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<sigh> Or when the Oracle SCN advances too quickly, causing random systems to refuse connections or crash outright. Just because software is large, supported, and mature doesn't mean it is free of serious design flaws.

[Edit:] Don't get me wrong, Oracle's DBs are serious business; an incredible feat of engineering. If I could afford them I'd probably use them more often. But everything in this business is a cost tradeoff--in licenses, in dev time, in risk.

Aware Postgres is free: it's an excellent database and I've used it successfully (like most of the other tools I've mentioned.) It also has spectacular failure modes; though the only ones I've personally encountered were around vacuuming.

So if these incredibly mature and robust systems are an 'operational nightmare' I'd like to hear what software systems ARE up to your operational standards?

How often did you manage to spectacularly fail PostgreSQL to qualify it an 'operational nightmare'?

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3974403 (reply threshold is high enough for me to post now)

I wonder if NonStop SQL ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NonStop_SQL ) might count..

FYI PostgreSQL is free.

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