There are many important considerations for IT decision-makers with virtualization. Top of mind to enterprises are the systems that need to be in place to support virtualization: servers, networks and storage. But it’s important that IT also understands the virtualization implications in the middleware and application stack. For many organizations, this is an afterthought until systems administrators actually begin to virtualize their application workloads. Understanding application virtualization is critical because one particularly large IT company has been causing quite a bit of confusion and pain for enterprises trying to virtualize their workloads. And unfortunately, many IT organizations are caught completely by surprise by the company’s stance.
If you haven’t yet clicked on the hyperlink above, I’m referring to Oracle’s draconian policies on virtualization. Industry analysts and pundits have been warning enterprises for months about Oracle’s inflexible licensing terms and conditions that require extra licensing costs to support key virtualization features, charge companies for processors they do not use, and do not provide support to any leading virtualization platform such as VMware, KVM or Hyper-V. This last issue, hypervisor support, is especially troublesome because now there is a perception among some enterprises that all IT providers have similar policies. Take this quote from a recent SearchServerVirtualization.com article for example:
“If Oracle said it would support Java on VMware and Hyper-V, they’d have to test it on all those hypervisors prior to release, and that’s nuts,” he said. “What they’re saying here is if you can’t replicate the problem on one of their four VMs, I’m not sure that’s all that different from IBM. All these companies operate the same way. They support their own stuff top to bottom, but if you run a mixed stack then they won’t support all those parts.”
While that statement describes Oracle’s approach to a “T”, the truth is that not all companies operate the same way with virtualization. In IBM’s case, our middleware and software can support deployments running in all leading virtualization platforms including VMware, KVM, Hyper-V, Xen, PowerVM and z/VM. We let our clients choose which platform is right for them, and we even support the entire “mixed” stack if that is what the client prefers. We make it easy for enterprises to complete their virtualization journey, leveraging existing IT investments and applications, with no surprises along the way.
Now that you know, don’t fall for Oracle’s virtualization trap.