When I opined that Oracle can not be trusted to keep MySQL going there were some in the MySQL and Oracle community who accused me of spreading FUD (Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt). I agree that there is indeed a lot of Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt around MySQL these days. However, I don’t think that this humble blog is the reason. Bottom line is that since the acquisition was first announced Oracle has said nothing about its plans for MySQL. Oracle certainly said plenty about its plans for SUN hardware, its plans for Java, even its plans for Solaris. Larry Ellison even threatened IBM hardware business.
Strangely enough he said nothing about HP; I guess this SUN deal makes HP Oracle Database Machine a bit of a white elephant. I am sure more than one CIO is thinking that she may hold off on that multi-million purchase until the smoke clears.
But I digress. With all this bravado and posturing Oracle has not said a word about MySQL. Even the father of MySQL has no idea of what Oracle plans to do with his baby. I think he suspects that Oracle is up to no good. This is actually a good thing for Monty Widenius. In the absence of any communications, MySQL Enterprise customers do not trust Oracle an are likely to look for an alternate trusted provider of support. Enter Monty Program AB, Monty’s new outfit that will be happy to take the business. Monty cautions people to be careful signing up for MySQL licenses from SUN/Oracle:
“With above limitations in place, you should consider if it’s worth it to you to buy licenses for MySQL under the current terms. Also, if you are an old licensee of MySQL, you should be careful to review any new conditions when your license is up for renewal.”
Not exactly a ringing endorsement for Oracle as the owners of MySQL.
US Department of Justice reviewed the SUN – Oracle deal but it focused its investigation almost entirely on Java. In the end, DOJ did approve the deal. European Union, proved to be a lot less trusting toward Larry Ellison and his crew. Besides, they are interested in the MySQL angle of the deal … finally, someone is thinking of something other than Java. So, EU recently launched it own review of the deal specifically focused on MySQL. I think this is a great thing for MySQL, a great thing for open source and a great move for database industry in general. MySQL did a fantastic job of providing a counter balance to the very expensive DBMS from the Redwood Shores. Oracle even responded by introducing its own (crippled and now hopelessly outdated) version of a free Oracle XE database. Hopefully, the EU will not abandon MySQL and let it fall victim to Oracle’s ambitions. The last thing we need is for MySQL to suffer the fate of Oracle XE which has not been updated in over three years, not even scores of well known security vulnerabilities.