Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The New Phone Books's Here! Informix Repackaging and Repricing - Part Duex

Page 73 - Johnson, Navin R.! I'm somebody now! Millions of people look at this book everyday! This is the kind of spontaneous publicity - your name in print - that makes people. I'm in print! Things are going to start happening to me now.

- The Jerk, 1979

IBM has tweaked the repackaging of Informix that they did on May 25th of this year and has put together a matrix showing how the newly priced Informix products stack up against similarly priced Microsoft and Oracle products.

The big news in repackaging is that Ultimate-C for Windows and Mac are gonzo and Innovator-C is now your free Informix engine of choice for all operating systems, not just Linux.

But remember, for almost everyone needing a free database engine this will be OK.  I broke down each feature that is excluded from Innovator-C here, here, here and here and there aren't any major show stoppers.

If you are dead set on using Informix on Windows or Mac and you need more power than the free Innovator-C gives you there is a new for purchase option (cost falls somewhere in between Innovator-C and Growth editions) called Choice.

It is so choice. If you have the means, I highly recommend picking one up.

- Ferris Bueller's Day Off, 1986

Choice Edition for Windows and Mac look like this:
  • Up to 8 CPUVPs
  • Up to 8 GB SHMTOTAL
  • Enterprise Replication up to 2 root nodes
  • 2 Node HDR (1 Primary and 1 Secondary)
  • No Compression
  • No SDS
  • No PDQ, Partitioning or Parallel Index Build
  • No LBAC
  • No SQL Warehousing Tool

Basically Innovator-C on steroids, or as Jerry Kessee, Grand Poobah and Director of Informix Development, puts it, "This is a low-cost, feature-rich Informix edition that offers enterprise-class functionality at a very attractive price point with high-availability for the mid-market."  Say that three times fast.

If this doesn't get you the horsepower that you need, Windows and Mac are now available on Growth Edition and have always been available on Ultimate Edition.

You can kind of see how this would work.  You need a database engine, but don't have much or any money in they budget for a database engine.  Start off with Innovator-C, it costs 0 dollars (and just a little bit over 0 dollars if you would like support).  You grow your business and now have some budget, but not a lot, for a database engine upgrade to keep up with your growth.  Boom.  Choice Edition.  So on and so forth through Growth and finally up to Ultimate Edition.

Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. I sense much fear in you.

- Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace

A full breakdown by IBM on the new packaging can be found on the IIUG website here.

On to the repricing.

There are no dollar figures in the Competitive Pricing and Packaging matrix that can also be found on the IIUG website here.  I'll just have to take their word for it when they say (or at least this is what I think they are saying) the cost of Informix has been reduced to be more in line with the competition and:
  • Informix Innovator-C competes with Microsoft SQL Server Express
  • Informix Express competes with Microsoft SQL Server Workgroup
  • Informix Choice competes with Microsoft SQL Server Workgroup
  • Informix Growth competes with MS SQL Server Standard and Oracle Standard
  • Informix Ultimate competes with MS SQL Server Enterprise and Oracle Enterprise
Things that I notice when comparing products of similar price
  • Innovator-C does not put a limit on database size, SQL Server Express does (10 GB!)
  • Innovator-C allows 2 GB of memory, SQL Server Express limits you to 1 GB
  • No Parallelism or Partitioning in either Innovator-C or SQL Server Express
  • Innovator-C gives you a read/write 2 node cluster and Enterprise replication, SQL Server Express does not
  • Choice allows 8 GB of memory per instance and SQL Server Workgroup limits you to 4 GB
  • Choice gives you a read/write 2 node cluster, SQL Server Workgroup does not
  • Choice gives you Update Anywhere Enterprise Replication, SQL Server Workgroup does not
  • No Parallelism or Partitioning in either Choice or SQL Server Workgroup
  • Growth gives you up to a 3 node cluster, SQL Server Standard only allows a 2 node cluster
  • Ultimate allows unlimited CPUs, SQL Server Enterprise is limited to 8 CPUs
  • Compression is the only for purchase feature in Ultimate, there are many for purchase features in Oracle Enterprise (Partitioning, Compression, HA, etc.)
That's all I've got for now.

Ted, while I agree that, in time, our band will be most triumphant. The truth is, Wyld Stallyns will never be a super band until we have Eddie Van Halen on guitar.
- Bill & Ted's Excellent Adventure, 1989


  1. You did not mention "Maximum of two sockets, total eight cores" restriction.

  2. This restriction is for Choice edition, of course.

  3. I think I covered that limitation, but with a little different wording when I said "Up to 8 CPUVPs." When I was getting familiar with Innovator-C I had a real problem with the "1 socket, total 4 cores" limitation because to me that said Innovator-C couldn't be used on a piece of hardware with 2 dual core CPUs. I asked IBM to clarify and they told me the limitation was on the number of CPUVPs and not the hardware, so Innovator-C can be installed on a 4 socket machine as long as only 4 CPUVPs are configured.

    I assume this is the same for Choice Edition, but double check with IBM before purchasing Choice for a 4 socket server to be sure.