Oracle quick out of the gate with TimesTen update

Four months after Oracle acquired TimesTen as a means to beef up its database offering, the first Oracle-stamped TimesTen In-Memory Database update has been released.

Oracle today announced the immediate availability of Oracle TimesTen In-Memory Database Release 6.0.

The release is the first major upgrade to the TimesTen product since Oracle acquired the company in June. The immediately available upgrade features enhancements in cache performance and support, a company representative said.

Tim Shetler, Oracle vice president of technology marketing, said the 6.0 release also includes tighter integration with other Oracle products and broader support of industry standards such as SQL and Java.

Shetler said while the TimesTen technology would become more tightly integrated with Oracle, including in the Oracle middleware space, the In-Memory product would still retain an individual identity.

Oracle acquired TimesTen in June with the aim of adding real-time capabilities to its database portfolio. The acquisition came during a year when Oracle had made a flurry of purchases, including PeopleSoft Inc., ProfitLogic and Retek Inc.; the latter arriving in Oracle's pocket after a protracted bidding war with industry rival SAP AG.

With the TimesTen acquisition, Oracle had promised an end-to-end data management suite that would offer customers real-time access to embedded and front-office systems, enterprise-level databases, and data warehouses. This functionality, Oracle representatives said in June, would be contained in a separate TimesTen product, with further integration with Oracle database products forthcoming.

The speed with which Oracle moved from acquisition to first collaborative product release impressed Carl Olofson, research director for information management and data integration software at Framingham, Mass.-based IDC.

"The rapid integration of the TimesTen products demonstrates Oracle's commitment to meet the needs of time-critical applications in a broad and expanding set of industries," he said.

Olofson said with the emergence of developments such as message-based business process automation environments linking business functions in automated flows, applications are showing a growing requirement for high-speed database management capabilities.

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Companies showing the most marked need for real-time, high-speed access include those in the telecommunications, financial services, travel, defense and intelligence industries, as well as real-time enterprises in other industries with business intelligence and service-oriented architectures, Shetler said.

In a phone call with, Shetler said the 6.0 release included several enhancements targeted at customers in the high-speed, high-performance database arena, including improvements in cache updates, cache availability and resilience.

Other key improvements in 6.0 included tighter integration and support for Oracle Database 10g with a TimesTen Cache Connect to Oracle option, and certification with Oracle Application Server 10g and other major Java 2 Platform, Enterprise Edition application servers, Shetler said.

The release will also sport expanded standards support for SQL and Java Database Connectivity application programming interfaces, Java Message Service and object/relational mapping certification, he said.

The Oracle TimesTen In-Memory Database is generally available with prices ranging from $12,000 to $24,000 per CPU, depending on the size of in-memory data store. TimesTen to TimesTen and Cache Connect to Oracle options are each available for $6,000-$12,000 per CPU, depending on in-memory data store size.

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