The ITAM Review

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FlexNet Manager for Oracle License Management

This is an independent review of FlexNet Manager for Oracle.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle Summary

  • Product: FlexNet Manager for Oracle
  • Version: 2013
  • Version Released: 25th June 2013
  • Year Founded / Turnover:  Founded as ‘InstallShield’ in 1987, Turnover not disclosed.
  • Total number of customers: “More than 300”

FlexNet Manager for Oracle Pricing Summary:

  • Most FlexNet Manager Suite products, including FlexNet Manager for Oracle, are priced by number of managed devices (e.g. desktops, laptops, servers) with tiered volume discounts.
  • FlexNet Manager for Oracle requires purchase of FlexNet Manager Platform as a prerequisite
  • Pricing not disclosed

Independent Review

FlexNet Manager for Oracle is verified by Oracle’s License Management Services (LMS) organization, which means that Oracle LMS will accept data provided by Flexera Software customers during a review.

Flexera Software state this gives their customers the opportunity to stay one step ahead of audit cycles by acting on Oracle license management intelligence ahead of time rather than waiting for outcomes from Oracle. Once data is collected, customers can generate a pre-populated Oracle Server Worksheet, an installation declaration to satisfy Oracle LMS requirements.

Flexera includes comprehensive inventory options including virtual platforms such as discovery of VMware vSphere, ESX and Microsoft Hyper-V and calculates licensing rules around hard and soft partitioning, a particularly tricky area of Oracle Licensing. Customers can use Flexera Software agent based, agent-less Oracle discovery and inventory or out-of-the-box and custom inventory adaptors to interface with other inventory tools or data sources.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle provides a good, logical layout of Oracle licensing options, calculations and licensing position.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle includes features for monitoring options and management packs, but unlike other products in this review does not include the root cause of how an option or pack was initiated or the date it was initiated – important when understanding how configurations occurred and preventing issues in the future.

Built on the popular FlexNet Manager Platform software license optimization platform, FlexNet Manager for Oracle is able to discover and inventory many Oracle products in addition to database software, including middleware and business applications.

Flexera Software did not provide pricing information for FlexNet Manager for Oracle so we were unable to ascertain whether this solution represents good value for money in comparison to other products in this review.

Strengths

  • Good all round SAM solution for managing Oracle
  • What if analysis to calculate new costs scenarios
  • Comprehensive inventory options for Oracle databases, other Oracle products and virtualization platforms.
  • Auto-populate the Oracle Worksheet with information pertinent to Oracle LMS.

Weaknesses

  • FlexNet Manager for Oracle identifies when Options and Packs are in use – but unlike other solutions in this review – does not identify when they were initiated or which feature triggered the pack to be activated.
  • No root cause provided for Options or Packs being switched on. Other solutions provide the root cause of an option or pack being switched on such as which feature was utilised to trigger the use of the option.
  • License entitlement is calculated on a ‘Best fit’ basis and is not as rigorous as other solutions in this review.

Case Studies

Further Reading:

FlexNet Manager 2-Minute Overview:

In their own words:

“FlexNet Manager for Oracle is an enterprise scale Software License Optimization solution that is built on FlexNet Manager Platform. It automates and optimizes license management to enable the reduction of license, maintenance and audit costs for Oracle software, while maintaining software license compliance.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle provides next generation software asset management functionality including automated license reconciliation for Oracle Database, E-Business Suite, WebLogic and other products. FlexNet Manager for Oracle has been verified by Oracle License Management Services (LMS) and its reports are acceptable to LMS in a software license review or audit.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle supports numerous Oracle license models including Processor, Named User Plus (NUP) and Application User. Its Product Use Rights Library contains the Oracle core factor table and the NUP user minimums per processor to enable it to calculate an accurate license position. It also understands and applies Oracle’s virtual environment licensing rules for both hard (LPAR, vPar, Solaris Zones, etc.) and soft (VMware ESX/vSphere, Microsoft Hyper-V) partitioning technologies. As a result, FlexNet Manager for Oracle is able to report license compliance and over licensed situations for Oracle software running in today’s dynamic IT environments.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle provides a simulation capability that allows customers to understand the licensing implications of a change to their IT environment. Actions such as modifying hardware properties, moving virtual machines across hosts or installation of a new software title can be simulated, providing an estimated license position that reflects these changes. This ‘What If’ analysis capability allows organizations to proactively maintain Oracle license compliance and understand the cost impact of changes before they are made.

FlexNet Manager for Oracle is part of the FlexNet Manager Suite for Enterprises used by hundreds of enterprises to gain control of and optimize spend across their software estate.”

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About Martin Thompson

Martin is owner and founder of The ITAM Review, an online resource for worldwide ITAM professionals. The ITAM Review is best known for its weekly newsletter of all the latest industry updates, LISA training platform, Excellence Awards and conferences in UK, USA and Australia.

Martin is also the founder of ITAM Forum, a not-for-profit trade body for the ITAM industry created to raise the profile of the profession and bring an organisational certification to market. On a voluntary basis Martin is a contributor to ISO WG21 which develops the ITAM International Standard ISO/IEC 19770.

He is also the author of the book "Practical ITAM - The essential guide for IT Asset Managers", a book that describes how to get started and make a difference in the field of IT Asset Management. In addition, Martin developed the PITAM training course and certification.

Prior to founding the ITAM Review in 2008 Martin worked for Centennial Software (Ivanti), Silicon Graphics, CA Technologies and Computer 2000 (Tech Data).

When not working, Martin likes to Ski, Hike, Motorbike and spend time with his young family.

Connect with Martin on LinkedIn.

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