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Sneak Preview: Quest's Central 5.5

A database administrator has enough to handle in supporting a single database platform. Supporting heterogeneous platforms means more challenges and requires a knowledge of multiple toolsets and languages. Quest Software's Quest Central 5.5 carries on the product's heritage of helping database admins manage multiple tasks with a common workflow across various platforms, taking some of those added challenges off the administrator's plate.


Good

• Rich set of tools for managing tasks across database platforms
• Quick access to vital performance information

• Standardized interface for most tools


Bad


• Some error messages could be improved
• Not every tool is completely integrated into the package

• Optimized SQL statements not always as intuitive as originals


quest central 5.5, $1,995 per server, Quest Software, (949) 754-8000, www.quest.com

Tool Suite

Quest Central is available for IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle and Sybase database management systems. Most of Quest Central's tools support Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle, but IBM's DB2 is well-represented, too. Sybase is the least supported of the four.

I put the tools through their paces using our Green Bay, Wis., NWC Inc. business applications lab, taking advantage of the lab's Oracle9i corporate database. Click here for more on our live 24/7 production environment and lab.