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It's not about technical merit or cost - it's about service contracts.

I was a Sybase point person for years at a fortune 50 medical devices enterprise company (we had revenues of well over $1B annually on devices running Sybase dbs). There were dozens of bugs/issues I found that I pushed up the chain to an engineer and had special patches turned around within 48 hours, sometimes even hours.

Before I left that job I started playing around with Rails and mentioned MySQL and Postgres for a potential greenfield project. I was told it would be fine for internal use but no way, no how were they going to deploy any software without that kind of parachute based on economic leverage.

But you can pay for this level of service for PostgreSQL too, there are a bunch of companies which offer it, and I bet you can get it for a fraction of the price you would buy the same service for from Oracle or Microsoft. So this seems to me to mostly stem for a poor understanding of open source.

Some years ago - never mind how long precisely -I was one of the engineers at Sybase who would have produced that EBF patch for you. More recently I do the same sort of thing for clients running Postgresql. I have worked on the code of both db servers, been involved in bug hunting and fixing as well as support escalation for both, and interacted directly with users and developers of both. If my life depended on a medical device, with a choice of one running Sybase and one running Postgresql, I would choose Postgresql, in a heartbeat (so to speak).

FWIW, there's several firms providing such services for PostgreSQL too. At $previous_company others and I, as a PostgreSQL committers/contributors, provided escalation exactly for such cases. I know they, and others still provide such services. (Not naming names right here, so this doesn't come over as an ad)

Often enough you'll even get similar turn-around times from the community, if you can't (or don't want to) afford such a support contract.

> no way, no how were they going to deploy any software without that kind of parachute based on economic leverage.

Making software work at scale without that economic leverage could never work in theory. It only works in practice.

Those in practice fixed bugs in mysql themselves and had to make it more performance themselves. Which basically means larger development team and more time. The parachute is meant to avoid that expense.

Oh, and those who did it were above oracle in terms of data size making it rational decision too. The calculation is still different for majority of companies.

I've gotten better support out of the Postgres mailing list than I have our of any commercial contract.

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