Ingres unveils developer bundle for Eclipse users

Ingres is making it simpler for Eclipse developers to build Java applications to run on its open-source database

Ingres Wednesday began offering a software bundle to make it easier for developers to build Eclipse-based applications on top of the Ingres 2006 open-source database.

The Ingres Eclipse Bundle brings together all the components developers need to create and run Java applications built using the Eclipse Foundation's open-source development framework. Available for download from the Ingres Web site as a single zipped file, the bundle includes a version of the Eclipse framework and the Ingres Eclipse Data Tools Project (DTP) plug-in, said Emma McGrattan, senior vice president of engineering at Ingres. The bundle also contains source code of a demonstration for developers on how to use Eclipse and Ingres and instructions on getting started with Ingres DTP.

The Ingres DTP plug-in features enhancements Ingres made to the Eclipse Data Tools Project so that the development environment is more aware of syntax specific to the open-source database, making it easier to run SQL (structured query language) statements and to debug code.

Previously, users had to download the Eclipse framework themselves, find the particular plug-ins they needed and use the Java Database Connectivity (JDBC) specification to link their Eclipse-based applications to Ingres, McGrattan said. Application developers within Ingres found that process time-consuming and the company realized its users must also be struggling with the complexity.

Ingres already offers bundles for the Python, PHP and Perl scripting languages, with support for Ruby coming next, McGrattan said.

Ingres definitely plans bundles of its database with third-party software, notably around business intelligence and application servers, McGrattan said. She sees plenty of opportunities for the vendor to "preplumb" or do the necessary integration legwork for customers between Ingres 2006 and other applications. "There are already projects underway at Ingres to build on top of Project Icebreaker as an appliance solution," she added.

Expected to ship shortly, Icebreaker, is a tight integration of the Ingres database with a version of rPath's Linux distribution.

Ingres would also look to offer bundles based on the other operating systems it supports -- Windows and Unix.

McGrattan also commented on recent executive departures.

Last month, Dave Dargo, the vendor's chief technology officer, revealed in his blog that he'd left his full-time role at Ingres while Dev Mukherjee, chief marketing officer is set to leave Friday to join Sears.

"The timing was unfortunate," McGrattan said. "But it's no secret we hired Dave off the golf course." Dargo retired from Oracle a few years ago after 15 years with the company where he headed up the vendor's Linux strategy. "We ran him ragged last year with traveling," McGrattan said, leading to Dargo decided to step back from his day-to-day duties. He remains a key Ingres evangelist and technical advisor, recently representing the company at an open-source conference at Germany and in several customer interactions.

"Dev is a loss for Ingres," McGrattan said, but notes he's leaving a strong marketing team in place including former Red Hat and VMware executives. The vendor is also hopeful that his new employer Sears might become a future Ingres customer. Ingres is looking for a new CMO, but has no plans to hire a new CTO, she added.

McGrattan doesn't expect any further upset among the company's executive ranks. "I've been with Ingres since 1989 and I'm not going anywhere," she said. McGrattan's tenure predates both the spin-off of Ingres from CA Inc. in 2005 and CA's 1994 acquisition of The ASK Group which had previously purchased Ingres.

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