IBM Db2 Database Review

Before installing DB2, make sure full planning is done regarding scalability and performance requirements


What is most valuable?

The simplicity of installation/setup and the ability to run without requiring constant maintenance.

For applications, we have Oracle and Microsoft SQL deployed for application systems, but I prefer DB2 for my “systems” usage primarily due to its limited requirement for administration.

How has it helped my organization?

Not one that is relevant, it is used purely in a “systems infrastructure” setting rather than as a “business application system”.

What needs improvement?

In my limited use case, the only major thing would be improved reporting capability.

What was my experience with deployment of the solution?

The first time was in 1989/1990.

Recently, from 2007 to the present day.

What do I think about the stability of the solution?

No, I had a DB2 instance running on an old IBM x3650 with Windows 2003, which ran continuously for eight years.

It was a performance data repository for our storage and fabric switches, with an average insert activity of several 1,000 per minute (had automatic record pruning setup).

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

No, but we never had it greater than 100TiB.

How are customer service and technical support?

Can’t rate it as we never had to use it.

Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?

No, I selected DB2 based on previous experience with Oracle and after a brief look at MS SQL.

How was the initial setup?

It was very simple to get up and running. The documentation is very good and the user forums, including IBM wikis, make it very easy to find out most things we did to it as far as setup/tuning are concerned.

Which other solutions did I evaluate?

As we already use Oracle and MS SQL for applications, I looked at the latest version of Oracle (at the time v9) to examine any differences pertinent to the last time I had looked at it.

MS SQL: I only briefly looked at it. IMHO, it was no match for DB2 or Oracle, as far as what I consider “Enterprise Databases” to be.

What other advice do I have?

Define their use cases as exactly as they can, then look at what DB fits them.
I have seen the app/database team deploy Oracle/MS-SQL when something really simple like MySQL would have been a better option.

Also, before installing DB2 make sure full planning is done regarding scalability and performance requirements.

Definitely, use the planning worksheets and search the DB2 wiki’s and user forums to ensure the setup is optimal from the start, especially as far as layout is concerned.

I have found in the x86 world that products seem to be installed with very little pre-installation planning. With my mainframe background, you don’t install anything until you have examined all available documentation, so you are aware of all the key decision points in the install/setup/layout.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

Version 9.X
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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