Q: While using open source databases what are the top three challenges to look out for?
A: Let’s not evade the obvious when you take on open source endeavors: you won't have a vendor to run to. Open source databases offer several benefits but they also bring in a few challenges..
Pay attention to the following aspects while using open source databases:
1. Supportand bug fixing: Open source databases fix only those bugs that affect the people who are of high priority. If it’s one of the bugs that are related to customer environments or systems, customers either have to find a workaround or live with the bug. A good measure is to add resources to contribute to the open source code tree. This way your problems will move up the priority ladder.
2. Dependencyand long term adoption: For companies to really adopt open source, it has to become part of their strategy otherwise it will never get due attention or resources. These are essential to support the bottom line success of the organization from the infrastructure stand point. Organizations should be very careful while their critical systems are dependent on open source databases as they run higher risks from a business standpoint.
3. Feature availability: Security, scalability, reliability,and functionality are critical when adopting open source databases. These will not be higher on scale when compared to commercial databases. If your organization can invest in these, then you are headed in the right direction; otherwise, you will end up spending more on resources such as time and money (compared to commercial databases).
This was first published in November 2011