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Microsoft's .Net cozies up to Oracle

Hoping to broaden the appeal of its .Net software plan, the tech giant is improving links between its products and those of its rival.

Microsoft, hoping to broaden the appeal of its .Net software plan, is improving links between its products and those of rival Oracle.

The new connecting software, released Tuesday, will link Microsoft's .Net Framework to Oracle's database software.

The .Net Framework--a crucial piece in Microsoft's .Net Web services software strategy--simplifies and automates many software development tasks and helps software run across multiple servers and computers. Because the .Net Framework has pre-written software code, it can save developers time and eliminate bugs that can occur in building software, Microsoft asserts.

Previously, Microsoft offered a general data-access technology, called ADO.NET, to link Oracle's and other maker's databases into the .Net Framework. The new connector improves data access speed by two or three times, said John Montgomery, group product manager for Microsoft's developer platform division.

"Our customers have a lot of data in Oracle databases, and we're making sure that their experience in getting data through the .Net Framework is fast and easy," Montgomery said.

The new software connector, called .Net Framework Data Provider for Oracle, is available as a free download on Microsoft's MSDN developer Web site. The software giant already offers a similar connector for its SQL Server database and is considering providing one for IBM's DB2 database software, Montgomery said.