June 28, 2008

Who is doing what in XML data management these days?

A comment thread to a post on a different subject has opened up a discussion of XML storage. Frankly, I haven’t kept up with my briefings on the subject, in part because XML support hasn’t proved to be very important yet to the big DBMS vendors, somewhat to my surprise. When last I looked, the situation wasn’t much different from what it was back in November, 2005. Unless I’ve missed something (and please tell me if I have!), here’s what’s going on:


7 Responses to “Who is doing what in XML data management these days?”

  1. Serge Rielau on June 29th, 2008 10:33 am

    >IBM has a very nice architecture, with a separate >optimized XML engine integrated into DB2. However, >performance is for some reason ghastly.

    Care to elaborate? “Ghastly” is certainly not an attribute we tend to attach to our XML performance.
    So I am curious as to where you got that impression from.

    Serge Rielau
    DB2 Benchmark & Solution Development
    IBM Toronto Lab

  2. Curt Monash on June 29th, 2008 10:52 am

    I heard “an order of magnitude” for the performance difference from prospects who evaluated Viper vs. Marklogic, and they were surely using the phrase correctly. Cache’ was competitive; Viper wasn’t.

    That was for a somewhat unusual application (tracking paths through a tree), but I’ve heard similar things elsewhere, and haven’t heard anybody speak favorably of IBM’s XML performance except IBM itself.


  3. Serge Rielau on June 29th, 2008 5:41 pm

    NY State Tax office seems to be doing fine and they made it through this season…

    I admit I have never looked at Cache’ and I didn’t even know of Mark Logic.
    Have either run any public benchmarks (such as TPOX) so I can take this claim as more than hear-say?
    When we compare we typically do so against Oracle an MS SQL Server and sure don’t have to hide.
    DB2 9.5 btw. is about 2x above DB2 9 w.r.t. pureQML performance.

    It would be interesting to know the usage scenarios you encounter. Perhaps the products simply play in different fields (exclusive XML vs. XML + relational, R/W ratios, concurrent usage, transactional semantics (?))…?


  4. Travis Spencer on July 17th, 2008 3:31 am

    When we talked w/ MarkLogic a few weeks back, they told us that they hadn’t performed any of the quasi “standard” XML database benchmarks (e.g., XMach-1). They told us that the reason was because these benchmarks are not indicative of the scenarios their customers are confronting.

    I tend to agree w/ them and, based on my research, feel that the “standard” benchmarks are not a sufficient tool by which one can compare two XML database products to determine which is better suited to solve one’s needs.

    The alternative approach which MarkLogic suggested to us, and that I also agree with, is to create a custom benchmark that aptly measure one’s own scenario. Based on the results of this measure, one is then able to make a much more informed decision about which database product best suites their needs.

  5. Conor O'Mahony on August 18th, 2008 8:42 am

    DBMS performance is a complex beast. Without rigorous analysis, it is impossible to know ahead of time exactly how a DBMS will perform in your particular environment. An interesting approach is to:

    1) Narrow the list of vendors you want to evaluate.

    2) Download the free versions of those vendor’s DBMS and evaluate for yourself. There is nothing like a hands-on evaluation to determine performance, power, ease-of-use, and maintainability.


    3) Make the vendors come in at this stage to help you optimize your prototype systems.

    This way you can rest assured of the DBMS meeting your needs, get a feel for the system before purchase, get some valuable optimization lessons from the experts, and you will likely be ideally set up to get a quick start on deployment.

  6. LinkedIn name search is ridiculously bad | Text Technologies on August 19th, 2008 11:36 am

    […] named Conor O’Mahony has posted excellent comments about XML databases on a couple of DBMS2 threads. After a look at the blog URL he provided and the job description he posted there, I resolved to […]

  7. Rob Tweed on August 28th, 2008 8:42 am

    In addition to Cache’s built-in XML support, you may want to note our add-on product eXtc which implements the W3C XML DOM directly onto its underlying database, effectively turning Cache (or the Open Source GT.M) into a Native XML Database. See http://www.mgateway.com/extc.htm and http://www.rpbourret.com/xml/ProdsNative.htm#extc

    The XML DOM turns out to be tailor-made to be implemented on top of a schemaless, hierarchical database.

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