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March 21, 2012
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Firebird SQL Project Newsletter, Issue 3
Editorial

In the editorial for the 3d issue of Firebird SQL newsletter we'd like to draw your attention to the upcoming Firebird 3. Firebird Project needs more testers for Firebird 3, and even if you are short in time, you can help Firebird with very simple quick test - download Firebird 3, make backup backup/restore of your current Firebird database and try to work with it.

Firebird 3 snapshots (as well as current development snapshots for 2.5.2 and older releases) are available here:
http://www.firebirdsql.org/en/snapshot-builds/

To report your findings, please use Firebird Tracker: http://tracker.firebirdsql.org (don’t forget to search it for the similar problem).

Community News Index (www.firebirdnews.org)

The news below was collected from FirebirdNews site. You can periodically visit the site or subscribe to its RSS feed to keep up to date in almost real-time with all the news coming from the Firebird community.

Community News

[March 20, 2012] Node.js Firebird driver 0.0.9 is released (tagged)

Here is the download page and you can check the Commit History for interesting changes (new features)and fixes (memory leaks , utf-8 char fields encoding handling).
  • Fix for slda improper init
  • Fixed memory leak for situation when single connection was used several times for several async queries, it also was making server to eat memory
  • Fix to stream for char fields in UTF encoding
  • Added async transaction start
  • One fix to allow run execute procedure (and tests were added)

[March 20, 2012] Firebird ODBC driver 2.0.1 released

I have built Firebird ODBC driver 2.0.1 release today. I have uploaded all files into sourceforge area.

All changes you can look in the file — changes-v20.log.

Regards,
Alexander Potapchenko

[March 17, 2012] Firebird roadmap has been updated

From Dmitry Yemanov:
The project roadmap has been updated a bit. The change is to boost the v2.1.5 and v2.5.2 releases at the cost of slightly delaying the v3.0 Alpha release.

Firebird 2.1.4 was released exactly one year ago, so now it's a promised time for v2.1.5. It has 53 bugs fixed and no critical issues remaining unresolved. Firebird 2.5.1 was released more than 5 months ago and the expected release date for v2.5.2 is approaching the next month. It has 45 issues resolved up-to-date and a few more are in the pipeline. So it makes a lot of sense to release them sooner rather than later.

The v3.0 Alpha release will be going through the preparation stage while all three release candidates (v2.0.7, v2.1.5, v2.5.2) are being field tested, so it's likely to appear shortly after the aforementioned releases, in the second quarter.

Thanks for your understanding.

[March 17, 2012] Generic thoughts about the Firebird network performance

Dmitry Yemanov wrote a series of articles related to Firebird network performance:
  • First article is: Generic thoughts about the network performance
  • Second article is: Protocol packets and buffers
  • And the last one is: Records batching.

[March 16, 2012] Lazarus 0.9.30.4 released and is now based on Free Pascal Compiler 2.6.0

The Lazarus team is glad to announce the 0.9.30.4 release. This release is based on fpc 2.6.0.

[March 16, 2012] Database Workbench 4.2.2 released

Upscene Productions is proud to announce the next version of the popular multi-DBMS development tool: "Database Workbench 4.2.2 Pro". For more information, see here.

Click here for the full list of changes in v4.2.2
Click here for the full list of changes in v4.2.1

Click here for the full list of changes in v4.2.0
Don't forget to take advantage of our 20% St.Patrick's Day Weekend Discount!

The free Lite Editions will be released next week.

Database Workbench supports:
  • Borland InterBase (6.x-XE)
  • Firebird (1.x, 2.x)
  • MS SQL Server/MSDE (7, 2000, 2005, 2008, MSDE 1 & 2, SQL Express)
  • MySQL 4.x, 5.x
  • Oracle Database (8i, 9i, 10g, 11g)
  • Sybase SQL Anywhere (9, 10, 11 and 12)
  • NexusDB (3.0 and up)
You like this news? Twitter it! Share it! Blog about it!

[March 15, 2012] Free Pascal full text index/searcher classes committed in Lazarus svn

ХудожникMichael Van Canneyt announced his full text indexer project:
I've committed a file/database indexing and search engine, fpindexer, to SVN.

It was developed by Darius Blaszijk, with help from me. One of the planned uses is to create searchable documentation. I've also (in a private project) used it to implement full-text search on a database that doesn't support that natively.

[March 15, 2012] Django south fork with support for firebird was merged into main trunk (original project)

News via Maximiliano Robaina and here is the patch. To check more about the project you can check it's homepage.

[March 14, 2012] Time Track is a program written in Lazarus and tiopf to allow people to track projects (with Firebird backend)

See the lazarus full thread and you can clone the git repository.

It's a small app that sits in the tray, and can be used to manage project time. If there is interest, I can donate it to the Lazarus community. It also serves as a nice example of how to program Lazarus and tiOPF.

It also keeps a todo list and a list of interruptions. (the helpdesk walks in and out of my office, which I started tracking to prove that this practice costs me 1.5 hours a day.)

I posted the project at http://www.freepascal.org/~michael/timetrack.zip

You'll need tiOPF and a database server. I use (and recommend) Firebird, but changing it to something else takes about 2 lines of code.

The included time.sql file creates the database.

[March 13, 2012] ANN: FB TraceManager V2.5.1 + New Screencasts available

Upscene Productions is proud to announce V2.5.1 of FB TraceManager, a professional environment to monitor, profile, trace and optimize Firebird databases.

More information on the new release is available here: http://www.upscene.com/displaynews.php?item=20120313

This release extends the per-database monitoring capabilities with database statistics (data/index pages and record version information) monitoring. Adds support for ODS 11.1 (Firebird 2.1) monitoring tables and several other improvements and fixes. In combination with the Trace API, this is a powerful and integrated toolset to optimize and tune your Firebird server, database and client application even further.

There are also the following new screencasts available:

More information on the product is available in the FB TraceManager section on our website, including an edition comparison sheet, webcasts etc.: http://www.upscene.com/go/?go=fbtm


[March 12, 2012] "Hopper for Firebird", beta 2 released

Upscene Productions announces the 2nd public beta of: "Hopper a Stored Code Debugger".

This release fixes several issues as reported by you, our users, and introduces Firebird 3 Stored Functions support.
For more information and a trial download, see the news @ Upscene Productions, pricing information is available.

You like this news? Twitter it! Share it! If you'd like to blog about it, contact us!

[March 09, 2012] Firebird 2.07 RC

The Firebird Project team is happy to announce that the v2.0.7 release candidate kits for Linux, Windows and Mac OS X platforms are ready for testing.

The download page: http://www.firebirdsql.org/en/firebird-2-0-7-rc1/

Enjoy the testing and please don't hesitate to report the found regressions (if any) in the Firebird-Devel list or in the bug tracker.

Regards,
Dmitry

[March 02, 2012] The Firebird Book: a Reference for Database Developers Edition II (Beta) is now available

The Firebird Book: a Reference for Database Developers Edition II (Beta) is now availble directly from IBPhoenix in electronic format on the March 2012 Edition of the Developer DVD. It covers Firebird up to Firebird V2.5.
 
If you buy a copy of the early version, you will have automatic accessto updated versions as they are released.If you have a subscription to the IBPhoenix Developer DVD you will automatically recieve your copy via post shortly.

www.ibphoenix.com

[February 29, 2012] Philippe Makowski finished the port of FDB (Firebird Driver) to Python 3

Philippe Makowski wrote on google plus:
I finished the port of FDB to Python 3 all tests seems ok next step: merge into FDB upstream
You can grab it there: https://github.com/pmakowski/fdb/tags (tag is v0.1) git repo: https://github.com/pmakowski/fdb

[February 28, 2012] Timeout records Feature request

For several years now, I'm yearning for a feature that I think that all SQL based databases that I know are missing, and throw it back to the program side.

The feature I wish to have is a way to set a specific record to be valid for only a known period of time, and when the time is up, I'll be able to do something.

In this post I'll try to create some sort of general specification for such feature, and I hope that there will be many comments on this that will benefit everyone, and I hopeful, that they will make the idea better.

[February 28, 2012] Upscene Productions announces "Hopper", a stored code debugger for Firebird

Upscene Productions is proud to announce the first beta of a new tool: "Hopper a Stored Code Debugger".

This beta is available for Firebird, after it's version 1 release, an InterBase Edition will be made available soon, a MySQL Edition will follow later this year.
For more information and a trial download, see the news @ Upscene Productions, pricing information is available.

March 1 Update! New installer uploaded to fix a problem with missing syntax highlighting files.

You like this news? Twitter it! Share it! If you'd like to blog about it, contact us!

[February 27, 2012] FDB python driver implements services (Python 3 only for the moment)

Philippe Makowski announced that he just committed new files in github fdb repository.

He implemented firebird services api for Python 3 driver, this driver version doesn't work yet for Python 2, and it is only the first step.

Certainly some improvements would be welcome.You can see diff here.

The hope is that he will start working on fbcore soon  

[February 26, 2012] Firebird: choosing an owner for database deployment

Like most users when I started using Firebird I connected using the SYSDBA username. That is the default username for server administration: every server has it.

It looked like a good idea because I did not have to care with users management, but I have now realized that using SYSDBA for database development can cause problems when the database is deployed to the customer's computer.

Read the rest on Accounting++ blog.

[February 23, 2012] Database .NET 6.0 released

 Hi! I am happy to announce the new major release of Database .NET 6.0 Database .NET is an innovative, powerful and intuitive multiple database management tool, you can Browse objects, Design tables, Edit rows, Export data and run Queries with a consistent interface. A standalone tool that does not require installation.

Click here for the full list of changes in Ver 6.0 (2012/02/23)

Features:
Supports:
  • Firebird Super/Classic/Embedded Server (*.gdb;*.fdb;*.*)
  • SQL Server 2000/2005/2008/2008R2/2012
  • SQL Server CE 3.1/3.5/4.0 (*.sdf;*.*)
  • SQL Server Express and LocalDB
  • SQL Azure
  • SQLite (*.db;*.db3;*.sqlite;*.*)
  • MySQL
  • PostgreSQL
  • Oracle
  • IBM DB2
  • IBM Informix
  • Sybase ASE
  • MS Access 97-2003 (*.mdb;*.*)
  • MS Access 2007-2010 (*.accdb;*.*)
  • MS Excel 97-2003 (*.xls;*.*)
  • MS Excel 2007-2010 (*.xlsx;*.*)
  • dBase IV (*.dbf)
  • FoxPro (*.dbc)
  • Data Sources(OLE DB) (*.udl;*.*)
  • ODBC DSN(Data Source Name) (*.dsn;*.*)
  • OData
All-In-One, Free, Simple and Standalone (no install).
 Supported Platforms: Windows All (x86/x64)
 Requires: .NET Framework 4.0 or higher
You're welcome to download the Database .NET v4 right now at: Download: DatabaseNet4.zip (7.03MB)

[February 23, 2012] New IBExpert Version 2012.02.21 available

News from ibexpert page New Data import, Extract metadata and Search metadata features, new IBEBlock functions, and more New features include:
  1. Data import: now you can convert Boolean values to smallint values when importing data into a new table. You can also now automatically generate simple column names for the target table.
  2. To-Do list: now you can duplicate To-Do items.
  3. Extract metadata: New Always include COLLATE option.
  4. Search metadata: New Do not search in comments option.
  5. New IBEBlock functions and features.
  6. Many small bug fixes and minor improvements.
Since version 2011.12.01 IBExpert now uses the Firebird database and Firebird Embedded 2.5 to store all IBExpert data (registered databases, query histories etc.) by default. In previous versions by default IBExpert stored this data in the IBExpert.stg file and the user was able to change this manually in Options / Environment Options / User Database. Working with IBExpert.stg is still possible (for example, if you disable the User Database manually), but you will get a warning every time you start IBExpert, and we will not support this method in the future.
  • The Customer version (setup_customer.exe) can be downloaded here (for customers with valid license keys). You can also download the customer version in theIBExpert KG Download Center. If you can not see it there, you might have used a different e-mail in the customer registration process or your account has already expired.
  • The Trial version (setup_trial.exe) can be downloaded here (45 day test version) or from the IBExpert KG Download Center.
  • The free Personal version (setup_personal.exe) can be downloaded here (version with limited features free of charge).

[February 22, 2012] We are currently preparing to release Firebird 2.0.7

From Paul Beach's Blog:
We are currently preparing to release Firebird 2.0.7, since I take responsinility for the Mac builds, I did a 2.0.7 build on MacOSX 10.7 using the development tools installed by XCode 4.1 (gcc 4.2.1 etc). I set up the relevant environment variables for this older 32bit only build CFLAGS, CXXFLAGS, LD_FLAGS and also set the MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET=10.4. The builds completed without any problems, some simple tests on MacOSX 10.7 showed no problems.

Now — Imagine my surprise when Philippe told me that when he tried to QA the builds on MacOSX 10.5 we got this error on SuperServer startup.

[February 22, 2012] The bleak future of SSD drives

The technology trends we have described put SSDs in an unusual position for a cutting-edge technology: SSDs will continue to improve by some metrics (notably density and cost per bit), but everything else about them is poised to get worse.

This makes the future of SSDs cloudy: While the growing capacity of SSDs and high IOP rates will make them attractive in many applications, the reduction in performance that is necessary to increase capacity while keeping costs in check may make it difficult for SSDs to scale as a viable technology for some applications.

Not good news, specially for those thinking about using the for critical work, like database servers.

Read full research here (in English). Short article in portuguse here.

[February 16, 2012] ANN: FB TraceManager V2.5.0 with per-database monitoring released!

Upscene Productions is proud to announce V2.5.0 of FB TraceManager, a specialized tool to continuously monitor your Firebird database via the Firebird 2.5 Trace API.

More information on the new release is available here: http://www.upscene.com/displaynews.php?item=20120215
Beside the Trace API stuff, V2.5.0 now adds per-database monitoring including:
  • Database header page monitoring
  • Full Firebird monitoring (MON$) tables integration
In combination with the Trace API, this is a powerful and integrated toolset to optimize and tune your Firebird server, database and client application even further.

Read more about per-database monitoring here: http://www.upscene.com/documentation/fbtm2/database_monitoring.htm

More information on the product is available in the FB TraceManager section on our website, including an edition comparison sheet, webcasts etc.: http://www.upscene.com/go/?go=fbtm

The full product documentation is also available online: http://www.upscene.com/documentation/fbtm2/index.html

[February 16, 2012] Database Workbench 4.2.1 released

Upscene Productions is proud to announce the next version of the popular multi-DBMS development tool: "Database Workbench 4.2.1 Pro". This release includes the FREE Lite versions for InterBase, Firebird and MySQL. For more information, see here.
For a video explaining how to debug a Firebird Stored Procedure, click here.

Click here for the full list of changes in v4.2.1
Click here for the full list of changes in v4.2.0

Database Workbench supports:
  • Borland InterBase (4.x-XE) 
  • Firebird (1.x, 2.x)
  • MS SQL Server/MSDE (7, 2000, 2005, 2008, MSDE 1 & 2, SQL Express)
  • MySQL 4.x, 5.x
  • Oracle Database (8i, 9i, 10g, 11g)
  • Sybase SQL Anywhere (9, 10, 11 and 12)
  • NexusDB (3.0 and up)

[February 15, 2012] Kitto A framework for creating data-driven web applications with Delphi and ExtJS

Kitto allows to create Rich Internet Applications based on a data model that can be mapped onto any database. The client-side part uses ExtJS (through the ExtPascal library) to create a fully AJAX application, allowing you to build standard and advanced data-manipulating forms in a fraction of the time.

Kitto is aimed at Delphi developers that need to create web application without delving into the intricacies of HTML, CSS, Javascript or learning to use a particular library such as ExtJS, yet it allows access to the bare metal if required.

Kitto includes a database-agnostic data-access layer, allowing to create applications that work on any database engine and port applications between database engines.

A Kitto application is described in a set of easily maintained YAML files, keeping definitions abstract and declarative and allowing for future extensions. Business rules are enforced either declaratively or through small javascript fragments on the client, or in Delphi code on the server.

Kitto was designed by Nando Dessena and its development is sponsored by Ethea, which uses Kitto for internal development projects and client work and provides Kitto-related tools, support and development services.

Start here for further information.



The getting started guide can be tested with Firebird and Delphi

 

[February 14, 2012] Piwik port for Firebird

Lester created a port for piwik 1.6, that can be downloaded at following url: http://lsces.co.uk/hg/piwik/archive/FBPort.tar.gz

His progress can be tracked on firebird-php list (you can give the feedback on the same thread.

[February 14, 2012] ANN: Firebird Data Sync 12.2 released

Firebird Data Sync
SQL Maestro Group announces the release of Firebird Data Sync 12.2, a powerful and easy-to-use tool for Firebird database contents comparison and synchronization.

Major features of the new version include comparison of database views and subsets of data, automatic checking of mappings, and exporting the comparison results to 18 file formats including Excel and HTML. There are also versions for other DBMS (MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite, Oracle, etc). Read full press-release.

[February 14, 2012] The Document Foundation Announces LibreOffice 3.5: The Best Free and Libre Office Suite Ever

The Document Foundation announces LibreOffice 3.5, the third major release of “the best free office suite ever”, which shows to end users the improvements derived from the development strategy adopted since September 2010.

LibreOffice 3.5 derives from the combined effort of full time hackers the largest group of experienced OOo code developers and volunteer hackers, coordinated by the Engineering Steering Committee.

Related to Firebird there is the ODBC linux 64 bug killed.

Also the db with no bool support (Firebird 2.5) issue is done.

[February 14, 2012] Firebird Embedded and LibreOffice is the killer combination to scale from a single file application to a client/server approach

Quote of the day is via this thread on Firebird Java Group:
It would be good if Jaybird 2.3 could be used with embedded and OpenOffice / LibreOffice because the feature set in Firebird is obviously much, much greater than HSQL or the proposed SQLite replacement.

The ability to create a zeroconf, transportable data file is of interest to me (along with using iReport to generate printouts from that file).
 
OT: Personally I think that Jaybird / Firebird / Firebird embedded is the way to go for LibreOffice instead of the very limited SQLite. The ability to upscale from a single file application to a client/server one is a killer.

[February 11, 2012] New FlameRobin 0.9.3.2216 builds for Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric) and Debian Sid

Flamerobin 0.9.3 revision 2216 binary snapshots for Debian Sid and Ubuntu Oneiric are ready to install and test. Enjoy, and please be sure to report any bugs, regressions or suggestions on flamerobin-devel list.

[February 11, 2012] Firebird on large big iron servers: 512G-2TB of ram 100.000 concurrent users

We run Firebird to power larger systems (for 12 government agencies and 3 banks). It has approximately 100000 end users multiplexed through 2500 (max) pooled connections. Here is the snapshot of nearly idle system at night:
top - 03:20:39 up 10 days, 8:39, 7 users, load average: 2.08, 1.87, 2.15
Tasks: 1732 total, 1 running, 1730 sleeping, 1 stopped, 0 zombie
Cpu(s): 11.9%us, 4.0%sy, 0.0%ni, 83.5%id, 0.0%wa, 0.0%hi, 0.6%si, 0.0%st
Mem: 529177288k total, 378587600k used, 150589688k free, 761532k buffers
Swap: 1073741816k total, 130612k used, 1073611204k free, 333281232k cached

[root mvv bin]# ps aux | grep -c rdb_inet_server
719

Database is on a small FusionIO drive:
mount: /dev/fiob on /mnt/db type ext2 (rw,noatime)
df -h:
/dev/fiob 587G 423G 135G 76% /mnt/db

Also later he mentions that he uses 2TB of RAM machines
Chipsets that can handle 2 TB of RAM and 8 CPU sockets (<=80 cores, <=160 threads) are the largest "commodity" type hardware available now. These are the largest systems we worked on. 8 GB of lock manager space per database should be just enough for them. With the allocation error check in place we'll have this problem solved for the next year or two until larger systems become common.

[February 11, 2012] Tpda3 (Tiny Perl Database Application 3) is released

For those who like classic desktop Firebird database applications and wxPerl, the first public release of Tpda3 is out.
 

[February 10, 2012] Phacil is seeking a Project Manager that has experience with Firebird in Arlington, VA for an important US Government customer

Shirin Lee posted a job: Phacil is seeking a Project Manager that has experience with Firebird in Arlington, VA. To learn more and check this job post.

I almost wanted to say that this is spam on the group but at a second look saw the list of
interesting customers for The Company also with a little help from google i found the job post
Phacil has an anticipated need for a Project Manager (Senior) for an important government customer in Sterling or Arlington, VA.

Clearance Requirements
Must have at least a Secret clearance

Scope
Experience project managing large IT projects including cost, schedule and performance management is required. Experience managing the execution of project tasks, Risk Management, Quality Control (QCP) and communication management are required.

Qualifications

Must have previous Task Manager/Project Manager experience of at least 5 years
Bachelor’s Degree with Masters Preferred in Computer Science or Information Technology
PMP highly preferred
Experience managing the system administration, training and support for the Firebird database management system is required. Conducted trainings on FIREBIRD system with users.
Experience with PMP PMBOK/PDCA, ITIL v3 foundations service delivery a plus Firebird database software and tools technology experience required

[February 02, 2012] Firebird .Net Provider Improved "weekly" builds

I've improved the http://netprovider.cincura.net/. It's now returning version build from latest SVN sources (so it's actually snapshot builds now). Again could be unstable, not a good idea to put it to production.

PS: It's reading the build from my internal CI server, that is really old and really not very powerful. Please try not to push it to the limit.

Jiri {x2} Cincura (x2develop.com founder) http://blog.cincura.net/ | http://www.ID3renamer.com

[February 02, 2012] Ruby driver and RoR adapter Rubyfb v0.6.2 released

Ruby driver and RoR adapter Rubyfb v0.6.2 released.

[February 02, 2012] New Book On Qt And Firebird Database Available In EPUB Format

Logikal Solutions is proud to announce “The Minimum You Need to Know About Qt and Databases” has been released in EPUB format as part of “The Minimum You Need to Know” book series. Currently it is available at Barnes & Nobel as well as Kobo. It should also be available
shortly at the Sony eBook store.



Barnes & Nobel


Kobo

This book shows the nitty-gritty of developing with Qt using PostgreSQL, Firebird, and SQLite databases. It also shows the developer how to create BOTH console and GUI Qt applications. Readers are shown how to do development with Qt Designer, Qt Creator, QDevelop, Monkey Studio, and Eclipse under KUbuntu. Like most of the titles in this series this book attempts to teach by repeatedly developing the same application with each new tool set so developers who understand one or only "some" of a given tool set can quickly come up to speed by looking at the differences each tool forces on the application.

Qt is an amazing application framework currently owned and supported by Nokia. While there are many books available discussing various aspects of the GUI, most give at most a single chapter to database access. This book is designed to cover that topic in depth. The vast majority of applications written today will need to communicate with a database in some fashion, even if it is just to store user entered data locally. Currently there are no books on the market providing any significant quantity of information about how to do it are more importantly just how different your application will be for each database engine.

"The Minimum You Need to Know" is an award winning technical book series written by Roland Hughes and published by Logikal Solutions. Please visit The Minimum You Need to Know for information about other titles in this technical book series.

[February 01, 2012] FBDataGuard 2.7: major update of Firebird moniotring and database protection tool

FBDataGuard was just updated to the version 2.7. Download it from your IBSurgeon Deploy Center account or get trial version from the product page.

Please schedule upgrade of your production system (please do upgrade carefully and plan all your actions).

Changes in version 2.7 include support for modern browsers in FBDataGuard web-console, fixed bugs and improved performance.

FBDataGuard is intended to be automatic maintainer and administrator assistant for important Firebird databases, especially at remote locations and being bundled with Firebird-based software.

FBDataGuard

FBDataGuard is designed to provide stability and confidence in business-critical Firebird databases:
  • prevent outages and corruptions,
  • reduce downtime and performance problems,
  • monitor database health and automate maintenance,
  • provide alerts and recommendations.
Also it can be used for advanced database recovery of protected database in case of heavy corruption (e.g., caused by hardware failure).

[February 01, 2012] Firebird case study from Wobe-systems GmbH

New Firebird case study from wobe-systems GmbH, German software development house for the graphics industry.

"...A production database of 100 GB and more containing BLOBs is nothing unusual at our customers sites..."

".. Firebird SQL server is at the core of our system helping our customers swift and safely through their daily work. Equipped with near zero administration and ample possibilities of scalability Firebird SQL database offers an operational reliability that does meet the requirements of industrial and time critical applications."

Read full article here.


FDB release 0.7.1 is out:
This is mostly bugfix release. The main notable difference is that now FDB works on Windows (0.7.0 wasn't) and is operational "enough" to power the Firebird QA tools. So the forthcoming Firebird 2.0.7 release (scheduled for February) will be tested using FDB.
 
News via Pavel Cisar Google+ Page

[January 31, 2012] InfoQ: Q&A with Jiri Cincura of the Firebird Database Project about the ADO.NET provider , ORM ,EF ...

Jiri Cincura was recently interviewed for InfoQ article Q&A with Jiri Cincura of the Firebird Database Project. We touched Firebird, ADO.NET, O/RMs, Entity Framework etc. If you have any questions, feel free to ask.

Update
: The article seems to be retracted for the moment. Don't panic we asked why and investigate the cause (see the comments section).

Here
is the full text from Google cache

We recently spoke with Jiri Cincura of the Firebird database project.

InfoQ: Can you tell us briefly about yourself and your role in creating the ADO.NET provider for Firebird?


Jiri: Currently I'm project lead for the ADO.NET provider for Firebird project. And actually only one active right now. I'm doing majority of development (although there are some worth contributions) and all the stuff around, like testing, releases, issue tracker watching, replying in mailing list etc.

InfoQ: And for the benefit of our readers who are unfamiliar with it, who would you describe Firebird?

Jiri: Firebird is a fully featured RDBMS, with small footprint and zero maintenance. It supports all standard features you'd expect - stored procedures, triggers, views, UDFs, monitoring, online (remote) backup/restore etc. There's also so called Embedded version, that just one main DLL and few supporting it, without install or need to copy something somewhere. You'll just reference this DLL and you have all the features of standalone (network) Firebird in your application. And of course, whole Firebird is completely free (and open source).

InfoQ: In the SQL Server world we have to deal with a serious trade-off. If you choose to use the embedded version, SQL Server Compact, then you lose the ability to use a lot of features. Is there any sort of tradeoff like that for Firebird or do you really get access to the whole feature set either way?

Jiri: Absolutely not. Firebird Embedded is fully featured as "big" server. It's even built from same sources, only with different output (DLL file). You can use everything Firebird offers. And not only that. Migration is super easy. You'll just take the database file and put it to some place where server can access it and you're done.

InfoQ: So what's involved in writing a ADO.NET provider?

Jiri: It's actually pretty simple. You're fixing bug, moving with features as Firebird server moves further and improving stability and code itself. Cleanup, refactoring. With all that you're trying to keep backward compatibility and not introduce some breaking changes. And on the other hand you're moving along with .NET and ADO.NET (i.e. Entity Framework) world and other data access providers and components.

InfoQ: DId you also work on the Entity Framework provider? If so, what's your opinion of the ORM?


Jiri: Yes I did. I worker on provider since early versions around 2007. I believe Firebird was first 3rd party ADO.NET provider to have working Entity Framework support (and it's open source). I think Entity Framework is good ORM, comparable to others, like LLBLGen Pro or NHibernate. It's not here that long but still very good. I don't think anybody can say i.e. NHibernate is best because ... Every project needs something more and something less. And every ORM (including Entity Framework) has strong points and places where there's room for improvement.

InfoQ: What areas in particular do you think the .NET-based ORMs need to improve upon?

Jiri:
There's mismatch between relational world and OOP world, even if you believe ORMs are hiding it, it's there. For simple small applications, this is not a problem. But for a big applications, the ORM needs to be flexible enough to allow really experienced developer hook in and in rare cases when performance is critical or special needs are placed in front of him/her allow to do it own way without creating huge disruption in your code.

InfoQ: If you had more resources available to you (i..e. developers, hardware, etc), what would you like to do with Firebird and .NET that you can't do right now?

Jiri: Provide more seamless experience for .NET developers using Firebird and improve codebase. Move further faster and provide more features, both from Firebird world and (ADO).NET world.

[January 31, 2012] Flamerobin 0.9.3 svn revision 2212 is now uploaded to #debian sid

The flamerobin version 0.9.3 revision 2212 is now in published in debian sid.

[January 31, 2012] Flamerobin 0.9.3 svn revision 2212 is now uploaded to ppa for #ubuntu oneiric

The package is now in ubuntu oneiric ppa.

To install it use
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:mapopa/ppa
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install flamerobin

or if you have already installed
sudo apt-get dist-upgrade.

[January 30, 2012] New python fdb driver works on Python3 (in git repository only)

The new driver fdb is branched in github for Python 3.x (work in progress).

You can check the progress by following this thread on firebird-python list and here is another one.

[January 25, 2012] FirebirdDA: Firebird database adapter for Zope2

ИконописInitial release of Firebird database adapter for Zope2.

[January 24, 2012] Flamerobin New snapshot 0.9.3.2210.* builds

New snapshot builds (SVN revision 2210) for Windows 32 and 64 bits are available on SF.net.

Feedback on field and text delimiter settings for save grid data as CSV file command would be especially welcome.

Thanks
Michael Hieke

[January 23, 2012] What version of Firebird do you use? Poll time

There is a new poll on linkedin about the Firebird versions.

[January 21, 2012] Firebird speed RUBY vs DELPHI vs .NET

I did some comparitions selecting 1000, 10000 and 100000 with Ruby Fb gem, Delphi Fibplus and the FB .NET driver, here is the result:
 
ROWS
RUBY
DELPHI
.NET
1000
0.12
0.47
0.09
10000
0.94
0.48
0.53
100000
10.95
3.79
5.53

The results are on milliseconds, the table is from a production database with 40 fields and about 3 million records, as you can see, native code is still the king, .NET result are quite good, but Ruby is quite dissapointing handling lots of data.

[January 20, 2012] DBInfo new IBSurgeon product

IBSurgeon DBInfo is designed to visualize internal structure's statistics, so administrators or developers can view how much data, index, blob or other kind of information your Firebird or InterBase database stores.

DBInfo is a free tool, download it now: http://ib-aid.com/products/firebird_interbase/monitoring/dbinfo
IBSurgeon DBInfo

More information at IBSurgeon official site.

[January 19, 2012] The trunk of django-firebird was updated with support for django 1.3

The svn trunk of django-firebird was updated with support for django 1.3 Please, feel free to try. Any feedback is welcome.

[January 18, 2012] ANN: django firebird with south support

Maxi Robaina wrote on django-firebird list:
I've a first attempt for support firebird into django-south. You can give a try at https://bitbucket.org/maxirobaina/south Feedback is wellcome.

[January 18, 2012] Delphi and Firebird: Marco Cantu's webinar is now uploaded to Youtube channel

Video uploaded to FirebirdSQL channel on Youtube.

Marco Cantu speaks about best practices and approaches to develop Firebird and Delphi applications with dbExpress framework.

[January 18, 2012] IBReplicator V4.0.8 has been released

For more information read the release notes.

[January 16, 2012] FBClone version 2.1.4 is released (bugfix release)

FBClone v2.1.4 is released.This is a "bugfix release" (field "XxX" not found when used against case sensitive databases.)
FBClone can clone a Firebird database in one shot (instead of backup/restore cycle) and pump data from one database to another with the same structure, it handles metadata / data charset conversion and may be useful to ease database owner change process or to migrate a database between two different firebird versions (eg. 2.1 -> 1.5)

[January 16, 2012] Using Embedded Firebird Database In .Net Projects

This post will show an example of using an embedded firebird database in .NET/C# projects.

[January 16, 2012] The Perfect Database Server: Firebird 2.5.1 And FreeBSD 9

Here is the guide on installing Firebird 2.5.1 from FreeBSD 9 Ports and creating your first test database; also we show you how to install Flamerobin GUI (administration tool) and the PHP driver for it. This was tested on fresh FreeBSD 9 on a kvm-linux virtual machine. Download a compressed snapshot of the Ports Collection into /var/db/portsnap.

# portsnap fetch

Or update it. If you are running Portsnap for the first time, extract the snapshot into /usr/ports:

# portsnap extract

If you already have a populated /usr/ports directory and you are just updating, run the following command instead:

# portsnap update

Enter firebird server ports directory:

# cd /usr/ports/databases/firebird25-server

Compile and install firebird server:

# make -DPACKAGE_BUILDING
# make install

Enable it by adding
firebird_enable="YES"
in /etc/rc.conf.

Start it with:

# /usr/local/etc/rc.d/firebird start

logs and security2.fdb seems to be in /var/db/firebird.

# /usr/local/bin/isql-fb

To create a new database:

SQL> create database "tmp/first_database.fdb;
SQL> connect "/tmp/first_database.fdb" ;
Commit current transaction (y/n)?y

Committing.

Database: "/tmp/first_database.fdb"

SQL>

If you want to create a simple table then insert 1-2 rows and select from it; here is one example:

SQL> CREATE TABLE TEST (ID INT NOT NULL PRIMARY KEY, NAME VARCHAR(20));
SQL> show tables;
TEST
SQL> INSERT INTO TEST VALUES (1, 'John');
SQL> INSERT INTO TEST VALUES (2, 'Joe');
SQL> select * from test;

ID NAME
============ ====================
1 John 2 Joe
To quit the isql-fb console, type quit:

SQL> quit
CON>;

For a good open source GUI admin tool you might check the flamerobin administration tool included in ports repository; it can be installed by a simple:

# cd /usr/ports/databases/flamerobin/ && make install clean

To use firebird with php, you will need the php5 driver:

# cd /usr/ports/databases/php5-interbase/ && make install clean

You can choose to compile php with apache support (I have chosen cli, cgi , and apache support); check it if is enabled with:

# /usr/local/bin/php -m


[January 15, 2012] IBSurgeon Log Viewer 2.0 free tool for viewing and analyzing firebird.log

IBSurgeon Log Viewer is designed to facilitate viewing and analyzing long Firebird and InterBase logs. Many Firebird and Interbase developers and administrators do not pay enough attention to the contents of firebird.log (interbase.log), though there is a lot of useful information, which can help to find and resolve various issues with Firebird/InterBase databases.

Originally Log Viewer was IBSurgeon's internal application, which helped to quickly navigate through very long Firebird and InterBase logs, and in version 2.0 it became mature enough to be released for the community. Download free version from IBSurgeon's site.

Install it and open server’s log (usually it's in C:\Program Files\Firebird\Firebird_n_n\ folder). There are also descriptions for log entries shipped with IBSurgeon Log Viewer:
 
IBSurgeon Log Viewer

Feel free to contact IBSurgeon Support if you see suspicious messages in your logs. Don't forget to attach log to the message!

[January 14, 2012] Ricardo Obregón has updated the Firebird PHP 5.3.9 PDO extension in ArchLinux

You can check his tweet and the package page in ArchLinux:
Just updated #php-pdo-firebird package in #ArchLinux User Repo to connect to @FirebirdSQL from PHP 5.3.9. #Firebird http://t.co/XyeaRJE0
If you find this package useful and want to have it in the community repository, please Vote Up!

[January 14, 2012] How to make an efficient check constraint for an e-mail field in Firebird

Question of the day on Stack Overflow is:
How to make an efficient check constraint for an e-mail field in Firebird (if field value not null)?

[January 12, 2012] Value of particular column from all (some) tables in database dynamically

A question came to me last week. It was simple. Given the column I’d like to query all tables in database for this column (with some condition) and get values back. It was on Firebird so I jumped into system tables and generated query on the fly in execute block (aka anonymous stored procedure).

Read the rest on Jiri Cicura blog.

[January 12, 2012] Trace API session at the ADUG Sydney meeting Wednesday January 18th, 2012

The new Firebird 2.5 Trace API will be the topic of the next ADUG (Australian Delphi User Group) Sydney meeting on Wednesday January 18th, 2012 6pm Sydney time. http://www.adug.org.au/meetings/syd/next_meeting.htm

There will be a live stream via GoToMeeting available. Seats might be limited. Feel free to join.

[January 12, 2012] RemObjects Article: Accessing Firebird Embedded databases from Data Abstract for .NET

This article shows how to use Data Abstract for .NET and Firebird Embedded together (and that it’s no effort at all to do this). All you need is to deploy the needed dll’s and to remember about the x86/x64 compatibility caveat.

[January 11, 2012] PHP 5.3.9 released with relevant PDO Firebird changes

PHP 5.3.9 is released.

Here are the relevant PDO Firebird changes included.

PDO Firebird:
  • Fixed bug #48877 ("bindValue" and "bindParam" do not work for PDO Firebird).
  • Fixed bug #47415 (PDO_Firebird segfaults when passing lowercased column name to bindColumn).
  • Fixed bug #53280 (PDO_Firebird segfaults if query column count less than param count).

[January 10, 2012] Firebird from the beginning

It was just released the first webinar video from the Mind the Bird campaign. The webinar is about the history of Interbase and Firebird, by Ann Harrison.

[January 10, 2012] Firebird 2.5.2 svn snapshot 53775 landed in Debian testing

firebird2.5 (2.5.2~svn+53775.ds4-1) package is now in debian testing. You can check the list of bugs fixed for firebird 2.5.2 (not yet released) in the tracker.

Here is the list of debian changes and fixes:
  • Snapshot from upstream's 2.5 branch, revision 53775 
  • control: note -doc doesn't contain release notes (LP#908963)
  • control: change transitional 2.5-dev package to oldlibs/extra
  • control: -common package is arch:all the last arch-specific bit, ibutil was moved to -server-common
  • -classic.init: provide a status option
  • control: 2.5-dev, -classic-common: depend on the same (source) version of -common-doc

[January 06, 2012] Firebird Roadmap updated for January 2012

This document states the current development activities of the project and establishes the estimated release schedule for the foreseeable future. It's getting periodically updated in order to be in line with the reality.

The project's development resources are currently dedicated to the v2.5 and v3.0 versions, with v2.0 and v2.1 versions being maintained on the regular basis.

As notified earlier, the v1.5.x series is not being released anymore. Firebird 1.5.6 was the last release of that series officially published by the project. However, its codebase may still collect some bugfixes occasionally backported from the newer versions. Any subsequent binary releases, should they be necessary, would be available from IBPhoenix on a commercial basis.

Please pay attention that the v2.0.x series celebrates its sixth anniversary this year. So far the project maintenance practice was to discontinue support for the release series older than five years. Thus please be prepared that the next point release (v2.0.7) could be the last one published by the project in that series.

For more details about the anticipated releases, read on.

[January 05, 2012] ANN: Firebird PHP Generator 11.12 released

Firebird PHP Generator
SQL Maestro Group announces the release of Firebird PHP Generator 11.12, a frontend to generate feature-rich CRUD web applications for your Firebird database. The software comes in both Freeware and Professional editions.

New version introduces security enhancements, powerful data export features, new insertion and editing modes, improved project management and a lot of other new features. There are also versions for other DBMS (MySQL, PostgreSQL, SQLite, Oracle, etc). Read full press-release.
 

[January 05, 2012] Paul Vinkenoog started working on the DML chapter for the 2.5 Language Reference.

ikoniPaul Vinkenoog announced on firebird-docs mailing list:
Hi all,

I'm going to start working on the DML chapter for the 2.5 Language Reference. Hope we can do some good work in 2012.

Happy New Year every one!

[January 05, 2012] Vote for Firebird as Database of the Year 2011 at LinuxQuestions

Vote for Firebird as Database of the Year 2011 at LinuxQuestions (must be registered user with at least one post) We must Crush MySQL, MariaDB, Drizzle

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/2011-linuxquestions-org-members-choice-awards-95/

[January 02, 2012] Free Pascal Compiler 2.6.0 has been released and adds many post-Delphi 7 language features and adds or improves the support for various platforms

Free Pascal Compiler 2.6.0 has been released and adds many post-Delphi 7 language features and adds or improves the support for various platforms also there are Firebird related fixes to the Database Components.

[January 01, 2012] Firebird 2.5.2 svn snapshot 53775 landed in Debian unstable

firebird2.5 (2.5.2~svn+53775.ds4-1) package is now in debian unstable.

Here is the list of debian changes and fixes
  • Snapshot from upstream's 2.5 branch, revision 53775
  • control: note -doc doesn't contain release notes (LP#908963)
  • control: change transitional 2.5-dev package to oldlibs/extra
  • control: -common package is arch:all the last arch-specific bit, ibutil was moved to -server-common
  • -classic.init: provide a status option
  • control: 2.5-dev, -classic-common: depend on the same (source) version of -common-doc

[January 01, 2012] Official FirebirdSQL video channel launched

Official FirebirdSQL video channel launched and contains the prensentations from the Firebird Conference 2011.

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