IBM releases DB2 Express and cuts expected price

IBM Corp. has released its DB2 Express midmarket-aimed database software, with a price tag that’s around half of what IBM initially estimated for the product.

The software, which IBM highlighted at its PartnerWorld conference in February, retails for US$499 for the base server package, plus $99 per user. IBM previously said pricing would start at around $1,000.

Available for Linux and Windows, DB2 Express is intended to offer easy installation and tools for simplifying administration, features IBM hopes will attract businesses with small IT departments. The company is also targeting the product toward ISVs (independent software vendors), which can build DB2 Express into their own applications.

DB2 Express’s main intended audience is companies with 100 to 1,000 employees, according to an IBM spokesman. The software lacks some scalability features found in its parent product, such as partitioning and advanced data warehousing functionality, but includes many of the autonomic and self-regulating aspects of DB2, IBM said. The software is also tailored for use on one- and two-processor systems.

DB2 Express is available worldwide through IBM’s network of partners and resellers. Several partners are also offering tailored versions for customers in vertical industries, such as banking, retail and manufacturing.

Other recent Express releases from IBM include Tivoli Storage Resource Manager Express and a pair of products from IBM’s Lotus messaging and collaboration software unit, Lotus Domino Collaboration Express and Lotus Domino Utility Server Express.