I see fellow OakTable Network member Tanel Poder has blogged that Oracle Database 11g Release 2 has switched to offer columnar store technology. Or at least one could infer that from the post.
I left a comment on Tanel’s blog but would like to make a quick entry here on the topic as well. Oracle Database 11g Release 2 does not offer column-store technology as thought of in the Vertica (for example) sense. The technology, available only with Exadata storage, is called Hybrid Columnar Compression. The word hybrid is important.
Rows are still used. They are stored in an object called a Compression Unit. Compression Units can span multiple blocks. Like values are stored in the compression unit with metadata that maps back to the rows.
So, “hybrid” is the word. But, none of that matters as much as the effectiveness. This form of compression is extremely effective.