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ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

IBM yesterday braved the on-going spending freeze on IT spending by launching the latest version of its DB2 database.

IBM, recently upbeat about its database sales, announced the immediate availability of DB2 version 8.0, which features re-worked pricing and packaging to attract medium sized businesses.

DB2 8.0 also includes improved administration and management capabilities, designed to further reduce businesses' overhead. Changes mean that DB2 also dips a toe into the waters of IBM's autonomic, or self-healing computing strategy.

DB2 8.0 's launch comes at a difficult time for IBM and other vendors. Business spending on IT is flat with the prospects of a recovery during 2003 being increasingly pushed out.

IBM is undaunted, though, claiming increased demand for DB2. The company said sales grew 2% during the company's recently reported third quarter. The company also claimed revenue from small and medium-sized businesses grew in the second quarter 204% compared to the same quarter twelve months before.

IBM hopes to increase DB2's appeal with simplified pricing and re-packaging. The company said Workgroup Server Unlimited Edition, which starts at $7,500 per processor, is suited to companies of fewer than 1,000 users. Enterprise Server Edition, meanwhile, starts at $25,000 per processor - $5,000 more than the previous version.

Enterprise edition includes data warehousing, 64-bit support and advanced clustering.

Clustering is offered through IBM's Multidimensional Data Clustering, which the company claimed can improve performance of complex business intelligence queries by up to 90% in some cases. Clustering is offered as an additional feature at $7,500 per processor.

Configuration Advisor speeds set-up by offering more than 100 parameters based on a set of questions while administration is improved through Health Center, a system that monitors database performance and alerts DBAs of problems via e-mail, pager or PDA.

Web services are also supported. A single Structured Query Language (SQL) query can span both DB2 and Web services, simplifying programming of applications.

© Computerwire

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