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Storing and Processing XML in DB2

pureXML extends availability and scalability to DB2 for z/OS


The idea of storing XML data in DB2* has been around for awhile. The first support was introduced through XML extenders in DB2 Universal Database (UDB) for Linux*, UNIX* and Windows* version 5.0 in 1999. DB2 UDB for z/OS* version 7 introduced the large object (LOB) data type, which provided a way to store an XML document, but wasn’t a viable solution due to the overhead of converting character data to LOB and then LOB back to character.

The introduction of XML extenders in DB2 UDB for z/OS version 8 provided a method for developers to access the XML nodes within a document, however the performance issues associated with converting to and from LOB continue to be a problem. Due to performance and scalability issues, most companies delay XML application development with DB2 for z/OS.

The concerns for performance and scalability are no longer valid with DB2 9 for z/OS. With this release, relational data is stored in relational format, and XML data is stored in native XML format using a new hybrid database engine. The database engine has integrated pureXML technology that not only provides an unprecedented level of performance, but also offers the availability and scalability for XML data you’ve come to expect when processing relational data.

pureXML is designed to remove the complexities of trying to store XML data in LOB data types.


Troy L. Coleman is an IBM-certified Certified database administrator, specializing in DB2 9 for z/OS and Linux, UNIX and Windows. Troy can be reached at

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