About Oracle’s Certified LMS Tools – Yet Again!

Oracle-LMS-Tool-VendorsToday we were on the road to visit a client who is looking at Flexera as a potential Oracle license management solution. The client and us were ‘old friends’ from our early days (almost 7 years ago now), but we always stayed in touch and willingly answered their basic licensing questions.

Looking back since our last article about tooling in 2009, not much has changed. Oh yes, Oracle has certified some vendors. But is that an advantage? Yes and No. All the tool vendors heavily rely on Oracle’s ‘Certification’, which only means that whatever the tool digests must be excreted in accordance with Oracle’s Terms and Conditions. In reality this means that all the false-positive output remain just that: False.

FALSE POSITIVES

  • Secured connections originating from (for example) connected RAC nodes or Oracle’s development tools, show up as if they require licenses. But when we look at the same output we rightfully argue that they don’t.
  • Whenever you add an 11g database to the OEM repository, Oracle will initiate Tuning and Diagnostics Pack without you knowing it. That single fact doesn’t imply you need a license: Period.
  • The ‘certified’ tool will tell you that you must buy Advanced Compression as soon as you have at some stage initiated the DataPump feature. Let’s just say this is sort of reasoning is open to interpretation.
  • The tool may correctly identify Enterprise Edition installations, but not know that the original installations was truely a Standard Edition and this merely changed while running an ‘innocent’ Patch which was made available by Oracle themselves, and that Oracle’s Patch caused the version change.

……….the list of exceptions is endless, and growing every day. I’m confident in saying that there’s no other – not even Oracle – who keeps track of the exceptions in the way we do. And we are proud nerds in applying our knowledge, whilst saving our clients tens-of-millions, year-after-year.

I emphasized to our contact that it wise to use a ‘certified’ vendor tool, simply because it’s better than having no tool (=no control) at all. But I also explained that if one or more examples of the basic scenario’s above would apply to their simple 64 Core ESX Cluster, they would easily be paying 300.000 euro and possibly multiple millions for licenses they really don’t need to begin with.

WHY USE A TOOL

While sitting at home and reflecting on the conversations of today, I read that Lime was selected by the ITAM Review for having the best price/quality match. Great for Lime. But Lime excretes the same false-positives as any other tool, simply because it’s Certified by Oracle. If any certified tool would consider any of our knowledge with their output, Oracle would rip the Certification from their shop and make them obsolete. And so in all honesty: Nobody can blame a ‘certified’ tooling vendor for not improving their output when it comes down to Oracle.

These Certified Oracle Tools are however extremely useful for us, because they help us to focus on output that do cause problems for licensable Options and Packs and allow us to skip output that don’t. And so, they make us much more scalable as a company. We can handle much more projects in the same timeframe and for a lower cost. Some tooling vendors know this, and (often secretly) use us to add value to the clients they engage with. Surely, there’s also big money in interpreting and countering arguments for not requiring licenses in Virtualized or Disaster Recovery (DR) environments or the interpretation of the ‘Users and Responsibilities’ in Oracle Applications. But our ability to analyze, interpret and save costs based on output from the Database Technology scripts (from vendors or the Oracle LMS Review Lite Scripts & CPU scripts) really illustrate to every Oracle client the essence of who we truely are.

WE DARE YOU!

Are you in doubt? I dare you. If you are using an Oracle ‘Certified’ Tool and want to know if your ‘Oracle LMS Certified’ output really represents the truth about your usage – and the money you should spend on Oracle licenses – you can challenge us. Send us the real script output under an NDA from your certified tool, and we’ll do another unbiased interpretation. The sole purpose will be to find false-positives. If our argumented second opinion doesn’t cause you to save licensing money in excess of our project proposal, you’ll get a 100% refund.

As always terms & conditions do apply, but even those are free for the asking.

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