The cutting of enterprise

By Lisa Vaas  |  Posted 2004-03-19 Print this article Print

-class features"> But one thing thats worthy of note is the lack of interest in those features that should have made SQL Server 2005 a real competitor in the enterprise database space, including clustering within the DBMS (shared disk or shared nothing), hash partitioning, SQL Server 2005 as the unifying storage engine within Microsoft applications, and file system support within the DBMS. Those are things that Microsoft had promised from the get-go, when it first started talking about the update, and theyre features that would give SQL Server supporters some useful fodder in the inter-IT department SQL Server/Oracle wars. As Gartners Betsy Burton pointed out to me, those are also the features that would enable SQL Server stalwarts to convince upper management that the database is ready to take on more, bigger, more mission-critical jobs, thus enabling SQL Server to reach its tentacles deeper into the enterprise than it has to date. Unfortunately, their chances for making it into the final product are just about nil at this point. Another calendar issue is, of course, continued support for SQL Server 2000 and 7.0, which is slated to come to a crashing halt on Dec. 31, 2005. If SQL Server 2005 ships in mid-2005, that gives customers all of—yikes!—six months to upgrade. True, Microsoft has conscientiously dealt with extending support in the past, but as the days tick past, were still waiting to hear about it this time. Customers are getting—well, not panicky, exactly, but you could say theyre a bit nervous. Heres another post from that epitomizes the angst: "Support a product for only six months after the latest version comes out? WTF! This is very NOT COOL, and Microsoft better clarify soon. For many shops, upgrading within a year will be an issue, much less six months. And how bout software that is SQL2K-dependent? Theyll have to develop an upgrade version before their customers can upgrade dependent databases, and theres no way that can happen in six months. Also, what about businesses that cant afford to upgrade immediately? They will be left high and dry as far as support is concerned. Microsoft better watch out; the time frame for upgrading to SQL2K5 will be the same time frame that mySQL will be taking off its training wheels. If theyre not extremely cool about this, they risk losing customers."
MySQL as a threat to one of the database Big Boys? Well, this isnt the first time the possibility has been mentioned. So, Microsoft, WTH! About that extended support? Were all ears.
Let me know which SQL Server 2005 feature is going to make a difference to you. Also, Id love to hear from anybody who was messed up by the delay—particularly ISVs that were working toward a 2004 release. Write me at Database Center Editor Lisa Vaas has written about enterprise applications since 1997. Check out eWEEK.coms Database Center at for the latest database news, views and analysis.
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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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