Oracle debuts apps hosting platform: Launch will accelerate the market sector in Australia

Oracle last week showcased its next generation software, which is the centrepiece of its strategy to accelerate the growth of the application hosting market worldwide.

Senior product marketing director of Oracle's Internet platform Bob Shimp said the Oracle 9i database, application server and developer suite will provide the technology platform to expand application hosting, which is still in its infancy in Australia.

Speaking at Oracle Open World in San Fransisco, Shimp said 9i is the "starting gun" for application hosting as the rollout of 8i software was developed at a time when content on the Internet was more static.

"This will accelerate application hosting in Australia; previously it was limited by scalability and performance," he said.

"The new 9i application server uses Web cache technology which can decrease back-end server load by 70 per cent by taking the pressure off a busy site and can service up to 7500 HTTP requests per second for both static and dynamic Web pages."

Shimp predicts 40 per cent of 9i sales over the next four years will be generated online. Since Oracle launched 8i software earlier this year developers have downloaded more than 350,000 copies of the product.

The new 9i database which uses cache fusion cluster technology is geared toward corporate IT departments, application service providers and B2B exchanges and lets organisations add computers without changing an application or data.

"Prior to this on older database architectures, IT departments were required to trade off scalability and reliability even after days of reconfiguring data for the applications to even run," Shimp said.

In a statement Oracle said its new cache fusion architecture lets applications run without a catastrophic failure for well over 100,000 years adding: "A 12-computer configuration from Microsoft used in recent benchmarks is estimated to experience a catastrophic failure every 7.5 days based on Microsoft's own estimates."

Oracle's 9i application clusters involves the development of nine patents with a further 18 patents pending.

The company also announced the industry's first clustered database server on the Linux operating system, the Oracle8i Parallel Server.

It is currently in beta testing and is expected to be available in the first half of 2001.

* Sandra Van Dijk travelled to Open World as a guest of OracleOracle extends wireless software rangeThe European market is proving to be the fastest adopter of wireless technologies worldwide, but Oracle believes the Asia-Pacific region is set to follow. Announcing a wide range of new wireless software products at its world conference, Oracle previewed the 9i application server wireless edition, which will be available in December. It will enable companies using IBM mainframes to wirelessly access data stored in legacy systems, officials said. The wireless Internet applications can be used on personal digital assistants, wireless phones, hand-held computers and standard phones connected to interactive voice recognition systems. This is in addition to a fixed scope solution that enables corporations to build an enterprise portal that can be accessed via wireless devices, officials said. For developers Oracle launched the OracleMobile Online Studio, the first 100 per cent online environment for building, testing and deploying hosted wireless applications leveraging XML architecture, the company said. Oracle also announced new customers in the Asia-Pacific including EverComm International and the Overseas Union Bank as part of its aggressive marketing plans in the region.

- Sandra Van Dijk

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