Oracle Database 21c has been released with several new features. This includes Blockchain tables, which is a new type of table that only allows insert operations. Other enhancements include a new JSON data type and new SQL Function JSON_TRANSFORM. Oracle has also updated its Database Administrator’s Guide and JSON Developer’s Guide for this database version.
More information about these new features of Oracle Database 21c at its online documentation site.
Oracle also has a free cloud tier option as well as a free entry-level training program: Oracle Learning Explorer.
DB-Engines.com publishes lists of database management systems (DBMS) ranked by category, including:
Extensions for the Microsoft Visual Studio suite of products can be found at marketplace.visualstudio.com. Extensions add support for languages not included in Visual Studio, aid in IDE development, or perform a specific task.
Some current popular extensions are:
Extensions can be free, preview, or paid. Paid extensions are often charged per user per month. Preview extensions are eventually converted to paid extensions. Extensions are either written by Microsoft, third party vendors, or individual developers.
More information can be found at code.visualstudio.com/docs/extensions/overview.
Oracle announced the release of Oracle Database 18c on February 23rd 2018. Oracle decided on a brand new method of numbering database versions so that a major version release is done annually (i.e. version 18 = year 2018). The last database version was 12c prior to this change.
One of the new features in Oracle Database version 12c and later include additional database support for JSON queries.
More information can be found here:
Java is a free widely-used programming language that was originally developed by Sun Microsystems and now managed by Oracle. Java version 10 was recently released on March 20th 2018.
Java versions for Windows, MacOS, Linux, and Solaris can be downloaded from www.java.com/en/download/manual.jsp. Online help for Java is found at www.java.com/en/download/help/.
Two recently detected security flaws currently named “Meltdown” and “Spectre” are causing Apple, Microsoft, Google, Intel, and others to release security updates to fix any potential problem. The flaws potentially affect all recent computers, smartphones, and tablets that use a CPU performance feature called speculative execution. There is no evidence that the flaws have been exploited at this time. The general recommendation is to download updates for all devices.
Current Apple products may have the security flaws with the exception of the Apple Watch. Apple is continuing to work on updates and released a statement at https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT208394.
Microsoft issued guidance for Windows users, SQL Server, Windows Server, and has updated most of its Azure infrastructure and will continue to do so. Security update KB4056890 also updates Internet Explorer and Edge browsers. Microsoft also issued update KB4056892 for various Windows versions but notes that some AMD processor machines to stop working after installing it.
Google recommended that Chrome users should turn on site isolation. Google also responded with these blog posts:
Mozilla is working on updates and a fix is available in Firefox 57.0.4 version.
Amazon has updated its servers already and will continue to do so.
Intel released a statement as well and is releasing updates. It also reported some systems rebooted more frequently after the updates. AMD also released a statement on their CPUs and speculative execution.
Oracle issued updates for MySQL, Java, PeopleSoft and other products that it maintains.
The CERT Vulnerability Notes Database has logged this issue as Vulnerability Note VU#584653.
eWeek reported that Linux 4.15 was released with Meltdown and Spectre patches and that further patches would be made for this issue.
More information can be found at https://spectreattack.com.
Some of the most commonly used free databases include:
Microsoft SQL Server Express Edition only runs on Windows-based PCs, and user database size is limited to 10 GB. This is radically smaller than the paid versions of SQL Server, at 524 petabytes.
MySQL is the popular open source database that is now owned by Oracle. It can run on Linux, Unix, Mac and Windows operating systems. Paid commercial versions with additional support are also available.
Oracle Database Express Edition runs on Windows and Linux operating systems, but the database size is limited. It can be downloaded from here.
Oracle SQL Developer is a free integrated development that makes it easier to administer both paid and free versions of Oracle databases.