How has it helped my organization?
We have been working on consolidation projects. Earlier, as anybody else did, we were co-locating databases on servers, creating VMs. Now, we have moved away from that and gone to creating multi-tenant databases, so that we can consolidate. Predominately, we are using it for consolidation projects.
What needs improvement?
Even though we say Unplug Plug Upgrade is a very good feature and it does work, we are seeing that sometimes it takes longer than what we expect for larger databases. Secondly, it does have that prerequisite of first upgrading in place to 12, and then you migrate. If you have a lot of non-multitenant databases as a source, the process of making them into multi-tenant databases is sometimes a bit longer and tedious, especially if you are at the pre-12c version. That's the only place where I would see if they can directly convert maybe an 11g database to pluggable 12c. That would be great. Right now, we are upgrading in place to 12c, non-multitenant, and then making it ready for the plug in.
For how long have I used the solution?
I have been using it for close to two years.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
It has been pretty stable. We have not found any issues in terms of ease of implementation, as well as mainly performance. We are not seeing any issues.
Of course, we have been a bit cautious, moving non-production databases first, in terms of consolidation. Nonetheless, we have found it pretty reliable, so we have now gone ahead and started using it for production databases.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
I feel that it is a scalable solution, but we have not reached that stage where we will start choking on the capacity. We have not reached that 255 in one, single container database, but I hope it will not choke. We have not reached that stage yet where we are reaching that limit.
How are customer service and technical support?
Support is hit or miss, depending on who you get on the support line. I've been working with Oracle for a long time, since the 1990s. I'm pretty familiar with Oracle support, as it is with other products.
Overall, I would say this product itself is so stable that you don't require a lot of support. However, support is always a question; sometimes, you get phenomenal support. It depends on who you get. We have a lot of expertise internally, so we don't really require that much support.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
As I’ve mentioned, we are long-time Oracle database users. The predominant driving factor was to find something that would get rid of creating a lot of VMs and co-locating databases. This was really an ideal solution for us. We didn't really select the product, the product selected itself.
How was the initial setup?
Initial setup and configuration is so simple; one of the simplest things to do. There are no issues configuring multi-tenant; very simple set up.
What other advice do I have?
Go for this. As far as this product is concerned, we are happy with this product. Definitely, if you solve the licensing part of it, the product, capability-wise and features, is phenomenal. There's no question about that. I would wholeheartedly recommend this product to anyone.