Oracle has unveiled an addition to its Fusion middleware, Oracle Data Integrator, to help users quickly bring together in a single place the huge amounts of information in different databases and applications across their organizations.
Data Integrator is based on technology Oracle acquired when it purchased French data integration company Sunopsis in October, according to Ashish Mohindroo, senior product director for Oracle's Fusion middleware.
Customers can use Data Integrator to pull data from different sources into one location, helping them with data analysis and queries in BI (business intelligence) and data warehousing applications. But the tool is not limited to BI, Mohindroo said. It can also be helpful for users engaged in master data management, SOA (service-oriented architecture) and BAM (business activity monitoring), as well as application migration and consolidation, he said.
One of the main reasons Oracle bought Sunopsis was to improve Fusion's ability to bring in data from non-Oracle products. Data Integrator supports databases, data warehouses and applications from vendors including IBM, Microsoft, NCR's Teradata, Netezza and Sybase.
Mohindroo wouldn't comment on Oracle's plans to support Hewlett-Packard's offerings, other than to note that HP continues to be a partner. HP has been ramping up its data warehousing business recently, debuting its Neoview data warehouse software, server and storage product family in October.
Data Integrator competes with Informatica's PowerCenter data integration software and IBM's rival Information Serverm, which it gained through the 2005 US$1.1 billion purchase of Ascential.
Oracle inherited an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) relationship with Informatica through its acquisition of applications vendor Siebel. In October, Oracle and Informatica reaffirmed that partnership, extending it for four years. The release of Data Integrator won't affect that relationship, Mohindroo said. "We offer it as an alternative to Data Integrator," he added. "Customers can pick and choose."
Naturally, Data Integrator is also optimized to work with Oracle's own database, application server, SOA Suite and BAM software. Customers can use the tool to build data warehouses that are then queried by Oracle's Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition.
Oracle shipped the most recent version of that software last week with a focus on tighter integration with Oracle's own applications and new native access to applications rival SAP AG's Business Information Warehouse. Oracle BI Suite EE 10g Release 3.0 also features a lot of work the vendor has done on the usability side, said Rick Schultz, vice president of Oracle Fusion middleware, including enhanced integration with Microsoft's Office desktop applications suite and drag-and-drop layout editing.
Oracle Data Integrator is now shipping at a cost of US$12,000 per-database target CPU (central processing unit) and US$4,000 per-database source CPU. Users can also try out an evaluation copy of the software online.