Documenting a virtualization project

Experiences in Virtualization

Oracle licensing examples

Posted by martijnl on February 12, 2008

Example 1:

Company X has 20 physical servers with two dual core processors running 15 times Oracle database and 5 times Oracle Application Server (IAS). Their planned host cluster consists of four DL580’s with four quad core CPU’s running a mixed environment. Currently they have licensed 15 x 2 x 2 x 0,5 = 30 CPU’s database and 5 x 2 x 2 x 0,5 = 10 CPU’s Application Server. The processor metric for the new situation will become: 4 x 4 x 4 x 0,5 = 32 CPU’s for database and IAS. This means they have to license two extra CPU’s Oracle database and 22 extra CPU’s IAS. This would mean an extra cost of $80000 for the databases and $660000 for the IAS licenses.

Creating a two-node cluster for Oracle VM’s to get around the licensing issue they calculate they need an extra cluster host for the “other” servers making the total tot 5 hosts. This will cost an extra server + VI license but will have a positive effect on Oracle licensing by reducing the number of processors to: 2 x 4 x 4 x 0,5 = 16 CPU’s database and IAS.

This means they save 14 x $8800 in annual maintenance and support fee for the database vs. an additional investment for 4 CPU’s IAS at $30000 per CPU and $6600 per year in maintenance and support which means they can expect an ROI within roughly two years.

Example 2:

Company Y has five physical servers with two dual core processors running Oracle database software. In Oracle processor metric they need to license 5 x 2 x 2 x 0,5 CPU’s = 10 CPU’s. They want to virtualize these servers to one HP BL480 blade server with two quad core CPU’s. The processor metric for this server is 2 x 4 x 0,5 = 4 CPU’s. However if that one server fails than everything is gone. So they plan a second BL480 in a cluster making the total processor metric 2 x 2 x 4 x 0,5 = 8 CPU’s. This means 2 CPU’s less than they have currently licensed saving $8800 per CPU per year in maintenance and support (before discount).

Compared to the investment needed in extra hardware and VI licenses there would need to be significant other factors like a high valuation of the increased resilience of the environment (because of the added failover capacity) to make this business case work.

Disclaimer: These are theoretical examples based on my experience with Oracle licensing, please discuss your licensing needs with your local Oracle rep.

2 Responses to “Oracle licensing examples”

  1. martijnl said

    Please note that I added some extra info regarding the last example.

  2. Charles said

    Thanks for this post. This is exactly what i was looking for.

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