November 14, 2005

Ingres memories

The news about Ingres being spun off by Computer Associates brings back a lot of memories. First of all, Ingres (then called Relational Technology Inc.) was one of the centerpieces of my first-ever research trip to the West Coast in April, 1982. Second, the day CA’s acquisition of Ingres closed, Charles Wang (CA’s CEO, of course), called me personally and asked me to consult to CA about their forthcoming product strategy. It was an intense, month-long project, perhaps still the single largest one I’ve ever done.

So with no further ado, here some observations of and about Ingres through the years.

I think I’ll go write about the rest of the story over in the DBMS 2 blog.


11 Responses to “Ingres memories”

  1. DBMS2 — DataBase Management System Services»Blog Archive » So how robust is Ingres? on November 14th, 2005 5:41 am

    […] But how stands the product? Let’s flash back a decade, to when CA bought it. Ingres was a solid general-purpose RDBMS. But it was beginning to fall behind the technology power curve, especially on the data warehousing side. (For more detail, see my Ingres history post over in the Software Memories blog.) And then product development slowed to a crawl. Tony Gaughan, who ran the product for CA before the latest move, claims that they’ve actually done a good job on advancing the product on the OLTP side, perhaps to the point of comparability with Oracle9i, and certainly ahead of MySQL 5.0. I’m inclined to believe him, after applying some reasonable discount factor for expected puffery, in part because this wasn’t a high hurdle to cross. Over the past decade, the main action in high-end DBMS product enhancement has been in data warehousing and nontabular datatypes, not in OLTP. […]

  2. DBMS2 — DataBase Management System Services»Blog Archive » Ingres’s questionable target market on July 15th, 2006 2:18 am

    […] Eric Lai of Computerworld interviewed Roger Burkhardt, new CEO of Ingres, and obviously did a bang-up job of asking him the tough “Who really are your target customers, and why would they buy from you?” questions. The answer, so far as I can tell, is “Large financial institutions writing new RDBMS apps that don’t need up-to-date functionality and don’t want to pay Oracle’s license fees.” Up to a point, that makes sense. Except for the “financial institutions” qualifier, it’s actually pretty obvious. I can’t imagine why any other new users would buy Ingres, which has been ever the bridesmaid, never the bride for the past 20 years. […]

  3. Yvonne on June 15th, 2007 12:54 pm

    I once had the best job ever at the beautiful
    campus at Ingres Ask computers. I was in the
    seminar department overlooking the bay, had the
    best managers ever to work with. I left after 6
    months to be with my husband over seas. I always
    had regrets leaving the company for it was the
    best place to work!!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. 25 facts about Ingres, give or take a couple | DBMS2 -- DataBase Management System Services on February 16th, 2009 4:50 am

    […] member of Ingres staff is John Smedley who has been with us since June of 1987.”  And most of Ingres’ technical staff left after Ingres was acquired by CA, which occurred a few months shy of 15 years ago. Reconciling all that is […]

  5. Ingres history | Software Memories on July 25th, 2010 10:37 pm

    […] of the same information made it into my post here on Ingres history later the same year, but for some reason not all did. Categories: Database management systems, […]

  6. Ingres: Can You Ever Go Back? | Kellblog on May 14th, 2011 8:35 pm

    […] have written the Ingres epitaph. Here is my version. Ingres, in my estimation, failed for the following […]

  7. Oracle’s evolution — overview | Software Memories on October 3rd, 2012 4:17 pm

    […] things. First, Oracle quality was pretty questionable, across the board. Second, as I observed in a post on Oracle’s arch-rival Ingres, Ingres was first to market with new features such as a 4GL or a truly distributed DBMS. Oracle, […]

  8. DBMS acquisitions | Software Memories on April 29th, 2013 6:49 am

    […] Ingres has been acquired three times, and hasn’t accomplished much for any of the acquirers (ASK, Computer Associates, […]

  9. florida department of banking and finance on August 8th, 2013 4:04 am

    ” If “boring” means returning to the basics of relationship banking, strong underwriting and transparent products, he’s right. They may not have made the papers, but these small scale con artists still cheated their victims out of every last penny. The positive news however is that, this crisis has forced NBFCs to improve their operations and strategies.

    Here is my blog; florida department of banking and finance

  10. Abstract datatypes and extensible RDBMS | Software Memories on December 12th, 2015 6:52 am

    […] with Illustra, which was founded by Mike Stonebraker in his first visible commercial effort since Relational Technology Inc./Ingres. A lot of smart people were recruited, including star outside PR person Sabrina […]

  11. Andrew J Pulkrabek on September 21st, 2021 4:59 pm


    This is a big stretch but I am looking for someone that deeply knows Ingres MES. Is there anyone?

    I hope so.


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