September 8, 2013

Layering of database technology & DBMS with multiple DMLs

Two subjects in one post, because they were too hard to separate from each other

Any sufficiently complex software is developed in modules and subsystems. DBMS are no exception; the core trinity of parser, optimizer/planner, and execution engine merely starts the discussion. But increasingly, database technology is layered in a more fundamental way as well, to the extent that different parts of what would seem to be an integrated DBMS can sometimes be developed by separate vendors.

Major examples of this trend — where by “major” I mean “spanning a lot of different vendors or projects” — include:

Other examples on my mind include:

And there are several others I hope to blog about soon, e.g. current-day PostgreSQL.

In an overlapping trend, DBMS increasingly have multiple data manipulation APIs. Examples include:  Read more

September 24, 2010

A little more on the JPMorgan Chase Oracle outage

Jaikumar Vijayan of Computerworld did a story based on my reporting on the JP Morgan Chase Oracle outage. He did a good job, getting me to simplify some of what I said before. 🙂 He also added a quote from Chase to the effect:

the “long recovery process” was caused by a corruption of systems data that disabled the bank’s “ability to process customer log-ins to”

While that’s true, and indeed is the reason I first referred to this as an “authentication” problem, I believe it to be incomplete. For example, the $132 million in missed ACH payments weren’t directly driven by log-ins; they were to be done on schedule, perhaps based on previous log-ins. Or as Jai and I put it in the guts of his story: Read more

September 17, 2010

Details of the JPMorgan Chase Oracle database outage

After posting my speculation about the JPMorgan Chase database outage, I was contacted by – well, by somebody who wants to be referred to as “a credible source close to the situation.” We chatted for a long time; I think it is very likely that this person is indeed what s/he claims to be; and I am honoring his/her requests to obfuscate many identifying details. However, I need a shorter phrase than “a credible source close to the situation,” so I’ll refer to him/her as “Deep Packet.”

According to Deep Packet,

Deep Packet stressed the opinion that the Oracle outage was not the fault of JPMorgan Chase (the Wednesday slowdown is a different matter), and rather can be blamed on an Oracle bug. Read more

September 16, 2010

Speculation about the JPMorgan Chase authentication database outage

Edit: Subsequent to making this post, I obtained more detail about the JPMorgan Chase database outage.

I was just contacted for comment about the Chase database outage, about which they’ve released remarkably little information (they’ve even apologized for their terseness). About all Chase has said is:

A third-party database company’s software caused a corruption of systems information, disabling our ability to process customer log-ins to This resulted in a long recovery process,

and even that quote is a bit hard to find. From other reporting, we know that ATM machines, bank branches, and the call centers continued to work, but various web and mobile access applications were disabled.

Of course, that quote is pretty ambiguous. My thoughts on it include: Read more

March 19, 2010

Some business trends in the data warehouse market

In recent conversations with various analytic DBMS vendors, a fairly consistent picture has emerged.

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