According to Oracle licensing rules, multi-core processors are to be counted as a single CPU in Standard Edition products. However for the Enterprise edition, the Oracle licensing rule is different…each core will be counted as a separately, but with pricing discounts.
Recently, on a Pythian Group blog, Mark Brinsmead smartly pointed out that recent changes to Oracles licensing rules for the Standard Edition may result in higher pricing. He rightly pointed out that “When licensing Oracle programs with Standard Edition One or Standard Edition in the product name, a processor is counted equivalent to a socket; however, in the case of multi-chip modules, each chip in the multi-chip module is counted as one occupied socket.” New definitions have been added in Oracle’s software licensing agreements. Oracle licensing can be confusing and very complex. Matching up intellectual property – which essentially is written in legal language – to real-world IT and business needs can really make your head spin.