Oracle: It’s Getting Cloudier All the Time

At Oracle Open World, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison announced a new an Infrastructure as a Service cloud computing offering. (Photo: John Rath)

SAN FRANCISCO – Oracle (ORCL) this week rolled out an Infrastructure as a Service cloud computing service, offering businesses the option of either virtualized compute and storage services hosted by Oracle, or an Oracle-owned and managed private cloud as an extension behind company firewalls.

As the Oracle Open World conference, CEO Larry Ellison also announced  the company’s first multi-tenant database management system, the Oracle Version 12c, with the c standing for cloud. Finally, Oracle unveiled a big boost to its big system with the Exadata X3 database in-memory machine.

“Oracle cloud will use our OS, our VM, our compute services and storage services on the fastest most reliable systems in the world — our engineered systems, Exadata, Exalogic, Exalytics, all linked with Infiniband,” said Larry Ellison, Oracle CEO.

Ellison, who was once famously skeptical about cloud computing, positioned Oracle as a comprehensive cloud service provider, emphasizing the theme of Hardware and Software, Engineered to Work Together throughout his keynote.

The Oracle Private cloud is installed behind a firewall, at the customer’s data center, but managed by Oracle.  It consists of an Oracle Exalogic, Exadata SuperCluster that delivers virtualized compute and storage services. The customer pays a monthly service fee based on usage. The ability then exists to move applications back and forth between the Oracle cloud and a private cloud for needs such as development, backup, disaster recovery, or when excess capacity is needed.

Investing nearly 7 years and billions of dollars in engineering the transition, Oracle offered a carefully crafted vision of its stake in the future. Oracle made several strategic acquisitions in the past year, with a focus on social and mobile markets. At the beginning of his keynote, Ellison alluded to a big announcement at the 2013 OpenWorld event with its partner Fujitsu, regarding a collaboration on a smart microprocessor. The  promise of this next generation processor is that it will run Oracle faster than anything else on the market, and will accomplish this by moving a lot of the software into silicon.

X3 Database In-Memory Machine

As a major component of the Oracle Cloud the Exadata X3 Database In-Memory Machine is the latest generation of its Exadata Database Machines. It uses a combination of scale-out servers and storage, InfiniBand networking, smart storage, PCI Flash, smart memory caching, and Hybrid Columnar Compression to deliver extreme performance and availability for all Oracle Database Workloads. Storing hundreds of Terabytes of compressed user data in Flash and RAM memory, in conjunction with its new multitenant database, means that a great number of disparate databases can be stored and quickly accessed in flash and RAM memory. A total of 4TB DRAM and 22TB PCI Flash can be implemented in a single rack.  A new Eighth-Rack configuration of the X3-2 offers a cost-effective ($200,000 list price) entry point for smaller workloads, testing, development and disaster recovery systems.

“Forward-looking enterprises are moving towards Cloud Computing architectures,” said Andrew Mendelsohn, senior vice president, Oracle Database Server Technologies. “Oracle Exadata’s unique ability to run any database application on a fully scale-out architecture using a combination of massive memory for extreme performance and low-cost disk for high capacity delivers the ideal solution for Cloud-based database deployments today.”

Oracle keynotes and videos can be found at and the conversation can be followed on Twitter hashtag #oow.

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About the Author

John Rath is a veteran IT professional and regular contributor at Data Center Knowledge. He has served many roles in the data center, including support, system administration, web development and facility management.

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