Managing on the Move

By Timothy Dyck  |  Posted 2003-03-03 Print this article Print

PocketDBA 2.0 provides database administrators with a lightweight, HTML-based administration console.

Expand Beyonds PocketDBA 2.0 provides database administrators with a lightweight, HTML-based administration console for on-the-move management.

The previous version, 1.4, was an Oracle-only product, but PocketDBA 2.0 broadens users options by including modules for Microsofts SQL Server 7.0 and 2000 and for IBMs DB2 Universal Database 7.2. (SQL Server support started shipping in November, and DB2 support became available in December.) Oracle databases from Oracle 7.3.4 through Oracle9i are also supported.

Managed database systems can run any OS, though the ability to issue operating system commands from PocketDBA requires the database server systems to be accessible through either Telnet or Secure Shell. The PocketDBA Server itself runs on Windows, Solaris or Red Hat Linux operating systems.

Once I had set up the package and registered test Oracle8i and Microsoft SQL Server 2000 databases, I was able to access PocketDBA from a test iPaq Pocket PC and from a normal Web browser. (The default interface is sized to fit on a PDA.)

Getting DB2 configured was trickier, however, because I had to install a Secure Shell server on my Windows test system to manage a DB2 7.2 database from PocketDBA. I also had to install some additional utilities, steps that will be automated in the next PocketDBA for DB2 release next month.

As my tests showed, with a wireless-enabled Palm or Pocket PC PDA, database administrators can log in to their servers to kill a bad query, restart a job or check job loads from anywhere at any time.

PocketDBA provides a substantial number of the tools found in each databases native management tools. For example, I could view and kill particular sessions, browse the database catalog and table structures, view and change storage settings, issue arbitrary SQL commands, control jobs, and view database engine statistics.

The PocketDBA 2.0 package starts at $500 for a single database on a one-CPU server.

More information is available at Expand Beyonds Web site,

Timothy Dyck is a Senior Analyst with eWEEK Labs. He has been testing and reviewing application server, database and middleware products and technologies for eWEEK since 1996. Prior to joining eWEEK, he worked at the LAN and WAN network operations center for a large telecommunications firm, in operating systems and development tools technical marketing for a large software company and in the IT department at a government agency. He has an honors bachelors degree of mathematics in computer science from the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, and a masters of arts degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, Canada.

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