I’ve been using MySQL since early 2002 and Sun’s purchase of MySQL has me quite concerned (unnecessarily, I hope). I’ve been hedging my bets in case Sun decides to radically change MySQL’s Community Edition (the free version) availability or make it too experimental to use in production or near-production environments (forcing MySQL users to the for-fee Enterprise Edition). One hedge is getting familiar with PostgreSQL. I’ve invested a bit of time building it from source code on a test Linux box and then testing upgrading a datbase from version 8.2 to 8.3. That was quite painful compared to MySQL, btw. I was surprised I had to perform a full database dump from 8.2 and then import everything back in to the 8.3 installation.
EnterpriseDB has been selling a repackaged version of PostgreSQL since 2004. They relaunced the product this week and renamed it Postgres Plus and Postgres Plus Advanced Server. The Postgres Plus edition seems similar to the MySQL Community Edition in that both are available with easy to use binary installers. Postgres Plus Advanced Server is priced at US$5,995 per socket. It provides additional features such as the ability to run applications designed to work with Oracle, database migration tools to move from Oracle and other commercial databases, and advanced management and monitoring tools. The Advanced Server developer edition is free. This is a good idea and one that MySQL should emulate with its Enterprise Edition.
I haven’t looked a the Windows or Mac OS X versions of Postgres Plus (the free version). But, I did download the Linux distribution and found that the gzipped download contained a single bin file. This really appealed to me since PostgreSQL’s binary versions consisted of what seemed like an endless list of RPMs to choose from and download. In fact, I decided to install from source code on Linux since it seemed easier than figuring out which RPM files I needed.
Old PostgreSQL hands probably don’t have any great need to take a look at EnterpriseDB’s offerings. However, newbies like me looking for a quick, painless, and correct installation of multiple PostgreSQL components across multiple OS platforms to create a stable platform from which to learn will probably benefit from EnterpriseDB’s Postgres Plus offerings.
FYI: Those of you considering running PostgreSQL or Postgres Plus on Microsoft Windows might want to take a look at these two PDF documents available from Microsoft’s Port 25 site…