Ingres turns to channel amid open source interest

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Ingres turns to channel amid open source interest

Paul Kunert

Open source database specialist Ingres is looking to exploit recession fuelled interest in opex based software as it builds up a channel.

The second largest business open source vendor behind Red Hat, Ingres was spun out of CA in 2005 and though 70% of its sales are direct, it has appointed distributor Interactive Ideas to garner interest from resellers.

"Demand is becoming very apparent and it is all economically driven" said Simon Cattlin, Ingres Nordics and EMEA vice president of sales and services.

"The partner community needs to push ahead with new projects but they need to do so in line with the current shift towards opex based computing where there are no software licenses," he told MicroScope.

Interest in open source is also becoming more apparent in the public sector, he added. Only last month, the Office of Government commerce published a model for procurement including open source as a consideration.

Michael Breeze, Interactive Ideas marketing director, said it was building its open source portfolio and was about to sign Zimbra, part of Yahoo's mail server collaboration suite to sit alongside Ingres and Red Hat.

"The downturn has forced companies to review their infrastructure costs," he said.

Earlier this year Ingres brought to market a TCO calculator and claimed subscription-based business open source software was 40% to 90% cheaper than the proprietary perpetual license model.

However, the cost of the license is only a small fraction of the total cost of ownership compared to the expense of supporting the application over its lifetime, said Clive Longbottom, services director at Quocirca.

"I have no problem with open source as a functional component of any company's strategy but they need to go into it with their eyes open, forget license costs as that is only one small piece of the jigsaw," he said.

Support costs from the major players were similar but more readily available in the proprietary vendors' channels and in some instances when training is factored into the equation, open source could be more expensive, added Longbottom.

Mickey Bharat, EMEA director of Avnet Technology Solutions' software division - Oracle's sole distributor across the region - said users needed to consider the hidden cost of consultancy, migration and the potential loss of productivity.

"These can be brushed off as scare stories," he agreed," but I feel it is reality and businesses need to do a risk assessment before embarking on a project of this type."

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