Oracle Will Support WebSphere in Project Fusion

Prospects for DB2 support are uncertain, however, as Oracle's president questions practicality of tying in a second database.

SAN FRANCISCO—IBMs WebSphere will be an additional run-time environment for Oracles Project Fusion applications, Oracle announced at its OpenWorld conference here on Monday.

Project Fusion is Oracle Corp.s ongoing effort to meld the best functionality from the slew of applications it has acquired in a prolonged buying spree.

Oracle previously announced that it would support PeopleSoft and J.D. Edwards applications through 2013 and that it will continue to support IBMs DB2 database while evaluating how the rival database will fit into Project Fusion.

But out of the vast array of products encompassed by the WebSphere family, the DB2 database has grim prospects for getting tightly knit into Oracles technology.

"We havent come to any conclusion on the database," said Oracle President Charles Phillips during a question and answer session with the press following his Monday keynote on the opening day of the conference.

The fate of DB2 support in Fusion is now being scrutinized by a Fusion strategy council that includes customers, Phillips said. A large part of what theyre considering is how highly customized and highly functional Oracles bread-and-butter database is, he said.

"We go through the litany of [Oracle database] features with customers," he said. "Once they see what theyd have to give up to support multiple databases," customers start to lose enthusiasm, he said.

/zimages/5/28571.gifOracle announces lifetime support for all of its acquired applications. Click here to read more.

"Theres a reason why we have the [database] market share we have," Phillips said. "Things are less organic, less secure [off of Oracle databases]. … Weve solved most middleware problems with IBM. But the database is less standard in how it works."

Oracle is aiming to conclude the Fusion strategy review of DB2 in under a year, Philips said.

The companies will also be studying which other, non-database areas in which to cooperate, both in terms of whats beneficial for customers and whats technologically feasible. The companies will also be jointly proposing standards where necessary.

The companies pledged to provide proof points on the way to WebSphere support. Already, J.D. Edwards applications are JSR 168-compliant, which means that J.D. Edwards application portlets can be rendered in WebSphere portal.

The companies also expect to enable J.D. Edwards, PeopleSoft Enterprise and Oracle E-Business Suite to support WebSphere and Tivoli in the areas of identity management, single sign-on and directories.

Project Fusion applications will be able to run on either Oracle Fusion Middleware or WebSphere as middleware platforms.

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