Not just a cluster, but a SuperCluster with an Oracle red cape
The point about the SPARC SuperCluster T4, Ellison explained when he finally got around to talking about it, is that it can process database transactions on the same scale and speed as the Exadata and can support application serving loads on the same scale as the Exalogic – and do both as a "general purpose" machine.
This is an artificial distinction – Oracle could put some Exadata and Exalogic nodes into a single rack with some plain-vanilla ZFS storage arrays – but it is one that Oracle is making. The SPARC SuperCluster T4 runs database nodes on the four-socket SPARC T4-4 systems – announced yesterday – instead of two-socket Xeon 5600 or Xeon 7500/E7 nodes, but it includes the same exact x86-based Exadata storage arrays used in the Exadata clusters. The SuperCluster can run Solaris 10 or Solaris 11, which has more optimizations to speed up parallel database processing specifically for this Oracle iron; the Exadata box runs Oracle Enterprise Linux, the company’s clone of Red Hat's Enterprise Linux that also has tunings specific to running parallel 11g databases and RAC. Which operating system has the better tuning remains to be seen. Oracle recommends that customers run 11g R2 databases on Solaris 11 and lets them choose between Solaris 10 update 8/11 and Solaris 11 for application tiers.
How the SPARC SuperCluster T4 stacks up
The SuperCluster T4 has Exadata storage arrays, four SPARC T4-4 compute nodes, Sun Datacenter InfiniBand Switch 36 switches, and several ZFS Storage 7320 arrays. Depending on the options customers choose, the SuperCluster T4 has 97TB to 198TB of disk capacity; it has 8.66TB of flash memory and can handle 1.2 million IOPS of storage processing. Customers can use the ExaLogic middleware or the plain vanilla WebLogic application server, but the former is tuned to take advantage of flash and compression.
Pricing for the SPARC SuperCluster T4 was not announced. ®
DB2 Advanced Enterprise Server Edition on 4 socket power7 will cost 450*6*4*100 = $1,080,000.00
now you can compare hardware costs ...
"...why Larry likes to only compare against the most expensive enterprise system from IBM with his 4 socket boxes..."
But if Oracle's offering is much faster than the biggest IBM P795, then there is not much of a point to compare to an entry level IBM server, is it? They both play in the same league. Better to compare them against each other then. It would be unfair to compare to a small server. If Oracle would do that, then you would scream about Oracle doing unfair comparisons! "How can Oracle compare against the smallest IBM POWER server? Of course Oracle wins! Oracle should compare to the biggest server to make it fair"
Expensive...yes....unless you are Larry
Here is our standard Oracle database load...and why we are not interested in Larry's scale out strategy. If and when we do RAC it is only 3 notes. We cannot afford to have four nodes with the performance of 3 and all the software costs.
Look at this pricing SPARC T4-4 compute nodes = 4systems*4processors*8cores*.5 core factor table = 64 licenses required.
Oracle EE $47,500
Oracle RAC $23,000
Oracle Dataguard $10,000
Oracle Database Vault $23,000
Oracle Advanced Security $11,500
Oracle Advanced compression $11,500
Oracle Partitioning $11,500
Grand total is $10.7Million with only one year of support
If you add in the software costs of those exadata servers and I think $10K per harddrive you will see this is insane and why Larry likes to only compare against the most expensive enterprise system from IBM with his 4 socket boxes.
Thanks but we prefer the buy IBM Power and virtualize it as much as possible to avoid buying more Oracle software licenses.