Oracle Scores Open-Source InnoDB Storage Engine

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2005-10-10 Print this article Print

Oracle has purchased InnoDB, a Finnish open-source database company whose add-on table storage engine for MySQL rivals MySQL's own MyISAM in popularity.

Oracle on Friday purchased InnoDB, the Finnish open-source database company whose add-on table storage engine for MySQL rivals MySQLs own MyISAM in popularity. InnoDB Oy Inc.s database engine isnt stand-alone. It is distributed as part of the MySQL database. Moreover, InnoDBs contractual relationship with MySQL is up for renewal next year. Oracle Corp., of Redwood Shores, Calif., said it "fully expects" to negotiate an extension of the relationship and will continue to develop using InnoDB technology.
"Oracle intends to continue developing the InnoDB technology and expand our commitment to open-source software," said Charles Rozwat, Oracles executive vice president in charge of Database and Middleware Technology. "Oracle has already developed and contributed an open-source clustered file system to Linux. We expect to make additional contributions in the future."
One InnoDB user, Slashdot, said its as "concerned about this as anybody," given that, barring its search feature, its site has run entirely on InnoDB for some time. But Slashdot quoted Brian Aker, former Slashdot coder and MySQL ABs current director of architecture, as saying that the "beauty of the open-source market" would save the day. "There is no lock-in, and we can continue to develop InnoDB as we see fit," Slashdot quotes him as saying. "The code is out there, and we plan on continuing to support it. The largest database vendor in the world just confirmed that the market for open-source databases exists." For its part, MySQL put out a statement welcoming Oracles "endorsement of open-source database technology." "This announcement provides further validation of the open-source movement," said MySQL CEO Marten Mickos in the statement. "The beauty of open-source software and the GPL license is freedom. As with all MySQL code, InnoDB is provided under the GPL license, meaning that users have complete freedom to use, develop and modify the code base. We are pleased to see even broader industry acceptance of open-source database technology. This also means that database developers now have even greater flexibility to use MySQL and Oracle in the same environment." In fact, InnoDB is only one of multiple storage engines supported in MySQLs storage engine architecture, which also includes Memory, Merge, Cluster and MyISAM. MySQL 5.0, now a release candidate, also adds support for Archive and Federated storage engines. Instead of being the center of the universe, Oracle now just wants its middleware to have strings to pull on everything in the universe? Click here to read more. InnoDB is based in Helsinki. Financial terms of the deal werent disclosed. This deal, however—the latest acquisition in a string of more than a dozen companies Oracle has gobbled up in the past year—is likely to be a snack in comparison to Oracles huge PeopleSoft Inc. and Siebel Systems Inc. swallows. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest database news, reviews and analysis.
Lisa Vaas is News Editor/Operations for and also serves as editor of the Database topic center. Since 1995, she has also been a Webcast news show anchorperson and a reporter covering the IT industry. She has focused on customer relationship management technology, IT salaries and careers, effects of the H1-B visa on the technology workforce, wireless technology, security, and, most recently, databases and the technologies that touch upon them. Her articles have appeared in eWEEK's print edition, on, and in the startup IT magazine PC Connection. Prior to becoming a journalist, Vaas experienced an array of eye-opening careers, including driving a cab in Boston, photographing cranky babies in shopping malls, selling cameras, typography and computer training. She stopped a hair short of finishing an M.A. in English at the University of Massachusetts in Boston. She earned a B.S. in Communications from Emerson College. She runs two open-mic reading series in Boston and currently keeps bees in her home in Mashpee, Mass.

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