Management Systems Appendix a Project Research Proposal

Excerpt from Research Proposal :

Another factor in open source database vendors leading this area is the focus on multiple models for scalability as can be seen in Table 1: DBMS Features Analysis. The support of multiple models of scalability also concentrates on OLTP transaction integration specifically within roles as defined in the security model (Pereira, Muppavarapu, Chung, 2006). Security will be discussed later in this analysis.

The second factor used to evaluate closed source vs. open source DBMS are the application development environments that each has. Closed source vendors have turned application development environments into revenue-producing lines of business (Worthen, Kiviniemi, 2009). As a result, closed database vendors have a slight edge in the areas of application development. There are also the initiatives of Service Oriented Architectures (SOA) and distributed application use by closed database vendors Microsoft and Oracle. The integration and use of application development is also a key catalyst for closed source vendors to ensure their maintenance fees can also be sustained over time (Hyatt, 2008). Open source DBMS vendors and providers have benefitted from the broad community of developers, yet it is not as focused on profitability as the primary goal; it is focused on breadth of OLTP engine support and Application Programming Interfaces (API) to ensure broad adoption (Ricadela, 2009). The pervasiveness of these open source extensions rivals closed yet, yet the latter is more aligned and attuned to supporting maintenance cycles and contract management of customers' contracts. In fact the reliance on contract management and the recurring revenue model of closed source DBMS vendors is the primary source of their most profitable revenue over time (Denton, Peace, 2003). This factor is the catalyst for their heavy levels of investment in application development environments and platforms on the part of Microsoft and Oracle especially. Oracle's Fusion initiative is an SOA platform that integrates role-based applications published as Web Services over an XML network (Spanbauer, 2008). Microsoft's .NET architecture is also specifically designed to provide for scalable and role-based Web Services across non-Microsoft systems. Fusion and .NET are the closed source DBMS vendors' approaches to creating a role-based business process management (BPM) platform. Due to these factors, application development is considered more enterprise in scope for closed source vendors.

Database security as a criterion for evaluating the closed source vs. open source vendors in this analysis illustrates how effective innovation of a DBMS can be when there are high levels of collaboration in a user community. Microsoft and Oracle both have defined role separation, reporting and data availability as part of their security models (Pereira, Muppavarapu, Chung, 2006) from a closed database standpoint. Yet the open source vendors included in this analysis have a more thorough interpretation of the three pillars of an effective security strategy (Kamel, 2009). These three pillars include creating a more consistent and uniform approach to path management and discovery & classification of risks, the development of consistent preventative measures for encryption, data masking and change management as well. Lastly and most significant is the need for defining intrusion detection, auditing, monitoring and vulnerability assessment (Kamel, 2009). Taken together these are the factors that define a scalable security strategy over time. On the first area of path management and discovery & classification, open source vendors have devised authentication and authorization logic to the role level for the DBMS platforms, while close source vendors rely on ancillary security applications for this (Kamel, 2009). Just as the basic licensing model of open source DBMS lends itself better to TCO advantages, this integration of security into the foundation of an open source DBMS provides a significant cost advantage (Spanbauer, 2008). The second aspect of security platform differences between open source and closed source are the preventative measures taken to provide higher levels of encryption while reducing the risk of data masking. All of these factors are critical for change management to be more effectively managed at the database, process and organizational levels (Kamel, 2009). Appendix C: Open Source Security Tools provides examples of the level of innovation being achieved in the development of security (Hyatt, 2008). The last column or tier of an enterprise-wide DBMS security strategy is the development of auditing, monitoring and threat assessment methodologies (Iyer, 2009). In this specific area Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and oracle 11g have defined scripts that can automate the auditing process and also launch audits of each database entry points randomly to test the scalability of security over time (Kamel, 2009). Audit data is then analyzed and provided within a dashboard that Data Base Administrators (DBAs) use to evaluate overall security and ACID-compliance as is seen in Table 1: DMBS Features Analysis. Using the series of analyses (Iyer, 2009) (Kamel, 2009) Table 2: Three Pillars of Enterprise Database Security illustrates how the three specific pillars of security interrelate and support role separation, reporting and data availability. Across this three pillars mode open source DMBS data structures have been shown to provide a greater level of data integration and support (Iyer, 2009).

Figure 2 Three Pillars of Security

Sources: (Iyer, 2009) (Kamel, 2009) (Giacomo, 2005) (Pereira, Muppavarapu, Chung, 2006) (Ramsey, 2003)

The next two criterion that are used to evaluate closed source and open source DBMS systems is the direction of the product strategies, commitment to a given architectural direction and the differing strategies in pricing. Across these three factors, the most prevalent in terms of its impact on the industry is the open source model of pricing to a single license and not necessarily requiring maintenance and service contracts as closed source DBMS providers often require in order to get software updates. Maintenance charges for Oracle and Microsoft are often up to 22% of the purchase price of the application, translating into millions of dollars per year in just support costs (Kamel, 2009). Due to this fact closed source DBMS are often part of Capital Expense (CAPEX) budgeting within a company (Iyer, 2009). CAPEX investments by definition need to go in front of the Board of Directors for approval. This significantly slows down adoption. The use of Operating Expense (OPEX) pricing strategies by open source DBMS vendors has led to significant market share gains over time and higher levels of adoption. The economics of this pricing strategy has also had a signification effect on open source DBMS vendor's financials (Pereira, Muppavarapu, Chung, 2006) (Spanbauer, 2008). As a result of the ability to expense investments in open source DBMS, the financial strength of companies including MySQL, as a division of Oracle now due to the acquisition, are superior to closed source vendors. CAPEX requires a longer sales cycle and more focus on the Return on Investment (ROI) of the investment in the DBMS.

Another factor in the evaluation of closed source vs. open source DBMS providers is in the area of training & certification, and systems integrator and partner support. The development of channel programs for DBMS platforms is more dependent on the stability of the selling strategies and less on the specific features of the product. Oracle has at times reversed their partner & channel management strategies leaving resellers without support while having to provide technical assistance on key DBMS updates. The results on Oracle's ability to support their channels and recruit new ones have been predictable; they have a tough challenge to overcome. Open source DBMS vendors on the other hand have been successful in creating channels by concentrating on the customization revenue opportunities for channel partners.


Based on the assessment of performance, scalability, and VLDB functionality, application development environments, database security and platform support, open source platforms are gaining significantly both technologically and also from a market adoption standpoint vs. closed source. These advances specifically in optimized XML networks for AJAX-based queries has led to the development of role-based applications that put the performance and functionality of MySQL in the same level of performance as Oracle 11g or Microsoft SQL Server 2008 (Pereira, Muppavarapu, Chung, 2006). Open source platforms have also defined more extensive 3rd party and legacy DBMS integration as is shown in Appendix A: Project Process Integration Diagram and Appendix B: Project Process Flow Chart. These are examples of network topologies that have been optimized fro the role of open source in a more generic level in Appendix A and a detailed, application-level integration in Appendix B. This analysis has centered on the design considerations of open source vs. closed source databases, pricing strategies that pursue OPEX instead of CAPEX and the structure model of security that emerges from this market. All of this analysis suggests that open source MySQL databases are superior in performance and TCO relative to their closed source counterparts. The further implication is that open source will scale to respond the rapid changes in the market much faster as well (Hyatt, 2008).


The following are the recommendations based on the results of this report's analysis. First, from an assessment of the performance, scalability and…

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