Oracle VM Review

Oracle has published VM templates for most Oracle products, and you can also build templates by yourself.

What is most valuable?

There are many valuable features. I'm only naming a few here.

First, it provides the enterprise-level hypervisor that supports virtual machines to run enterprise applications. It allows virtual machines to use a specific number of physical processors and cores to handle complex application. It also provides a high-available virtual infrastructure for applications as the virtual machines can be migrated or failed over to a different physical server to avoid a system down time.

Oracle VM simplifies the application deployment with a large number of predefined VM templates. Oracle has published VM templates for most Oracle products, and you can also build templates by yourself.

Oracle VM allows application users to pay for the software license by virtual CPUs instead of the physical CPU.

Oracle Enterprise Manager can manage and monitor the entire Oracle VM virtualization stack.

How has it helped my organization?

I am on a team that is responsible for validating and architecting Oracle VM on Dell servers and storage. For example, we helped a customer design a private cloud system based on Oracle VM, Dell's latest 13g servers and Dell flash-based storage. The private cloud system was designed to offer Database as a Service (DBaaS).

What needs improvement?

The product works well for all its intended purposes. I would prefer that Oracle provide more backup capability for the Oracle VM stack, including the applications running on virtual machines.

It would be even better if Oracle Enterprise Manager could directly manage the Oracle VM stack, without needing the Oracle VM manager sitting in middle.

For how long have I used the solution?

I have been working on Oracle VM since 2009 when Oracle released Oracle VM release 2.1.

What do I think about the scalability of the solution?

The product is easily to deploy and very well scalable.

How is customer service and technical support?

It has been a good experience working with Oracle support on Oracle VM. I didn’t have too many issues with that. Once in a while, we have to log bugs or issues in Oracle Bugzilla, which is Oracle's bug tracking system for Oracle Linux and Oracle VM.

How was the initial setup?

Initial setup of Oracle VM and the rest of stack was very straightforward. The steps in Oracle documentation were very easy to follow.

What about the implementation team?

We implemented Oracle VM stack by ourselves. One of my words of advice is, if you need to implement complex applications such as an Oracle RAC database on an Oracle VM stack, it takes some learning curve. You need to understand both Oracle VM and Oracle RAC stack, and would need to design the special networking and shared storage that are required by Oracle RAC database. An Oracle white paper such as will definitely be helpful. Here are a couple of screen shots from one of our previous Oracle RAC POC projects:

Oracle Infrastructure Cloud based on Oracle VM and Oracle EM 12c

Oracle VM architecture designed for Oracle RAC database

What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?

With Oracle VM, you only pay for the software license based on the # of the virtual CPUs on which the application runs.

Which version of this solution are you currently using?

Oracle VM 3.x
**Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
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