Is Litware on SSDS appropriate for ISV's?

Topics: Architecture, Business model, Datamodel, Security, Setup
May 12, 2008 at 1:12 PM

I think that I can see two possible issues here:-

1.  I have tried to get an account to SSDS (Invitation Only/Limited Beta) and I have been waiting several weeks.  I currently have no indication when my trial account may be ready, it could take several months.  Is this because I am in the UK and must wait for a UK SSDS host to be provisioned?   Until I can gain access to SSDS onlone services, it seems that I cannot use the new release of Litware.  This highlights a worring dependancy (Cant use Litware without SSDS).


2. An Independent Software Vendor (ISV) often seeks to remain as 'independent' as possible, both from a commercial standpoint (e.g. no larger company ownership) and from a technical (e.g. no proprietry dependencies on languages or technology) standpoint.  If the latest version of Litware means that the ISV is 'dependent' upon the online (and proprietry) SSDS, this compromises the 'independent' element.  The ISV will be reluctant to develop a system based upon a service, which for whatever reason (e.g. Merger/Rationalisation, failure to make profit etc etc.), can be 'switched off' at any point in time.  Where would such an event leave the ISV and its considerable investment in the application/platform?  Also, from a commercial point of view, if the ISV has an exit strategy involving selling the software and business, the value that a buyer is willing to pay may be much less, if the system is seen to have a dependency upon another system (i.e. SSDS) over which the buyer and seller have absolutely no control.  Is it possible to eliminate this dependancy by running SSDS locally using SQL Server, like it is possible to run SSRS etc?


Rgds

Coordinator
Jun 12, 2008 at 4:24 PM


Northlondonguy wrote:

I think that I can see two possible issues here:-

1.  I have tried to get an account to SSDS (Invitation Only/Limited Beta) and I have been waiting several weeks.  I currently have no indication when my trial account may be ready, it could take several months.  Is this because I am in the UK and must wait for a UK SSDS host to be provisioned?   Until I can gain access to SSDS onlone services, it seems that I cannot use the new release of Litware.  This highlights a worring dependancy (Cant use Litware without SSDS).


2. An Independent Software Vendor (ISV) often seeks to remain as 'independent' as possible, both from a commercial standpoint (e.g. no larger company ownership) and from a technical (e.g. no proprietry dependencies on languages or technology) standpoint.  If the latest version of Litware means that the ISV is 'dependent' upon the online (and proprietry) SSDS, this compromises the 'independent' element.  The ISV will be reluctant to develop a system based upon a service, which for whatever reason (e.g. Merger/Rationalisation, failure to make profit etc etc.), can be 'switched off' at any point in time.  Where would such an event leave the ISV and its considerable investment in the application/platform?  Also, from a commercial point of view, if the ISV has an exit strategy involving selling the software and business, the value that a buyer is willing to pay may be much less, if the system is seen to have a dependency upon another system (i.e. SSDS) over which the buyer and seller have absolutely no control.  Is it possible to eliminate this dependancy by running SSDS locally using SQL Server, like it is possible to run SSRS etc?


Rgds



On #1, see:  You don't have a beta account with SSDS, but you'd like to use the latest LitwareHR anyway

That describes what you need to do to have LW running on SSDS "offline".  On #2, I think you have good points, but the ultimate decision is yours to make. Each ISV will have to jugde risk vs benefits of taking a dependency on something like SSDS. I would argue that this is nothing new, same happens with any platform dependency you take: .NET vs Java, SQL vs Oracle, etc.

I undertsand though, that the "cloud" platforms might project different perceptions (higher risk). e.g. if software gets deprecated, you still have the bits. If a service gets deprecated, you rely on contracts to be able to run.

FWIW, LW has 2 datamodels: SQL and SSDS which are functionally equivalent and interchangeable. You can see this as being similar to what many ISVs do with multi-database support (e.g. supporting SQL Server, Oracle or DB2).

Jun 13, 2008 at 6:10 AM
Hello Eugenio,

Thanks very much for your reply.

I did not realise that the off-line SSDS solution existed, I will certainly take a look at it, even though i have now managed to obtain access to the SSDS beta program and the cloud based SSDS service.

With regard to the potential ISV issues, i am now given to understand that SSDS, as well as being offered as a 'cloud service' SSDS may also ship as an on-premise solution as part of a future version of SQL Server.  Is that correct?  If it is, the potential concerns of the ISV largely go away, because if the cloud service is withdrawn for any reason, the ISV has the option to switch users to a hosted solution, using SSDS as part of an on-premise (at the ISV) SQL Server installation.  That being the case, the on-premise solution is essentially the same as having a dependency on an on-premise SQL Server.  That is, no more additional dependency is introduced by using SSDS.

I also take your point about Litware having 2 data models, SQL and SSDS and since both may, presumably, be on premise or in the cloud, then I assume there are 4 possible configurations to consider/choose from, which is great!

I am very much looking forward to installing litware and evaluating the various options.

Rgds.



eugeniop