DB2 migration problems caused IBM to resurrect Netezza, according to analyst

Plenty of competition out there for Big Blue

IBM brought its flagship data warehousing product Netezza back from the dead because customers were having trouble migrating to the IBM database DB2, according to an analyst blog published today.

The Netezza was retired last year, leaving customers facing either moving to IBM's Integrated Analytics System (ISA) or its Db2 Warehouse on Cloud (Db2WoC). Alternatively, customers could look at data warehousing beyond IBM's stable of products.

But Big Blue revealed last month, to the surprise of many, that Netezza Performance Server on the Cloud would be available on June 19 on both IBM Cloud and Amazon Web Services.

Hemant Suri, IBM program director for Data & AI, said at the time: "We have made Netezza on the Cloud a completely seamless upgrade for existing Netezza deployments. It's a simple lift and shift to the cloud. And, we're using cloud-native building blocks to construct a scalable, elastic and highly performant cloud data warehouse."

Philip Howard, a research director at Bloor Research, said after conversations with IBM, that one of the reasons IBM brought Netezza back was that, although it was supposed to run the same SQL engine as DB2, some customers were not finding it as easy to switch to DB2 as they'd hoped.

"As a result of that, IBM was opening [itself] up to competition such as Vertica or Yellow Brick," he told The Register.

"The second reason is that IBM had not realised how much Netezza users really like Netezza," he said.

Howard said the new Netezza cloud offer was an "upgrade, not a migration".

He told us: "You just have to move your data into the new environment and you're ready to go – as opposed to having to change your store procedures and applications and so forth."

IBM had also added enhancements such as 64-bit addressing, which the company said allowed the new cloud-hosted Netezza to run significantly faster the most recent on-premise box, called Mako.

Big Blue has so far declined The Register's request for comment. ®

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