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IBM Simplifies Data Management With New Self-Managing DB2 Software

Enables Companies To Accelerate ROI With Improved Manageability And Access To Information Across The Enterprise

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SOMERS, NY - 22 Jul 2002: -- IBM, the worldwide database market share leader, today announced new self-managing software to help companies simplify and automate many of the tasks associated with maintaining databases. The new database software also delivers the broadest support for open standards, enabling customers to manage, integrate and analyze information from the widest variety of sources to gain a greater return on their investment.

Today's announcement of DB2 version 8 helps customers solve a critical business problem -- integrating information across the enterprise and minimizing the tasks and costs associated with maintaining their data management infrastructure. According to industry experts, the increased complexity and volume of data has increased the burden to database administrators at a time when the industry is facing a shortage of IT skills.

Additionally, businesses face the challenge of managing information located in various data sources, using multiple software vendors' products and developing new applications that leverage their existing business information. DB2 plays an important role in this e-business evolution as the foundation for integrating a company's most critical assets, across all platforms including Linux, Unix and Windows.

Today's open beta announcement of DB2 version 8 introduces:

Self-Managing Capabilities Tackle Complexity As data management systems continue to grow in size and complexity, advanced self-managing and self-tuning capabilities in DB2 help customers ease manageability, increase efficiencies and lower the costs associated with managing their IT infrastructure.

DB2 can now automatically update database administrators (DBAs) on system performance, give advice on problems occurring in the database or application it supports and alert them that a fix has been generated. This new capability, called the Health Center, alerts administrators via email, pager or PDA if a database system is running out of memory or if a query is taking up too much time or processing power and allows them to make adjustments through any Web browser. As a result, DBAs can quickly identify and resolve potential performance issues and manage five times the number of systems that they could before.

DB2 also delivers the new Configuration Advisor that enables DBAs to reduce the time consuming tasks associated with configuring their database system and eliminates the need for frequent manual tuning of performance related parameters. Administrators are typically required to configure as many as 100 parameters for their database, including allocating memory and configuring query capabilities. DB2 now automatically sets parameters based on a few simple questions, enabling users accomplish tasks in a matter of minutes versus several days.

Integrated Information -- Accessing data wherever it resides According to industry analysts, companies spend as much as 40 percent of their annual IT budgets on integration. Recognizing that most companies have different information sources residing in various computer systems, in different locations and of multiple data types, IBM is extending its federated capabilities in DB2 by delivering new features that enable customers to integrate information available as Web Services.

Now through a single SQL query, DB2 can access and consolidate information from Web Services providers, eliminating the need of going through applications. This developer-friendly technology enables programmers to speed up integration projects and benefit from a more automated way to link companies, customers, suppliers and employees over the Internet.

IBM's unique federated capabilities are a key differentiator versus competitor offerings that promote a centralized approach to data management. DB2's federated capabilities enable customers to access, manage and analyze data wherever it resides. This approach allows customers to build on their current technology infrastructure, increase scalability and reliability, and lower the total cost of computing.

For example, if a bank merges, consolidating three areas -- such as a Savings and Loan, Securities and Insurance divisions -- DB2's federated Web Services capabilities can quickly provide a customer account executive with a unified view of information wherever the data resides. Coupled with enhanced integration with WebSphere, IBM provides customers with a complete Web Services framework.

Enhancements for XML make it easier for programmers to integrate DB2 and XML information. For example, DB2 now automates the transformations that programmers typically are required to write, enabling XML documents to be viewed on a Web browser. Additionally, XML document storage and retrieval forms, an integral part of DB2, are now provided as a combination of SQL language and DB2 XML Extender enhancements.

Building upon DB2's leadership in open standards, IBM has also built a Developer Center that makes it easier for developers to build and deploy applications for either JAVA or Microsoft, giving customers the ability to leverage DB2's advanced functions in the programming model they are familiar with.

Advanced Performance -- Gaining a Faster Return on Investment from New Insight from Data
Organizations are increasingly looking for ways to uncover trends and patterns in volumes of information stored in their database systems in an effort to improve customer service, increase revenue and gain a competitive advantage.

DB2 incorporates advanced performance features that more easily organize information for faster query response times. New "multi-dimensional clustering" capabilities enable customers to reorganize information in one easy step, so that it can be retrieved quickly, from any view the customer may require.

For example, a retail company that configures their database to search for monthly sales reports can in one easy step customize their information to simultaneously search and analyze data based on sales performance in specific regions and buying patterns in specific stores. By clustering data physically on a disc by multiple dimensions, DB2 now doubles the performance of many queries, providing customers with rapid access to the information they need versus going on a fishing expedition.

DB2 also provides customers with new online utilities, enabling them to perform tasks, such as table reorganization, index maintenance and database loads online. These capabilities provide customers with more flexibility in managing online environments to ensure the highest level of availability for critical business information.

In addition, DB2 also supports the 64-bit environment for Linux and Windows for improved performance and scalability enhancements.

General Availability
The beta version of DB2 v8 will be available to customers starting July 23, 2002 and can be downloaded at www.ibm.com/db2/v8beta.

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Information Management, Lotus, Tivoli, Rational, WebSphere, Open standards, open source