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Bulging Databases

France Telecom database tops list as the largest in the world with 29.2 terabytes
The size of the world's biggest database has nearly tripled in the past two years, to more than 29 trillion bytes, according to a study released last week.

The Winter Corp., a database research and consulting firm, released its list of the largest databases for the first time in two years and found dramatic growth in size, more Windows installations, and an increased international presence, according to Winter Corp. analyst Rick Burns. Topping the list: a mammoth 29.2-terabyte Oracle database at France Telecom. Second is an AT&T installation packing 26.3 terabytes of data. Two years ago, the largest site measured 10.4 terabytes.

Winter fielded a Web survey between May and September; it received 313 complete responses, including from commercial database vendors' largest customers. It validated the survey results by measuring each database with its own software.

Data volumes are expected to keep growing: By 2006, respondents expect the largest database on the list will reach 60 terabytes.