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Oracle – Vendor Strengths and Cautions – Gartner

http://www.gartner.com/technology/reprints.do?id=1-2JFZ1KP&ct=150715&st=sb

Oracle

While the x86 virtualization market has been growing significantly, general interest in Oracle VM Server for x86 has been declining with Gartner customers (based on inquiries and client meetings). Oracle is focused on an application-driven virtualization strategy that goes beyond the hypervisor to provide full integration across the Oracle software portfolio. This integration is driving a strong execution in the Niche Players quadrant.

Gartner continues to receive a limited number of inquiries from clients considering VMware alternatives (such as Oracle VM) because of Oracle certification, license and support issues. Clients report that difficulties around live migration and storage recovery have generally been resolved — tied to improvements in both Oracle VM and Oracle Linux as they are integrated within Engineered Systems, where we do see increased Oracle VM activity.

Oracle VM is Oracle’s implementation of the Xen hypervisor, which leverages intellectual property tied to Oracle Linux. Oracle has further integrated these technologies into a more coherent and packaged solution with the Oracle VM 3.3 release, tied to “Application Aware Virtualization,” that offers more integration to RedStack as well as heterogeneous support. Oracle VM is managed by Enterprise Manager 12c, Oracle’s system management product. Enterprise Manager can monitor and manage the entire stack — from applications to infrastructure — allowing application and platform administrators to get contextual insight into their virtualization environment. Enterprise Manager 12c also acts as the service delivery platform for cloud services, leveraging the infrastructure and virtualization resources provided by Oracle’s VM product portfolio. This portfolio includes Oracle VM Server for x86, Oracle VM Server for SPARC (based on Sun Logical Domain [LDOM] technology), Oracle Solaris Zones, Oracle Linux Containers, and potential software appliances using Oracle VM, storage and other related virtualized infrastructures. This management unification is an important foundation for Oracle virtualization and builds an integrated approach to selling virtualized DBMSs (including Oracle RAC), Oracle WebLogic Server and other Oracle software solutions, as well as attached storage with Oracle-based management solutions.

Most customer references that Gartner talked to stated that certification and licensing remain the primary reasons for choosing Oracle VM. Oracle has now certified its software on Hyper-V; this certification has gained a few Gartner client inquiries and limited momentum. Oracle still favors Oracle VM for software licensing and pricing — for example, with processor pinning (allowing the specification of a limited number of processors being used by a VM, which can reduce software costs when live migration is not required). This approach and flexibility do not extend to the Hyper-V certification.

Oracle Solaris Zones offer shared OS virtualization capabilities for tactical x86 deployments (the same capabilities as provided on the SPARC platform, although that is out of scope for this market evaluation). All zones and container technologies provide differentiated benefits for x86 Oracle users — higher virtualization density and reduced operational costs due to fewer OS instances, something that hypervisor-based solutions cannot do. In this case, Oracle Solaris Zones alongside Oracle VM can be a complementary solution, targeted at different application requirements. Solaris Zones also contain a new Solaris optimized virtualization layer that allows for the flexibility of a Type 2 hypervisor that is optimized to run Solaris as a guest.

Strengths

  • Oracle provides preferential licensing and certification of Oracle software using Oracle VM.
  • Oracle has a large overall software installed base and financial strength, allowing Oracle to test and tune the hypervisor for optimal application performance, including VM templates for Oracle Linux, Oracle DBMS, Oracle RAC and Oracle applications.
  • Oracle Solaris Zones and Oracle Linux Containers complement Oracle VM as lightweight alternatives to a hypervisor — only for Solaris and Linux deployments.

Cautions

  •  Gartner client interaction regarding Oracle VM has declined in the last year.
  • Oracle’s push for an Oracle-only stack limits its general market potential.
  • The third-party ecosystem for Oracle virtualization is smaller than that of the market leaders.

New Features of VMware vSphere 5.5

List of new features in VMware vSphere 5.5

• Hot-pluggable SSD PCIe devices

• Support for Reliable Memory Technology

• Enhancements to CPU C-states

• Flash Read Cache (vFRC) or vFLASH – Virtualises server-side flash to provide high performance read cache layer that dramatically lowers application latency.

• vSAN – software based distributed storage solution which is built directly in the hypervisor.

Along with the core vSphere ESXi Hypervisor improvements, vSphere 5.5 provides the following virtual machine–related enhancements:

• Virtual machine compatibility with VMware ESXi 5.5

• Expanded support for hardware-accelerated graphics vendor

• Graphic acceleration support for Linux guest operating systems

In addition, the following vCenter Server enhancements include:

• vCenter Single Sign-On Server security enhancements

• vSphere Web Client platform support and UI improvements

• vCenter Server Appliance configuration maximum increases

• Simplified vSphere App HA application monitoring

• vSphere DRS virtual machine–virtual machine affinity rule enhancements

• vSphere Big Data Extensions, a new feature that deploys and manages Hadoop clusters on vSphere fromwithin vCenter

vSphere 5.5 also includes the following storage-related enhancements:

• Support for 62TB VMDK

• MSCS updates

• vSphere 5.1 enhancements

• 16GB E2E support

• PDL AutoRemove

• vSphere Replication interoperability and multi-point-in-time snapshot retention

vSphere 5.5 also introduces the following networking-related enhancements:

• Improved LACP capabilities

• Traffic filtering

• Quality of Service tagging

• 40 GB nic Support

• Enhanced Host level capture

• SR-IOV – Single Root I/O Virtualisation enhancements.

 

EMC Clariion Analyser Script

Script to download Analyser NAR files from the EMC clariion storage processor to local machine.
This can the be added to a batch file and scheduled to run every day.

naviseccli -h -User -Password -Scope 2 analyzer -archive -path c:\EMC\analyzer\SAN_spa -all -o
naviseccli -h -User -Password -Scope 2 analyzer -archive -delete -all -o
naviseccli -h -User -Password -Scope 2 analyzer -archive -path c:\EMC\analyzer\SAN_spb -all -o
naviseccli -h -User -Password -Scope 2 analyzer -archive -delete -all -o

In this script, the scope has been selected to use LDAP (2).

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vSphere Storage Appliance (VSA) licensing information

(VSA) VMware vSphere Storage Appliance provides virtual shared storage volumes without the hardware. vSA runs as a virtual machine on vSphere, in multiple hosts. vSA is only compatible with vSphere 5.

Licensing Details
•vSA is licensed on a per-instance basis. Each vSA instance supports up to 3 node.
•At least two nodes needs to be part of a vSA deploymen.
•vSA is supported by all vSphere 5 edition.
•There are no upgrades in vS.
•vSA can only run with Essentials Plus or any vSphere Edition.
•vSA must be purchased for the vCenter Server edition that it will run on – vCenter Essentials (sold only with Essentials Plus), vCenter Foundation, or vCenter Server.
•If you apply the old vCenter Server license key after installing vSA, the vSA disappear.
•You must reapply the vSA key if you upgrade from vCenter Foundation to vCenter Standard. You have to contact the Licensing Support team to get a new vSA key compatible with the new vCenter Server edition. This exchange is at no charge.
•The vRAM used for vSA factors in to your vRAM entitlement.
•vSA must be deployed on the same vCenter Server.
•The vSA virtual machine counts as a protected virtual machine.

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