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IBM releases Viper database beta

DB2 database, scheduled for completion next year, takes a different approach to handling of XML data.

IBM delivered a beta version on Wednesday of its forthcoming "Viper" DB2 database and said the product will be completed next year. One of the major additions IBM is planning for Viper is improved handling of XML data. XML documents will be stored in the "native" XML data format, rather be reformatted as rows and columns. That will improve the database's performance and make XML data easier to modify, IBM said. Programmers can query DB2 using the XML standard Xquery or traditional SQL (structured query language).

Viper will also give more options for database administrators to "partition," or organize, data across storage devices. IBM said that its Zend Core for DB2 package for writing PHP applications will work with Viper when it comes out.