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Oracle extends its autonomous capabilities to Linux operating system

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Oracle has extended its autonomous capabilities to the Linux operating system and it is offered free of cost to its paying cloud customers in a bid to make it more appealing and win more customers and developers.

According to Larry Ellison, co-founder and CTO of Oracle, it is the first and only autonomous operating environment in the world that eliminates complexity and human error to deliver cost savings, security and availability for customers and added that the company has been working on it for 20 years.

In his keynote speech at Oracle OpenWorld, he said that autonomy is the defining technology of a second-generation cloud and the company’s ultimate goal is to build the world’s first complete and truly autonomous cloud.

 “Oracle Autonomous Linux is designed for extreme performance, reliability, and security to run the most demanding enterprise applications and an instantaneous migration. The OS is free for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure customers. If you're paying IBM, you can stop. Any RedHat application will run unchanged on Oracle autonomous Linux platform,” he said.

Moreover, Oracle claims that it offers more compute and storage than Amazon, Google, and Microsoft do with their free trials.

“The free Autonomous Database stays free for as long as it's used,” he said.

Eliminating human labour and error

Autonomous systems eliminate human labour, he said and added that autonomous eliminate human labour and when you eliminate human labour, you eliminate human error.

“The scale of the benefit of eliminating human labour is enormous when running computer systems, we spend much more on people than much more on storage or compute or any of the physical assets,” he said.

Moreover, he said that it is the easiest system to run and it is the lowest cost.

“If you want all those benefits, you want to eliminate data loss, you’ve got to be willing to pay less. It costs way less to run Oracle Autonomous Databases than it costs to run Redshift or Aurora. It is way cheaper and way safer. We don’t just automate the database, we automate all the infrastructure around the database, the compute and the storage. And it’s easy to use because there’s nothing to learn, it drives itself. There’s nothing to do because it drives itself. You can concentrate on building the systems that relate to your business.

“Servers fail, storage fails and networks fail. Lots of things fail. The Oracle Autonomous Database not only eliminates human errors, but it’s configured in such a way that the memory can fail and the system keeps running. A server fails and the system keeps running, you’re not even aware of it,” he said.

Autonomous Linux is designed to work with the Oracle OS Management Service, an Oracle Cloud Infrastructure component to monitor and control systems that use machine learning, to enable users to automate capabilities to execute common management tasks for Linux systems.

The new OS offers automatic security updates with no downtime.

Ellison stressed that with no human error, no data loss and data theft.

The Capital One data breach was an exploit of a configuration issue in a firewall, something that's typically rectified by routine security audits and controls.

“AWS support policy is very clear – as a customer you maintain full control of your content and responsibility for configuring assets that AWS serves. When you use Oracle’s autonomous database, it configures itself, consumers cannot make configuration because there are no pilots to make configurations or errors. In AWS, if you make a mistake, it is on you but in Oracle autonomous database, the Gen 2 cloud is responsible for preventing data loss,” he said.

“Simple rule to prevent data theft is to put the data in an autonomous system and that is the big difference with us and AWS,” he said.

Converged database

To strengthen its offerings, Oracle announced Oracle Data Safe - a unified control centre for monitoring security issues with data, users and configuration, as well as recommendations on how to contain security risks.

Oracle has taken the lid on the converged database that supports all the applications and data while it is autonomous.

“If Amazon has five different databases, they’ve got to build five different autonomous databases. It’s impossible. Each one of AWS’ databases has a different API, so if you’re running a programme and you are talking to three or four different databases, you have to be knowledgeable on how to use three or four different databases. It makes it much more complex.

“It gets worse. You have to have experts to maintain these databases. If you have seven databases you need seven teams of experts. You need different security procedures. The same thing with scalability and availability and backup and patching - you’re not just patching one database, you’re patching 10. It’s a really bad idea,” he said.

Ellison said that Oracle, which opened 12 cloud infrastructure regions last year, currently operates 16 hyper-scale regions globally with 40,000 customers and plans to open 20 new regions by the end of 2020, making it 36 regions compared to 25 AWS regions.

Further expanding its reach, Oracle said that it is expanding its regions interconnected with Microsoft Azure. In addition to Ashburn and London, Oracle is globally expanding the partnership to US West, Asia and Europe.

Naushad K. Cherrayil