IBM’s Announcement on Oracle’s DBSE2

In December of 2022, it was announced that IBM has “… a high-density 24-core processor for the IBM Power S1014 system (MTM 9105-41B) to address application environments utilizing an Oracle Database with the Standard Edition 2 (SE2) licensing model.”[1]

There are two (2) fallacies with taking this announcement at face value:

First, there is the constraint that “Oracle Database Standard Edition 2 may only be licensed on servers that have a maximum capacity of 2 sockets.”[2] So, if there is a configuration for greater than this number of sockets, then SE2 is not an option. And Oracle does not accept turning off the processor at the BIOS. Further the rule states “maximum capacity.” So Oracle would be averse to any deployment on servers with a greater capacity.

Second, regardless of the number of cores, “… Oracle Database Standard Edition 2 database may use a maximum of 16 CPU threads at any time.”[3] This is a technical constraint. So adding more threads via more cores may not boost the performance of DBSE2 the way IBM intimates it might.

While it is true that licensing SE2 does not consider the cores of the processors on which it is deployed, the second point above limits the deployment. So you would want to be careful about purchase this or any device with greater than two (2) processors or greater than 16 threads to be used with SE2.

Contact Miro, your trusted software licensing advisor, for more information.

[1] Source: IBM to create 24-core Power CPU chiefly for Oracle databases • The Register

[2] Source: Database Licensing (oracle.com)

[3] Source: Ibid

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