Sybase, Quest Apps Battle Database Bulge

Sybase and Quest are each readying data replication and archiving products to help enterprises fight the battle of the bulge in their databases.

Sybase Inc. and Quest Software Inc. are each readying data replication and archiving products to help enterprises fight the battle of the bulge in their databases.

Such tools are critical, as unmanaged data growth has caused performance and operational inefficiencies in production databases. For example, global investment management company T. Rowe Price Associates Inc. routinely weighs the costs and benefits of keeping a large amount of data in its active database versus transferring some data to an archive.

"We have business requirements that cause us to want to have access to data and have it [condensed]; were looking for a creative solution to have a proper balance between the two," said Doren Jacobs, vice president of T. Rowe Prices Investment Technologies unit, in Baltimore. "We need to balance that everyday need of being able to run the system and have it accessed around the world in multiple time zones versus serious needs to answer regulatory or customer requests—thats a challenge."

This week, Sybase will introduce two products, Dynamic Archive and Mirror Activator, to help remedy such issues. Due this month, Sybases Dynamic Archive lets customers move inactive data from a production database to an inactive online database. The software is integrated with OuterBay Technologies Inc.s Application Data Management suite to identify inactive data in the production system. T. Rowe Price is evaluating Dynamic Archive to determine if the software could be used to run a data archive for a third-party application running on top of Sybases ASE (Adaptive Server Enterprise) database.

Mirror Activator, designed for high-transaction-volume applications requiring synchronous block replication databases, reduces network traffic by allowing a warm standby database to be used for read-only data access, said Sybase officials in Dublin, Calif. The tool plugs into block replication software from EMC Corp., Veritas Software Corp., Network Appliance Inc. and Hitachi Data Systems Corp. Mirror Activator, available now, supports only Sybases ASE database. Company officials said it will support third-party databases in the future.

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Separately, Quest last week debuted SharePlex 5.0, which replicates Oracle Corp.s databases. The product has a multithreaded posting technology that revs performance and allows wider application support, said Quest officials in Irvine, Calif.

Next quarter, Quest will offer SharePlex 5.2, which will have Quests Enterprise Database Auditor to compress transaction data and check that it is synced with the right database. Quest also said that early next year it will debut technology, tentatively named Open Poster, that can take changed data in a database and send it to any relevant application interface or database via XML.

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