Monday, October 3, 2011

Oracle’s Ellison Introduces Faster System to Challenge SAP, IBM

Oct. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Oracle Corp. introduced a computer system that works faster by analyzing data within its dynamic random access memory, aiming to boost market share and take on International Business Machines Corp. and SAP AG.

“Everything runs faster if you keep it in DRAM -- if you keep it in main memory,” Chief Executive Officer Larry Ellison said in a keynote address at a conference in San Francisco tonight. “You ask more questions, you get better answers.”

The Exalytics Intelligence Machine Ellison introduced will run Oracle’s Times Ten and Essbase databases, both gained through past acquisitions, in its terabyte of main memory. The system analyzes business data many times faster than on machines that store information on disk drives, Ellison told customers at the company’s OpenWorld event.

Oracle, the world’s largest maker of database software and biggest maker of business applications after SAP, is seeking to keep its database relevant for computing jobs that involve processing increasing amounts of data. Oracle’s $16.6 billion in database and related middleware sales last year also make it the top supplier of software that powers corporate and government computer programs.

Ellison also said that the Redwood City, California-based company plans another update to its Sparc microprocessor next year that’s twice as fast as its recently released T4 chip. The idea is to challenge IBM for more hardware sales through Oracle’s Sun Microsystems unit, gained in a $7.4 billion acquisition last year.

Taking on IBM

“We want to take IBM on in their strongest suit, which is the microprocessor, said Ellison. He said Oracle’s T4 chip runs software written in the Java programming language faster in a benchmark test than a competitive IBM system. The company introduced a new Sparc Supercluster system on Sept. 26 using the Sparc T4.

At least one rival doubted how far Ellison will go with the Sparc chip. Oracle may not make the billions of dollars in investments needed to keep Sparc competitive with IBM and Intel Corp. chips in the future, Steve Mills, IBM senior vice president, said last week in an interview.

Diamond stud

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