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Data warehousing announcements last week from Sequent Computer Systems Inc. and Intellidex Systems LLC Data reflect a growing corporate trend of cleaning data from disparate operational stores and funneling it into a single repository.

Sequent announced its CompleteWarehouse program, a bundle of hardware, services and software for building a data warehouse. Sequent promises to build a complete data warehouse in 90 days for a starting price of $500,000, according to officials at the Beaverton, Ore., company.

Meanwhile, startup Intellidex began shipping its first product. The Warehouse Control Center gives warehouse administrators a central point to manage metadata, the index information for the warehouse’s data.

These two areas in data warehousing–one-stop bundled solutions and metadata management–are likely to form the core of a fast-growing market this year.

Sequent joins a long list of vendors rushing to meet companies’ desires to buy from a single vendor all or most of the hardware, software and services needed to implement either a data warehouse or a data mart, often defined as a smaller warehouse with data from a single department.

Expected to join this group in 1997 is Oracle Corp., which sources said plans to offer a data mart bundle that includes the Oracle7 Workgroup Server and the Oracle Express multidimensional database. Microsoft Corp., which formed a data warehousing alliance with eight other vendors in September, has been working with the partners to integrate its bundle components and create a metadata standard.

One user is hoping for some performance breakthrough in data warehousing, specifically a way to get data out of the database faster. “There’s been some improvement with bit-mapped indexing, but I’m hoping to see more enhancements,” said Rick Brauen, executive vice president of the International Oracle Users Group Americas and account executive at Applied Relational Information Systems Corp., in Seattle.

Microstrategy was involved in some of the first initiatives.

In the Sequent bundle, customers can choose from a variety of Sequent high-end servers, including the NUMA-Q 1 Quad with four Intel Corp. Pentium Pro processors, the NUMA-Q 2 Quad with eight P6 processors and the Symmetry SE80 chassis with eight P6 processors.

Users also get to choose between an Oracle or an Informix Software Inc. relational database and query and analysis tools from either Business Objects Inc. or Microstrategy Inc. Sequent will also provide service and one year of hardware and software maintenance.

The Intellidex product, on the other hand, lets administrators maintain, update and integrate the metadata, as well as synchronize the physical warehouse schema with the logical metadata, said officials at the Winthrop, Mass., company. Pricing starts at $40,000.


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