Open Source Databases Keep Chipping Away At Oracle’s Empire

Klint Finley | WIRED | January 7, 2015

The three fastest growing databases of 2014 were all open source, according to a new report from DB-Engines, a site that tracks popularity in the rapidly changing database marketplace.  The ever popular new-age database MongoDB topped the list again this year, with Redis, a tool for managing data, and Elasticsearch, which provides the foundations for building your own search engine, as runners up.  The lesson, both this year and last: if you want to gain traction in the database management system market, its a good idea to open source the thing, making the code freely available to the world at large.

The flagship product from software giant Oracle has dominated the database landscape for years, and it’s still sitting pretty at the top of the DB-Engines ranking, followed closely by MySQL, a database the company acquired as part of its purchase of Sun Microsystems in 2009. But the market has diversified in recent years, thanks to new data management techniques pioneered by the likes of Google and Amazon.

Drawing on these techniques, so-called “NoSQL” databases ditch the traditional relational database structure of storing data in neat rows and columns and enable developers to spread data across hundreds or thousands of servers—or develop much simpler applications that don’t as much structure. Oracle has tried to break into this field with its own Oracle NoSQL database and Oracle Big Data Appliance, but the real action remains in the world of open source, according to DB-Engines...