We are currently part of an information-driven society, which is continuously generating more and more critical business data. The storage of such data for pursuing a procedure, which allows informed decision-making. As the volume of data available to the organization increases, various problems related to analyzing, storing and protecting the data arises. Database Management is the procedure of managing the available data effectively to allow future use of the data in various organizational decision-making processes. Database Management Solutions refer to software, which is utilized to manage the data stored within a database.
Key Functions Performed by Database Management Systems are as follows:
• Redundancy Control
• Data Protection
• Ensuring Continued Availability of Storage Space for New Programs and Data
• Supporting Rules-based Inference as well as Actions
• Supporting multiple user interfaces
• Providing Backup and Recovery Support
Leading database management systems suitable for enterprise use include Oracle 9i; IBM’s DB2 UDB7 and Microsoft’s SQL Server2000. Each of the platforms provides access to features suitable for particular business and the choice of DBMS would reflect the user’s requirements.
Microsoft’s SQL Server 2000: Key Features
The SQL Server2000 is part of Microsoft’s flagship series of DBMS platforms- SQL Server. The active directory service of Windows 2000 together with SQL Server 2000, allows the centralized management of SQL Server databases along with additional enterprise resources. Due to centralized management support, SQL Server 2000 simplifies system management considerably in the case of large databases. Key benefits of SQL Server 2000 include automation support provided by the database platform, which significantly reduces the administrator’s burden. The inbuilt support system of SQL Server 2000 includes intuitive wizards, which allow IT administrators to swiftly perform various complex tasks. SQL Server 2000 also features role-based security as well as integrity tools suitable for security auditing. Additional features include support for network and file data encryption including Kerberos and SSL (secure socket layer). The SQL Server 2000 is certified with a C2 level of security by the US government. Internet features provided by SQL Server 2000 include integration with.net enterprise servers such as Microsoft commerce server and Microsoft BizTalk; web access to data; web-enabled analysis support; as well as robust XML support. Key programming languages supported by the system include XML, Visual Basic, C/C++, SQL and Java (through.NET platform).
IBM’s DB2 UDB7
IBM’s DB2 UDB7 is the latest version of the database solutions provided by IBM Corp. DB2 features self-management capabilities, which eliminate the requirement for intervention by database administrators. IBM’s DB2 features a SMART guide, which allows users to set configurations capable of providing optimal performance. Other features include a query patroller, which monitors the activity on the database, while the physical organization of data to facilitate efficient access, is achieved through an inbuilt record utility. Key security features include the use of various security mechanisms for authentication of users and the presence of all authorization within the database following authentication of users. The database also supports the encryption of passwords during transmission at the time of authorization. Internet features of the system include Web sphere; Net Data enhancements; EE XML Extender; separate Net Search Extender; Java Support and XML Extender. The DB2 UDB7 platform supports a wide range of programming languages including XML, COBOL, Perl, Visual Basic, C/C++, SQL, and Java.
Oracle 9i is the latest database offering released by the Oracle Corporation. The Oracle 9i platform is loaded is various features such as Database Resource Manager, Duplexed Backup Sets, Unused Index Identification, Resumable Space Allocation, and Automatic Undo Management. Additional features include recovery manager; server managed recovery and backup; Legato Storage manager; self-tuning memory management; as well as Oracle Enterprise Manager. Optional features available with Oracle 9i include Management Pack for Sap R/3; Management Pack for Oracle Applications; Tuning Pack; Diagnostics Pack; as well as Oracle Change Management Pack. Key Security features in Oracle 9i are proxy authentication; password management; fine-grained auditing; Virtual Private Database; Encryption tool kit; and Oracle Label Security. Oracle 9i’s Advanced Security Option provides row-level, function level, and role level security. Internet capabilities incorporated into Oracle 9i include support for managing entire organizational Web infrastructure inside a comprehensive and single management framework and availability of various tools for integrating data, applications and business processes. The Oracle 9i also allows database developers to develop web applications using Java, SQL/PL, whereas, the Oracle9i Application Server supports the deployment of various internet applications and e-business websites using Oracle XML Developer’s Kit and Java. Programming language support featured in Oracle 9i includes XML, Perl, PL/SQL, C/C++, SQL, and Java.
The choice of database platform is vital for further growth of the organization as a properly chosen solution would enable streamlined database operations and generate an increase in overall ROI and profitability of a company’s operations. The choice of the Database platform would be influenced by the functions required as well as the consistency of the current organizational system. Both Oracle 9i and DB2 UDB7 are capable of being used in any operating system. Oracle 9i features leading functionality as it provides support for key applications such as Human Resource applications and Oracle Finance. Oracle 9i is a completely object-oriented database and is the preferred database platform among enterprise users. The SQL Server 2000 is the most reasonably priced database platform among those discussed in the article however the platform is limited by its capability to operate only on Windows environments.