In a move reflecting the increasing
acceptance and adoption of open source software and the principles behind it,
Redgate Software has released community editions of its MySQL database tools.
Alongside the paid-for enterprise editions, MySQL Compare and MySQL Data
Compare are now available free for non-commercial use.
Redgate first came to prominence when it launched SQL Compare, which has
since become the industry standard for comparing and deploying SQL Server
database schemas and data. The company now has a complete suite of database
tools and has further developed many of them for use in the Oracle and MySQL
MySQL Compare and MySQL Data Compare save users hours of work comparing and
deploying MySQL databases, while ensuring accuracy. They eliminate mistakes
by finding and fixing the errors caused by differences between databases, and
generate the SQL scripts necessary to deploy changes.
The launch of the community editions of the tools is in response to changes
happening right across the software industry.
In late 2014, for example, Microsoft open sourced its .NET software framework
and released a free community edition of its integrated development
environment, Visual Studio. Other software companies are developing
proprietary tools in the open source space, and offering community versions
as well as commercial versions.
Many, like Berlin-based 3T, see it as a natural part of their business model.
3T was founded by three NoSQL enthusiasts who wanted MongoDB users to have
access to the same kind of development tools available to relational database
users. As a consequence, they created MongoChef, a multi-platform data
browser and editor for MongoDB. While it is a paid-for tool, a community
edition is also available.
As Co-Founder Thomas Zahn says: “Coming as a developer from a traditional
RDBMS to a NoSQL database like MongoDB can be a truly liberating experience.
It can also be frustrating because there aren’t many tools to help you with
editing, searching, importing and exporting, management and connectivity. We
wanted to resolve that with a commercial product, but give individual users
the opportunity to enjoy the same advantages with a non-commercial edition.”
David Atkinson, Head of Product Strategy at Redgate, concurs: “Many
charities and educational institutions as well as individual users turn to
open source software in an effort to lower costs. The flipside is, while
there’s no upfront cost, there is an ongoing maintenance cost. Paid-for
tools like MySQL Compare make the often complicated task of deploying
databases simple. By releasing a community edition, everyone benefits.”
There are advantages for Redgate as well. David Aktinson concludes: “With a
community edition, more users will adopt our tools and become familiar with
them, we’ll get more feedback to develop them further, and if users move to
SQL Server or Oracle, they’ll find familiar tools waiting for them.”