Re: Restricting Oracle to one processor

Jason,

   The text you cited is exactly correct.  And here is the part that makes
SE-1 (or any SE product) ineligible for wide ranges of hardware:

[Standard Edition] When licensing Oracle programs with Standard Edition One
or Standard Edition in the product name, a processor is counted equivalent
to an occupied socket; however, *in the case of multi-chip modules, each
chip in the multi-chip module is counted as one occupied socket*.

   Why is that?  Well, many -- probably *most *-- processors today are
implemented as "Multi-chip-Modules".  In most cases, a Multi-Chip-Module
contains *one* CPU chip, one Memory Controller, and one or more memory
chips.  A single-core processor manufactured by Intel (or, indeed, by
anybody else) could be shipped as an MCM containing a dozen chips or more.
*And each and every chip now counts as an "occupied socket" (and therefore,
a CPU) for purposes of SE licensing.*

   Is this what Oracle *meant*?  I very much doubt it.  But this *is what
the license says*.  Even if you interpret this rule the way Oracle corp
probably *intended* it, a server with 2 quad-core *intel* processors (they
have 2 CPU chips each right now) is ineligible for SE-1 licensing because it
exceeds the *maximum capacity *for SE-1 (namely, not more than 2
"sockets").  The rules (even as "probably intended") apply differently to
quad-core AMD processors, though.  Or SPARC processors. Or POWER processors,
or...

   To license Standard Edition correctly, you now need to know details of
CPU implementation that are not at all easy to locate, and your server's *
eligibility* to run SE products can change over time as manufacturers
introduce new (compatible) processor designs with differing numbers of
chips.  (E.g., if AMD introduced next year quad-core processors implemented
with 2 @ dual-core chips, the server you licensed today for SE may no longer
be eligible, because its *maximum capacity* has increased!)  Not being a
lawyer, though, I have no idea whether Oracle would get away with trying to
enforce *that* though...

   You purchase SE licenses today at your own peril.  How many chips are in
*your* processors?  How would you know?  (MCMs are so common-place now,
nobody really discusses them anymore.  Personally, I cannot imagine Oracle
corp being foolish enough to enforce this rule exactly as written, but I
think potential purchasers would be equally foolish to *accept* this
licensing condition as written.


On Fri, Jun 6, 2008 at 9:44 AM, Jason Heinrich <jheinrich@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
wrote:

> Here's the exact wording on multi-core licensing from Oracle's most recent
> price list (
> http://www.oracle.com/corporate/pricing/technology-price-list.pdf):
>
> [Enterprise Edition] For the purposes of counting the number of processors
> which require licensing for AMD and Intel multicore chips, "n" cores shall
> be determined by multiplying the total number of cores by a core processor
> licensing factor of .50.
> ...
> [Standard Edition] When licensing Oracle programs with Standard Edition One
> or Standard Edition in the product name, a processor is counted equivalent
> to an occupied socket; however, in the case of multi-chip modules, each chip
> in the multi-chip module is counted as one occupied socket.
>
> I don't see anything there that would prevent SE1 from being used on his
> Intel hardware.  A multi-core processor is still just one chip, so my
> understanding of the "multi-chip module" wording would be something like a
> daughtercard with multiple processors on it.  One motherboard socket, but
> multiple physical CPUs.  However, if you were going to purchase SE or SE1
> licenses, I would definitely ask a licensing expert to be sure.
>
> On Thu, Jun 5, 2008 at 7:16 PM, Mark Brinsmead <pythianbrinsmead@xxxxxxxxx>
> wrote:
>
>> The OP did not say anything about database editions.  Bill, you might also
>> want to be aware that with the new license rules regarding
>> Multi-Chip-Modules, the hardware you described will not be (cannot be)
>> eligible for Standard-Edition One licenses if your quad-core processors are
>> manufactured by Intel.  (Actually, because Oracle seems to have accidentally
>> mis-worded the new license rules, the hardware may be ineligible for SE of
>> any flavour with CPUs from any manufacturer.)
>
>
> --
> Jason Heinrich




-- 
Cheers,
-- Mark Brinsmead
Senior DBA,
The Pythian Group
http://www.pythian.com/blogs

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