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Beta testers give 10g rave reviews

A panel of beta testers sang the praises of Oracle's 10g database and application server at the company's annual U.S. user event this week. Users were especially pleased with the product's new self-managing capabilities.

SAN FRANCISCO -- Arvind Gidwani, IT manager at San Diego-based Qualcomm Inc., is beaming over the results of beta tests that he conducted on Oracle's new database and application server, 10g.

Gidwani's team is currently running Oracle 8i on Sun Microsystems Inc.'s Solaris platform. His division oversees code-division multiple access (CDMA) and wireless communications development for Qualcomm. A group of four database administrators have watched the number of databases in the division increase in recent years from 10 to 110, Gidwani said.

So it was 10g's self-managing capabilities that held special appeal for Gidwani.

"The self-managing features are the best, because they tell you where the problem is and give you what to do to fix the code," he said. "If you choose to deploy those fixes, it's also automated, and for that I have to really thank Oracle."

The gleeful Gidwani was in the right place yesterday, featured on a panel of five Oracle 10g beta testers selected by Oracle to describe their experiences with the product at OracleWorld 2003.

Jamie Shiers, who leads the database group at Geneva-based CERN, the world's largest particle physics laboratory, called grid computing a "revolution."

"It really is the underlying cornerstone for our computing model," Shiers said. CERN currently stores hundreds of terabytes of information in an Oracle database and plans to use Oracle 10g technology to make a larger particle accelerator by 2007.

When the CERN accelerator goes online in about five years, it will churn out petabytes. (A petabyte is about 1 quadrillion bytes of data.) The grid infrastructure will be key to efficiently organizing and storing the mountains of data churned out, Shiers said.

Grid technology is also at the heart of a project being completed by Jeremy Foreman, a computer systems analyst at the New Mexico Department of Transportation. Foreman is the organization's sole database administrator; he oversees 24 databases.

Foreman's shop is currently running Oracle 9i, and he is hoping to upgrade to 10g. Eventually, Foreman wants to store photographs -- images of 30- to 40-foot sections of all 30,000 miles of New Mexico's interstate roadways -- in a single database.

The collection of 500,000 photographs includes geo-spatial referencing information that equals close to 5 terabits of information, Foreman said.

"With 9i, it wasn't possible to partition a common object," he said. "In 10i, you can performance-tune these table spaces, and I've seen an incredible increase in performance due to table spaces."

Oracle used grid technology to develop the 10g database, said John Magee, Oracle's vice president of application server marketing. The company ran over 100,000 automated tests nightly, up from more than 30,000 tests run each night during Oracle 9i software development.

To date, 200 partners and customers have tested the new Oracle 10g software.


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To provide your feedback on this article, contact Robert Westervelt.

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