Oracle changes core processor licensing factor for HP Itanium
Posted by John Hallas on December 13, 2010
This blog is probably only of interest to those shops that use HP Itanium chips but from this month Oracle have changed the Core Processor Licensing Factor for Intel Itanium Series 93XX from 0.5 to 1.0. This will impact new servers that require licensing but and as I understand it for those companies with site licenses it will only affect new servers being added in, not existing servers.
To completely spoil the Xmas period for any HP server salespeople, at the same time Oracle have made changes to the licensing factor for Sun servers so that the new Sparc64 VII+ has a factor of 0.5 which to those of us who are mathematically challenged means you can run twice as many CPUs on those boxes as an HP Itanium 9300 for the same money. You will note that I have used the term CPU in the last sentence rather than core and as long as Oracle databases base their internal calculations on a cpu count then I will continue doing so. The documentation states quite clearly that various components of Oracle Database are configured based on the number of CPUs, such as the Optimizer, Parallel Query, and Resource Manager. That is CPU not cores.
Is this the death knell for Oracle on HPUX. Well it is probably the last rites at least. Given that market share will drop, HPUX is a very late port for new developments and for some products such as OEM/Grid the user base is tiny compared to Oracle Enterprise Linux (or any other Linux varient) then I cannot see any other way but downwards for Oracle sales on HPUX.
Am I sorry. Well as I work on an all HP site for Unix systems then it is of interest but I cannot say that I am sorry, in fact hopefully it might lead to the opportunity to evaluate other suppliers and see if database performance can be increased and if that comes at reduced cost of ownership then it can only be positive.
The Oracle licensing factor document is available online
Throughout this blog I have made the assumption that those investing in Itanium 9300 chips which are primarly used on HP servers will be using HPUX which is what my forecast on the reduction of Oracle databases on HPUX is based upon. If I am wrong in that assumption and there is a big market out there for those chips to run another OS then please feel free to correct me.