Oracle Database Cloud Services: A Few Initial Thoughts

Posted in: Cloud, Technical Track

The website for Oracle Database Cloud Services at is now online, in conjunction with Larry Ellison’s announcement during the Oracle OpenWorld keynote going on now. It’s a hosted database service running Oracle 11gR2. The database can be accessed using a hosted Oracle application server, via JDBC across the Internet, or their own RESTful API a la Amazon. Notably lacking is Oracle’s own TNS network protocol.

Actually it looks a lot like Amazon’s services. Last year Larry was praising their approach to the cloud and offering special licensing for using Oracle databases inside Amazon EC2 instances. Now they’re competing directly. I guess imitation of the greatest form of flattery….

Looking at the list of specifications it looks like a pretty standard list of Oracle 11G enterprise edition features, with the inclusion of partitioning, transparent data encryption, and fine-grained access control, which are usually extra-cost options.

A lot of the feature set seems to be oriented toward data warehousing applications, including the aforementioned partitioning, bitmap indexes, query rewrite, and star transformations.

A few other interesting features:

Asynchronous operations, allowing operations to be kicked off and progress monitored lately. Is this some kind of advanced queuing feature, or something completely new?
Triple redundancy storage: not messing around with the chance of storage loss. The question is: will it stay triple redundant if Oracle is doing maintenance behind the scenes
Tape backup: tape, in this day and age?

And a few missing ones:

Compression: no mention of any type of compression. Perhaps they’re trying to meter disk usage on actual space consumed?
Database links: can multiple databases talk to each other.
Management tools: Is OEM Grid Control and/or features of its management packs available?
SLAs: No mention of availability targets or SLA policies
Migration tools: I’d expect simple, high-performance migration tools to be front and center when dealing with a cloud environment like this. How about bundled GlodenGate replication to migrate over?

Traditional Oracle licenses will not be available or required. The new pricing model has not been announced, but I expect something similar to Amazon’s services where resources like disk space, CPU capacity, disk I/O, and Internet bandwidth consumption are metered separately.

The service is said to be running on “Exadata and Exalogic technology”, though I don’t see Exadata-specific features like hybrid columnar compression in use.

And yes, there are a number of other public cloud service offerings (again Amazon-style): Fusion CRM, HCM, hosted social networking, and Java app servers.

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About the Author

Marc is a passionate and creative problem solver, drawing on deep understanding of the full enterprise application stack to identify the root cause of problems and to deploy sustainable solutions. Marc has a strong background in performance tuning and high availability, developing many of the tools and processes used to monitor and manage critical production databases at Pythian. He is proud to be the very first DataStax Platinum Certified Administrator for Apache Cassandra.

2 Comments. Leave new

In simpler words: a 1960s service bureau.
Tremendous progress…


Pricing model is actually announced – it is no licence required, monthly subscription. The Oracle Database Cloud is based on monthly subscription -“per user-per month or per environment-per month basis”. ”
Please refer to for more information.


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