Sybase Readies ASE Beta for Mac

Beta will help Sybase scout interest in a version of its relational database software for Mac OS X.

Sybase Inc., in its push to support Apple Computer Inc.s enterprise efforts, later this month is releasing a beta version of its relational database software for the Macintosh operating system.

Sybase, which in May promised to ship a Mac version of its Adaptive Server Enterprise 12.5, plans to begin what it is calling the Apple Early Adopter Program on July 17. The Dublin, Calif., company plans to formally announce the program on Monday at the Macworld Conference and Expo in New York, officials said.

The beta version will help Sybase scout interest in ASE 12.5 for Mac OS X and allow engineers to find and track any problems in the software, said Steve Olson, director of engineering in the enterprise solutions division at Sybase. General availability is scheduled for the end of September.

Sybase isnt limiting the number of participants in the beta program. The program provides a 90-day license to the pre-release version of ASE 12.5 for Mac OS X, which can be installed on a Mac or Apples recently introduced Xserve server. Sybase is setting up an online newsgroup to offer technical support during the beta, Olson said.

"The Mac version gives us an opportunity to move into verticals where we think we can do well, including education, content management and publishing," Olson said.

Sybase already in May released Open Client and Open Server for Mac OS X, its programming tool kits for creating database applications from within the Apple operating system.

Beyond the database, Sybase is evaluating Mac support for other software, specifically its namesake Replication Server, Olson said. Those plans will depend on the response to the beta for ASE on Mac and demand after its release.

"Were going to take a wait-and-see approach," he said. "If the response to the early beta and the GA release are positive, then if [customers] want it we will do it."