IBM Db2 Product Family

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Db2 Product Family

by Sherry Kercher

Docid: 00011262

Publication Date: 2003

Report Type: PRODUCT


IBM’s Db2 relational database management system (RDBMS) is geared toward
large enterprise computing environments. It supports primarily Unix (AIX),
Windows, Linux, and z/OS servers in Enterprise, Developer, Workgroup, and
Express versions. Db2 11.5 offers the efficient running of queries, makes
it easier to implement natural-language querying, and provides a
search-engine-like experience to explore datasets. This report describes
the main features of the Db2 family and also lists its competition in the

Report Contents:


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IBM Database 2 (Db2) is IBM’s relational database management system,
which is built to manage data in large-scale computing environments.

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Enterprise Product

Purpose – IBM Db2 provides large organizations with a
database environment to store, automate, and analyze large groups of data.
It can be used to back-up, protect, or automatically file away data from
multiple sources. This can be useful for data capture, e-mail storage and
archiving, and the filing of sensitive information in industries such as
healthcare and government. 

Versions – IBM Db2 supports Windows, Unix, and Linux
environments, and is available in seven editions: Advanced Enterprise
Server Edition, Advanced Workgroup Server Edition, Enterprise Server
Edition, Workgroup Server Edition, Express Edition, Developer Edition, and

Additional Versions – Other iterations include Db2 11
for z/OS, a version of the platform designed for mainframe computers. Db2
11 is intended to deliver increased value by reducing CPU usage and
producing cost savings. The company reports that internal testing and
early beta customer results show that, depending on the specific workload,
customers can achieve out-of-the-box Db2 CPU savings of five to ten
percent for traditional workloads, and up to twenty percent for specific
workloads; when compared to running the same workloads on Db2 9.


Name: IBM
1 New Orchard Road
Armonk, NY 10504
(914) 499-1900
(800) 426-4968
Type of Vendor: Information Technology Services
Founded: 1911 (As
Computing-Tabulating-Recording Co.)
Service Areas: Worldwide
Stock Symbol: IBM (NYSE)

Related Tools – Users can extend their Db2 deployments
through tools and components such as data administration, performance,
application management, recovery, and replication tools; the Db2 Query
Management Facility; and the Db2 Developer Workbench, a developer
environment for creating, editing, debugging, deploying, and testing Db2
stored procedures and UDFs.

IBM DB2 Architecture

DB2 products are all based on a common relational architecture; the
database consists of a collection of tables, which, in turn, comprise rows
and columns. 

The original Db2 products and all that followed after have been built
according to E.F. Codd’s relational model, ensuring that they comply with
two of Codd’s most critical rules: Operational closure (i.e., that an
inquiry against a relational database composed of tables should produce
another table) and referential integrity (restoring the ability to express
one-to-many and many-to-many relationships among records in related

Db2 is intended for large, complex database implementation and supports
databases with hundreds of millions of rows (on the mainframe) or
terabytes of data (on smaller platforms). In the most general sense, Db2
is an RDBMS (relational database management system) that enables users to
create, update, and control relational databases using Structured Query
Language (SQL).

Db2 is an open system. In addition to client platforms provided by IBM,
all Db2 database servers allow for open access from any product that
supports the Distributed Relational Database Architecture (DRDA) protocol.
IBM also offers a facility to access any other RDBMS that implements DRDA
application specifications. This support is offered by a companion product
called Distributed Database Connection Services (DDCS). In addition to its
data management functions, DB2 includes tools that allow users to create
customized applications for accessing and working with data. Support is
included for the development of multimedia and object-oriented
applications. The products that Db2 family encompasses are listed as

DB2 Product Family

IBM introduced Db2 10.5 in June 2013. This release merged DB2
functionality with InfoSphere Warehouse on Linux, UNIX, and Windows. Db2
10.5 offers IBM BLU Acceleration, which is designed to accelerate
reporting and analytics through dynamic in-memory columnar processing
technology. This capability combines with Parallel Vector Processing,
Actionable Compression, and Data Skipping. With this release,
pureScale clustered database technology is integrated with DB2 disaster
recovery. It supports online fix pack updates, as well as mobile
capabilities and the ability to store and manage JSON objects.

Its most recent release is Db2 Version 11.5, which enables the efficient
running of queries, supports popular data science languages and
frameworks, and makes it easier to implement natural-language querying. It
is designed to provide a search-engine-like experience to explore
datasets. It also offers improved writing queries through auto-completion,
natural language querying and faceted search via the inclusion of IBM Db2
Augmented Data Explorer.

pureXML Technology – With the release of Db2 9, IBM
introduced a new technology for data management, which it dubbed pure
XML services. The pureXML technology supports data server external
interfaces and extends to the Db2 engine. The XML and relational services
in Db2 are tightly integrated, thereby making the offering a pureXML and
relational hybrid data server. Db2’s pureXML technology provides pure
XML data type and storage techniques for the management of hierarchical
structures common in XML documents, as well as pureXML indexing technology
to speed searches of subsets of XML documents. The technology delivers
query language support (for XQuery and SQL/XML) based on industry
standards and new query optimization techniques, as well as administrative
capabilities such as extensions to popular database utilities.

Figure 1 illustrates IBM’s Data server manager interface in the Advanced
Enterprise Server edition.

Figure 1. IBM Data Server Manager Interface

Figure 1. IBM Data Server Manager Interface

Source: IBM

DB2 for Windows, UNIX, and Linux

The IBM Db2 system features an Eclipse-based developer environment, and
allows users to access data through both SQL and XQuery. The platform also
features integration with PHP, Java, and .NET infrastructures. Security is
also a notable part of Db2, with advanced access control and other
advances over previous Db2 releases. The platform supports operating
systems in Windows, UNIX, and Linux environments.

Table 1 outlines the core versions of the IBM Db2 database.

Table 1. IBM Db2 Offerings Db2 Core Family



DB2 Express The entry point of the Db2 line, DB2
Express offers users a fully-functioning hybrid data server that
boasts simple installation, self-managing capabilities, and can be
expanded with pureXML and optional enterprise class features to
improve performance and workload management, as well as offering
high availability. The Express version of the IBM system runs on
the Linux, Solaris x86, and Windows platforms, and can be scaled
to two CPUs and 4GB RAM maximum. Express is available on both an
authorized user (at lease five per server) or per-processor
DB2 Enterprise Server Db2 Enterprise Server builds on the
Express and Workgroup versions of the Db2 line with tools to
handle high user loads and provide 24x7x365 availability. Among
its core features are High Availability Disaster Recovery (HADR),
Tivoli System automation, table partitioning, multi-dimensional
data clustering, and full intra-query parallelism. In addition to
pureXML, the Enterprise edition also includes advanced features
such as storage optimization, performance optimization, advanced
access control, scale-out clustering, and geodetic data. The
Enterprise release also has unlimited scalability, and its pricing
structure is based on either an authorized user basis (with a
minimum of 25 per CPU), or on a per-processor basis.
Advanced Enterprise Server The Advanced Enterprise Server provides
the features of Db2 Enterprise Server Edition, storage and
performance optimization capabilities, and a suite of data
management capabilities. It provides collaborative data design
that helps discover, model, relate, and standardize diverse and
distributed data assets. It also offers rapid cross-platform
development and database porting, as well as simplified
administration, workload management, and performance tuning. It
features integrated compression, comprehensive database
administration and development tooling, and Db2 HADR and
active/active availability with Q-Replication Data federation for
multiple databases.
Db2 Workgroup The Db2 Workgroup 9 release includes
all of the features as the Express version, as well as offering
advanced scalability. While the Express version can only scale to
two CPUs and a maximum of 4GB RAM, the Workgroup can be run on
systems with up to four CPUs and 16GB of RAM. The Workgroup
release can also run on the HP-UX platform, which the Express
Edition cannot.
Advanced Workgroup Server Advanced Workgroup Server is a
multi-workload database for transactional, data warehousing, and
analytics capabilities. Designed for mid-sized businesses, it
provides simplified database administration and development tools
and workload management capabilities.
Developer Edition The Developer Edition lets developers
evaluate, create, and test database and warehousing applications
in a non-production environment. It offers storage optimization,
workload management, and availability via pureScale, OLAP cubing
services, data mining for discovery and predictive analytics, and
text analytics for analyzing unstructured content. It supports
transactional workloads and dynamic warehousing, as well as
in-database analytics.
Db2 Express-C DB2 Express-C is a no-charge edition of
DB2. It can be used in the development and deployment of
applications, including XML, C/C++, Java, .NET, PHP, and others.
Users can run Db2 Express-C on up to 2 dual-core CPU servers, with
up to 4 GB of memory, any storage system setup, and with no
restrictions on database size or any other artificial
restrictions. Db2 Express-C can run on both Windows and Linux
environments, and lacks certain features that are inDb2cluded in
the  Express 9 platform. Among the features not included in
Db2 Express-C is support for Microsoft’s Cluster Server and
Informix data sources and Db2 Web tools.

DB2 Data Warehouse

Db2 Data Warehouse is an integrated package of applications designed to
provide organizations with business intelligence insights from their
Db2data.  Data Warehouse, which runs on the Windows, AIX, and Linux
platforms, features built-in analytics and integrates the Web-based
analytics and reporting of Db2 Alphablox with data mining, online
analytical processing (OLAP), and extract, transform, and load (ETL).

Table 2 lists the features of the DB2 Data Warehouse Edition.

Table 2. IBM DB2 Data Warehouse Features



Data Mining The Db2 Data Warehouse Edition features
IBM data mining technology to assist organizations segment
customers, detect fraud, and simplify market basket analysis. Db2
Data Warehouse Edition comes with in-database mining capabilities
that integrate with existing systems.
OLAP Acceleration OLAP acceleration makes the relational
database a platform for managing and deploying multidimensional
data across the enterprise. The Data Warehouse Edition includes
metadata support for dimensions, hierarchies, attributes, and
analytical functions, as well as tools to analyze a dimensional
model and recommend aggregates that improve OLAP performance.
DB2 Alphablox Alphablox provides users with
consolidated data and analytical capabilities, helping to improve
the decision-making of employees. As part of the Db2 Data
Warehouse Edition, Db2 Alphablox provides a comprehensive business
intelligence platform for common data structures in a data
warehouse. The tool also features new capabilities such as
improved clustering, scalability enhancements, improved relational
cubing engine, lowered cost for multi-language deployments, and
several additional features and functions.
Db2 Query Patroller IBM’s Db2 Query Patroller is a client
and server solution that can be deployed on DB2 Enterprise Server
Edition. Db2 Query Patroller is made up of three core components,
which are:

  • Query Patroller Server – The Query
    Patroller Server deploys a set of software elements to a
    targeted computer, including Query Controller, the main engine
    code for Query Patroller that intercepts and manages database
    requests; Query Patroller stored procedures, which are used by
    other Query Patroller components to perform necessary database
    tasks; and control tables that are used by Query Patroller to
    create managed queries issued against a database, the DB2QP
    schema, control tables, triggers, functions, and procedures
    within that database.
  • Query Patroller Center – The Query
    Patroller Center is a graphical user interface that allows
    administrators to manage Query Patroller system properties,
    users, and queries, and to view historical analysis reports.
  • Query Patroller command line support – Command
    line support enables Query Patroller administrators and
    submitters to perform most Query Patroller tasks from the Db2
    CLP or from the operating system’s command line prompt.

Db2 Warehouse on Cloud

Db2 Warehouse on Cloud is a fully managed cloud data warehouse that
enables users to get insights from data by leveraging in-database
analytics and parallel processing. It is a fully managed, elastic cloud
data warehouse that delivers independent scaling of storage and compute.
It provides an optimized columnar data store, actionable compression, and
in-memory processing. It is now available on AWS, and offers Flex One for
smaller data marts and spin ups. Among its key features are built-in
machine learning and geospatial capabilities​ and compatiblility with
on-premises data warehouses​.

Db2 Big SQL

Db2 Big SQL is a SQL on Hadoop offering that provides low latency support
for ad hoc or complex queries, high performance, security, compatibility
and federation capabilities. It is a hybrid ANSI-compliant SQL-on-Hadoop
engine, delivering massively parallel processing (MPP) and advanced data
query. It provides a single database connection or query for disparate
sources such as Hadoop HDFS and WebHDFS, RDMS, NoSQL databases and object

Db2 12 for z/OS

IBM’s Db2 12 for z/OS is designed to be an AI enterprise database that
allows users to support XML data within their Db2 databases. It allows
users to provide analytics, extend mobile and AI support, and provide IBM
Cloud provisioning and management to reduce complexity and cost. It also
allows mainframes to store XML data within the relational database,
enabling Db2 administrators to include the file into the relational
database and query XML documents like any other data type. Other features
of Db2 for z/OS include DataQuant, which allows role-based access to
analysis reports, enhanced logging capabilities, and updated data
compression to save on storage. The tool features hybrid data server
support, standards-based capabilities to enable SOA requirements, and new
SQL capabilities, including additional data types and built-in functions,
expanded SQL commonality with Db2 family, and enriched text handling with
functions like caseless comparisons, cultural sort, and index on
expression. Db2 is intended to deliver value by reducing CPU usage. It
also offers rapid application and warehouse deployment for business
growth, as well as enhanced business analytics and data visualization
solutions with QMF.

Db2 for i

Db2 for i is a 64-bit RDBMS that leverages Power Systems capabilities. It
supports a variety of applications and development environments using
unique autonomic computing features. Db2 for i is designed to maintain
mainframe-like reliability and security for mid-market companies. It
features System i Navigator (formerly iSeries Navigator), which lets uses
graphically work with Db2. Key features include:

  • Single Level Storage architecture
  • Cost base query optimizer
  • Self-tuning
  • Dynamic Logical Partitioning
  • Capacity Upgrade on Demand

  • PowerVM
  • SMP parallelism
  • Encoded Vector Indexing

Db2 on Cloud

IBM DB2 on Cloud offers Db2 security features, including data encryption.
It is provided on dedicated, single-tenant IBM Cloud servers, and can be
deployed with either the IBM Db2 Workgroup Server Edition or the IBM Db2
Advanced Enterprise Server Edition feature set. IBM Db2 on Cloud can be
deployed on different size cloud instances to handle small, medium, large,
or extra-large workloads.

Key features included with Db2 on Cloud are:

  • Rapid provisioning
  • Monthly subscription-based licensing
  • Administrative capabilities
  • Deployment location flexibility

DB2 Connect

IBM Db2 Connect is a tool for integrating IBM System z, System i, and
other enterprise data with client/server, Web, mobile, and SOA
applications. Db2 Connect is designed to access enterprise information
wherever it is stored. For those using Db2 on IBM eServer System z and
System i servers, Db2 Connect provides application enablement and a
scalable communications infrastructure for connecting Web, Windows, UNIX,
Linux, and mobile applications to data. IBM offers five versions of Db2

  • Application Server Advanced Edition – Designed for
    large-scale environments and includes IBM Data Studio and the IBM
    InfoSphere Optim pureQuery Runtime environment.
  • Application Server Edition – Designed for multitier
    client/server or web applications that require access to IBM Db2 data on
    IBM System z or System i platforms.
  • Enterprise Edition – Offers connectivity for
    client/server applications in large-scale, demanding environments.
  • Unlimited Advanced Edition for System z – The Db2
    Connect Unlimited Edition delivers connectivity to host data across the
  • Unlimited Edition for System i – Provides deployment
    for development against iSeries databases.

Table 3 compares the features of select Db2 Connect editions.

Table 3. Comparison of Select IBM Db2 Offerings Db2 Connect Editions
Feature Enterprise Edition Application Server Unlimited for iSeries Unlimited Advanced for zSeries
Support for Windows and Linux Yes Yes Yes Yes
Support for AIX, HP-UX, and Solaris Yes Yes Yes Yes
For personal workstation and
application connectivity
No No No No
Server/Gateway functionality Yes Yes Yes Yes
Unlimited Deployment No No Yes Yes
Simplified application development Yes Yes Yes Yes
Java JDBC enhancements Yes Yes Yes Yes
Enhanced support for federated data
Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes  Db2 Connect Personal
No No Yes Yes
Includes IBM Homogeneous Federation
Feature for DB2 databases
Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes Db2 Developer Workbench Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes Db2 Embedded Application
Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes Db2 Mobility on Demand No Yes Yes Yes
Includes Rational Web Developer Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes WebSphere MQ Yes Yes Yes Yes
Includes Quick Beginnings for Connect
Personal Book
No No Yes Yes
Includes Quick Beginnings for Connect
Server Book
Yes Yes Yes Yes


The universality of Db2 Universal Database makes it a good choice for any
business that operates heterogeneous or legacy systems. Behind the power
of DataJoiner, users have access to data stored on various database types.
The addition of the Intelligent Miner gives Db2 a boost as well, allowing
businesses to get the most value from existing data. Other strengths
include the product’s built-in multimedia extenders, an improved
installation process, a more intuitive interface, and its native support
for Java and JDBC. Its ability to let Oracle applications run natively on
Db2 is a significant step forward for the product. It is the first time a
commercial vendor has supported another DBMS vendor’s functionality.


IBM, along with the other commercial DBMS vendors, is facing increased
competition from the open source market. It is also known primarily as a
database system for larger clients, and may have trouble making inroads
with smaller clients.


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IBM Db2 can be configured to store, automate, and analyze data in complex
computing environments. Large retailers and distributors, for example,
have used Db2 for company-wide e-mail management and archiving, automated
data back-ups, and filing of sensitive information. Organizations with
high privacy and compliance requirements, such as healthcare and
government agencies, will benefit from the extensive features offered by
IBM Db2.


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IBM Db2 works in Windows, Linux, and Unix operating environments. It can
be used to archive and analyze multiple operating platforms, applications,
and data sources. Table 4 describes the operating requirements of IBM’s
Db2  platform.

Table 4. Operating Requirements of IBM Db2
Operating System Hardware
AIX pSeries systems based on
POWER 3, POWER 4, and POWER 5 processors are supported. eServer i5
and p5 systems are also supported.
HP-UX HP 9000 Series 700 or 800
system or HP Integrity Series server.
Linux x86 requires Intel Pentium 4
or higher, Intel Xeon, or AMD Athlon based systems; x86-64
requires Intel EM64T or AMD64 based systems; POWER requires IBM
eServer OpenPower, iSeries, or pSeries systems that support Linux;
IA64 requires Intel Itanium 2 based systems; zSeries requires
zSeries systems that support Linux.
Solaris UltraSPARC-based computers;
x86-64 requires Intel EM64T- or AMD64-based systems.
Windows All Intel and AMD processors
capable of running the supported Windows operating systems (32-bit
and 64-bit).


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IBM supports Db2 through direct sales offices and its business partners.
IBM also offers an IBM Support Center for Db2 and specific support
licenses. In addition, IBM offers supplemental documentation, as well as
specialized user and programmer training for Db2. IBM provides Db2
community forums and online chat support.


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Db2 products are sold through IBM’s direct sales offices and IBM Business
Partners. The Db2 Universal Database is also available for purchase
through IBM’s Web site. Db2 is available in more than 30 national
languages and character sets, and is sold worldwide by IBM’s international
subsidiaries and distributors. DB2 Express-C is available for download at
IBM’s Web
. For the commercial releases of the IBM database line, users
should contact IBM’s sales staff for pricing to meet their specific


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IBM Db2 product suite competes against a number of database vendors. One
major competitor is Oracle, with its 18c Database. Other
competitors include CA, IBM, Microsoft, SAP Sybase, and Teradata.
Increasingly, business have been looking to meet their database needs with
open-source alternatives, most notably with Oracle’s MySQL. Other open
source databases include Firebird and Actian’s Ingres.

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About the Author

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Sherry Kercher is an editor for Faulkner Information
Services. She holds a master’s degree in library and information science,
and tracks and writes about storage, communication networks and equipment,
and Internet technologies.

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