July 10, 2014, 3:14 PM — Oracle's massive annual OpenWorld conference isn't happening until late September, but the vendor recently unveiled details of nearly 1,800 sessions planned for the event that on balance paint a comprehensive picture of what its customers, partners and competitors can expect.
Here's a look at some of the highlights.
Oracle's 12c database may have become generally available in June 2013, but most customers haven't been ready to upgrade, preferring to let early adopters deal with any remaining kinks and give Oracle time to provide patches for stability and performance.
Some may be convinced to take the plunge thanks to a new in-memory option for 12c that is set for release this month. While Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has already spent time hyping the product, it's likely he'll do more of that at OpenWorld. Oracle users who want a deep dive into the in-memory option will get the opportunity thanks to a rash of sessions scheduled for the event.
Another key feature of 12c is multitenancy, which allows many databases to run inside a single database instance. Oracle is pitching this as a way for customers and independent software vendors to cut down on system overhead. OpenWorld will feature a number of customers who have implemented multitenancy, according to the session catalogue.
Overall, this year's event will feature an array of sessions touching upon 12c in some way, and the resulting education could help spark a broader 12c upgrade cycle.
Several years after getting into the hardware business with the purchase of Sun Microsystems, Oracle has finally managed to get the division on a path to growth.
While Oracle makes money on the hardware in its Exadata, Exalogic and Exalytics "engineered systems," the real cash comes from the many software licenses customers pack into those boxes.
Oracle has had the challenge of convincing applications customers who run their systems on commodity hardware that moving to engineered systems can provide benefits that improve both performance and their bottom line.
This year's OpenWorld schedule seems geared toward making the case from a real-world perspective, with many sessions featuring customers who have made the switch.