The Difficulty of 99

By eweek  |  Posted 2006-02-15 Print this article Print

.999 Percent Uptime"> What do you think about the whole argument of providing 99.999 percent uptime?

Stutz: I think its possible, but its real difficult. You can come close. But lets face it, its machines. Machines need maintenance; databases need maintenance. Youve just got to minimize it and make sure you dont have unscheduled outages, which is what Salesforce has experienced. Thats the danger of multitenancy. When you have a database bug in a multitenancy, serialized fashion, that bug manifests itself like dominoes.
Just think how long it takes to refresh if youve got 350,000 users and you go down, and you dont know where you go down, and youve got to recover those transactions. To reload that data in a multitenancy is tough. Which is why they cant get back up fast. To restore those databases is a task.
What are your thoughts on Oracles plans with Siebel, particularly with all that Nexus code in the mix? McDermott: Bob is the man that built it all. Stutz: I was involved in building all [Siebels] products. I was responsible for every one of them. Nexus just complicates it even more. Youve got Siebel, which has what I would consider a set of fairly mature products for CRM, and PeopleSoft which has what I would consider a set of immature CRM products, and Oracle that thought they had a CRM product, but never really did. It was a set of bastardized products that they acquired over the years. Now you have this problem. You have these three products that you have to take and put together. And if you look at Oracles history, theyve never been good at taking things and putting them together. I think what theyre going to find here, is they have to make some hard decisions because Fusion is based on their code base. And if they want Siebel to play in that theyre going to have to move Siebels code base over. And I can tell you thats not going to be an easy feat. Its a different architecture, a different structure. Click here to read more about SAPs on-demand CRM push. Really to be quite honest, theyre looking at 18 months from being able to do anything. And at some juncture youve got to stop selling all three products. It gets expensive to support all those different products. Just take a large Siebel implementation—55,000 users—now youve got to move them to a whole new code base. Thats reimplementing. That can cost as much as $45 million to do a reimplementation of a large CRM. Its very expensive. Are you offering any specific programs for "Off Oracle" on demand? McDermott: Not in the on-demand area. We dont think we need to. They never really had any traction anyway. Stutz: Four-and-a-half years, 40,000 subscribers, $11 million total contract value is not a good record. So we dont even focus on that. McDermott: From a customer perspective, our pipeline compared to Oracles is a ground swell. Any plans for bringing your open-source database back in-house? Ive heard rumors. McDermott: No. Were not in the database business. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis about productivity and business solutions.


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