Today Microsoft unveiled their top secret project code named CatchMe.
This is their new flagship database for Linux and Unix based on predominantly the
PostgreSQL 9.0 code base, but with an emulation layer that makes it behave like SQL Server
2008 R2. Unlike the Windows SQL Server 2008 R2 product, this version is completely free and
open source under the Microsoft Public License (Ms-PL). Downloads for the RCs of these will be available soon. Please stay tuned.
Reporter Dat A. Base managed to get an exclusive interview with the head of the
project, Quasi Modo. The transcript follows:
Q: Dat: Why is Microsoft now going after the Linux business so late in the game?
A: Quasi: We like showing up late to all parties. It gives us an idea what to wear.
- Q: Dat: Why are you making this Free and Open Source - MPL?
A: Quasi: We discovered we make more money selling software, support contracts, and consulting for SharePoint Team Services, Microsoft CRM, Microsoft Dynamics and Office
than we do selling SQL Server. SQL Server is just a tool for us to upsell our Office (via Excel Pivot integration) and other products. Since many people are migrating to Linux (at least for server), we are losing a large body of potential buyers for our other products
to Oracle's half-assed BI products.
If we could capture this market share -- we can be the dominant force in the COTS and services arena and outstrip Oracle in their efforts.
- Q: Dat: Why did you base your Linux product on PostgreSQL instead of SQL Server 2008?
A: Quasi: Well its no big secret that SQL Server came from Sybase a predominantly Unix/Linux based server. Sybase itself
was developed by Berkeley students working on Ingres and Postgres projects. As such SQL Server and PostgreSQL
are more alike than what you would expect. We have all these years been baking SQL Server into our windows ecosystem, such that its
next to impossible to get it to work on Linux/Unix without significant rework. PostgreSQL has on the other hand made theirs a cross-platform product, very ANSI SQL compliant
similar to SQL Server, and yet works on many OSes. It was easier for us to make PostgreSQL look like SQL Server than to
get SQL Server working on Linux/Unix. On top of that PostgreSQL rich pluggable language architecture allows us to run .NET code easily in PostgreSQL. We have also implemented an Open Source PL language called PL/Redmond that is syntactically compatible to our Transact-SQL offering. Postgres pluggable authentication
system also allows us to keep on using Active Directory for some kinds of authentication and build in other Authentication schemes. In fact we plan to eventually rework our core SQL Server base based on PostgreSQL similar to what EnterpriseDb has
done for their Oracle emulation layer. We call this rediscovering our roots and reinventing ourselves.
- Q: Dat: How are you going to get SharePoint and Microsoft CRM to work on Linux?
A: Quasi: Well they almost do already using Mono.NET. In fact we estimate there is very little we need to do to make them work on