Ever since Oracle bought SUN it was clear that relationship between the database company from Redwood Shores and HP will never be the same. The original Oracle Exadata “database machine” became the first casualty. Then there was that sorted affair with Mark Hurd being kicked out of HP and picked up by Larry Elison. In December of last year Oracle doubled their “scaling factor” for Itanium 9300 in effect making Oracle software twice the price on this processor architecture. While the price action was directed at a particular chip architecture, it is interesting to note that HP is pretty much the only company that builds systems based on Itanium 9300. And to add insult to injury, Oracle dropped the scaling factor for for their software for Sparc T3 processors. Gee, why not just come out and say it “get off HP”?
Earlier today Oracle announced that it is discontinuing development for Itanium all together . Oracle claims that this move was prompted by Intel’s direction away from Itanium; a statement Intel denies. It is hard to argue that Itanium has not been a resounding succes in the marketplace. However, it is quite obvious that Oracle’s real target is HP. Itanium is simply a convenient weapon. In his move for world domination, Larry Elison is leaving a lot of Oracle + HP customers with expensive boat anchors. HP customers do have a choice. DB2 has a really nifty way of turning itself in to a DBMS that understands Oracle flavour of SQL.DBAs and programmers can keep their Oracle skills and continue to develop using PL/SQL and SQL*Plus like interfaces.
As usual, I will admit to bias. However, you can see a more independent assessment by Forrester’s Richard Fichera. Also, check out what Noel Yuhanna from Forrester had to say about the ease of migration from Oracle to DB2.