Hi, Got a question here that may sound stupid but... I don't know Oracle, though I heard of it as the most powerful database out here. What is the difference between Oracle and, say, MySQL, and what makes it more powerful?
Well, you need to be clear on what you mean by "powerful".
Oracle is very hugely featureful; working with it has been my full-time job for a few years now, and I know about most of the major features at a high level, but have actually used a very few. For example, my company has no need for "multi-master replication", a feature wherein multiple databases synchronize changes with each other, often across wide geographic distances (e.g. so that the ATMs in Chicago have the same account balances as the ATMs in Los Angeles). Oracle also has some powerful packages such as for text indexing and one for managing geographic or spatial data.
Oracle is also designed for very high concurrency; all databases eventually suffer slower and slower repsonse times as more transactions are processed, but Oracle can handle a higher degree of parallelism than many of the other databases I'm familiar with before response time degrades, and it degrades slower. However, for low-to-medium concurrency, other databases are competitive; in fact, for single user/single connection, some other databases were faster (last time I checked, about 18 months ago).
Oracle also has good support, which I find to be pretty powerful... [ March 15, 2006: Message edited by: stu derby ]