REDMOND, Wash., Sept. 3, 1996 — Microsoft Corp. today announced the immediate availability of the Microsoft® OLE DB Software Development Kit (SDK) version 1.0. OLE DB, a data access API, is Microsoft’s component database architecture interface. Based on the Component Object Model (COM), OLE DB provides access to data regardless of location or type. OLE DB is a freely published specification created with industrywide participation and designed to take full advantage of the existing ODBC industry standard. OLE DB provides a standard for data access and interoperability in an enterprise’s network, from the desktop to the mainframe and across the Internet.
The OLE DB SDK is a complete development kit designed for use by developers whose products either supply or consume data. The SDK includes the programmers reference, test utilities, sample code, an ODBC data provider for efficient OLE DB-based access to existing ODBC data sources, and an OLE DB data provider for ODBC-based access to OLE DB data sources. The OLE DB SDK 1.0 also contains a beta version of ActiveX
Data Objects. ActiveX Data Ojects are a data access object model based on OLE DB functionality for use by solution developers from any ActiveX Controls-compliant development tool or language.
OLE DB Provides Solutions for Accessing Data
The combination of OLE DB and ActiveX Data Objects creates a unified strategy for data access and will be used throughout the Microsoft line of applications, tools and data stores as well as a broad range of third-party products. This will provide a consistent data access object model across a range of tools and data sources for developers.
“We expect OLE DB to play a significant role in the way tools and languages access data industrywide,”
said David Vaskevitch, vice president of enterprise computing at Microsoft.
“There is a rapidly increasing variety of types of data and data stores in business today. The inconsistency in the way data is found and accessed creates barriers for the developer attempting to deploy integrated solutions. The goal of OLE DB is to utilize data sources such as relational, desktop, mainframe, mail and ISAM, in a consistent and high-performance way.”
“OLE DB’s standardized interface is a critical step forward in the support of object data access for mainstream applications,”
said Larry Alston, director of product management at Object Design Inc.
“Our goal is for users of our object database management system to have a standard option for accessing object data. We view this as an important evolutionary step toward the coexistence of traditional and object data management.”
Market Opportunity for Database Components
OLE DB defines how to partition the functionality of a traditional relational database into logical pieces, allowing developers to use these interfaces to define a very simple data provider, such as a log file, all the way to a full relational database. The OLE DB SDK will enable developers to create database products that are assembled from best-in-class components, encouraging a new market for interoperable database components to emerge and creating a more flexible way to access and manage heterogeneous data sources. For example, a query processor or transaction manager can be written as separate components that can plug into an OLE DB-compliant data source, allowing functionality to be added incrementally as required by the client application. This enables specialized database components to be offered by a third-party value-added market.
An application of this approach can be seen in the ISG Navigator an OLE DB-based distributed middleware product, which provides transparent access to data on a variety of platforms and data sources, such as RMS and MUMPS, and SQL-based data.
“OLE DB allows ISG Navigator to plug into and manage a wide variety of data sources, distributed throughout the enterprise and across the Internet boundaries,”
said Arie Gonen, CEO of ISG International Software Group.
“We are able to make existing corporate information considerably more valuable by accessing more data sources in their native form. I am confident that OLE DB will become a standard for data access and manipulation to both SQL and non-SQL data sources.”
“With OLE DB, we have an opportunity for our decision support tools to integrate a wealth of diverse information and present it to users in ways that are not possible today,”
said Tommy Steele, president of Intergraph Software Solutions.
“By exposing the technical information within our applications through OLE DB interfaces, we believe the benefits for our customers to be almost limitless.”
ODBC in a COM World
Microsoft open database connectivity (ODBC) is a standard SQL-based data access interface that will continue to provide a unified way to access SQL-based data. Transparent access to ODBC-based data from an OLE DB client is provided through the ODBC data provider, included in the SDK, giving OLE DB developers high-performance access to existing ODBC drivers, thereby leveraging their investments in ODBC drivers.
“OLE DB provides a robust data access design and enhances the support of any data source, along with ODBC,”
said Bob Zurek, vice president of research and technology for the Powersoft Business Group of Sybase Inc.
“This technology will allow our customers to build applications with even greater access to enterprise data with Powersoft development tools.”
Broad Industry Support for OLE DB
Since the beta release of the OLE DB SDK last July, over 700 software companies and 300 corporations have downloaded the SDK. These companies include Apex Software Corp.; Asymetrix Corp.; Attachmate Corp.; Borland International Inc.; Intergraph Corp.; ISG International Software Group; INTERSOLV Inc.; MapInfo Corp.; Object Design Inc.; ONTOS Inc.; Open Horizon Inc.; Pervasive Software Inc. (formerly Btrieve Technologies); PLATINUM technology inc.; Powersoft Business Group of Sybase Inc.; SAS Institute Inc.; Seagate Software, Information Management Group; Simba Technologies Inc.; Sybase Inc.; Tandem Computers Inc.; Visigenic Software Inc.; Visio Corp.; Wall Data Inc. and many others.
Pricing and Availability
The OLE DB SDK will be available at no charge to customers for downloading at http://www.microsoft.com/oledb beginning today.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ
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Microsoft and ActiveX are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
Industry Support for OLE DB
Apex Software Corp.
PR Contact: Kristen McGahey
Phone: (412) 681-4343
PR Contact: Dennis Sullivan
Phone: (206) 637-2458
PR Contact: Tiffany Allesina
Phone: (206) 649-6069
Borland International Inc.
PR Contact: Knox Richardson
Phone: (408) 431-1201
PR Contact: Jack Robertson
Phone: (205) 730-8785
ISG International Software Group
PR Contact: Derek Caldwell,
Sunrise Financial Group Inc.
Phone: (212) 421-1616
PR Contact: Colleen Duffy
Phone: (301) 838-5229
Object Design Inc.
PR Contact: Louisa Zauli
Phone: (617) 674-5162
PR Contact: Basil Harris
Phone: (508) 323-8266
Open Horizon Inc.
PR Contact: Alison Bowman, NRG PR
Phone: (415) 827-7016
Pervasive Software Inc. (formerly Btrieve Technologies)
PR Contact: Craig Lakey
Phone: (512) 794-1620
PLATINUM technology inc.
PR Contact: Barbara Brodley
Phone: (630) 620-5000
Powersoft Business Group of Sybase, Inc.
PR Contact: Kathleen Quirk
Phone: (508) 287-1882
SAS Institute Inc.
Phone: (919) 677-8000
Seagate Software, Information Management Group
Simba Technologies Inc.
PR Contact: Susan Trainer
Phone: (510) 837-5503
PR Contact: Mary Shank-Rockman
Phone: (510) 922-4165
Tandem Computers Inc.
PR Contact: Junne Moy
Phone: (408) 285-6142
Visigenic Software Inc.
PR Contact: Shannon Hall, The Horn Group
Phone: (415) 579-6437
PR Contact: Melissa Covelli
Phone: (206) 637-9097
Wall Data Inc.
Phone: (206) 814-3654