dbTuning: Firebird

Created by: Anonymous, Last modification: 26 May 2005 (18:30 UTC) by Lester Caine
Firebird 1.5 is a full-featured SQL database engine. It is powerful, yet lightweight, with minimal configuration and administration needs. It's easily scalable from single-user, single-database usage up to company-wide enterprise purposes. A single Firebird server can handle multiple independent databases, each with multiple client connections. And best of all: it's true Open Source, thus free of any license fees even for commercial use.

Firebird is based on the source code of InterBase 6.0 that was released as Open Source by Borland in August 2000. The story of InterBase goes back as far as 1984, so in total there are close to 20 years of relational database experience in the product.

Firebird runs on almost any hardware. Even "small" hardware can do the job, esp. when used with Linux. As with any RDBMS, there are the usual aspects that influence performance: the amount of physical RAM (as little as 16MB will do for a start); the speed of the storage subsystem (like RAID systems) etc. Of course, the recommended hardware depends on what you want to do with the database, e.g. how large will it become, how many concurrent users do you expect andsoforth. You can start off with a minimal configuration and then power up the server later on as the need arises.

The most commonly used OS platforms for Firebird are Linux and Windows (incl. MS Terminal Servers and Citrix Mainframes). Other supported platforms are Mac OS X, Solaris and HP-UX.

Migration from one platform to another is painless and possible at any time: just backup a database on one OS using the Transportable Format, then restore it on any other.