As a legacy database system, Btrieve won’t work with most industry-standard integrations. This not only limits the applications you’re able to build, it also limits your client base. Many organizations won’t even consider buying an application not based on a mainstream SQL database.
As systems handle more and different types of data, the ability to implement business rules enterprise-wide has become increasingly important. If you’re still using an ISAM style database, expect increased resistance from prospective and current customers alike as time goes on.
As programmers move on, Btrieve’s lack of brand recognition leaves you at a competitive disadvantage. Continuing to use a database that many developers consider outdated restricts your access to new applications and limits your talent pool of developers.
Keep in mind that companies aren’t simply following trends – as legacy applications fade away, continuing to use them makes it harder to create new tools and harder to recover from potential problems.
Btrieve’s expertise base is steadily shrinking, making it difficult to find people who speak its language and harder to troubleshoot issues.
If you’re still using a Btrieve or Pervasive SQL system, you immediately face the dilemma of working with developers who are less up-to-date on more mainstream systems. And it bears repeating that cutting yourself off from the latest generation of developers also means cutting yourself off from business prospects.
Lacking encryption or data-masking abilities, systems that run on Btrieve are at high risk for security breaches and noncompliance. Moreover, with fewer and fewer developers fluent in Btrieve, what happens in the case of a problem with your data?
The European Union recently implemented the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to enforce standards for data collection and storage. The regulations also put into place fines of up to $22 million USD for noncompliance. Now more than ever, companies must be proactive about security to avoid these steep consequences.
Unlike SQL databases, ISAMs like Btrieve allow direct access to data via the operating system’s file manager, making unauthorized access a constant possibility. And while a SQL conversion can be costly, an ISAM database failure can cost far more in time, resources, and money than simply being proactive about such a scenario.
The costs of a potential database failure don’t take into account expenses related to licensing costs. As fewer companies use Btrieve, its licensing fees have steadily gone up in an attempt to offset the decline in popularity.
For instance, while the base licensing fees for a Pervasive SQL v7 50-user system cost $2,500, the most recent version of the same product (Actian Zen v14) cost $7,430. This increasing overhead hurts your bottom line while adding little value.
With customers increasingly willing to work only with the latest database systems and programming languages, continuing to use a legacy application is an immediate red flag for potential leads. Creating new business starts with staying competitive.
Ensuring that you're using an up-to-date system also gives you the opportunity to reassure current customers that you're taking proactive steps toward innovation. Customer data will be more secure, and they'll benefit from new tools you'll be able to program thanks to your improved integration with modern technologies.