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Oracle Raises Linux Pressure, Rolls New Support - InternetNews.
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Oracle Raises Linux Pressure, Rolls New Support

Oracle  is basing its Unbreakable Linux offering on Red Hat's Linux, but the database vendor is not content to rest on Red Hat's laurels when it comes to managing Linux.

Oracle today is announcing Oracle Management Pack for Linux, which is a module for Oracle's existing Enterprise Manager offering. Oracle claims that Management Pack for Linux does everything that Red Hat does with its Red Hat Network management product, and more. Plus, Oracle said, it's a free add-on for its Unbreakable Linux subscribers.

For Oracle, the release is part of its announcement last fall that it would provide enterprise level support for Red Hat's  Linux kernel on the same par as it does for its own products, upping the pressure on Red Hat's own offering and setting the open source world abuzz over the move.

Oracle's Enterprise Manager has been around for years. Its original scope was to help administrators manage thousands of databases, Adam Hawley, director of product management for Oracle Enterprise Manager, told internetnews.com.

The Management Pack for Linux extends that idea by providing an integrated and centralized way to provision servers from bare metal; handle patching, configuration, performance management and centralized administration of Linux servers.

"The pack is part of Oracle Enterprise Manager, which is a broader based framework that manages database and application components," Hawley said. "You can manage your Linux servers in the context of other things that are in your total enterprise."

Where that really pays off is that servers don't run in a vacuum, but are there to host applications, he continued. "We can track all that and it give better visibility and manageability across an enterprise."

The other part of the offering is that it's free for existing Oracle Unbreakable Linux subscribers. "This support offering includes 100 percent of everything you need," Hawley said.

Oracle's Unbreakable Linux is based on Red Hat's Enterprise Linux, which also offers a management platform called Red Hat Network (RHN). But Monica Kumar, senior director of marketing at Oracle, insisted that the offering isn't about competing with a specific vendor. "In general we've been extremely pleased with the momentum and the interest in the Linux support program offered by Oracle," Kumar said.

Kumar declined to say how many customers Oracle's Unbreakable Linux currently counts. "Once the free trial ends we'll have a better idea of which customers are paying for support versus not," Kumar said.

Oracle's Linux business is already extremely lucrative even without paying customers for Unbreakable Linux.

"We made $1.2 billion dollars of database revenue on Linux last year," Kumar said. "There is a clear trend among the Oracle customer base for adopting Linux and that trend is also clear with customer exploring Linux support from Oracle."