Countering Larry Ellison's claims about DB2 - Q&A

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Countering Larry Ellison's claims about DB2 - Q&A
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As you are probably aware, Larry Ellison made some outlandish claims
about DB2 on the Oracle/Sun Webcast last week. While we all know that
these claims are untrue, there are many that do not have our insight.
As such, IBM would like to encourage you to use your blog or twitter
account to make sure that your followers know the truth. Please absorb
the information below and relay it to your followers in an appropriate
form. IBM appreciates your support in this endeavor. We have all
worked hard to build the DB2 community. We need to ensure that these
insidious comments from Larry Ellison do not harm our community.

ORACLE: "We blew the doors off of IBM. We crushed them." [Referring
TPC-C benchmark results] In a machine that took up less than 10% the
floor space, of IBM's record setting computer. We ran faster, we ran
lot faster: using a tiny fraction of the floor space, a tiny fraction
the power, cost less."

IBM: Until late last year, DB2 enjoyed a massive 49% lead over
With Oracle's most recent result, they have taken the lead by 25%
by the way, they used more than six times as many CPU cores to do
We are confident that DB2 will retain its lead this year. Also,
remember that DB2 has dominated TPC-C performance leadership over the
past seven years, with almost twice as many days of leadership as
Regarding the claim of using less space and power, this is a result
Oracle using flash memory and comparing it with an IBM benchmark
conventional disk technology. If Oracle compared its benchmark to an
system using flash memory, they could not make these outlandish
For a more detailed look at Oracle's outlandish claims, see

< >

ORACLE: "SAP chooses the Oracle Database to run under SAP in almost
their large accounts."

IBM: SAP themselves favor DB2 for their own systems. They operate
than a thousand SAP systems, and all of those systems run on DB2
( Not only that, but the past
couple of years has seen literally hundreds of SAP clients ripping
Oracle Database and replacing it with DB2 (
< > They have been
migrating off Oracle Database and on to DB2 to lower costs, improve
performance, and ease administration.

ORACLE: "We have the best Unix in the world"

IBM: AIX has demonstrated performance leadership with 7 of top 10
performance results (
< > Also, the ITIC
2009 Global Server Hardware & Server OS Reliability Survey Results
reveal that AIX is 2.3 more reliable than the closest UNIX

ORACLE: "The Oracle Database scales out, IBM DB2 for Unix does not.
me see, how many servers can IBM put together for an OLTP
Let's see, how many can they group together? Um, one. They can have
to one server attacking really big jobs. When they need more
they make that server bigger. And then they take the old server out,
put a bigger one in. And when you've got the biggest server, that's
That's all the can do for OLTP."

ORACLE: "They can't scale out, they can't do cloud, they can't do
clusters, the can't do any of this."

IBM: This statement has been false since the inception of DB2. DB2
Parallel Edition was brought to market in 1995, along with the
capability to scale to a system of over a 100 Unix servers. DB2 for
scalability is proven in many of the world's largest OLTP
In fact, IBM believes that DB2 for LUW powers one of the largest OLTP
system in the world, if not the largest (
< > As regards
support for clusters, DB2 pureScale was introduced to market in 2009.
For a cluster of 64 nodes, DB2 pureScale maintains 95% efficiency.
128 nodes, DB2 pureScale maintains 84% efficiency. This is important
because if you are growing a cluster to handle bigger workloads, you
want your hardware to be doing productive work, not handling system
overhead. On the other hand, Oracle RAC [Real Application Clusters]
has a 100 server limit. And to my knowledge, Oracle has yet to
any efficiency numbers.

ORACLE: "You would've thought, years ago, that IBM would have come
with a database machine. I mean its so obvious, they've got
they've got DB2. Why in the world didn't they come out with a
machine? It's fascinating."

IBM: Remember that IMS and DB2 have made System z a database machine
more than 40 years. In recent years, IBM has also brought "database
machines" to market. In 2005, IBM introduced an integrated offering
data warehousing that has evolved into the IBM Smart Analytic System.
2009, IBM also introduced DB2 pureScale, an integrated
stack for OLTP.

ORACLE: "IBM doesn't have the same assets, and that's a big problem
them. They don't have Java, they don't have the Oracle Database.
they've got is a problem."

IBM: He's right. IBM does not have the same assets as Oracle. We
more. Oracle does not have System z, the world's top performing,
reliable and secure server; does not have business consulting arm
as 4,000 business analytics consultants with industry specific
and IBM Research - a leader in developing patents for the 17th year
in a

ORACLE: "They're so far behind, I don't think they have any chance at
all. I'm serious. I mean they've been working on this DB2 thing for
don't know how long, and they still can have up to one. I would say
database, they're a decade or so behind us. I'm serious. "

IBM: IBM has led the industry in developing patents for the last 17
years. In 2009, IBM produced 4914 patents while Oracle did not even
place in the top 50 patent leaders. A search of the US Patent office
database reveals 1588 patents with "database" in the patent
while Oracle produced only 184 patents. (
< >

ORACLE: "They are not competitive in the database business, except on
the mainframe. The IBM DB2 product on mainframe is a good product.
fact the two best databases on the planet are IBM on mainframes and
Oracle. The trouble is that Oracle runs on modern computer systems
IBM on mainframes runs on mainframes.

IBM: Larry is on record saying, "Our vision for 2010 is the same as
IBM's in the 1960." IBM has added 50 years of experience in
software and services since then. Oracle is giving IBM the sincerest
form of flattery by attempting to imitate IBM.

Also, please note the following early coverage of this topic:

DB2 News:

Conor O'Mahony

Program Director, Competitive Marketing

Information Management

IBM Software Group

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