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IBM Throws Cloudscape into the Open Source Stew

IBM Throws Cloudscape into the Open Source Stew

IBM has open sourced the little Cloudscape embedded database it got when it bought Informix.

IBM valued its contribution at $85 million, which was the price Informix paid when it acquired Cloudscape in September 1999.

IBM is giving half-a-million lines of Derby, the current version of Cloudscape, to the Apache Software Foundation, which maintains the popular Apache web server open source project.

IBM intends to release a commercial version of Cloudscape later this year based on the same technology as the Apache code. IBM expects its contribution to accelerate innovations around Java apps that in turn create new business opportunities around a broad spectrum of programs including ones that use embedded databases.

A Java-based RDBMS with a tiny 2MB footprint, Cloudscape is typically embedded in other applications and used in applications and workloads that don't require an enterprise-class database. IBM thinks that's 30% of the time.

Cloudscape is supposed to be good for small web sites, point-of-sales systems and small departmental applications.

Embedded in around 70 IBM applications, Cloudscape is a key element in Blue's Workplace offerings, WebSphere Application server and WebSphere Portal.

The Apache Incubator, which will initially manage the Cloudscape open source project, will inspect the code to ensure it conforms to its licensing and code integrity standards and oversee the formation of a developer community.

Cloudscape is IBM's latest open source move. It has reportedly made some 150 other contributions to such as Linux, Eclipse, the Globus Alliance and Apache.

The Cloudscape code is expected to be available for download from in the next few weeks. Meantime, IBM is offering a binary copy of Derby at its web site.

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Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at) or paperboy(at), and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

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