I was recently discussing load balancers with someone. I said I was much happier with F5 than I was with Cisco and he countered that although he preferred F5 head to head, going with Cisco for all the network was better for them in the long run.
The situation with storage is similar. EMC makes a great SAN but a pretty bad NAS. Is it worth getting EMC”s NAS for the One Stop Shop factor?
Since Oracle’s acquisition of Sun, I’ve been looking forward to the success of their “One Stop Shop” philosophy. Successfully bringing all their offerings under one roof promises better and faster support all around.
Unfortunately, it has been almost a year and Oracle is still not sure how they are to unify the customer support systems. New support contracts don’t work in either system. To make things a little less clear, Oracle recently announced that everything will be migrated to “My Oracle Support” but they don’t know when- very reassuring.
A simple pattern emerges. One Stop Shop is a dream for IT people. Support is hard enough to get when you’ve isolated a problem to a specific vendor. It is even harder when your problems are between two vendors and each points the finger at the other.
When does the One Stop Shop strategy become a rationalization for Vendor Lock-In? It is a delicate balance around how much better your IT could be with Best of Breed vs. how much worse they will be integrating all the different pieces of the puzzle.
Regarding Cisco vs. F5, I’m also pretty happy letting Cisco handle everything Layer 3 and under and I don’t worry too much about the integration. I’m also optimistic regarding Sun and Oracle. I think they’ll have the wrinkles ironed out by the second half of 2011. If they don’t, it will be a serious let down.
Last night I watched almost the entire 5 hour live webcast announcing Oracle’s strategies regarding the Sun Microsystems acquisition. As a near-evangelist for Sun and Solaris, I’m very happy with the deal finally going through and even happier that most of what Oracle said makes sense to me as a customer.
What I liked:
- The clear commitment to the SPARC roadmap especially the T series. I honestly don’t know what I would have done if the T series servers disappeared. I’m very happy that they put raising the clock speed into the roadmap because some applications just can’t be deployed on these servers.
- The clear commitment to making waves in Enterprise Storage. NetApp was specifically mentioned and obviously the 7000 series arrays are best suited to compete with the NetApp arrays but I hope they will draw some EMC blood as well. I like the plans for integrating backup capabilities.
- The plans to integrate really great Solaris tech into Oracle applications like DTrace, and RBAC
- The plans to offer direct support. Honestly this was one of the most annoying parts of working with Sun was having to work with different support providers in every location.
- The plans to change the supply chain and ship direct- no more out of stock excuses.
- The plans to integrate Ops Center with Oracle Enterprise Manager.
- Larry Ellison’s stand up comedy
- And completely unrelated- the flashing disk lights on the Exadata V2 🙂
I didn’t like:
One thing I’m not sure about is the integration of Sun virtualization technologies into Oracle VM. On one hand it sounds good, on the other hand, I think this was the only part of the presentation where I noticed there were no due dates. Virtualization is super important to me so I really want to know where things stand.
Obviously, it is easy to get up and say everything will integrate but doing it is much harder. Just getting past the internal politics of this will be a major issue. Now we can only wait and see if Oracle can pull it off.
I used to get upset with “Oracle people” for always thinking that Oracle was the solution to every problem. If they pull off this acquisition, I much just become an “Oracle person” myself.