Oracle Corp. is broadening its partnership with Microsoft Corp. in an announcement today of new services aimed at blurring the line between Oracle Cloud Infrastructure and Microsoft’s Azure cloud.

The Oracle Database Service for Microsoft Azure allows Microsoft customers to provision, access and monitor Oracle database services on OCI from within the Azure console. They can then migrate or build new applications on Azure that connect to Oracle services such as the company’s Autonomous Database.

The new service extends the Oracle Interconnect for Microsoft Azure service the companies announced in 2019 and that has been adopted by about 300 organizations across 11 global regions, according to Leo Leung, vice president of product management at OCI. That enables interoperability between the two company’s clouds. The new announcement leverages Microsoft administration tools and eliminates fees for moving data back and forth between cloud platforms.

No egress fees

There’s no charge for the service; customers pay for the Azure or Oracle services they consume. The service automatically configures everything required to link the two cloud environments and federates Azure Active Directory identities. It also uses the Azure console, terminology and monitoring along with Azure Application Insights, which provides extensible application performance management and monitoring for live web applications (pictured).

“It uses the existing Azure nomenclature, resource groups, and regions,” said Kris Rice, vice president of software development for Oracle Database Services. “When we do network peering, we give you a list of virtual networks you can peer to on OCI.”

“This makes moving data from one cloud to another as high-performance as possible,” Leung said. “It presents a very Azure-like interface so Azure customers can connect their Azure login with their OCI login and from there provision Oracle databases that appear just like Azure resources. They get full visibility into metrics, logs and the like.”

Supercloud forming

The offering is the latest example of a “supercloud,” which is a term coined by SiliconANGLE for a new breed of applications built on a combination of multiple public and private cloud platforms that provide value beyond the platforms themselves.

“There are a lot of applications that require both technology stacks,” Leung said. “Typically, it might be Windows Server and .NET stack connected to an Oracle database. This gets the best of both worlds: all the capabilities of our database and the best managed service around Windows.”

Leung said Oracle sees three principal use cases for the new offering. One is customers that have relationships with both cloud vendors and want easier access to data on both platforms. The second is customers that want to move from running Oracle inside an Azure virtual machine to a fully managed environment on OCI. “This instantiates a database on OCI,” he said. “They still have to migrate from one database to the other but then they get the database as a managed service.”

A third is customers that use on-premises infrastructure and want to move to the cloud, a process that can usually be done through a simple backup and restore process, according to Rice.

Oracle executives declined to estimate how many potential users there are for the service but “if you look at the joint Microsoft-Oracle installed base, it’s in the tens of thousands,” Leung said.

Oracle Interconnect for Microsoft Azure is available immediately.

Image: Oracle

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