Borland International Inc spin-off Interbase Software Corp has released the latest incarnation of its Interbase embedded database, Interbase 5.0, boasting a new multi-threaded implementation and a Java Database Connectivity driver for greater client access. The company, spun off by Borland earlier this year (CI No 3,153), claims the key strength of the latest version of Interbase is what it refers to as its multigenerational architecture, which uses an enhanced row level locking system rather than page level locking used by the likes of Oracle Corp and Sybase Inc. UK director of business development, Paul Beach says the new architecture, dubbed SuperServer is designed to enable multiple threads to share access to a single server process. Interbase says this gives more efficient access to data by reducing bottlenecks caused by arbitration for shared database pages. It claims a more effective indexing system increases throughput, enabling certain queries to be handled up to 50% faster than the previous Interbase offering. The other key enhancement, a new JDBC driver, enables access from any client-side device. Interbase says the key benefit of its database is easier administration, and scoffs at claims by rivals such as Oracle and Microsoft Corp that their products are easy to administer. Any database that comes on fifty diskettes and needs an independent software application to help run it is not easy to administer. says Beach. He claims that once installed, Interbase doesn’t need any further input from administrators. The Interbase database has been around in various incarnations for the last ten years or so, it just hasn’t been marketed very well, Beach admits. Up to now it’s been a very well kept secret. The company says it is not going head-to-head with the likes of Oracle, Informix and Sybase. 25% of all Borland development tools users develop tools using Interbase as the embedded database says the company. The rest of the company’s business comes from Value Added Resellers who use Interbase in their applications and the embedded appliance market. The database is currently used as the underlying technology in several emergency dispatch systems and is also being used in the Mission Control system for Russia’s MIR space station, although the company stresses its technology is not the bit that went wrong. Interbase 5.0 runs on Windows 95 and NT, Novell, AIX, HP-UX, DG-UX, Solaris and Santa Cruz Operation Unix and costs between $5,000 and $6,000 for a fifty- user license.
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