Sybase Enhances Database Availability, Utility

Sybase released two new products to allow expanded use and capability of warm standby replication, as well as real-time archiving of inactive data.

InformationWeek Staff, Contributor

June 21, 2004

3 Min Read

Sybase today announced the immediate availability of two new products designed to boost database availability and ease infrastructure needs.

The first new release, Dynamic Archive, is designed to selectively migrate inactive database information to an online archive, lowering load on primary database repositories while maintaining the ability to retrieve lesser-used data upon demand. Developed in partnership with OuterBay (, Dynamic Archive provides the ability to define "inactive" data in a detailed, granular manner, moving beyond basic time-based criteria to include any data, transactions, or other collections of data which can be defined via SQL queries.

Dynamic Archive is being released in part in response to the increased data retention needs spurred by data compliance programs such as HIPAA and Sarbanes-Oxley, which can mandate expanded data retention and access requirements.

"A key problem for businesses is data growth across customer segments, including financial, health care, and education." says Ashok Swaminathan, Director of Product Management at Sybase Inc. Swaminathan reports that with retention requirements of seven to fifteen or more years, and as customers start to put in more business intelligence, integration and analytical requirements, data growth rates from 100-125% each year are not uncommon. The impact can be severe, evidenced in increased maintenance needs, a shrinking windows of time in which to perform that maintenance, and a proportionate increase in required hardware and infrastructure resources.

The initial release of Dynamic Archive supports Sybase's ASE database and makes use of an ASE store as its repository, also utilizing the OuterBay ADM Suite and Sybase Replication Server. A future version is planned to use Sybase IQ as an archive database, and it is planned that Dynamic Archive will offer archiving of other databases in the future according to Swaminathan. Pricing for Dynamic Archive starts at $80K.

Mirror Activator, the second new Sybase release, is intended to work in conjunction with block replication solutions from vendors including EMC, Veritas and NetApp, to enhance business continuity and disaster recovery capabilities of replicated data stores.

Targeted at organization with high-availability requirements, Mirror Activator is designed to enhance database replication over wide-area networks, maintaining transactional integrity while reducing the time typically required to bring up a secondary "warm standby" data store from hours down to seconds or minutes. In addition, Mirror Activator will allow use of the secondary data store as a source for reporting and queries, increasing the regular operational usefulness of those costly assets. By moving only log files across the network, Sybase hopes to shrink network bandwidth costs significantly, as well as reduce the potential for data file corruption, according to Karen Parker, Sybase Product Manager.

Mirror Activator runs on Solaris 2.9 and 2.9, HP-UX 11o and 11i, IBM AIX 5.1 and 5.2, and Windows 2000 and 2003. At present , Mirror activator supports only Sybase ASE databases, but a version of Mirror Activator which will integrate with Oracle databases is planned for late 2004 or early 2005 release, Parker said. Pricing for Mirror Activator is dependent on client configuration, and no fixed pricing was available.

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