Cloud AGILITY sketch on notebook

How cloud and data combine to drive business agility

Because it touches on every aspect of operations, digital transformation is more of an ethos than just an IT project. However, three key factors are crucial to enabling the business agility you need.

1. Data platform simplification

Although hybrid IT allows businesses to build truly flexible systems, it also dramatically increases operational complexity. With virtual machines, containerised applications and SaaS platforms to contend with, achieving complete data visibility is harder than ever.

Choosing a single, integrated platform like Oracle Cloud can help to simplify the data platform and blur boundaries between on- and off-premise systems. Smart management tools then provide line-of-sight across the entire estate – and facilitate new ways of working – to make operations simpler, faster and more effective.

2. Intelligent automation and AI

Your data estate continues to grow exponentially, adding to management overheads. Managing the balance between cost, speed of access and availability is a full-time job.

Again, the smart tools included with the Oracle Cloud can help to streamline management, automatically placing workloads where they offer the best price-performance potential. Artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities ensure that the platform continues to learn what your business needs – and to make it happen. This will be particularly important as demand changes; AI will be better able to manage short-term surges in resource demand for instance.

Using automated management tools frees your infrastructure team to focus on the strategic projects which will carry your organisation forwards, rather than diverting resources to keep the lights on.

3. Lower operating costs

A smart data platform in the cloud has the potential to significantly reduce costs – some estimates suggest 55%-100% improvements in price/performance. Service costs also fall by 30%-50% as you outsource responsibility for keeping the hosted platform running.

The savings made can then be re-invested in other activities. From developing next-generation apps to purchasing additional infrastructure that will allow you to achieve your digital transformation goals, the cloud will be an invaluable asset. Assuming you choose the right platform for your current and future needs.

Faster, smarter, cheaper

Cloud investments continue to rise year-on-year – but IT departments also face potential budget reductions in the face of a challenging economic climate. Now more than ever C-suite stakeholders are demanding greater value from investments. This means that IT decision-makers will need to demonstrate operational performance improvements whilst maximising return on investment – or even cost reductions.

The cloud remains the only viable option for achieving these contradictory demands. With the right operating platform, it becomes possible to improve access to data and operational agility and reduce costs too.

To learn more about Oracle Cloud and how it will help your business achieve its digital transformation aspirations, please get in touch.

Oracle Cloud the best place for your enterprise applications

8 Ways Oracle Cloud Destroys the Competition

All cloud platforms are roughly the same right? Wrong. Each has its quirks and nuances, benefits and pitfalls, that may cause problems for your future cloud strategy. So why is Oracle the very best of the bunch?

1. Built to support every app

Many cloud platforms are the result of a vendor scaling out their internal systems to create a public platform, which means mixed results for your enterprise-class apps. Oracle Cloud has been developed towards a single concept – the cloud should support every app.

2. No application re-engineering

Cloud migrations typically involve significant application re-engineering to ensure it works with the target platform – unless you choose Oracle. Oracle Cloud is engineered to be adaptive to your applications, bringing cloud-scale and consumption models to them all.

3. Autonomous management capabilities

The infinite scalability of the cloud quickly increases the complexity of managing hosted operations and systems. To ensure your databases and infrastructure deliver maximum performance, Oracle Cloud includes Oracle Autonomous Linux that self-patches and optimises the OS. Similarly, Oracle Autonomous Database uses machine learning and AI to automate key database management activities to better protect your cloud-based systems.

4. All new hybrid cloud models

Edge computing, data sovereignty and general security concerns have prevented many organisations from moving line-of-business operations to the cloud. To address these issues, Oracle offers a choice of technologies that allow customers to choose where data is physically hosted for maximum security, performance and control – on-premise, in the cloud or anywhere in between.

5. Always-on security

Many cloud platforms treat security as a bolt-on feature, to be added and configured after deployment. Oracle takes a security-first approach, ensuring that controls are enabled from the outset of any project, using automation to prevent human error, reduce complexity and to automate patching for up-to-the-second protection at all times.

6. Predictable cloud costs

The cloud consumption pricing model ensures that organisations only pay for what they use – but that doesn’t mean billing is transparent. Predicting cloud costs is notoriously difficult – unless you choose Oracle Cloud. Oracle charges are both lower and more predictable, using flat-fee pricing for many features that others charge a premium. Oracle database storage and I/O intensive workloads can be as much as 98% cheaper than AWS.

7. Low-code development tools

On many cloud platforms, you will need the services of a data scientist to build the tools which help you make sense of your data. Only Oracle offer a selection of low-code development tools that allow anyone to unleash the power of machine learning to build applications and work smarter.

8. Seamless analytics and BI

Adding analytics and BI to your cloud platforms incurs even more expense – and constant reconfiguration as the environment grows. Oracle Analytics is embedded in the Oracle Cloud, allowing your stakeholders to make sense of patterns and trends – and to make smarter strategic decisions that will help your business grow.

As you can see, Oracle provides many advanced features as standard – although essential, other providers expect you to pay a premium for the same tools. Only Oracle Cloud allows you to build a cloud infrastructure that truly works the way you want – which is why it is the smartest choice for your enterprise applications.

To learn more about Oracle Cloud and why it is the pefect choice for your enterprise applications give the WTL team a call.

NetApp for Oracle

10 Reasons to Choose NetApp for Oracle applications

Infrastructure choice has the potential to make your IT environment acceptable or world-beating. Here are ten reasons why NetApp is the smartest solution for your Oracle applications.

1. Zero downtime

NetApp storage has been proven to deliver 99.9999% availability consistently. Factor in automatic storage failover and you can be sure that your mission-critical Oracle applications will always be available as downtime becomes a thing of the past.

2. Next-generation performance

Built around NVMe/FC technologies (an industry first), NetApp SANs deliver market-leading performance, reducing latency and increasing predictability and scalability. With an exponential performance gain, you will be better able to serve the data-driven needs of your users and customers.

3. Sub-one-minute DR

NetApp allows you to backup and restore petabyte-scale Oracle databases in a matter of seconds. So you can recover operations in less than a minute should something go wrong.

4. Zero loss as standard

Data protection is built into every layer of NetApp infrastructure – edge, core and cloud. No matter where your data is stored, you know it is fully protected against loss at all times.

5. Maximised storage potential

NetApp offers advanced storage efficiency technologies to optimise your data footprint. This means no more wasted capacity or spending caused by storing duplicate data unnecessarily.

6. Automated storage management

Use policy-based quality of service settings to ensure your mission-critical apps have automatic access to the resources required for maximum performance. Smarter, automated optimisation allows you to maximise resource usage – and to safely run production and development environments on the same shared hardware.

7. Simplified provisioning

NetApp tools can automate and accelerate provisioning allowing your developers to bring new products and features into production faster. By reducing the manual effort required to provision your environment, developers and operators can devote more of their resources and time to the strategic projects which will drive your business forwards.

8. Future-ready infrastructure

Native integration with Ansible and Kubernetes allows your team to build service-oriented technologies faster. And with tools to move data seamlessly between on-premise and cloud locations, your applications can be migrated quickly according to your changing business needs.

9. Native multi-cloud integration

Achieve your optimal cost/performance balance with tools to move workloads across on-premise, hybrid and multi-cloud environments. Take control of your storage spend using simplified tools to migrate to wherever offers the best value at any moment in time.

10. Optimised efficiency

Clear reporting and benchmarking tools allow you to quickly and easily understand resource usage and costs. You can use these insights to make smarter strategic decisions that maximise budget and operational efficiency.

Taken together, these ten benefits underscore why NetApp is the ideal choice for your Oracle applications.

Ready to learn more about your Oracle apps on NetApp? Give the WTL team a call today to discuss what it could mean for you.

Oracle Linux Illustration of Hybrid Cloud, Computing IT infrastructure

Oracle Linux – A Linux OS Designed For Hybrid Cloud

There are hundreds of Linux distributions to choose from, but not all are created equal. When it comes to enterprise deployments you need a distro that is secure, reliable and performant – particularly in a hybrid cloud scenario.

So why should Oracle Linux be at the top of your shortlist?

Cloud-native technology built in as standard

Oracle Linux has been built with cloud operations from the outset. Support for Kubernetes and container orchestration is included with the kernel. This allows your business to build modern cloud-ready applications and run them locally, in the cloud or across a combination of both according to your needs and preferences.

Indeed, Oracle is the only vendor to offer a complete technology stack to accompany their Linux distribution – applications, middleware, database, management tools, operating system, virtualisation, hardware, engineered systems, and cloud.

Enterprise-class support available

Oracle offer a selection of flexible support contracts to cover any combination of Oracle Linux instances. As well as ensuring access to product support experts in the event of a problem, you also benefit from advanced tools to help better manage your hybrid cloud operating environment. You can run line-of-business applications on Oracle Linux safe knowing that you have sufficient resources available to assist whenever required.

Importantly, Oracle Support for tends to be cheaper and more cost-effective than other competing enterprise-class services too. This is particularly true when you consider that physical and virtual installations are treated the same, simplifying your support subscription.

Oracle uses Oracle Linux

One of the best tests of a product is whether the vendor uses it. Oracle develops all of their products and services on Oracle Linux giving them a deep insight into demanding enterprise workloads. Their efforts to improve reliability, security, scalability and performance in-house are then rolled into each OS upgrade for the benefit of all of their customers too.

Multicloud support

The modern hybrid cloud operating environment is increasingly complex, often relying on services from more than one vendor. In recognition of this fact, Oracle Linux is available for both Amazon AWS and Microsoft Azure – in addition to Oracle Engineered Cloud.

By offering multi-cloud support, your business can build Linux-based applications and services with confidence, knowing that they will run anywhere without any reconfiguration or redevelopment. Any on-premise development will continue to deliver even after it is migrated entirely to the cloud.

It’s time to learn more

Few operating systems can come close to Oracle Linux in terms of enterprise performance, security, functionality and cost. And the cloud-ready nature of the distro makes it a natural choice for hybrid cloud operations.

To learn more about Oracle Linux and why it is the perfect OS for enterprise workloads anywhere (including hybrid cloud), please give the WTL team a call

CentOS Linux

What’s the best replacement operating system for CentOS Linux?

When IBM Red Hat announced that CentOS Linux would be retired, it left many users with a headache. What should they replace their current operating system with?

Not CentOS Stream

CentOS Linux will be retired imminently – but the name lives on with CentOS Stream. However, this is not a production-ready OS; it is primarily used as a preview for new features and functions that are coming to Red Hat Enterprise Linux. It is constantly updated by Red Hat, just like a beta test environment.

As such, CentOS Stream has not been hardened or battle-tested, rendering it unsuitable for any production use case. This means that CentOS has reached the end of the road for most businesses.

Oracle Linux to the rescue

One exceptional (some say the best) CentOS alternative is Oracle Linux. And for enterprise-class organisations, it’s not hard to see why.

Optimised for Oracle

As you would expect, Oracle has optimised their Linux distribution for their own software. As a result, Oracle Linux outperforms every other distro when it comes to running Oracle databases for instance. As an added bonus, Oracle Linux is faster than CentOS in both bare metal and VM environments, providing another good reason to migrate OS.

Better than CentOS

CentOS had its uses, but Oracle Linux outperforms in every way. In addition to faster OS speeds, Oracle also offers greater stability and security, making it a better all-round choice for enterprise use. Indeed, Oracle outperforms most other Linux distros in these categories too.

Native support for Oracle Cloud

Oracle Cloud Infrastructure runs on Oracle Linux, offering seamless compatibility for your applications, wherever they are hosted and run. This also makes Oracle Linux the only distribution that is available for use on-premises and by a major public cloud provider on their own platform. Oracle Linux also includes tools (Oracle Linux Manager, Oracle Linux Virtualization Manager, Oracle Linux Automation Manager etc) that simplify the process of migrating and managing servers on-premise and in the Oracle Cloud.

Enterprise-class support available

Enterprise-class deployments and mission-critical applications demand enterprise-class support. Despite being a completely free Linux distribution, Oracle also offers (optional) paid support to users. And if your business already uses Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) or Oracle Engineered Systems, you are also already entitled to the ‘Premier’ support tier, offering round-the-clock assistance for your OS.

Streamlined OS migration

Migrating from one OS to another is usually easier said than done. In the case of Oracle Linux, an intuitive migration application is provided, streamlining and simplifying the move away from CentOS – and reducing the risk of a failed migration.

Are there any drawbacks?

Does Oracle Linux have any weaknesses? The biggest is a lack of support for the cPanel hosting platform. But given that most enterprises do not use cPanel, this is unlikely to be a huge concern. The reality is that Oracle Linux really is the smartest choice for most businesses – particularly those who are already invested in the Oracle ecosystem in some way.

Ready to learn more about Oracle Linux? Need help migrating your workloads away from CentOS? Give the WTL team a call and we’ll help you better understand the best move for your business.