Sidebar: Where XML Databases Make Sense

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Consider a native XML database when:

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XML data can be structured in a stable, well-accepted schema.

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XML documents must be kept in their original form for auditing or archiving.

Consider an XML-enabled relational database when:

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It's hard to precisely define the XML schemas you will use.

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Investing in third-party integration tools is cost-prohibitive.

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The underlying relational data must be stored in its original format for long periods.

Consider third-party integration tools when:

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The data being shared is critical enough to justify the expense.

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You must integrate multiple data sources such as SQL, flat file and text into a common XML schema.

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You can't wait for relational database vendors to provide such capabilities themselves.

Scheier is a Computerworld contributing writer. Contact him at rscheier@charter.net.

Copyright © 2003 IDG Communications, Inc.

  
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