PostgreSQL Database On Power Systems-IBM i? Why Not?
July 11, 2011 Timothy Prickett Morgan
The profile of the open source PostgreSQL database has been rising in recent months, and you can run it on an IBM i platform if you have a Web application that requires that database.
PostgreSQL got an immediate boost the minute that Oracle closed its $7.4 billion acquisition of Sun Microsystems in January 2010. That’s because Sun owned the popular MySQL database at that point, and companies that did not want to be beholden to Oracle, which owns a slew of databases after many acquisitions and much internal databases. A heavily modified PostgreSQL database is embedded in IBM‘s Netezza data warehouse appliances, which are goosed by field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) to extract and chew data, and the Oracle compatibility layer in DB2 V9.5 and V9.7 for Linux, Unix, and Windows operating systems comes from EnterpriseDB, the commercial entity that offers support for PostgreSQL and contributes heavily to the project. And thanks to the legal tiff between Hewlett-Packard and Oracle over Oracle ceasing development of its database, middleware, and application software on future Itanium processors, PostgreSQL, which just got formal support for HP-UX Unix last week, is being positioned as an Oracle alternative by HP and EnterpriseDB. And the fact that Oracle has yanked support for MySQL on IBM i, which has irked a number of i shops, might see PostgreSQL slide in as a supported open source alternative if EnterpriseDB gets enough interest.
In any event, Ryan Watkins of IBM has posted directions for installing the open source PostgreSQL database on the Young i Professionals (YiPs) Wiki, which you can read here. You will need to have the PASE for i AIX runtime environment (Option 33 for the i/OS and IBM i operating system) as well as IBM’s XL C/C++ compiler for AIX and the RPM Package Manager, which will run inside PASE. PosgreSQL will obviously run inside PASE. You could also run it on AIX within a logical partition. It is not clear what replication tools are available, but I know that that EnterpriseDB has a replicator called xDB that can suck data out of Oracle or SQL Server databases and pump it into PostgreSQL databases. You might need IBM’s InfoSphere Replication Server to do the trick.