A recent licensing dispute between software giant Oracle and candy manufacturer Mars has been making headlines in the Software Asset Management community. While this case was settled before going to trial, Mars was facing massive licensing fees that could arise for any company running Oracle’s premiere database and VMware’s virtualization software.
Oracle is targeting users that deploy their products in conjunction with VMware because of conflicting definitions of hardware partitioning. Oracle only accepts a limited set of virtualization and partitioning technologies, and then only when configured as per the descriptions in this Oracle document. VMware is not listed as a hard partitioning technology option.
We’ve covered the complexity of Oracle licensing in 1E’s Better ITAM Blogs before and hope that the news surrounding this case will be greater awareness to how conflicting interpretations of licensing laws can impact businesses of any size or complexity.