Ingres releases update to open-source database

Ingres 9.2 arrives just as analysts predict a spike in the adoption of open-source databases as a result of the economic crisis

Ingres, the commercial sponsor of the open-source Ingres database management system (DBMS), on Tuesday released a new version of the software with improved availability and developer features, among other updates.

Ingres 9.2 arrives at a time when industry observers are predicting a spike in the adoption of open-source databases, as a result of the economic crisis.

Two of the major improvements in the new version of Ingres tackle system recovery and the simplification of development of web-based Java applications, the company said.

The company said it sought to make system recovery more efficient by adding the ability to recover from a single point in time. The new database includes more efficient user interrupt and exception handling, with optimisations to specific bits of code that had been slowing response time, the company said.

The company also changed error messages to make it easier to determine their source, finding there were some instances where the same error message could be generated by different problems.

Ingres added features such as support for scrollable cursors to simplify development of web-based Java applications, and made performance improvements to the Java driver, the company said.

Other updates include improved Unicode support for non-English applications and online backup features.

"The many new capabilities in this release were driven by our customers, partners and other community members and we benefited from significant community code contributions," stated Ingres president and chief executive Roger Burkhardt.

Forrester Research in July found the open-source database market had reached $850m (£570m) in mid-2008, fuelled partly by the boom in web applications. Last month, the firm predicted the market would grow by 24 percent in 2009 as companies look for lower-cost alternatives to the likes of Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server.

Sun's MySQL dominates in open-source databases, with Ingres, Oracle-owned BerkeleyDB, PostgreSQL and Apache's Derby project trailing, according to Forrester. This means they compete not only for customers, but for the attention of developers, Forrester said.