Will Database in the Cloud supercharge PLM for Small Companies?

Will Database in the Cloud supercharge PLM for Small Companies?

I want to talk about an interesting segment of cloud technologies – cloud SQL Database. For the last months, I’ve seen multiple announcements of vendors in this space. Overall, it seems as an interesting trend. In a nutshell, cloud SQL database is a service that allows you to have your SQL database running “somewhere” on the cloud. Thinking about PDM/PLM solutions for small companies, database is a critical component. Database installation made overall product installation complicated. Future configuration, tuning and administration of this database create another level of complications.

So, what is available today on the market to provide cloud SQL database services? Here is the list of most popular solutions: Amazon EC2 RDS, SQL Azure, Google Cloud SQL, Salesforce’s Database.com, Oracle Database Cloud.

SQL Azure

Microsoft is building their own Azure platform. Databse service is part of the Microsoft’s cloud platform. If you 100% relies on top of Microsoft development stack, you may find SQL Azure attractive. Read more here and watch the video:

Google Cloud SQL

Google just announced the availability of Cloud SQL service few weeks ago. Read the following article Google Adds Cloud Based SQL Database to App Engine and Google’s blog Goolge Cloud SQL: Your database in the cloud to learn more. Here is the passage from Google’s blog about what Google provides to developers:

  • No maintenance or administration – we manage the database for you.
  • High reliability and availability – your data is replicated synchronously to multiple data centers. Machine, rack and data center failures are handled automatically to minimize end-user impact.
  • Familiar MySQL database environment with JDBC support (for Java-based App Engine applications) and DB-API support (for Python-based App Engine applications).
  • Comprehensive user interface for administering databases.
  • Simple and powerful integration with Google App Engine

Salesforce Database.com

Salesforce is aggressively pushing more services to power more salesforce services on the cloud. The fact salesforce is using database.com domain for these purposes is very symbolic. Take a look on this following video to learn more about database service.

Oracle Database Cloud

Very recently, Oracle announced Oracle Public Cloud. As part of this cloud offering Oracle is providing an access to their popular database via so called Oracle Database Cloud Services. Watch the following video for more:

Amazon EC2 RDS

Last, but not least. Amazon is one of the most popular providers of cloud infrastructure today. As part of Amazon Elastic Cloud (EC2) you can have an access to Amazon Relational Database services (RDS). You can learn more here. Amazon is not developing their own database, but provide you an access to one of the popular databases on the market. This is an interesting differentiation from all previous solutions that I described.

What is my conclusion? As you can see database service from the cloud is not a unique service these days. Large vendors like Oracle are jumping into this space to compete with their old competitors (like Microsoft) and newcomers (Google and Salesforce.com). It is an interesting decision point for PDM/PLM companies developed their infrastructure for years on top of existing infrastructure. The opportunity to remove complexity is huge, in my view. However, to change existing infrastructure and make this change (both technological and business) will be not a simple task. The fastest will be winners in this game. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg


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