Re: oracle costs

  • From: Tim Gorman <tim.evdbt@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: dmarc-noreply@xxxxxxxxxxxxx, "oracle-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx" <oracle-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 30 Sep 2019 18:42:11 -0700


When running any software licensed by CPU, smaller numbers of faster CPUs are less expensive than larger numbers of slow CPUs.

What you described in your email seem to be six-year-old Dell database servers, probably E5-2697 Xeon processors with 12 cores? Unless I misunderstood, you mentioned four (4) servers, each with 4 sockets, each socket with 12 cores.  To me, that is 4 x 4 x 12 which totals to 192, not 96, cores to license.

A new Dell R740 server running dual Xeon V2 82xx CPUs with 28 cores apiece would kick the butt off any two of those old servers, if not all four of them.  Two such servers, each with 56 cores, is only 112 cores to license.

Updating the hardware will drop your core count from 192 to 112 while improving performance dramatically.

Oracle EE licenses with a 75% discount (i.e. list $47,500/core to discounted $11,875/core) is a licensing drop from $2.28m to $1.33m. If your discount is less than 75%, then savings are even bigger.  If your shop has only 15 people, I'm betting even money that your discount isn't 75%.

Figuring that a decently loaded R740 can be bought for about $60,000 or less, the $120k hardware purchase pays for itself with $950k licensing savings.  That'll pay for some VMware/OVM licenses too, with enough left over for salaries for a couple developers or DBAs.

The only way a hardware upgrade wouldn't pay for itself is if there is a 97.5% discount (i.e. $1187.50/core is $228k for 192 cores and $113k for 112 cores, difference of only $115k).  And with a 97.5% discount with Oracle, your time is better spent on other concerns. :)

Please re-purpose those old servers for software not licensed by CPU, and keep the Oracle licenses on new fast hardware.

This is a golden opportunity to ditch those old boat-anchor servers, and to ditch the boat-anchor concept of "physical servers" as well, and build a nice VM farm for databases.

Just my US$0.02...


On 9/30/19 4:18 PM, jh3dt68@xxxxxxxxx (Redacted sender jh3dt68 for DMARC) wrote:

Hello all,

Where I work we have Oracle EE running on 4 physical Dell servers, all running Oracle 12.2 and RHEL 7. The environments are PROD, DR, TEST and DEV. At present all of the servers have 4 sockets with 12 cores per socket, for a total of 96 CPU cores of Oracle EE . Unfortunately, due to budget cuts, management is asking us to reduce our annual Oracle maintenance costs, either that or we have to lay off a couple of developers, there are 15 people total in our shop. Our first thought was to combine DEV and TEST as both of those environments are not fully utilized. That would reduce our core count by 1/4. But digging into the contracts and the world of Oracle licensing  (ugh), it looks like Oracle could re-calculate the maintenance costs based on the current list price of annual support, not on the discount price we received when buying Oracle 4 years ago. That means we wouldn't pay more but maintenance costs might not be any less. The other idea we had, was to convert the CPU licenses to Named User Plus licenses for DEV/TEST. There are only 15 people who ever use the DEV/TEST environments and we would leave PROD/DR alone for now. I understand there are processor minimums which must be accounted for, but if we combine the DEV/TEST and switched to NUPs I'm hoping it would result in some cost reduction, even if Oracle tries to claw back some of the savings.

Any insights or suggestions are greatly appreciated,

- Jack H.

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