Oracle takes grid show on the road

Interest in Oracle Corp.'s grid strategy is rising among IT executives lured by the prospect of doing more with less.

Juggling a hodgepodge of IT systems, Ramaswami Vasudevan and his co-workers are among those who can hear Oracle Corp.'s grid message loud and clear.

An IT manager at Fresenius Medical Care North America in Lexington, Mass., Vasudevan inherited a variety of legacy systems when his company made a number of acquisitions over the last several years. Now the dialysis products company is planning to migrate some systems to Oracle Application Server 10g and Oracle 10g database management system (DBMS) over the next year.

Our problem today seems to be we're operating systems as if they're on islands.
Ramaswami Vasudevan
 IT managerFresenius Medical Care North America

"Our problem today seems to be we're operating systems as if they're on islands," Vasudevan said. "There are islands of storage and islands of servers and some of them are over utilized while others are underutilized."

Vasudevan was one of nearly 50 IT managers who last week attended a seminar "Build a Grid-Enabled Adaptive Enterprise: Agility, Higher Service Quality, Lower Costs," sponsored by Oracle, Hewlett-Packard Co. and Intel Corp. The central message of the seminar was clear: By building a grid architecture, companies can share resources and improve efficiency.

Oracle, HP and Intel are founding members of the Enterprise Grid Alliance, a group of Oracle partners formed this year by Oracle to set grid standards for commercial use. The companies are sponsoring similar events across the country, in a series of seminars designed get customers to migrate to Oracle 10g using HP servers.

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"This is not rocket science to implement," said Paul Gavin, business development manager at HP. "Implementing grid gives the IT department the ability to react to business requirements before they become an issue."

Eager to learn more about grid, Shalom Keynan, chief technology officer at WorldCare Clinical Inc., based in Cambridge, Mass., was trying to envision his company moving to grid while listening to testimonials from Oracle customers. Keynan said he likes the idea of easily managing server capacity based on how a company's applications are being used.

"It would make life easier to be able to easily allocate resources based on demand," Keynan said. "We've got a variety of systems running, and managing them all together would certainly be more efficient."

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