Busted: 7 myths about Oracle SAM tools

Third-party Oracle licensing consultants tend to tell their clients that Oracle Software Asset Management (SAM) tools are weak, lacking capabilities and accuracy. In the end, helping you with Oracle compliance calculation or an Oracle audit is consultants’ bread and butter. However, what are the differences between standard Oracle licensing services and a professional Oracle SAM tool and is the latter really that bad?


Myth #1: Oracle SAM tools cannot collect accurate data

Oracle licensing consultants often claim that their collection is precise as they are using their own slightly modified License Management Services (LMS) scripts which are identical to the official Oracle LMS scripts. This is true. It is also true, that Oracle SAM tools do not use LMS scripts to collect the data.

That said, collected data from some select Oracle SAM tool vendors is approved for audit. In this case, the data collected by the tool is so accurate and identical to the data collected by Oracle that Oracle will accept this data without question in the event of an Oracle audit.

Will Oracle accept the collected data of Oracle licensing consultants? No. This means that from Oracle’s perspective the data collected by verified SAM tools is more accurate.

Myth #2: An Oracle SAM tool is only as good as the data you feed in

Oracle licensing consultants claim that they can always notice if their client missed a server or if some information is lacking. They can then ask to run the script there again or double check if no Oracle products are installed. Consultants claim that no Oracle SAM tool can accomplish that. Well, some tools indeed can. For example, USU Oracle Optimization clearly demonstrates if all Servers and Databases are collected as expected. Moreover, if they were not properly collected, USU Oracle Optimization will suggest you what could be the reason for it.



Your Guide to Software Asset Management for Oracle



Myth #3: The implementation of an Oracle SAM tool takes longer than running scripts

Although this is true on the short term, on the long term it is faster. The reason is that you need to install and configure an Oracle SAM tool only once. If you are planning to use the tool more than once, it will be much faster than LMS scripts, because you need to run them every time when you want to get an update on your Oracle estate. And every time it does not only take consultants’ time, but also extra time of your internal team. Both cost money. As an example, USU Oracle Optimization deployment time is around 3-4 days while running scripts on all servers on average takes 2 days. Hence, if you are planning to check compliance of your Oracle products more than once it makes sense to think about a long-term solution like an Oracle SAM tool.

Myth #4: Oracle SAM tools cannot show you a correct compliance position

To address this myth, let me first briefly tell you about the process of compliance calculation at an average Oracle Licensing Service provider.

  1. Consultants discuss the details of the client’s Oracle environment with the latter.
  2. LMS scripts are run, and the data is sent to consultants.
  3. Analysts team using semi-automated approach checks the quality of the data and transforms it in a form of several reports for later analysis.
  4. Licensing consultants using MS Excel manually calculate the client’s compliance.

As you can see analysts do use software to normalize the data and bring it in the right format. Oracle SAM tools are in fact very similar to it, but are generally faster, more robust and tested.

Although the part of the data normalization is automated, the rest is still manual human work which is often prone to errors. Errors which can cost a lot of money and bear high risks for your business. That's why Oracle SAM tools go a step further, as compliance can be calculated in a fully automated way. For instance, USU Oracle Optimization can automatically proof compliance for Oracle Databases, Options, Packs, Middleware, JAVA Software, and some other products absolutely flawlessly.

Myth #5: Oracle SAM tool is more expensive than consultants

On the contrary, Oracle SAM tools are less expensive than consultants if you plan on using it for more than one year.

In fact, the real value of Oracle SAM tools is its flexibility as you can use it anytime. The problem with consultants preparing a compliance report for you is that it happens only once. So, if yesterday they prepared a report for you and today you bought more or removed some Oracle products, then their results from yesterday will not reflect the reality any longer. With an Oracle SAM tool, you can see the changes in your environment in real time and even prevent unexpected usage rather than dealing with it post factum.

For example, USU Oracle Optimization does not only show you what Options and Packs you use, but also where and what was the reason for their activation. So, having these details you can find the server it is used on and speak with your DBA if the Options/Packs were activated on purpose. If not, then you can disable them and save a lot of money. Furthermore, it shows you when was the last usage of Options & Packs. This information is useful if you consider a reinstallation if the last usage was a very long time ago.

Myth #6: Oracle SAM tools cannot help much with ULA exit, EBS compliance calculation, negotiations, etc.

This is only partially true. Yes, to approach more complex use cases like exiting ULAs, calculating compliance for EBS, or negotiations, the experts help is necessary. However, you first need a tool to gather the data to evaluate your current Oracle state. Modern Oracle SAM tool vendors often do not have just a tool, but also a team of Oracle licensing professionals in place to help you out with managed services. For example, USU has an experienced team of Oracle licensing experts who can help you with such complex tasks using USU Oracle Optimization and their longstanding expertise.

Myth #7: Oracle SAM tools can't be used to finish Oracle licensing projects successfully

They should look better. In fact, many Oracle licensing consultants use Oracle SAM tools by themselves. For example, USU Oracle Optimization is now used by 5 Oracle licensing service providers to calculate compliance, prepare for an audit, exit ULAs, optimize the costs, etc.

Unsurprisingly, Oracle licensing consultants of USU use it too and have already accomplished more than 70 successful customer projects. Check out one interesting case study from the French healthcare sector.

If you want to learn more about the benefits of Oracle SAM tools, feel free to contact us or ask for a free demo.



Your Guide to Software Asset Management for Oracle




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