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DB2 is IBM’s premiere Database Management System or DBMS. It was developed in the 1970’s and is considered to be the first DBMS to use SQL, which was also developed by IBM. DB2 was initially a relational DBMS; however, over the years it has been upgraded and evolved into an object-SQL DBMS. DB2 was initially only designed to run on IBM mainframes. Later it was upgraded and released for a much wider array of platforms that include Unix, Linux, Windows and others. A company called Informix acquired Illustra and created the first object-SQL DBMS. Shortly after that Oracle and IBM followed suit by adding capabilities to their DBMS’s making them capable of object relational extensions. In 2001 IBM bought Informix and incorporated many of their technologies into its DB2 suite which is when DB2 became a true object-SQL DBMS.


DB2 has driven many hardware enhancements, particularly on IBM System Z by requiring 64-bit processors. A second IBM DB2 advancement was the parallel edition which allowed the database to be stored on multiple mainframes connected via a high speed interconnect. The biggest advantage of this to businesses was that this allowed unlimited scalability.

Operating a DB2 database has two options, a command line interface and a GUI. Using the command line interface allows for easier scripting and automation; however, it does require a working knowledge of the product. The GUI is designed for the less technical user and is a multi platform java client and contains a multitude of wizards for data entry, update, and delete.

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