DB2 version 8, due in November, is IBM's newest weapon in the competitive database market. The company is hoping to steal some thunder from rival Oracle in the $12.7 billion annual market for software that manages and retrieves data. Excluding databases for mainframe computers, Big Blue has been gaining market share, but still ranks second behind Oracle, according to a recent study by market research firm IDC.
Overall, IBM claims that the new database, now in testing by customers, is faster, more reliable, and easier to manage. Also new is better support for Web services, making it easier for companies to interact via the Internet. DB2 version 8 will also includes a new feature, called "configuration advisor" that can save database administrators time by automatically configuring a database for use.
IBM will ship DB2 version 8 on Nov. 21.
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