Reseller eases Oracle 11i upgrade woes

Reseller eases Oracle 11i upgrade woes

Specialist Oracle reseller mPower Systems has come up with a way of making new Oracle implementations easier and more cost effective by partnering with managed service providers to offer a hosted solution.

Oracle end users that have been attempting to upgrade to the vendor's new E-Business suite (11i) have long been complaining about installation difficulties and a lack of support from the database vendor. At a recent Oracle application user group meeting in Toronto, an AMR research survey found that very few of 115 surveyed user group members were satisfied with the upgrade process. The users had spent, on average, 40 per cent more money and 39 per cent more time on 11i implementations than they had expected. Fewer than 40 per cent of Oracle's existing users have upgraded to the new suite.

North Sydney's mPower has found a way to take away these headaches for Oracle customers. The company has signed partnerships with two MSPs that have their own state-of-the-art data centres: Adelaide's Hostworks and Sydney's Macquarie Corporate Telecommunications.

Both the MSPs and mPower will be offering customers a managed, hosted Oracle solution. The MSP will manage everything below and including the operating system layer (that is, OS, hardware, and network support), while mPower will manage the solution and services from the operating system layer up (that is, the database and application layers). Customers will pay either the MSP or mPower a monthly rental fee, depending on who found the client, and the relevant share of the revenue will be passed on to the other partner.mPower director Mark Pavkovic said the decision to upgrade can often require the purchase of new hardware, another expense that end users are often sceptical of. Renting the application as a service, on the other hand, takes out both the cost of hardware and the risk of expensive and time-consuming implementations.mPower has been trialling the solution itself for the last four months and Pavkovic is confident the solution will prove to be popular. He said end users without expertise in Oracle software should not attempt a complex implementation without the aid of an Oracle channel partner anyway.

"My personal view is that the customers who have complained about a complicated installation have been their own worst enemy by trying it themselves," he said. "You really need to go to an expert to minimise your risks."mPower is not the first database reseller to offer a hosted solution, with WebCentral now offering a similar service for end users requiring Microsoft's SQL product.

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