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Oracle wins Dell for appliance database strategy

Claims Compaq and IBM to follow

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Oracle CEO Larry Ellison says Dell is to sell Oracle 8i appliance servers using the 'Raw Iron' technology the company unveiled last year. Oracle also won Hewlett-Packard's support at the end of last week, and Ellison claims Compaq and IBM are also close to signing. Oracle's system provides a major challenge for Microsoft in that it allows the database to run on just a small kernel - it's much faster, and it can be used to cut Microsoft's NT out of the equation entirely. From Oracle's point of view it's therefore extremely important to win over PC suppliers. Dell will be selling pre-configured Oracle 8i appliances direct, and will be using a new type of licensing model for them. Rather than going for the rigorous 'per user' model Microsoft favours or the rather more relaxed concurrent licensing system it has used for Oracle products in the past, charging will be based on server power. This approach ought to make things simpler to administer, and is at least apparently fair, as the power of the server usually relates to the number of concurrent users. ®

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