Informix Enterprise Edition

(25)
4.7 out of 5 stars

IBM® Informix® Enterprise Edition enables you to store, access and query all your data with first-rate efficiency and agility. Real-time analytics, always-on transactions and seamless data integration get you to answers faster and speed time to market. And with the exception of Informix Warehouse Accelerator, this database includes all Informix features on all supported platforms to provide you easier app development and deployment with unlimited scalability. Full grid and replication capabilities ensure always-on data access, and optional storage compression helps maximize resources.

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Informix Enterprise review by <span>Spokey W.</span>
Spokey W.
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Always a pleasure

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What do you like best?

I like the performance, the ease of use and maintenance and generally very talented and helpful support team. Setting it up is easy. Performance out of the box is great. Tuning it is very easy and the latest versions have outstanding diagnostics. It also has a remarkable feature set, especially if you look at the ease of a grid implementation compared to other vendors. And then there's the extensibility.

What do you dislike?

IBM does very little to market Informix. I can't blame them, they have thousands of software products, but it means the product has a lot less market awareness than it deserves. Security is a bit of a grey area, but it's no more of an issue than it is for any other vendor.

The documentation for TimeSeries is not up to par with the rest of the product set. The people designed and built the various DataBlades are some of the smartest people I know, sadly the documentation doesn't really get the rest of the world up to speed. I'd definitely recommend some consultancy if you're going to implement TimeSeries.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Do it. IBM's marketing is terrible, but the product is superb: easy to install and configure, easy to administer and incredibly powerful and fast.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Over the years, I've solved pretty much every kind of business problem, whether ERP, logistics, telco, retail, financial, medical... whatever, really. Lately I'm using Informix to help solve time series problems in the energy and utilities market.

Benefits include blistering performance, outstanding uptime, incredibly light-touch admin and integration with pretty much every development platform.

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Informix Enterprise review by Administrator in Gambling & Casinos
Administrator in Gambling & Casinos
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High volume OLTP database

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What do you like best?

We get direct support from IBM experts and are closer to the development team as a large customer that we would be if we ran Oracle or SQL Server, for example. We manage high OLTP volumes running a site turning over in excess of £1bn+ annually and the product is scalable and by and large very reliable. We find the replication and high availability features and are very good and priced very competitively compared to other offerings.

What do you dislike?

There could always be more features and a faster development roadmap. I am hoping that the new HCL partnership will go some way to address this.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

It provides us with a reliable high-availability ACID-compliant database product capable of scaling to both large transaction volumes with databases 10s of Tbs. Amongst other things it has facilitated the rapid growth of our business.

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Informix Enterprise review by <span>Peter M.</span>
Peter M.
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What do you like best?

Informix is a great engine. It's fairly straightforward to learn. I have taken 2 sysads and had them be effective at the end of a day of training. Always requires less headcount to support. As far as being able to take advantage of ALL system resources, Informix can do it. Have seen other db's hit limits, but not Informix. Also, the user community is very strong. Those who use Informix are usually very passionate about it and believe in it.

What do you dislike?

IBM seems to promote their db2 product line in all of their marketing. There aren't as many third party tools or commercial off the shelf software out there written to use Informix as the underlying db, which can be very frustrating.

Recommendations to others considering the product

I consider Informix to be the Humvee of the database world. It's extremely stable, powerful, and flexible. IBM has recently changed it's licensing/cost model to be a little more like Oracle in that there are extra pieces you can buy to enhance the experience (enterprise replication being one). The biggest knock against Informix is that no one outside of the existing user base seems to know it's still heavily used. Look on any job board, and you'll see at least a 10:1 ratio of any other db to informix. I've seen informix in use at numerous locations and the informix teams are always smaller and handling more activity. I've used MSSQL, Oracle, MySQL, and db2. I simply prefer Informix.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Have only used it for OLTP type activity. I can't speak to the warehousing aspect. For OLTP it can provide continuous uptime for many different types of applications.

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Informix Enterprise review by <span>Art S. K.</span>
Art S. K.
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Informix. The best database. Period.

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What do you like best?

Performance.

Features.

Innovation.

Reliability (5 9's++).

Zero unplanned downtime.

Best DR/HA features and performance.

Scalability both up and out.

Ease of maintenance and tuning.

Multiple workload capable (OLTP & Data Warehouse on the same server).

Relational and NoSQL capable.

Native REST access.

Informix offers six different types of data replication, distributed database, sharding, central master database, and other schemes for scaling and customizing the location and availability of your data. It offers load balancing tied to disaster recovery/high availability and the ability to very quickly bring additional servers online to handle unusual load. Data can be distributed and/or replicated across homogeneous or heterogeneous server farms. Server version upgrades can be applied to a cluster of servers while permitting users to connect to the database and continuously access their data with no downtime. Servers and client connections can be configured to guarantee that no transactions are lost, even if the primary server or its host goes offline. This combination of features ensures that Informix is always on and always available.

What do you dislike?

That IBM cannot manage to get over the fact that the best database system they sell was not originally invented at IBM.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Just do it. Informix users are all fanatical in their love for this database system.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Banking systems. Securities systems. Medical/health systems. Retail systems. Retail logistics systems. Retail warehouse systems. Manufacturing systems. Wholesale products systems. Data analytics systems.

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Informix Enterprise review by <span>Eric V.</span>
Eric V.
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What do you like best?

* Reliability and stability: the identified record uptime is more than 6 years uptime

* Scalability: real multithread architecture allows smooth horizontal and vertical scalability

* Best rate for performance / hardware sizing: amazing performance level achieved with very moderate size hardware

* Best rate for staffing: no need for an army of DBA. Some companies handle 30,000+ informix servers with a team of 6 DBA's 24/7/365

* Replication functionality is very complete, although very simple to admin

* the Informix Warehouse Accelerator is a software appliance that you plug into Informix, that can turn BI/DS queries by 700+ times faster, with no necessity to rewrite the DS applications not replug them anywhere else

* Works great on ARM/Quark processors, making it a great asset for IOT

What do you dislike?

* Some of the SQL language is not yet as rich as other DBMS vendors

* IBM poorly promoting one of their best assets, although this is changing for better now

Recommendations to others considering the product

Informix has poor visibility on the market. Make your own idea with user companies and you will see that a company that uses Informix does not want anything else, when speaking on technical terms.

Best way to achieve to register to the International Informix User Group http://www.iiug.org and or attend the Annual IIUG Conference www.iiug2015.org

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

Speaking for customers in Health and Finance:

* reliabilty: server not shutdown since 20010

* staffing: 1/7 of a DBA for a 4000 users Informix system, 4 DBAs for smaller Oracle systems

* hardware: 4000 users working

* hybrid possibilities: Informix is ready for NoSQL and works better than MongoDB. My customer will

develop new applications in MongoDB client, accessing Informix Database Server, and mix SQL data with NoSQL data.

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Informix Enterprise review by <span>Andrés R.</span>
Andrés R.
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What do you like best?

To explain what I like best, I am going to refer to two aspects: A) NoSQL vs RDBMS and B) Freeware and Licensed Engines

A) Distributed data is based on replication, and data partitioning lets you not only to scale your overall performance up, but also improve availability. There are two streams, one that is based on Hadoop and the other one is based on Sharding, the first one requires a huge amount of disk space, another invisible cost, and that initially none is caring about, as the storage costs drops, no need to worry or concern about data duplication and wasting space. In addition to the space issue, it is that the data is open, and there are not many security tools yet to hide the data and secure it. I am not sure everyone shares or knows these things…, so again this is confronting people with different ways of thinking. On the other hand maintaining replication in Hadoop is not a plug and play thing, it also has its challenges and requires complex java scripting. At last if we use Hadoop we are going towards a NoSQL or unstructured DB, and again, this is where many people get confused with…, so why turning the wheel to the opposite direction!, whilst we can use distributed data implemented in RDBMS (sharding)…, we have to have in count that NoSQL sacrifies consistency mainly by a very bad space consumer optimistic locking method to avoid dealing with atomicity and isolation.

Definitely NoSQL can’t replace RDBMS, as the BASE model is for some specific use cases, and for companies that defined their own solutions no other in the market was able to do…, but at that time!, RDBMS have now also powered up their engines, and in one case have even started to integrate and improve the unstructured model integrating it with the structured one, in the same data repository combining the best of both worlds, this is keeping up with the performance and capacity, without scarifying consistency, atomicity and isolation at the same time!.

There’s just one company that understood this problem and started working in a new paradigm, and this is to support the unstructured data model together with the structured one. This company is IBM, and its powerful INFORMIX engine. In any of the scenarios, either if by sharding or doing data partitioning required to scale out horizontally, a database engine has needs a very strong replication technology.

INFORMIX deployment has been driven by its strengths in replication – Informix employs one of the industry’s most scalable and efficient replication architectures – and data management. It also combines strengths in embedded data management with low administrative overhead, highly effective use of server resources and enterprise-class resilience.

INFORMIX is oriented to solving the massive change that is occurring in computing environments around the world. Specifically, unstructured data is flooding into organizations and companies are struggling to choose between a relational or NoSQL database to handle it. While NoSQL offers the ability to have dynamic elasticity with data and its organization, these databases lack essential elements such as scalability, security, flexible deployment, transaction support and full data integration. INFORMIX offers a solution that can natively handle NoSQL and structured data simultaneously providing a single system with the seamless integration of all data within the enterprise. It is meant to help developers use native JSON and BSON data types as well as other NoSQL functions (including sharding) for complete plug-and-play compatibility with MongoDB and other NoSQL databases. Application developers can access structured and unstructured data in a single statement and join them together as needed. NoSQL applications can use the enterprise-level capabilities of a structured database system including transaction support, backup and recovery, H/A, compression, enhanced scalability, security and access control. All these last features are not minor and characteristic of any other NoSQL engine.

I think that the hybrid development capability of INFORMIX-NoSQL to manage and present both structured and structured data repositories, is going to be very important as organizations realize that 1) there is value in the new flexible schema paradigms like JSON, 2) existing apps can benefit from being able to present this data, 3) JSON based applications could benefit from access to the relational data that is already in the organization's relational databases, 4) NO new hires will be required to work in the NoSQL/JSON space, simplifying the complex, expensive, slow, and error prone daily ETL, from multiple data sources.

B) This is TCO (Total Cost Ownership). This is to do with how easy an engine is to be maintained, this is then to do with TBF (Time Between Failures) or unplanned downtime, and the much the technology allows you to avoid the downtime or plan downtime to reduce it. All this at the light of the incurring expenses to maintain it, support it vs licensing costs.

I always like to call these as DIRECT and INDIRECT COSTS.

DIRECT COSTS is very simple, it is represented by the licenses cost.

INDIRECT COSTS are the ones that NONE seems to sees, it is incredible!. This is why one platform needs more resources than others…, it is simple math, if a platform is all the time requiring an engineer to touch here, and there, today, next month again the same thing in the same place, in one word REDOING!. This is consuming most of te DBA time, that could be used to grow the business. If the DBA spends most of his time in recurrent fixes!..., then it is simple, another DBA is required. It is not just what we redo, but also what we can't do because we are stuck fixing. INDIRECT COSTS are invisible!, incredible, but real.

There are also many aspects to consider as INDIRECT COSTS, such as performance, capacity, how much an engine can do with it…, and I am talking about using the same h/w, same data, but how much it is able to process is key…, so HOW MUCH THE ENGINE CAN DO WITH LESS!.

What do you dislike?

The bad marketing there is around INFORMIX. I hate ppl when they talk about INFORMIX as an OLD technology.

Recommendations to others considering the product

Run a ROI and TCO, benchmark it, you'll love it.

What business problems are you solving with the product? What benefits have you realized?

-

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