Linux by Red Hat, where the Linux operating system is supplemented by Apache, Samba, and other open source additions. EnterpriseDB Postgres is available at the EnterpriseDB Postgres Resource Center at its Postgres.enterprisedb.com Web site.

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