Tue, Oct 02, 2012 - Page 15 News List

Oracle’s Ellison introduces new server and updated database to challenge SAP


Oracle Corp CEO Larry Ellison, seeking to reverse slowing growth, unveiled a high-end server with more memory and an updated flagship database to compete against SAP AG.

Computing power and storage, applications software and Oracle’s database will also be sold as a cloud service businesses can rent instead of buying outright, Ellison said on Sunday in an address at the company’s OpenWorld conference.

Ellison is depending on new products and a shift to cloud services to boost sales at the world’s largest supplier of database software. The revamped 12c database is Oracle’s first new version for its flagship in five years.

The 12c database will let customers move their computing jobs from data centers to the Internet, Ellison said.

“You can access all of these services across the network,” he said at the conference in the Moscone Center in San Francisco. “It makes sense for Oracle to be in all three tiers of cloud services.”

The new Exadata servers — which pack computing power, storage capacity and high-speed networking into a single chassis to speed performance of Oracle’s database — can set the firm apart from competitors, co-president Mark Hurd said last week.

The company’s addition to its Exadata line of servers, called the X3, will be able to house as much as 22 terabytes of flash computer memory and four terabytes of DRAM in a single server rack to greatly speed up business reports. That is four times as much flash storage per rack than a previous version of Exadata, Ellison said.

Sales for the Redwood City, California-based company declined 2.3 percent in the fiscal first quarter ended August, dragged down by a drop in the hardware business acquired from Sun Microsystems in 2010. The revenue number missed analysts’ estimates as computer hardware sales declined for a sixth straight period.

Ellison said Oracle was “ideally positioned” to deliver many components of hardware and software — including its database, application connecting middleware and computer systems — as a cloud computing service delivered entirely through the Internet, or with some equipment sitting in customers’ data centers.

International Business Machines Corp, Microsoft Corp and VMware Inc are also vying to supply more of the platform software that can help companies move to cloud computing. SAP’s High Performance Analytical Appliance uses hardware from IBM, Hewlett-Packard Co and others to store data in computer memory for faster analysis. SAP is the top business applications maker.

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