Everyone loves SQL Server 2005, which Microsoft did an excellent job of developing, proving you don’t have to lead to offer the best.

Still pushing petabytes after all these years, DB2 continues to hold sway. And IBM’s free edition doesn’t hurt adoption numbers any.

A major force in the open-source database world, despite seeing its transaction engine gobbled up by Oracle.

2004’s thought leader continues to better its line; took a leading role with Eclipse efforts of Java persistence.

Kept its ubiquitous embeddable database purring with performance improvements and eked out the year on an up note before being skinned by Oracle.

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