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Thread: Oracle vs AlphaFour

  1. #1
    Dan ONeill

    Default Oracle vs AlphaFour

    Eight years ago I created a Product Data Management system for our company using AlphaFour. Something we needed to go with our new CAD system that we had installed 2 years earlier. The CAD system came with a PDM system but it was worthless! Anyway AlphaFour has worked out great but now we are getting a "New" CAD system which is supposed to have some superduper PDM system that runs on Oracle. I've got a feeling that this is going to be a headache. Any consolation out there?

  2. #2
    "Certified" Alphaholic
    Real Name
    Russ Boehle
    Join Date
    Mar 2000

    Default RE: Oracle vs AlphaFour

    I haven't used it but oracle is supposed to be a good program but very expensive and I'm sure much more difficult to learn than A4 or A5

  3. #3
    rick blanka

    Default RE: Oracle vs AlphaFour

    IF the PDM in CAD can read a DBF file, then you create like fields in alpha. Is CAD asking for a ODBC connection? One should be able to run a flat file system in Access. Depending the function of Oracle will answer this question.

    I think it is insane to have to connect to only one product (in this case one with steep learning curve) in order to make this thing work.

    Question, what is Oracle's function in repect to the CAD PDM? It must be more than just doing database stuff. Oracle is a universe of its own with specialist within different components of Oracle. It sounds to me that CAD is thinking,"More is better."


  4. #4
    Dan ONeill

    Default RE: Oracle vs AlphaFour

    Thanks for your reply Rick. Your timing is good. I'm headed to Atlanta for a weeks worth of training on this stuff. Your comments will give me something I can look into. I think you're right, I think the CAD people are thinking "More Is Better".

    Thanks again,

  5. #5
    rick blanka

    Default RE: Oracle vs AlphaFour


    Say you wanted to create a list of items that was going to be listed in a lighting
    schedule. The numbers come from either the architect or a lighting company.

    When you draw your lighting plan and pop the lights in, the choice of lights available for this project are listed in the PDM along with the price and line drawing. When you walk you client through, you may click on an element or in this case, a light fixture, in your CAD a picture with the detail and manufacturer specs pop out. This is basic stuff. This data needs to be ported to a spreadsheet. The export filters are necessary. The system needs to be open. Most databases can grab a gif or jpeg file. What are these CAD guys thinking? Integration and portability are indeed models of database technology. Can you imagine a word processor which has no export functions?

    Quicken and Quickbooks are similar, the company wants you to stay with Quick
    products and makes it difficult for one to import or export to a dbf file. Any previous accounting data can not be included, you have to start with new data the time you begin working with Quicken or Quickbooks. I call it Quicksand for this reason.

    Say you have a client which is working with Quickbooks products, you are going to
    have a time trying to get the data out to your Alpha database. You must export it out as a spreadsheet file then convert the WKS file to a dbf file. This is done by turing the WKS file into a delimited file, WHOW!!!, what a pain.

    Give them Hell I say.


  6. #6
    James Markis

    Default RE: Oracle vs AlphaFour

    Oracle is a no brainer but it has volumes and volumes and volumes of text written to do what alpha 4 does faithfully and uncondionally in a fraction of the time, cost, and energy.

    I couldn't fathom the scope and depth of what Oracle can also do in it's exhaustive library of tasks to justifies
    itself, but there is enormous corporate demand.

    On the othe hand, I can't imagine anything faster or more powerful than Alpha Four spitting out dbf files for data entry intensive applications...

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