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InfoQ Homepage News AWS Announces the General Availability and Open Sourcing of Babelfish for PostgreSQL

AWS Announces the General Availability and Open Sourcing of Babelfish for PostgreSQL

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Recently, AWS announced the general availability (GA) of Babelfish for PostgreSQL. With Babelfish for Aurora PostgreSQL, customers can more easily move applications running on Microsoft SQL Server to Amazon Aurora to simplify operations and reduce costs by eliminating the licenses of SQL Server. Furthermore, the Babelfish open-source project is now available.

Almost a year ago, the company introduced Babelfish for PostgreSQL as a preview during the annual re:Invent event, including the promise to make the open-source Babelfish project available under the Apache 2.0 license. Now with the GA, it is available on GitHub. In addition, in a Babelfish for PostgreSQL blog post, the open-source project team stated:

Babelfish is structured in two parts: a patch against community PostgreSQL, which will be submitted for inclusion in future versions of PostgreSQL; and extensions built on top of the patch. You can clone, compile, install, and run Babelfish on your own environments to obtain T-SQL capabilities.

The Babelfish for PostgreSQL capability in Amazon Aurora acts as an SQL Server-compatible end-point for PostgreSQL, making the service PostgreSQL fluent in understanding communication from SQL Server applications i.e., understanding T-SQL and SQL Server wire protocol Tabular Data Stream (TDS) communication protocol. The Support for T-SQL includes the SQL dialect, static cursors, data types, triggers, stored procedures, and functions.


In an AWS News blog post, Sébastien Stormacq, principal developer advocate at AWS, explained the benefits of Babelfish:

Babelfish reduces the risk associated with database migration projects by significantly reducing the number of changes required to the application. When adopting Babelfish, you save on licensing costs of using SQL Server. Amazon Aurora provides the security, availability, and reliability of commercial databases at 1/10th the cost.

In addition, Matt Asay, global head of partner marketing at MongoDB, tweeted:

This is a big deal, and I think the underlying Babelfish code being open source is an even bigger deal. For those who love running SQL Server, this isn't for you. But if you wanted to increase your flexibility/options by moving from SQL Server to Postgres...? Here you go.

And a respondent in a Hacker News thread made the following comment regarding the open-souring of Babelfish:

Adding SQL Server compatibility opens Postgres to new users, use cases, markets. It makes one of the most general-purpose databases to reach even more "purposes."

Currently, Babelfish for Aurora PostgreSQL is generally available in various AWS regions globally supported by Aurora PostgreSQL, and additional regions will come soon. More details on pricing are available on the Amazon Aurora pricing page.

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