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Sybase ports server to Mac OS X

By Alan Earls

Sybase Inc. has started shipping Sybase Adaptive Server Enterprise (ASE) 12.5.1, the latest release of its enterprise-class RDBMS, on Apple's Mac OS X Version 10.3 Panther Server.

Steve Olson, Sybase's technical director in engineering, notes that this isn't the first Mac-oriented announcement for Sybase. Indeed, the ASE product has been available for the Mac since 2002. But, he stresses, the new release provides many more bells and whistles, including quite a few of interest to developers.

Relational support on the Mac platform has been thinner than on Windows, so moves like this are significant.

In addition to supporting development languages and environments, including WebObjects, JBoss, Tomcat, Servoy, 4D, RealBasic, Omnis, Lasso, MacSQL Framework and Filemaker, as well as the new Sybase Open Client Framework, ASE 12.5.1 also works with Mac's Rendezvous feature.

"Because we support the OS X Rendezvous feature, whenever a server running ASE starts, it broadcasts its availability to everything out there that might want to know [about it]," Olson told eADT. "That means clients can establish a session with that server without any additional configuration."

Olson says Sybase is working with tool companies and with Apple in a number of ways to enhance the capabilities available with ASE. Among the results are a WebObjects plug-in for ASE, a plug-in for Real Basic, and an Open Client API that supports building native COCOA applications (the native graphical interface for Mac OS X).

Some other features of the Panther release take advantage of its features to support asynchronous disk IO -- increasing throughput by a factor of two or three, says Olson. Finally, to ensure that even those with limited development experience, like database administrators, are able to get the most out of the product, Olson says ASE works with Apple's "Server Admin" tool. A Sybase plug-in allows Sybase to be managed through the same interface as Apple-provided services such as print server and mail server.

Sybase ASE 12.5.1 for Mac OS X is now available, with prices starting at $1,495. For a free developer download, you can visit http://www.sybase.com/mac.

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