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Oracle makes clustered file system open source

Oracle is releasing the underlying code to software it developed to allow databases to be better managed on clusters of Linux servers

Robert Shimp, vice-president of database marketing at Oracle, said the company would be making the source code for its new Clustered File System designed for its Oracle9i Real Application Clusters (RAC) available to users.

The release available tomorrow (Wednesday) will be an early test version of the software for developers. Shimp said a production version of the software is due for release in October.

"It's the first time that we've offered source code from Oracle to the Linux community," he said.

Available with Oracle9i Database Release 2, the software is designed to allow the management of data across large numbers of connected server and storage systems. This type of software ensures that data remains consistent even though many users are modifying files on the hardware at the same time.

The source code for the Oracle Cluster File System is being made available under the GNU/General Public Licence, the same software licence that covers the Linux operating system. In theory, Oracle's RAC technology could eventually be embedded within the Linux kernel.

Shrimp said, "We think that probably the best thing for the Linux community is to have a robust open source technology; that way the Linux operating system will become more and more enterprise ready."

Oracle is not alone in offering a clustered file system that is designed to ease the management of database software running on clusters of Linux servers. IBM has its own version of the technology called Control Center that ships with its DB2 Enterprise Extended Edition database software. IBM said it planned to demonstrate at LinuxWorld a 40-node Linux cluster running DB2 that makes use of Control Center.

The source code for the Oracle Clustered File System will be available on the Oracle Technology Network Web site.

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