Open source database usage closes in on Microsoft

While Microsoft Corp. continues to dominate the database market with its SQL server and Access application, use of the open source MySQL database rose by more than 30 percent in 2003, according to a worldwide study released Monday by research firm Evans Data Corp.

A survey of about 550 database developers worldwide indicated that reliability, total cost of ownership and the ability to integrate a database into an existing infrastructure are the most important factors when selecting a database. Joe McKendrick, database analyst at Evans Data, said these concerns are spurring more companies to consider open source databases and that this trend shows no sign of letting up as open source offerings are continually improving.

Sixty-two percent of respondents to the survey said they would save money by implementing Linux. Of the 62 percent, more than 10 percent estimated cost savings at more than 50 percent of their current operating systems costs, while 25 percent estimated savings of 10 percent or less.

Evans Data also surveyed database developers on the most common types of analysis performed on the stored data. Results indicated that business performance analysis grew by about 20 percent in 2003; financial analysis and customer life-cycle analyses were the next most popular types of analysis performed.

Grid computing has also experienced a jump in popularity according to the survey, with 12 percent of companies either having deployed or planning to deploy grids within the next year, while nine percent plan to deploy over the next two years.

The last finding of the survey indicated that only 14 percent of respondents said they could restore mission critical data in under five minutes, while 27 percent said it would take them one to six hours, while 26 per cent said six to 30 minutes, and 19 percent said it would take between 31 and 60 minutes.

Evans Data is located in Santa Cruz, Calif.

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