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May 14, 2009



I agree wholeheartedly here Chuck. This is going to suck for customers and solution providers as well.


Ellison needs a new boat you guys, he's gotta corner a market and charge even more.



It seems the field has turned into a game of giants.

Looks to me that EMC/VMW would stand to lose the most (financially) if Oracle is successful with a full stack virtualization offering, so I can see why you seem "concerned" as well as your position on "customers losing". It's probably less about Oracle's customers losing and more about VMware losing Oracle customers.

IMO there are advantages to a single stack solution in IT. Solutions that are tightly integrated often times need the least amount of human intervention and work the best. With everyone looking to reduce costs in IT, I don't see it as a bad thing, but time will tell.

BTW - any comments on this?

Juan Jose Palacios

Hello, Chuck.

I really don't get Oracle's move in all this issue, at least as it has been explained. I really cannot believe a company like Oracle will try to force customers to throw all the TCO arguments for movin forward in virtulization to the dustbin... I just cant imagine such a silly move.

There HAS to be more to the story. If Oracle wants to compete in the virtualization software market I do not think the customers might loose. More competition, more advantages for customers.

If they try to force customers into strategies the customers do not want, they´ll be in trouble. Oracle knows well. Customers will try (if they can) to swap DB engines. Not Oracle's style in fact.

¿A newcomner to the virtualization market?, well, lets wellcome the initiative, and see what happens. Maybe this could bring cheaper prices to the costly virtualization solutions.


Chuck Hollis

Lucas, I think you might be missing a key difference here.

On one hand, I don't think anyone has a problem with open competition in the marketplace. If Oracle ends up with a better answer to virtualization via end-to-end integration, and customers want it -- well, that's a good thing.

But that's not what is happening here. Oracle has used support of their database as a weapon, and is working hard to deny customers choice regarding hypervisors.

And that most definitely is bad for customers, if you think about it.


-- Chuck

Balbir Singh

I think customers will define whether they need the hypervisor more than the database or vice-versa. Using your strength is one area to stengthen the other is common business practice, but the line is very thin. Eventually I see value in software moving up the stack, hypervisors and tools will be commodity, so gain control on as top of the stack as possible :)


Lucas and Chuck might be both right and wrong in a same breath. Chuck implies that Oracle’s using its own database stack to corner virtualization. On the other hand, Lucas sees that size matters, whether it is right or wrong on its own merits. Currently, the underlying technology enabling Web 2.0 is still the legacy Web 1.0 with some ad-hoc and band-aided solutions to meet the need of the supposed demand of Web 2.0. Without fundamentally overhauling the underlying web technology and bandwidth in a near future, the industry may reach a possible crisis point. Although I like EMC’s approach to the current situation, EMC hasn’t reached critical mass yet (neither have any of the other “big boys”, for that matter). This may or may not be an issue going forward according to the blog(http://wikibon.org/blog/can-emc-remain-independent/) Lucas pointed out. Oracle’s market cap is about four times bigger than EMC’s own or three times if you factor VMWare into the mix. The classical battle between David and Goliath will not be pretty even if VMWare’s solution is much more elegant than the others. For instance, this would be analogous to EMC Documentum vs. Microsoft SharePoint in content management space. Even though Documentum is much superior to SharePoint in its architecture or breadth, people think that SharePoint is much better simply because it is marketed by Microsoft and its affinity to Office products. As the blog points out, the industry dynamics are just like chess games. Since EMC is not just like the big boys as far as the market cap is concerned, EMC needs to think it out of the box. You can’t keep carping about the injustice or illogicalness of the circumstances. To avoid any unforeseen casualties, EMC needs to think strategically and think big out of the box right now. EMC might have some good resources on hand already to do this successfully. Although the blogger suggests that there are intrinsic differences between Public and Private Clouds due to its horizontal and vertical tendencies respectively, however, I believe there is a market for this and the timing is right since EMC has been playing its acquisition cards with the horizontal space in mind. You transform the Public Cloud into the Private one effectively virtualizing it by employing EMC’s own storage stack, VMWare, and RSA in consort. Notwithstanding sudden tornados or hurricanes, the enterprise can use the cloud as their virtual processing centers that are dynamic, scalable, and secure rather than building the ubiquitous physical data centers we all were accustomed to these days. Although I am not sure this is actually possible or not, this is a sure way to get out of the box. By George, if successful, EMC can exceed the big boys by spearheading the true Enterprise 2.0. Otherwise, sooner or later, it will face the ill-fated conclusion as the blogger purports.

Even G

We are currently in the process of Oracle license auditing. Results are unbelievable to say the least. We are running one VM with one vCpu and 1GB of RAM for historical reasons; it's the old financial system. And Oracle's stance is the following:
- You run a "softpartitioned" virtual server in a VMWare cluster with 5 servers and 8 cores each.
- Total amount of CPUs to license is 20 CPUs (5 * 8 * 0.5)
- Minimum users to license is 25 per CPU, resulting in a minimum of 500 users.
- There is one (1) user of the system. He prints reports on other peoples request, about once or twice a month...

How costly can it be to move this to SQL? We have started pondering that question.

The comments to this entry are closed.

Chuck Hollis

  • Chuck Hollis
    SVP, Oracle Converged Infrastructure Systems

    Chuck now works for Oracle, and is now deeply embroiled in IT infrastructure.

    Previously, he was with VMware for 2 years, and EMC for 18 years before that, most of them great.

    He enjoys speaking to customer and industry audiences about a variety of technology topics, and -- of course -- enjoys blogging.

    Chuck lives in Vero Beach, FL with his wife and four dogs when he's not traveling. In his spare time, Chuck is working on his second career as an aging rock musician.

    Warning: do not ever buy him a drink when there is a piano nearby.

    Note: these are my personal views, and aren't reviewed or approved by my employer.
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