DB2

From Academic Kids

DB2 is IBM's flagship relational database management system.

It has a long history and was what some consider to be the first database product to use SQL. According to Michael Stonebraker, when IBM chose to make SQL the standard for database query languages by announcing its inclusion into DB2, Oracle seized the opportunity to trumpet that it too used SQL.

The name DB2 was first given to the Database Management System or DBMS in 1982 where IBM released SQL/DS and DB2 on its mainframe platform. Prior to this the product was named System Relational, or System R, which launched in 1978. DB2 has its roots back to the beginning of the seventies where Dr. E.F. Codd, working for IBM, described the theory of relational databases and in June of 1970 published the model for data manipulation. To apply the model Codd needed a relational database language which he named Structured English QUEry Language or SEQUEL. SEQUEL was already a trademarked name, so IBM renamed the acronym to SQL, short for Structured Query Language. The acronym SQL still stands to this day.

Historically, it is interesting to note that when Informix acquired Illustra and made their database engine an object-relational database by introducing their Universal Server, both Oracle and IBM followed suit by changing their database engines to be capable of object-relational extensions. Moreover, in 2001 IBM bought Informix and in the following years incorporated Informix technology into the DB2 product suite. Technically, today, DB2 can be considered to be an object-relational database.

Even though DB2 started out on the mainframe it migrated down through UNIX and Windows servers and finally became available on Linux and on PDAs. This process was mainly undertaken though the 1990's. DB2's precursors are IBM DL/1 and IBM IMS, both initially hierarchical and then network (or codasyl) databases.

Currently, there is a dogfight going on between DB2 and Oracle for the number 1 position in the market. On May 3, 2004 IBM's head of database development and sales, Janet Perna, claimed their main competitors were Oracle in the context of advanced transaction handling, and Teradata in the context of decision-making systems (e.g. data warehousing).

DB2, like Oracle, can be administered from either the command-line or a GUI. The command-line interface requires more knowledge of the product, but can be more easily scripted and automated. The GUI is a multi-platform java client that contains a variety of wizards ideal for novice users.

DB2 has API's for .NET CLI, Java, Python, Perl, PHP, C++, C, REXX, PL/1, Cobol, Fortran, and many other programming languages. DB2 also supports integration into the Eclipse and Visual Studio .NET integrated development environments.


DB2 is also the designation of an Aston Martin sportscar dating from the early 1960s, made famous by James Bond films.

See also

nl:DB2UDB ja:DB2 pl:DB2 uk:DB2

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