Sybase plans to finally be able to run SAP's market leading R/3 application software by next September. However, it will not be because the German software supplier helped it to do so.
R/3 cannot currently run on the System 11 database because of Sybase's devotion to page level locking in its server engines, rather than the row level locking approach taken by Oracle and Informix, both of which can run R/3. But Sybase confirmed this week that it was reengineering its database engine to enable row level locking by the end of the third quarter next year.
Paul Wahl, chief executive of SAP US, says Sybase has approached his company twice about help with an R/3 for Sybase port, but repeated SAP's oft-quoted stance that there are no plans to support Sybase. Industry gossip claims that SAP's stance is reflective of a personal dispute between senior technologists at both companies over the respective merits of row level or page level locking, with Sybase bosses adamant that R/3 should be reengineered to support page level. But Sybase's decline in 1996 has meant that the importance of a product its database has diminished considerably.
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