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Firebird 2.0 Final Released 158

Posted by Zonk
from the reborn dept.
Samyem Tuladhar writes "After 2 years in development, the Firebird Project today officially releases the much-anticipated version 2.0 of its open source Firebird relational database software during the opening session of the fourth international Firebird Conference in Prague, Czech Republic."
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Firebird 2.0 Final Released

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  • Finally... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Bourdain (683477) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:16AM (#16819542)
    Now I can finally convince my friends to upgrade their web browser from Firebird 0.6 :)
  • by IcEMaN252 (579647) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:17AM (#16819550) Homepage
    I must admit to be rather ignorant of Firebird, how does it compare to other RDBMSs out there?
    • by Shados (741919) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:30AM (#16819644)
      While I have never used it myself, I have heard nothing but praises from it, including from the Microsoft programmer community side. It is supposed to be full featured, quite fast, and can be used as an embedded database by just shipping a single DLL (on Windows, dunno how it goes on Unix side of things) with your app, thus allowing for a lot of flexibility. It has a lot more feature than even most commercial embedded database, and is supposed to be very easy on the developer, and its drivers are quite complete for java, .net, etc.
    • by jozeph78 (895503) on Monday November 13, 2006 @01:53AM (#16820130)
      We used it at my last shop, maintaining a database file for each "project" and a master database to keep track them. Keeping it in it's realm, it's leagues beyond HSQL or Derby and other databases I've worked with of it's caliber.

      It was not without the quirks and kludgey features expected of a 1.0 database. Some of the unusual things (to me) were setting a Term character for scipts, lack of "if exists"/"create or replace", "suspend" in procedures, and identity ID's via triggers. That said, it had triggers as well as fully functional stored procedures, user defined functions, custom exceptions to deliver nice error messages to your JDBC layer and even a simple c API to write low level custom functions that were easily compiled into the db.

      The guys always made fun of FireBird for being slow until I replaced rebuilding a hierarchical structure via java (single JDBC call per record) with a recursive stored procedure (single JDBC call for collection in order). JDBC usually incurs a good deal of overhead but I've never seen it so costly as in this case. Removing this JDBC overhead brought the longer running cases of 30-40 seconds (consider this lag opening a word document), down to 1-2 seconds. So the query engine of FireBird is quite efficient considering you know how to sweet talk it. :D

      In the process of writing that procedure I discovered that the documentation for FireBird is actually quite good, albeit somewhat confusing with the Interbase/Firebird ambiguity. What I couldn't find in the documentation I found in a rather active FireBird Yahoo Group (may have been Google, whatever).

      Don't go comparing it to MySql, PostGRE, Oracle XE, or MSSQL Express. I'm not sure how the performance for databases larger than the amount of available memory will work meaning, I've never profied the IO performance. Still, it's a great alternative to storing complex data structures as binary files or stubbing a prototype db for rapid development.

      Ultimately, I'm excited about the new release of FireBird. Kudos to the team.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by flurdy (301431)
        > It was not without the quirks and kludgey features expected of a 1.0 database.

        Well it was not 1.0 database, more like a v 7 or 8 consider v1 was based on interbase 6 and as mentioned in post further down has been around for 20+ years.

        Ive been using it for 4 years now, and we offer it as our prefered database for our products, but the customers can use ms sql server or oracle if they prefer. Choosing other rdbms databases offer nothing more for us, except they cost loads of money.

        One thing firbird lacks
    • by vhogemann (797994) <victor.hogemann@com> on Monday November 13, 2006 @05:36AM (#16821066) Homepage
      I have some experience with it on Linux,

      We used Firebird on a project called "Remédio em Casa" (Medicine at Home), for the Rio de Janeiro city Health Department. People suffering from a heart condition or diabetes would come to a public hospital, get their diagnoses, an then receive medicine for 3 months of treatment at their homes, by mail.

      The patient data is sent to a Java Servlet by a Delphi desktop Application, the medical subscript data is sent to the Post Office along with the patient address, and everything was stored on a Firebird database running on Debian Linux.

      Last time I was involved with the project, we had a 3GB database, with over 270 thousand people attended... Somebody from the brazilian Firebird user Group told us that this was the largest Firebird database in operation at Brasil :-)

      I can only tell good things about Firebird. It has a straight forward command line interface, its easy to manage, backup and restore, and has an excellent performance.

      Just my $0.02
  • by ghazban (28784) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:18AM (#16819560) Homepage
    Who else thought this must be old news or a dupe after reading the title! I think they should change their version number to avoid confusion... Firebird v2.3-notawebrowser.
    • by denttford (579202)
      Yup. Especially since I just loaded this page immediately after a FF 2.0 crash.
      Maybe someone should tag this story not-a-firefox?

      It's got to suck to be a developer of a useful project and have another one start up and steal some of your thunder (err... no pun intended).
  • DUPE! (Score:5, Funny)

    by damiena (263598) <neimad915@@@gmail...com> on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:20AM (#16819570)
    Come on editors... They changed the name to Firefox how long ago? Not only that, but 2.0 was released like 3 weeks ago. I could of sworn I saw an article on slashdot even... Way to read your own site.

    Oh, with... this is a database? Hmmm... they should probably change their name so that people won't get confused all the time.
  • Huh? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Senjutsu (614542)
    Firefox, Thunderbird, Firebird...

    I'm confused.
    • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Funny)

      by GoogolPlexPlex (412555) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:22AM (#16819586)
      Thunderfox
    • by Shados (741919)
      Well, the firebird was one of the previous names of Firefox, and they changed it to avoid confusion with this very database. Guess it didn't work on you :)
    • by RuBLed (995686)
      To be used to confusion. Install this https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/31/ [mozilla.org]
    • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Informative)

      by astrosmash (3561) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:55AM (#16819790) Journal
      Firefox's original name was "Phoenix", as the browser was meant to rise from the ruins of the old Netscape/Mozilla application suite. The Phoenix BIOS guys complained that people would confuse Phoenix the browser with Phoenix the BIOS, so they changed the name to Firebird, which is still quite a bit like a phoenix. Then the Firebird database guys complained for the same reason. Thus the name Firefox was born, a trademark now vigorously defended by the Mozilla organization.

      It didn't work, though. My first thought when I read this article was that it's some Mozilla project. The Firebird guys would have been better off renaming their project, since few people had heard of it anyway. And my new computer doesn't even have a BIOS.
      • by jibjibjib (889679)
        I've had no experience with new computer technology, but I thought the BIOS was pretty much an essential part of the computer. Could someone please explain how a new computer can 'not have a BIOS'?
        • by afidel (530433)
          He most likely means his PC has EFI Firmware, meaning his new PC is probably a MacBook.
        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by KarmaMB84 (743001)
          EFI is the newest incompatible BIOS replacement.
        • by shadowmas (697397)
          I think the poster is confused by not being able to see the BIOS since nowadays most BIOSes display a splash screen or a blank screen making it look like as if it's no there.

          Either that or he has a very different computer indeed.
        • by tygt (792974)
          Maybe he just keys in the OS from the front panel... is his name "Seymour"?
        • by starwed (735423)
          It wasn't confusion with the BIOS that was the issue. I was never completely clear on the complete details, but the key point was that Phoenix Technologies had registered a trademark for some sort of browser, using the name Phoenix.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by mdfst13 (664665)
        "The Firebird guys would have been better off renaming their project,"

        How so? I doubt that /. would have posted this story if it weren't for the name confusion. I certainly wouldn't have know what Firebird was if not for Mozilla.
      • BIOS (Score:1, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward
        And my new computer doesn't even have a BIOS.
        How does it smell?
      • by RedBear (207369)
        It didn't work, though. My first thought when I read this article was that it's some Mozilla project. The Firebird guys would have been better off renaming their project, since few people had heard of it anyway. And my new computer doesn't even have a BIOS.

        One word: ThunderCougarFalconBird. [google.com]
      • Actually, I'll bet the Firebird database guys are picking up some surplus attention due to the name confusion. I'd quite forgotten about the embedded db project myself, and I primarily read this article wondering if was a fork of Firefox, perhaps branching off a pre-name-change version or something.

        After reading what's here, I'll probably give Firebird a go in a test project. Who knows, they may have just picked up a user at least partly because of name confusion.

        Oh, and Down with Daylight Saving Time indee
    • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Funny)

      by Reality Master 101 (179095) <RealityMaster101@noSPAm.gmail.com> on Monday November 13, 2006 @01:32AM (#16819984) Homepage Journal

      Firefox, Thunderbird, Firebird... I'm confused

      I think it's a song by Lynyrd Skynyrd.

  • by IntelliAdmin (941633) * on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:26AM (#16819606) Homepage
    FireBird is a database system that has been used in many projects. It has nothing to do with Firefox or any browser or email client. Just go to the website to check it out

    From the website: Firebird 2.0 is the happy culmination of more than two years' efforts from a broad-ranging, truly international community of dedicated developers and supporters. It brings with it a large collection of long-awaited enhancements that significantly improve performance, security and support for international languages and realise some desirable new SQL language features. Under the surface, it also provides a much more robust code platform from which the re-architecting planned for Firebird 3.0 is proceeding.

    http://www.windows-admin-tools.com [windows-admin-tools.com]
  • Really cool but... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by LWATCDR (28044)
    The problem is
    99% of all open source projects that use a database support MySQL.
    maybe 10% have some support for Postgres.
    and I don't know of any that support Firebird.
    We really need to see some more support for databases other than MySQl
    • by griffjon (14945) <GriffJon@gmaLISPil.com minus language> on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:32AM (#16819652) Homepage Journal
      Or, and I know this may be a bit revolutionary, how about a database abstraction layer and support for anything that speaks SQL, brought forward to the user/administrator interface? I imagine most projects are using libraries that support this anyhow...
      • by Shados (741919)
        This works, to some extent. When you start doing anything relatively serious, you have to get out of the standard API. SQL is unfortunately not supported in a standard way, because the actual SQL standard is limited. So all serious RDBMS have to add custom features. Want to page your data server side? You either do 3 nested query using ANSI SQL, or you use one of the "proprietary" features and have it run in about 1/100th the time (number not out of my ass, it comes from benchmarks). Standard APIs are only
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by vadim_t (324782)
        Not really possible. Differences run a lot deeper than just syntax.

        For example, take mySQL and PostgreSQL. They've got vastly different locking methods: mySQL does row locking, while PostgreSQL does MVCC. Databases like mySQL like small, short running transactions because otherwise things start getting caught on locks and performance goes way down. PostgreSQL on the other hand LOVES big transactions to the point that you can BEGIN ; SELECT * FROM multi_gb_table ; COMMIT as a perfectly good backup strategy,
      • Almost as good would be to code the slow, portable way, make sure it really is too slow, and then code a specialization for each database you support. Then you don't get gratuitous incompatibilities, and anyone who knows database X can add support for database X without being a specialist in the database(s) you already support. The downside is that it increases your testing burden by one, which may seem like a lot when you only support one database to begin with, but I imagine it pays for itself when you
    • Why, though? MySQL or PgSQL are fine -- feel free to explain why others are better.
    • by aligma (682744) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:41AM (#16819722)
      "and I don't know of any that support Firebird." Its the other -9%.
      • by richdun (672214)
        I believe he meant that some overlap, i.e., support both MySQL and PgSQL - supporting two competing products in the same function category is not illegal you know. Unless of course it's vi and emacs, but I didn't even have to say that.
      • by LWATCDR (28044)
        There are very few FOSS applications that just have support for PostgreSQL.
        Some like Drupal support both PostgreSQL and MySQL so yes you can have 99% MySQL and 10% support PostgreSQL because some support both.
    • by msobkow (48369) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:47AM (#16819766) Homepage Journal

      99% of commercial applications that can pay your rent and put bread-and-butter on the table use Oracle, Sybase, DB/2, or SQLServer/Sybase10.

      100% of applications that I'd trust with any personal data like credit cards run under the first three of those databases.

      For applications that don't have such stringent requirements, you might want to pull your head out of the smelly sphincter of non-standard MySQL syntax and try working with something that can handle joins of more than 5-7 tables without crumbling. Firebird happens to be one -- it's the open sourced version of Borland's database engine, which has kicked MSAccess around the block on performance and standards compliance long before it was open sourced.

      With a couple years of additional development, I expect the new version probably does an even better job of supporting ANSI92 SQL and common language drivers.

      What I can't understand is why everyone still goes ga-ga over MySQL. It doesn't follow standards for syntax, it doesn't scale for statement complexity, and it's reputation for reliability and recoverability is deservedly bad.

      Don't get me wrong. Use what works. But there are so many application profile variants that it's quite narrow minded to presume one database fits all, especially when you try to pick the weakest runt in the litter as your panacea.

      • by Shados (741919)
        The only reason people go ga-ga over MySQL is name recognition. Since the last version, I understand that it doesn't suck anymore, so thats great. But it sure as hell used to. PostgreSQL is great, but some of the legacy code in it probably can make Windows' code base look clean (they had to get someone from Summer of Code to try to clean up the DISTINCT code because it was beyond horrible, for one). Firebird's supposed to be pretty darn good, I need to try it (Frans Bouma, a fairly well known Microsoft MVP
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by ninjaz (1202)

        What I can't understand is why everyone still goes ga-ga over MySQL. It doesn't follow standards for syntax, it doesn't scale for statement complexity, and it's reputation for reliability and recoverability is deservedly bad.

        I think it is mostly due to historical reasons, and because MySQL hangs out in the sweet spot for many uses. I started using MySQL in 1997. In 1997, the only free SQL databases around for skunkworks projects were MySQL and miniSQL, version 1 of which had a single-threaded engine

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by killjoe (766577)
        "What I can't understand is why everyone still goes ga-ga over MySQL. It doesn't follow standards for syntax, it doesn't scale for statement complexity, and it's reputation for reliability and recoverability is deservedly bad."

        Let me try and explain it to you.

        Mysql was first to market (the market of open source database engines) with the features that people really want. Full text indexing, replication, clustering, ODBC drivers, etc.

        Now maybe their replication wasn't all that hot but it took five minutes to
      • At my office we have only a single program that uses MS-SQL and that is our accounting system.

        While important our mission critical application uses PostgreSQL. It tracks all the incoming support calls, RMAs, and support issues for our customers.
        The other money making application we use is Drupal for our website. It does support MySQL and Postgres but not every modual supports them both. In that case I am sorry to say we went with the path of least resistance and used MySQL.

        What you didn't understand is that
        • by msobkow (48369)

          Actually MS Access was the primary product Microsoft lobbed at Borland's market share. SQL Server was much too expensive to win Borland's customer base -- until it was pitched as an "upgrade" to customers who bought into MS Access. By then it was too late to go back.

          Of course if you want real scalability, it's pretty easy to migrate from SQL Server to Sybase ASE, but I'm betting you don't hear that from MS developer shops trying to deal with performance issues.

      • by munch117 (214551)
        98% of posters who claim to know what 99% of the world looks like, are deluding themselves.
      • by curunir (98273) *
        The thing that MySQL does better than any other database, and the reason why it continues to be supported by so many open source projects, is how well it works in a shared environment. Namely, the $5/mo webhosting environment. That doesn't mean that it can't be done with other databases, but mysql makes everything really simple from the hosting provider's standpoint. And most open source web applications expect to be installed in this kind of environment at least some of the time.

        However the benefit of M
    • phpBB supports it.

      I think quite a few other things support it too.
    • by mccoma (64578)
      Does someone always have to bring up the "we already have X, why do we need Y" argument every-time someone announces a program? The answers is these people do not believe the current solution is the right solution, and they have something they believe is better.
      • by plumby (179557)
        The answers is these people do not believe the current solution is the right solution, and they have something they believe is better.
        Surely the answer is a list of the specific things that they believe their product can achieve better than their competitors, rather than a "they wouldn't have created it if it weren't better" type reply.
        • by mccoma (64578)
          Surely the answer is a list of the specific things that they believe their product can achieve better than their competitors

          uhm - that is pretty much saying the same thing I said. They believe they have a better solution. Some people like to list specific things. Some people think in terms of a different approach. Both groups believe they have a "better" solution in there point of view.

          • by plumby (179557)

            uhm - that is pretty much saying the same thing I said.

            Uhm, no it's not. I'm saying that your statement was not an answer to the question "why do we need Firebird?".

            My post was not attempting to be an answer to that question (as I have no idea why someone would need Firebird rather than, say, Postgresql). It was pointing out what your answer lacked - specific examples of what Firebird does (or does better) than other free DBs.

            If I asked you why people should pick (for example) Linux instead of Windows, a go

      • by LWATCDR (28044)
        Actually I was saying.
        We have a many really good choices in FOSS databases why is it that MySQL seems to be the default choice.
        I really want to see more CMSs that support Postgres and Firebird at the same level they support MySQL.

  • Firebird is nice (Score:3, Informative)

    by mashmorgan (615200) on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:35AM (#16819686)
    I' use MSSQL, mySQL and Interbase/firebird. Each has their own strengths but for me I've been using Interbase so when Firebird came on the scene I starting porting apps. Unlike some of the others, it was x-platform a long time ago and was/am using it for Stored procedures etc. Nowadays I tend to use mySQL as the syntax is more friendly to dev's eg month(), day() functions whilst on Firefird is extract(dateCol, 'month'). Overall its pretty cool and has its niche. Certainly faster that m$sql 2006
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      MySQL syntax might be easier, but it's also proprietary almost-SQL crap, on a database that's not exactly great (works OK for simple queries only, doesn't value data integrity, just starting to get features we've been taking for granted for ages like sprocs and transactions, poor clustering/replication, etc). It's the single worst DB I've ever tried (and it's not "free" either - it's dual licensed, pay for non-GPL stuff). If you want a better database (works, normal SQL, has the features it should, etc) at
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Mondor (704672)
      "Certainly faster that m$sql 2006"

      Of course, taking into account that MS SQL Server 2006 does not exists.
  • by Salvance (1014001) * on Monday November 13, 2006 @12:39AM (#16819714) Homepage Journal
    I wonder if this was posted simply to see what fun folks might have comparing the name to Firefox. I've only used Firebird once, and I wasn't a big fan (who knows, maybe 2.0 is better). I'm having a great time reading the comments though, so nice job /. editors!
  • by crazyvas (853396) on Monday November 13, 2006 @01:05AM (#16819840)
    Firebird (sometimes called FirebirdSQL) is a relational database management system offering many ANSI SQL-99 and SQL-2003 features. It runs on Linux, Windows, and a variety of Unix platforms. Firebird was programmed and is maintained by Firebird Foundation (formerly known as FirebirdSQL Foundation). It was forked from the open sources of InterBase from Borland.
    More at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Firebird_(database_se rver) [wikipedia.org]
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by TheRaven64 (641858)
      Firebird (sometimes called FirebirdSQL) is a relational database management system offering many ANSI SQL-99 and SQL-2003 features

      So is PostgreSQL. Would anyone who has used both like to comment on relative levels of SQL support, ACID compliance, and speed on different workloads? All other things being equal, I'd take BSDL over MPL, but I'd be interested in hearing what Firebird does better than PostgreSQL (and vice versa).

      • by Shados (741919) on Monday November 13, 2006 @01:33AM (#16819986)
        Well, one thing: Firebird can be used in embedded scenarios
      • The big thing for me was ACID -- the damn thing has great transactional support. I still miss it now that I'm forced to work on Oracle ("serializable" mode in Oracle is nothing like real transactional support if you've been using Firebird for a while.) From everything I've read, Postgres caught up with Firebird mainly by, uh, borrowing their generational data architecture, but then somewhat surpassed it in terms of user-defined types/functions. It is still really stinkin' easy to install though, whereas my last experience installing Postgres was nothing but a nightmare. (I don't really mean that as a knock on Postgres -- I'm terrible at sysadmin-like tasks, so it's no surprise that I had trouble; rather it's amazing that Firebird was as easy as it was to install.) As far as I know, PHP always comes precompiled only with MySQL support, so both DB's require equal extra work. I used FB/C++ at my previous job (500 some-odd tables, mostly normalized), and I still use FB/PHP for personal projects (far smaller.) It's pleased me in both settings. Keywords: solid, predictable, tunable, extensible, expressive, safe, and not a freakin' fan-club hack job.

        I do hear someone's been working on an oracle-compatibiliy feature for Firebird (support some of oracle's more interesting expressions), so that's a possible bonus, but I'm not clued in on the current project status. If you're in the market for better OSS databases, you might also consider SAP-DB (rebranded as MySQL's MaxDB.) Just seems like another oft-forgotten contender in that same general weight class.
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by larry bagina (561269)

          Installing postgresql 8.1 with windows was easy - it uses a nice standard windows installer.

          PHP 5 (windows installation) includes the postgres dll (in fact it includes a dll for all supported databases). They stopped including mysql in favor of sqlite (due to changes in the mysql license and since most unix boxes already have the mysql client libraries installed).

        • Well, wake me up when "the damn thing that has great transactional support" can handle transactional DDL. MySQL and IB/FB both suck equally badly when it comes to handling DDL's (CREATE TABLE, RENAME TABLE, DROP TABLE, ALTER TABLE, ...) in transactions. MySQL performs an "implicit commit", while IB/FB acts as if it can handle it but then behaves weirdly and the only thing to avoid weirdness is to perform a COMMIT after each DDL.
  • Can someone advise an inquisitive soul as to whether Firebird and its [database] engine, is a serious replacement to Microsoft's front-end (Access) and its Jet engine? I really miss the flexibility, the possibility of adding business logic, and level of configuration possible with Access. Is this possible with this latest Firebird?
    • by Shados (741919)
      They are biaised, of course, but...look at this:
      http://www.dotnetfirebird.org/blog/2005/01/firebi r d-and-microsoft-jet-feature.html [dotnetfirebird.org]

      Especialy if you are using .NET (which is possible since you're in a Microsoft environment), know that the ADO.NET driver for Firebird is feature complete. I never used it myself, but having seen several comparison between Vista DB, Access, SQLite and Firebird, which I -beleive- to be the dominant embeddable database engines in the WIndows world, Firebird seems to come at th
      • by Jugalator (259273)
        That looks more like a Firebird vs Jet comparison, not a Firebird vs Access.

        Access for example also supports building reports, and I wonder how Firebird works in that area? If it's "just" a DBMS, is there any good way of adding reports in an as integrated way as with Access and have this report tool be able to generate reports filled with data (preferrably possibly backed by scripting and/or a WYSIWYG layout tool) if another application calls it? Access can do all of this anyway, and a big reason we're usin
        • by Shados (741919)
          Ahh, sorry, not a clue. My apologies for assuming the Jet comparison... Its just, Firebird IS a DBMS, so asking for a comparison with a database engine frontend is fairly weird :) I'm unfortunately not familiar enough with the tool support for it :(

          At first glance though, reports-integrated-with-the-DBMS is a MS thing mostly. Only other one I can think of is SQL Server Reporting Services...
  • Don't be so bent on "this is an MS Access replacement". Firebird is a full-featured RDBMS.

    Check some information in this white paper [ibphoenix.com].

    Some info from that document:

    "The project, implemented by the original developer of InterBase (Jim Starkey) was commissioned for SAS Institute, the world's largest vendor of business and medical statistics application software. SAS had made the decision in 2003 to move many of its business applications over from Oracle to Firebird."

    "The largest Firebird database we have heard
    • by Shados (741919)
      Hahaha, you're right, it is far more than an Access replacements. However, RDBMS are a dime a douzan. Full featured desktop databases are rarer, thus the "hype" about the whole MS Access replacement thing =)
    • by Forbman (794277)
      If it was an Access replacement, it would also have a highly integrated application development tool for it. But it doesn't. It's a much richer Jet (Access' native DB) replacement, however, along the lines of Oracle XE/MSDE/etc.

      Marathon (not the Bungi game...) is a good admin tool for Firebird/Interbase.
  • Or for that matter, when might we see FMPro on Linux.
    I've got nothing against SQL DBs. Horses for courses and all.

    What i'm after is something similar to FMPRo where I quickly create a database from Raw data, manipulate it in some fashion, create a layout to present it nicely and have some scripts do stuff.
    This is the beauty of FMPro. It simple, quick and to boot you can even create run-time solutions.
    Yes, Filemaker is quite limited compared to "proper" RDBMS, but hey, I don't want to run a webserver to view
    • This is the beauty of FMPro. It simple, quick and to boot you can even create run-time solutions.

      Until somebody decides to take the app in question and deploy it to 100 users in many locations instead of 10 users in one location. FM Pro is not a bad product in and of itself when used appropriately. For the sake of ease, it has no proper separation between data store, GUI widgets, and scripting language; that is all one integrated glop. When used by small workgroups, this inherent inability to scal

  • Firbird's History (Score:5, Informative)

    by secondhand_Buddah (906643) <secondhand.buddah@g m a il.com> on Monday November 13, 2006 @02:36AM (#16820352) Homepage Journal
    For those of you who don't know. Firebird is a fork of Borland Interbase. For a brief moment in time, Borland decided to open source Interbase, but quickly changed their minds about it. But, during the open source period, a group of developers siezed the moment, and created the fork.
    Interbase has 20-25 years of development behind it (and therefore Firebird). It is stable, and used by many major corporations, including NASA, throughout the world. In terms of open source products, it probably has the MOST mature code base of ALL open source projects.
    Interbase used to compete in the Oracle, Sybase marketspace, but lost considerable market share in the 1990's. What differentiates Firebird from most open source projects, is its history. Most open source databases have been built from the ground up, whereas, by the time Firbird came into existance, it already had 20-25 years of development in the source code base.

    So while, the core dev team of Firebird is fairly small, poorly funded, and badly marketed, the potential still exists to turn this into a project that will compete strongly in the OSI DB arena.
  • They should just rename it "Camaro". No Mozilla confusion with Firefox/Thunderbird, and we all know it's really a Camaro anyway except for the front-end. ;)
  • Cross platform (Score:2, Informative)

    by TrashGod (752833)
    I enjoyed using Firebird 1.5 for a small (24 table, 10,000 row) multiuser (8-12) database on Mac OS X (10.3, 10.4) and linux (RedHat 9, RedHat WS3, Debian) with the JayBird JCA/JDBC Drivers and Java. Everything worked cross-platform including declarative constraints, and the database export utility cleanly handled the endian change between PPC and x86. Firebird is an often overlooked FOSS alternative to Oracle.
    • by Tim C (15259)
      an often overlooked FOSS alternative to Oracle

      There are alternatives to Oracle, but none that I'm aware of are FOSS. If you actually need Oracle (and a lot of people using it don't), then Firebird simply isn't an alternative.

      Most projects don't need Oracle, of course, and could well use an open source RDBMS instead.
  • by ras (84108)

    A seemingly unbiased speed comparison (well at least not biased towards Firebird, anyway) can be found here: http://www.sqlite.org/cvstrac/wiki?p=SpeedComparis on [sqlite.org]

    As for features: it has them all. ACID, triggers, stored procedures, will maintain identical copies of the one database on two drives for you, etc, etc. Possibly because of this when I went looking for a database to replace Oracle it seemed to be the one most recommended. At least one commercial vendor has an add on tha

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      The parent seems to be suggesting that Firebird is an embedded database. It isn't. Its a full-featured industrial-strength RDBMS (ie. proper concurrency etc), usually run as a daemon/service, that is nevertheless suited to embedded applications.

      Firebird 1.x could scale to about 100-200 users on late 90's hardware (it wasn't so good at taking advantage of multiple cpus). Firebird 2 should go way beyond that even with the same hardware.

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