Alternatives to Exadata for Oracle Database - Optimizing Hardware Platforms

When alternatives to Exadata may be a better fit

There are several compelling alternatives to Exadata for Oracle Database.

Exadata is recognized as the gold-standard platform for running Oracle Database Enterprise Edition, and for good reason. It is a high-performance, customized, single-purpose system built to do nothing but run EE better than any competing platform, and that it does. It is also expensive.  In situations where Exadata may be cost-prohibitive there are other, less costly options that provide similar benefits.


Exadata Alternatives for Oracle Database:

  • Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) is also a single-purpose system but does not require expensive Exadata Software.
    • Its Capacity-on-Demand (COD) CPU core activation feature allows deployment of only the number of cores required, with the option to activate additional cores as needed, a very significant factor in controlling licensing costs.
    • Unlike Exadata, ODA can run Oracle Database Standard Edition.
  • Oracle’s ZFS Storage System is optimized for Oracle Database at a fraction of the cost of Exadata.
    • Like Exadata and ODA, ZFS uniquely employs Hybrid Columnar Compression (HCC) to reduce space requirements and accelerate queries.
    • As a general storage system ZFS is price/performance competitive with other vendors, making it an excellent solution not just for Oracle, but for any demanding storage requirement.
    • ZFS can be attached to an existing Exadata for less expensive storage expansion and/or a robust backup solution, without investing in additional Exadata.
  • SPARC running Solaris is still the most powerful, best optimized server platform for running Oracle Database.
    • One processor unit (2 CPU cores) of Oracle Database Enterprise Edition has a list price of $47,500 plus support. Running on fewer, more powerful cores can create substantial savings.
    • The latest SPARC cores, including those in the Fujitsu M-series (sold by Oracle) are not only the most powerful in the industry…they also have advanced software-on-silicon features that optimize and accelerate database functions.
  • IBM LinuxONE offers performance comparable to or better than Exadata using the power of mainframe-class hardware rather than proprietary software, with the familiarity of Linux.
    • Powerful, general purpose system that powers Oracle Database like Exadata, but with the flexibility to run other applications as needs fluctuate.
    • Un-licensed cores run I/O and other non-compute functions, enabling licensed cores to be dedicated solely to database functions – fewer cores to license
    • Capacity-on-Demand built-in to every LinuxONE to accomodate seamless growth within one footprint.
    • Hardware driven, low-overhead encryption and compression provide security and performance with minimal performance impact

SMI is an Oracle Gold Partner located in Fairfield, CT since 1994…and a two-time Fujitsu SPARC North America Partner of the Year.
Contact us for more information, and find more information about ODA, ZFS Storage, and SPARC at: