OpenWorld 2012: Oracle Assuming Role as Soup-to-Nuts IT Integrator
Hurd Connects Strategy With New Products
Oracle President Mark Hurd told members of the international press that the company's strategy is very simple. "We've broken our strategy down into four basic pillars: a) best-of-breed IT in the stack; b) customized vertical integration; c) standard industry applications; d) complete cloud infrastructure and services." This is where the 12C database, Exadata X3 hardware and the new cloud services all work together, he said. In short, Oracle is preparing to provide the entire software stack as well as much hardware as a customer wants to buy, although it contends it will work hand-in-hand with other vendors in the data center.
Oracle 12C Database
Oracle's new 12C database, the first major update in four years to its bread-and-butter product, is optimized for multitenant workloads that are becoming commonplace in cloud computing—environments where a single instance of an application runs on remote servers and is accessible by multiple users in multiple organizations. "Before this, if you wanted to run multitenant services on one database, you had to do it at the application level, and there are all kinds of problems that can come up in that situation—security being the main one," CEO Larry Ellison said. "The 12C makes all of that just go away."
The third edition of the Exadata database server can run multiple databases—all the while keeping the data separate and secure—that enterprises in the past have had to run on separate dedicated servers with separate storage/backup, networking and security. The new Exadata server runs 2TB to 4TB of DRAM in up to 22 terabytes of NAND flash memory, which delivers micro-second-fast response times, even for large workloads.
Oracle Private Cloud
Oracle Private Cloud gives users the advantages of a public-cloud service but runs on Exadata or Exalogic servers that reside in a customer’s data center. The system could be managed by Oracle, if that is the customer's choice. Such a private cloud deployment also could run inside Oracle's own data centers, depending upon the needs of the client.
Oracle Infrastructure as a Service
Oracle is taking Amazon Web Services' original concept of providing computing power-on-demand and backing it up with the fast new Exadata servers, either in the user's data center or in its own. The bottom line is that the customer never has to expend capital costs for anything—it's all subscription based on a monthly fee. Contracts are usually for one to three years.
X3 + Oracle 12C = Competition to SAP's HANA
CEO Larry Ellison, in a rare bow to a competitor, acknowledged from the podium on Day 1 at Oracle OpenWorld that SAP is "the No. 1 seller of business applications in the world." But he also said that the German company's new weapon, the HANA in-memory database, doesn't compare to the 12C database running on Exadata. "Ours has 26TB of memory power—HANA is really, really small, with .5TB," Ellison said. SAP begs to differ, which means that when 12C comes out early next year, a real market battle will ensue.
Oracle Linux guru Wim Coekaerts said the new open source database release candidate, MySQL 5.6, provides improved linear scalability, which helps users to better use modern hardware capabilities. Users get simplified query development and execution, better transactional throughput and application availability, flexible NoSQL access, improved replication and enhanced instrumentation.
EMC's Relations With Erstwhile Partners Oracle and Dell Getting Tenser
Long-established data storage and security provider EMC has seen its relationships with Oracle and Dell sort of slowly melt down over the last couple of years. This is a trend that began when those two companies decided to make their own storage hardware and security products. EMC is understandably miffed about all this, yet contracts with many common customers remain on the books. These three companies will have to get along until they all expire. Then, it's every company for itself.
What They're NOT Talking About: Itanium
This isn't all that surprising in the aftermath of the legal tussle between Hewlett-Packard and Oracle over an agreement signed between the two companies for Oracle to port its apps to the often denigrated Intel Itanium processors in high-end HP servers. The "I" word hasn't yet been uttered from any podium or stage at Oracle Open World and probably won't be for the duration of the show.
Building Social Networking Into the Oracle Cloud
Larry Ellison offered an update to Oracle's social network application set, which was announced a year ago, but hasn't surfaced in the market yet. However, the company seems to be working on some other projects. Coming in the next 12 months from Oracle Fusion HCM (Human Capital Management) will be "Workforce Reputation Management," an additional aspect of its focus on Worker Interaction.