SQL Databases

This week's newsletter includes a quick overview of available

Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) for Linux that will help

you find a database that suits your needs, budget, and personal taste.

MySQL www.mysql.com

One of the most popular RDBMS for Linux, MySQL is free for

noncommercial use and offers high performance and reliability.

Pros: Still behind first league products

Cons: Fast, easy to use

GNU SQL www.ispras.ru/~kml/gss

A multi-user RDBMS with client/server architecture. Offers basic

administration operations.

Pros: Open Source, portable,

Cons: Still a beta, certainly not for time-critical systems

PostgresSQL www.postgresql.org

PostgresSQL is based on an RDBMS engine developed at Berkeley. Linux

versions of PostgresSQL are included in Red Hat, Debian, and Slackware


Pros: Free, Open Source, minimal installation requirements

Cons: Unsuitable for large-scale systems.

Oracle www.oracle.com

The truth must be told: Although it's not an Open Source product nor

is it free, Oracle is unbeatable by any other RDBMS in terms of

scalability, redundancy, fault-tolerance, security.

Pros: The Rolls Royce of RDBMS, excellent Internet interfacing,


Cons: Expensive, resource hungry, overkill for small databases

Informix www.informix.com/linux

Once upon a time, Informix was the uncrowned king of Unix databases.

Although in recent years it has lost some of its royal luster, Informix

now offers tight commitment to Linux. Informix SE is a fast, reliable,

and friendly database for Linux. Informix 4GL offers a complete IDE + a

library called C-ISAM for index sequential data access.

Cons: Includes special libraries and tools, minimal database


Pros: Not free, a bit old-fashioned

Sybase www.sybase.com/linux

Sybase offers several free products for Linux. The Sybase Enterprise

Database offers data integration that coordinates all information

resources on a network. SQL Anywhere is a lightweight RDBMS designed

for compact databases.

Pros: Support various types of users and needs

Cons: Some of the products aren't free; some libraries are


DB2 www.software.ibm.com/data/db2/linux

DB2 was originally a mainframe database. Recently it was ported to

Linux. It's scalable, expandable, supports Perl and offers an interface

for Web browser administration.

Pros: Internet functionality, customizable

Cons: Feels and looks like a mainframe database, not free

Ingres II www.ingres.com

Ingres is not the latest word in the industry, but it's one of my

favorites. It's easy to use and maintain, and supports both C and Perl.

Pros: Supports Binary Large Objects and Internet publishing Cons:

antiquated, not free.

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