IBM releases updated DB2 software

IBM Corp. yesterday released a new version of its DB2 database software, featuring enhanced integration support for the company's WebSphere application server as well as its MQSeries middleware technology.

The IBM announcement said DB2 Version 7.2 also introduces support for emerging Web services standards such as Simple Object Access Protocol (SOAP) and Universal Description, Discovery and Integration (UDDI), as well as new migration tools for users moving from competing database products to DB2.

The latest release of DB2 builds on IBM's efforts to help users access and integrate data from the widest variety of data sources possible, said Brant B. Davison, a program manager at IBM's data-management solutions group. This includes offering access to information stored not just on DB2 but on other databases including Oracle, Informix, Sybase and Microsoft's SQL Server, he said.

This kind of data integration is necessary for companies that are building new e-business and business-to-business applications, Davison said.

The latest iteration of DB2 builds on IBM's effort to use its messaging and application server technologies for transporting real-time data from operational databases to various applications, said Mark Shainman, an analyst at Stamford, Conn.-based Meta Group Inc.

"What they have done with this release is to automate the processes required to [achieve this]," he said.

DB2 Version 7.2, for instance, lets developers treat message queues as if they were tables in the database. This makes it easier to publish data from DB2 to MQSeries, Davison said. Similarly, the tighter integration with WebSphere enables DB2 to manage and deliver SOAP- and UDDI-based Web services, he said.

"This is more of an incremental upgrade than anything else," said Jon Rubin, an analyst at Stamford, Conn.-based Gartner Inc. Rather than offer any dramatic new functionality, "most of the points that [IBM] seems to be making with this introduction is about integration and interoperability" with multivendor platforms, he said.

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