The impact of open-source software on the database market

By Brian Prince  |  Posted 2008-04-08 Print this article Print

In a recent report entitled, "Turning the Tables?", which focuses on the impact open-source software has had in the database market, Aslett and colleague Raven Zachary found that open-source databases such as MySQL and PostgreSQL were not actually supplanting proprietary offerings, despite their growing adoption. Instead, the report found enterprise adoption of open-source databases to be widespread but shallow, with them typically deployed to avoid the cost of additional licenses from proprietary vendors for new projects in specific application areas, such as in-house applications.

The report listed a number of reasons for all this, including concerns about enterprise functionality as well as service and support. However, Urlocker said the focus for MySQL is not so much to unseat its proprietary competitors when it comes to traditional enterprise database applications, but to become the key database for Web 2.0 companies.

"The growth rate and adoption of MySQL among Web 2.0, enterprise 2.0 applications has been phenomenal ... older areas of the DBMS market are perhaps flat, but our area is growing rapidly," he said. "The best practices in Web 2.0 applications will be the basis for the next 10 years of growth with what we call enterprise 2.0. So our plans are to continue to meet the needs of new application developers building applications that scale using the Web infrastructure."

He also said areas like data warehousing are just starting to be addressed with open source and that the market will see more of that emerging in 2008 with specific storage engines built on top of MySQL.


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