Monday, March 28, 2011

DB2 vs Oracle complexity study

Triton Consulting recently conducted an objective assessment of several routine DBA activities, comparing Oracle Database 11gR2 and DB2 9.7:

The study looked at the task complexity of the following:
  1. Installation
  2. Enabling table compression
  3. Enabling index compression
  4. Backup and recovery
  5. Automatic memory tuning
  6.  Data access control

Full details can be found in the report.

If you are interested in the subject, there is also a DB2 and Oracle Architectural Comparison webinar you could attend on March 31.


Leons Petrazickis
DB2 Community Team

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

State of DB2 in the Cloud, March 2011

Unlike many of its competitors, DB2 is fully supported in virtualized environments. Since every cloud is built upon virtualization, this means that DB2 is automatically supported when running on Amazon Web Services (AWS) and IBM Development & Test Cloud, even in unofficial images.

One interesting aspect of this is that, if you fill out the free redistribution form, you can create cloud images that bundle the free DB2 Express-C database with your company's software without paying a dime to IBM. At any time, you can then upgrade to the DB2 Express edition and get IBM support for your custom bundle.

Amazon EC2 uses Xen as its hypervisor, while IBM Cloud uses KVM. Hypervisor is industry jargon for the component which sits on top of physical hardware and manages hardware access for virtual machines. There are many other hypervisor technologies, of which VMWare ESX is a popular one.

Because all editions of DB2 support virtualization, there's no need for any sort of hypervisor edition for DB2.

Public vs private

Amazon EC2 and IBM Cloud are public clouds. That is, you use them to provision virtual servers which are then accessible over the internet. However, internet access can be a big security no-no. In such cases, it's often preferable to set up a private cloud internal to your organization.

A quick way to set up a private cloud is to use WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance. WCA is not a hypervisor -- rather, it is a vending machine full of thoroughly tested virtual machine templates preloaded with IBM products that lets you deploy and manage groups of virtual machines to your existing VMWare ESX or PowerVM hypervisors.


Cloud computing takes the idea of virtualization and automates as much of it as possible. This creates the illusion of infinite resources. As described above, WebSphere CloudBurst Appliance creates a public cloud by providing automation for your existing infrastructure.

There are ways to automate things further. For example, RightScale is a free service that automates Amazon Web Services and other cloud providers. It provides a convenient interface to coordinate deployments, run scripts, or exactly duplicate deployments of multiple machines. My team has built several DB2 templates targeting RightScale.


An alpha of the next version of DB2 is available in the cloud today. Once approved, it takes just five minutes to get your own dedicated DB2 machine up and running.


Leons Petrazickis
DB2 Community Team

Thursday, March 17, 2011

DB2 chat for Oracle professionals defies signup limits

On March 31, we'll be holding a DB2 Chat with the Lab aimed specifically at Oracle professionals curious about DB2 database server architecture. As you know, IBM DB2 9.7 introduced a thorough Oracle compatibility mode.

Almost immediately after we announced it, the event filled up completely. More people signed up than the webcast infrastructure allowed, and many had to be turned away.

To handle the extreme level of demand, we've now set up a parallel signup link:
DB2 and Oracle - An Architectural Comparison

Date: Thursday, March 31, 2011
Time: 12:30-2:00 PM Eastern / 11:30 AM Central / 9:30 AM Pacific / 17:30hrs London / 18:30hrs Frankfurt, Paris / India 10 PM

Many database professionals and DBAs often ask how DB2 and Oracle compare architecturally, that is, how they are different and similar at their core. They also ask what are the equivalent concepts, names, commands etc. in the other database system. This free webinar will answer those questions by covering the following topics in detail:

  • Server architecture comparison (e.g. instances and database model, process vs. thread)
  • Memory architecture comparison (e.g. Oracle SGA & PGA vs. DB2 instance, database and application memory)
  • Parameters, environment variables and registry variables
  • Database storage model comparison (e.g. table space types and layouts, compression approaches)
  • Basic database administration comparison (e.g. terminology, create database, start/stop, dictionary vs. system catalog, performance)
  • Compatibility mode for running Oracle applications with DB2

Attending this webcast would be valuable for you whether you are an Oracle professional and looking to learn more about DB2 (for Linux, Unix and Windows), or work in a heterogeneous environment and looking to expand your DBMS knowledge, or simply interested in enhancing your database skills for improving your career prospects.

Leons Petrazickis
DB2 Community Team

Thursday, March 03, 2011