A directory of data access products for Delphi

Product: InterBase Objects
Vendor: Jason Wharton
Version: 4.9 Data Aware Controls: TDataSet, native IB
Web Site: http://www.ibobjects.com Support Delphi Vers: 3 4 5 6 7 2005 2006 2007 2009 2010 XE
Source Available: Yes Supports C++B Vers: 3 4 5 6 2006 2007 2009 2010 XE

Description: IB Objects is the for developing client and service applications for InterBase/Firebird without the BDE, ODBC or any other middleware.
Deployment: Royalty-free, no limits. Compiles in to your EXE; you only need the Interbase client installed on each workstation.
Modes of

Check indicates
primary intended
Local: Local Firebird/InterBase Server supported, TCP/IP local loopback preferred
Multiuser File Server:
Multiuser Client/Server: Yes, with Firebird or InterBase server
Web Server: Yes. Commercial InterBase needs special Borland license. Firebird no restrictions.

Package(s) Available: Price:
Data Access Bundle $395
Productivity Bundle $245
Grand Bundle $595

Database/File Format Supported Native? Via Notes
Firebird Yes DSQL & BLR
InterBase Yes DSQL & BLR

Third Party Tool Compatibility: Compatible?
(Delphi) Database Explorer Unknown
Ace Reporter Yes
InfoPower Yes
Orpheus (TurboPower) Yes
QuickReports Yes
RAVE Reports Yes
ReportBuilder Pro Yes

Vendor's Description (from Readme files, web site, etc.):

What is InterBase Objects?

  • IB Objects is the most powerful toolbox available for developing client and service applications for InterBase/Firebird in Delphi and Borland C++Builder without the BDE, ODBC or any other middleware.
  • IBO connects its data access objects directly to the application programming interface (API) of the InterBase/Firebird engine
  • In code, the developer can use the explicit transaction mechanisms to control things pre-emptively; or the application can be made to react to the logical state of the transaction that results from what the user has been doing.
  • IBO automates features to monitor and, if necessary, shut down long-running transactions according to configurations set on transactions. This process is referred to as "OAT (Oldest Active Transaction) Management"
  • With IBO it is possible to give each dataset a specific behavior when a transaction is ended, with number of different behaviors to choose from
  • IBO's design does confer a little more complexity and richness to client/server connectivity.
  • IBO's design can keep 99% of all processing on the server, its rightful place in a client/server application
  • IBO datasets allow you to embed optional InsertSQL, DeleteSQL and EditSQL to make any dataset live
  • CachedUpdates was implemented in IBO for compatibility. It is handled natively in the dataset buffers, making maintenance much more efficient and allowing much more control over how the updates are applied
  • IBO bookmarks are configurable in terms of both format and content. Hence, by using meaningful data like a primary key column, you can have permanently accurate bookmarks and assign them from one dataset to another
  • All IBO datasets can be made "generator-aware" through the use of the GeneratorLinks property
  • IBO provides a SQL trace monitor which the developer can build into the application and check the server conversations continually for statement bugs and opportunities to identify and optimize performance bottlenecks
  • IBO can augment applications which need to remain BDE based, by enabling additional concurrent transactions, including cross-database transactions, by sharing the connection being used by the BDE TDatabase component
  • IBO 4 introduces explicit support for connection pooling, very suitable for ISAPI applications, because each web hit can close its own connection if it used one; and connection handles need not be wasted on hits that turn out not to need a connection
  • IBO includes a number of "Tool" components for adding extra features to client applications: data pumping, running DDL scripts, table exports, et al., with encapsulated implementation support in the supplied controls, toolbars, dialogs, etc
  • IBO is now split into separate packages to give better support for runtime packages and to modulize some of the more complex utilities (IBOWeb, Replication, Text Search)

BDE Alternatives Guide Comments:

The Interbase Objectscomponents offer full, native access to Interbase's transaction features. In addition to supporting the standard Delphi data aware control, Interbase Objects comes with a set of custom data aware controls, more closely matched to the Interbase "world view".

If you are looking for a database server, take a look at InterBase: http://www.interbase.com. For certain kinds of applications (those that need to have long-running queries concurrently with short update transactions), Interbase's multi-generational architecture is a major technical advantage over all other database servers I know of. Unfortunately, Interbase's market share and mind-share are lacking compared to the major players (Oracle, MS, Sybase, Informix, IBM, etc.).

Interbase is quite "lightweight" (in the positive sense) to deploy and use, but is "heavyweight" in its SQL and transaction support. Interbase was released as "Open Source" by Borland some time back, so the core product is available at no charge.

Related Sites / Products

An excellent reference site for information on Interbase and Firebird is IBPhoenix: www.ibphoenix.com.

Firebird is the open source "fork" from the IB 6 code released by Borland in 2000; it's well-established now as a leading open source RDBMS. www.firebirdsql.org

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