Why Oracle Linux is a Good Thing

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News: Why Oracle Linux is a Good Thing

  1. Why Oracle Linux is a Good Thing (24 messages)

    There is a wrong perception that large companies don't adopt Linux because they prefer commercial offerings. This is only half right. It's not that they like commercial software for its own sake. They know and understand the benefits of open-source software. The real issue for the lack of adoption is the perceived legal exposures of running open-source software and becoming liable for it. SCOs legal shenanigans put a real hamper on adoption. Large companies, especially those with high visibility and perceived deep pockets, haven't adopted Linux because it's perceived as having a bullseye painted on their back. These large companies will be happy to bring Linux in-house as long as a larger company offers some kind of indemnification clause in their contracts that passes any lawsuits for use of open-source software, and Linux in particular, to a vendor. Some large companies offer Linux distributions and absorb the indemnification. It's no wonder then that superior distributions like Ubuntu aren't yet on the enterprise shopping list: there is little or no viable indemnification offered. Red Hat is a big fish among open-source vendors but not large enough to convince many large enterprises to take the plunge. Novell seems well-positioned to do well with SuSE since they offer indemnification directly or through their partners like Dell, better technology than Red Hat, and better support. IBM has made a good play in this arena even though their Linux offerings are rather unimaginative and hardly state of the art; IBM offers the magic word to their customers: INDEMNIFICATION. This has opened many doors for them that remained shut to other vendors. An Oracle offering brings the same "large company support" that will let legal departments and middle managers sleep well at night. A large chunk of Larry Ellison's presentation was devoted to indemnification for that reason. Oracle is already known to work well with Linux; couple that with Red Hat functionality and Oracle support (especially if other Oracle products are involved) and that makes a very attractive proposition for all the parties involved. If Oracle plays this right they can start by offering Red Hat dressed in Oracle garb as they came out of the gate, and then provide a migration path toward a distribution based on Ubuntu or another Linux distribution with better tools. Oracle's prices are perceived as "inflated"; that's a relative term. Consider a near-future scenario involving Linux competitive bids and pitting Oracle vs. IBM. Both will charge through the nose for their products or services; anyone willing to pay IBM's price is in a good position to pay Oracle's. It is my opinion, based on recent experience in dealing with both companies, that Oracle offers much better products, support, and a customer presence for roughly the same price. List prices are high for both but aren't cast in stone. Given the potential price parities after negotiations, financial considerations are less important because they can be set to similar levels for both companies. Since both companies offer the magic words of INDEMNIFICATION, LINUX and INTEGRATION, the competition moves to services, products, and bundles. Management and legal get what they need, and the IT department can evaluate Linux and related open-source software without having the artificial cloud of "you can only buy this from IBM because of the indemnification clause" hanging over their heads. Oracle didn't get that big by being idiots. They are smart and they are very aggressive. This is an overall good thing. It creates more competition for IBM, who perhaps now will push for real Linux offerings that work, for Novell with SuSe, for Sun and Solaris, and it opens the door for upstarts like Canonical to get into enterprises by legitimizing Linux and give them a shot at making Ubuntu a household name. Oracle Linux marks the maturity phase of the first round of consolidation and is the harbinger of the next distribution wars. Oracle may be the catalyst that brings much-needed Linux to the enterprise through the front door. pr3d4t0r is the director of platform technology for a Fortune 10 company based in the United States. He's known as an open-source advocate and is a contributor to several open-source projects. He may be reached on IRC Freenode (##java, #awk, #esb) and Efnet (#java), or via pr3d4t0r@teslatestament.com

    Threaded Messages (24)

  2. Red Hat and JBoss forgot the cardinal rule in software: you need a defensible/differentiated offering or you will be competing for low prices and low margins. As Oracle puts price pressure on their core offering they will have a hard time making their sales and earnings targets which will put more pressure on their stock, making them an easier take over target. As of today their market cap is down to $3 billion, a deep discount from the $6 billion they would have cost in May. They will also find it hard to sign large deals as customers question their long term viability. I predict the eventual acquisition of Red Hat and the death or dwindling of JBoss. If IBM buys them they will keep the OS and kill JBoss because they already have an open source offering via Apache Geronimo. If Oracle buys them they will keep the OS and kill JBoss like they are doing with Berkley DB (and how they tried with MySQL via InnoDB). If Sun buys them they will keep the OS and goof the middleware like they did with Forte, NetDynamics, Netscape, iPlanet, SunOne, Java Enterprise Server and Glassfish. HP could make an interesting run at it but didn’t have much luck in middleware with the Blue Stone acquisition a few years ago.
  3. Tougher road ahead for BEAS[ Go to top ]

    BEA does have a somewhat defensible position in Tuxedo, but Eric will have a tougher time (particularly as IR rep.) explaining how his company positions in JEE and SOA with at least a dozen alternatives. I would rather compete with Oracle than on standards. It doesn't take long for the WebLogic apologists to come out and devour any news that may point to a possible scenario where JBoss is somehow eliminated. I would recommend that the WebLogic product team count on losing market share to a more viable product and model, along the way to Aqualogic nirvana. As for Sun's Glassfish, there is no more direct one-two threat to an entire company's future than what BEA peers in to the looking glass of a dual JBoss-Glassfish threat on all Solaris and Linux installations. Maybe someone will start deploying on Windows for app servers, and then Intel can optimize JRockit for this Itanic-like market share. Until then, I would rather be spared the "predictions" of the demise of entire business models, OS', and #1 middleware platforms. Stick to the money, Eric, you'll find your industry musings more palatable to the few that listen to BEA reps' non-objective posts. douglas dooley http://douglasdooley.blogspot.com/
  4. Re: Tougher road ahead for BEAS[ Go to top ]

    It's amazing to see and read.. what you guys are considering ! By the way how does BEA enter the picture ? BEA is - so far! - the only platform independant software vendor which can deliver both application infrastructure (with Weblogic and Tuxedo) and service infrastructure (with newly introduced Aqualogic) on almost every platform !! why would they break this platform independance and enter this tough playground where only few companies can play ... and fight to sell ultra conservative software (you do not change/swap your database or operating that often!!). that's a non sense to me !
  5. Re: Tougher road ahead for BEAS[ Go to top ]

    Douglas, well put. The long term impact to Red Hat, and JBoss isn't a done deal, largely because it remains to be seen how Oracle will be able to provide better support for RHEL than Red Hat can, even though Oracle has 0% input or control over RHEL. Forking is a possibility, but it's unlikely that Oracle could pull that off (anytime soon). If BEA/Eric really wanted to see WebLogic fortunes change, getting much more involved in an open community that's gunning for JBoss (i.e. Apache Geronimo) would be a good start. Building a product and supporting Apache Geronimo would be a necessary second step. Is Geronimo there today? No. Will it get there? Absolutely. Our experience has been that customers are using Apache Geronimo & WAS Community Edition (built on Geronimo) in some situations, and the rest of the WebSphere Application Server (WAS) family in other projects. Giving the customer choice has, as expected, paid off. Far from cannibalizing our WAS revenue, our support for Apache Geronimo has helped drive our overall WAS family revenue growth. Re. Glassfish, I don't know much about it, but it doesn’t have the community heritage that ASF projects have. Savio
  6. Only question: Why not sooner?[ Go to top ]

    I've always wondered why someone (i.e. someone bigger than RedHat, like IBM) didn't do this sooner. RedHat cannot prevent anyone from copying and selling RHEL, and obviously they can't stop anyone from selling support for Linux. This seems like another blow for RedHat. However, it's really just a blow for RedHat shareholders, who have seen the stock drop by half its value this year. RedHat the business could still do fine though, as long as they focus on providing great support and they get more competitive on price. Peace, Cameron Purdy Tangosol Coherence: The Java Data Grid
  7. Re: Only question: Why not sooner?[ Go to top ]

    I easily understand how current Red Hat customers can switch from RHAT to Orcale support offering. That is quite simple, actually you don't even need to be a Oracle existing customer. So you decide to switch and Oracle takes care of your Red hat distribution : taking your request and providing patches. Story is simple so far. Help me on this : How can Oracle garantee you that change request, and others bugs fix they provided to you , are pushed to the original (or next) red hat distro ? giving you the opportunity to switch back to red hat ... My understanding is that Oracle forks from original, and will try to integrate this to Red Hat official (or next release). No rule makes this mandatory, bug fix will not be integrated in the Red Hat QA tests ! What is the interest for customers ? getting fast answers from entreprise class support company ? or simply makes RHAT linux your own ? .. not far from here will we talk about extreme forking ? Stephan
  8. I easily understand how current Red Hat customers can switch from RHAT to Orcale support offering. That is quite simple, actually you don't even need to be a Oracle existing customer. So you decide to switch and Oracle takes care of your Red hat distribution : taking your request and providing patches. Story is simple so far.
    Help me on this : How can Oracle garantee you that change request, and others bugs fix they provided to you , are pushed to the original (or next) red hat distro ? giving you the opportunity to switch back to red hat ... My understanding is that Oracle forks from original, and will try to integrate this to Red Hat official (or next release). No rule makes this mandatory, bug fix will not be integrated in the Red Hat QA tests !
    What is the interest for customers ? getting fast answers from entreprise class support company ? or simply makes RHAT linux your own ? .. not far from here will we talk about extreme forking ?

    Stephan
    Good points. I thought the same. I read the release and talked to Oracle. Although it still is a little fuzzy, the gist is that Oracle will provide support as it relates to Oracle products; verifying configurations and such. Since Oracle will maintain their vendor relationship with Redhat, any changes for customers should have some weight in subsequent builds. As a sidebar, how much of this move by Ellison is just sour grapes with Redhat purchasing JBoss instead of Oracle? A little corporate smackdown methinks. Didn't help Redhat stock but it also didn't help Oracle's stock either. Seems like a lose-lose at first blush.
  9. Re: Only question: Why not sooner?[ Go to top ]

    I've always wondered why someone (i.e. someone bigger than RedHat, like IBM) didn't do this sooner. RedHat cannot prevent anyone from copying and selling RHEL, and obviously they can't stop anyone from selling support for Linux.
    I think nobody has done it before because its freakin hard to do. Red Hat is a huge contributor to many parts of the Linux ecosystem. Sure, Oracle can "just take our code", but you still have to develop the relationship with the Linux community as well as build an organization that can deliver on patches and new releases. Its going to take Oracle years to get a credible distribution that can compete. You can't just do this overnight. JBoss has lived through defections (CDN), a fork (Elba), and somebody with deep pockets moving into OSS App Servers (Geronimo/Gluecode/IBM). In the long run it made us better and stronger as a company and organization. I expect the same to happen here with Red Hat. I'm convinced that the OSS business model is a lot stronger than some pundits think. If it wasn't, I don't think JBoss would have ever survived. Personally, its a lot more interesting having a credible threat against you. This "living on the edge" is one of the major things I enjoyed working at JBoss. I'm glad working for Red Hat will present similar challenges. Bill
  10. Re: Only question: Why not sooner?[ Go to top ]

    I think nobody has done it before because its freakin hard to do. Red Hat is a huge contributor to many parts of the Linux ecosystem. Sure, Oracle can "just take our code", but you still have to develop the relationship with the Linux community as well as build an organization that can deliver on patches and new releases. Its going to take Oracle years to get a credible distribution that can compete. You can't just do this overnight.

    JBoss has lived through defections (CDN), a fork (Elba), and somebody with deep pockets moving into OSS App Servers (Geronimo/Gluecode/IBM). In the long run it made us better and stronger as a company and organization. I expect the same to happen here with Red Hat.

    I'm convinced that the OSS business model is a lot stronger than some pundits think. If it wasn't, I don't think JBoss would have ever survived. Personally, its a lot more interesting having a credible threat against you. This "living on the edge" is one of the major things I enjoyed working at JBoss. I'm glad working for Red Hat will present similar challenges.
    All reasonable, cogent and mature. Just don't underestimate them .. Peace, Cameron Purdy Tangosol Coherence: The Java Data Grid
  11. Depends on whether or not you want to trust support of your mission critical platforms to someone that is #1 in service and support or someone that is number 37 of 41. For a company that wants to get into the support business, perhaps they should shore up support of Oracle customers before they start branching codebases and trying to support a product that's not even theirs. Its insulting, almost laughable that Oracle would in such short order offer all of these support and update services to provide "Unbreakable" Linux, yet they haven't done the same for their own database offering which is SIGNIFICANTLY more expensive. Nevertheless, so long as th analysts think the sky is falling - that's what people will see.
  12. I think what Eric means to say is... "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!" STAY METAL! Roy Russo
  13. Roy... once again your input is just fu** annoying ! stay metal bottom line is a pain.
  14. Roy... once again your input is just fu** annoying !
    stay metal bottom line is a pain.
    Sorry, but I see Eric's blabbering as yet more FUD from BEA. To make you happy, I will give BEA one point of credit... they've moved past the "We're more open source than JBoss", and "My M5 is a really really fast car" party-line. It shows progress. I applaud you guys for thinking outside the box. ;-) And just for you, Stephan... STAY METAL! Roy Russo
  15. Sorry, but I see Eric's blabbering as yet more FUD from BEA.
    Nice to see that the "usual suspects" aka BEA, JBoss, Oracle are showing their usual intelligence in a debate. You know where you can STICK your metal
  16. Oops, forgot to add the smiley. jejeje :-)
  17. Bull*&#%![ Go to top ]

    For all the reasons put forward by Dave Dargo at Ingres. http://blogs.ingres.com/davedargo/content/2006-10-25.html
  18. The Lawyer's Game?[ Go to top ]

    OK, so two conclusion: (1) Software has no value by itself (2) If there is any value in software, it is created by the lawyers. (3) Software business is becoming solely the lawyer's business. (4) Do you think the lawyer would offer you genuine "INDEMNIFICATION"?
  19. Re: The Lawyer's Game?[ Go to top ]

    oh.. it is "fourc conclusions". Th lawyers just filed two more. :-)
  20. looks like these companies have full development stack: Microsoft: Windows Server + MS-SQL + IIS + Visual Sudio .Net platfrom Oracle Linux + Oracle DB + OC4J + JDeveloper JavaEE (ADF Framework, ...) IBM AIX + DB2 + Websphere now Redhat and SUN need to have a database system to complete their stack, looks like redhat and SUN are happy with MySQL now one these companies should buy MySQL and Postgre to complete their stack, or Oracle should buy mysql to kill redhat!
  21. rhdb[ Go to top ]

    looks like these companies have full development stack:

    Microsoft:
    Windows Server + MS-SQL + IIS + Visual Sudio
    .Net platfrom

    Oracle
    Linux + Oracle DB + OC4J + JDeveloper
    JavaEE (ADF Framework, ...)

    IBM
    AIX + DB2 + Websphere

    now Redhat and SUN need to have a database system to complete their stack, looks like redhat and SUN are happy with MySQL

    now one these companies should buy MySQL and Postgre to complete their stack, or Oracle should buy mysql to kill redhat!
    RedHat still offer RedHat DB (PostgreSQL), or has it been discontinued?
  22. Re: rhdb[ Go to top ]

    RedHat still offer RedHat DB (PostgreSQL), or has it been discontinued?
    They have a lot of PostgreSQL contributors as well as one of the leads.
  23. rhdb[ Go to top ]

    RedHat still offer RedHat DB (PostgreSQL), or has it been discontinued?


    They have a lot of PostgreSQL contributors as well as one of the leads.
    Well, I hope they don't buy postgresql ... would that be possible at all? And mysql-at least the innodb stuff-is already bought by oracle, isn't it?
  24. rhdb[ Go to top ]

    looks like these companies have full development stack:

    Microsoft:
    Windows Server + MS-SQL + IIS + Visual Sudio
    .Net platfrom

    Oracle
    Linux + Oracle DB + OC4J + JDeveloper
    JavaEE (ADF Framework, ...)

    IBM
    AIX + DB2 + Websphere

    now Redhat and SUN need to have a database system to complete their stack, looks like redhat and SUN are happy with MySQL

    now one these companies should buy MySQL and Postgre to complete their stack, or Oracle should buy mysql to kill redhat!
    RedHat still offer RedHat DB (PostgreSQL), or has it been discontinued?
  25. Is it?[ Go to top ]

    see http://yakovfain.javadevelopersjournal.com/how_oracle_kills_open_source_1.htm