Even a chimp can write code

Thursday, August 05, 2004

The brawl to be the preferred developer database just got muddier

We had recently heard of Microsoft's interest in winning the developer community over by dangling the prospect of a free SQL Server Express as a preferred development database. Now IBM has jumped in and decided to contribute 'Derby', a copy of its current Cloudscape relational database product, to the Apache Software Foundation. Both companies will still hold on to their commercial database products, MS SQL Server and Cloudscape respectively.

I think it is generally accepted that most enterprise products and solutions use relation databases as persistent stores. I have always liked Cloudscape for its simplicity of use and non-imposing nature on my development environment. My main concern has been that my team has had to maintain 2 sets of scripts: one each for the development and Production environments. The advantages of having a development database like Cloudscape are numerous. Its lack of support for stored procedures keeps us honest and away from temptation. Supporting multiple databases meant that our data access code wan't married to any one of them. The new Cloudscape avatar complies with DB2 syntax. Now since DB2 is our relational database for Production systems, this will make script maintenance easier.

It will still be some time before the open source code is made available on the Apache website. Meanwhile, you can download the binaries here.

More on why we don't use MySQL or Postgres later...

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