Open-source databases have been available in the enterprise database market for several years now. Until recently, they didn’t come anywhere close to competing with the major database platforms such as SQL Server, Oracle, Sybase, and DB2. However, we are now seeing a proliferation of open-source databases in the enterprise database market that are being used with web applications and other portals in the enterprise. Recently, I asked Noel Yuhanna, a principal analyst for Forrester Research, what his thoughts were about open-source databases in the SQL Server market.

So why are companies becoming more interested in implementing open-source databases? According to Yuhanna, interest around these databases is growing for several reasons, including their low cost, their maturity, and Sun Microsystems’ acquisition of MySQL. “Enterprises want a lower cost data management solution, and open-source databases offer the best price/performance value,” said Yuhanna.

When I asked Yuhanna if he believes open-source databases will ever compete directly with enterprise database platforms, he said “Yes, it has certainly put pressure on enterprise database platforms, and we will continue to see that impact in the coming years. If you look back in time, when SQL Server came into existence, no one wanted to use it in their enterprises. It had to build its credibility and image, which took time, but today, it’s well accepted as an enterprise-class DBMS to support any business application. The same way, we believe open-source databases are slowly and gradually making their way to compete directly against enterprise database platforms. With the acquisition of MySQL by Sun Microsystems, we believe in the coming years, it will start to offer rip-and-replace strategies against SQL Server, Oracle, and DB2, to gain into the large database market.”

Do you agree with Yuhanna? Are you running an open-source database in your environment? If not, do you plan to implement one in the future? We want to hear your feedback!