Yesterday, Oracle announced that they will no longer be developing for the Itanium processor. SearchOracle posted a blog this morning with a few more details. This caught my attention because last summer my company made the move from HP-UX on Itanium to Oracle Enterprise Linux on X86-64. The initial plan a year ago was to replace the current Itanium server with a bigger one to support our growing processing needs of the Oracle environment. When we started scoping the project, the DBA team suggested looking at Oracle RAC and using smaller, commodity hardware with Linux. Long story short, that was the ultimate decision, and based on the news yesterday, turned out to be the right one. Any time you can make a recommendation that ultimately saves the company time and money, you can call that a success. In this case, if we had moved forward with replacing the existing platform with the same processor, we would be looking for another replacement.
Understanding the technology that you are supporting in your job is just the start. This example shows that keeping an eye on trends and really trying to understand where your company is and where you are going is even more important than being a good technologist. Much of the decision came down to the cost of Itanium, but knowing that the technology did not have the backing that it once did had an impact. Also, Oracle had already put Itanium into its second round anytime releases came out. I was able to learn about those trends while being involved in the Oracle user community. A big part of that is attending conferences like Oracle's OpenWorld and Collaborate which is co-hosted by IOUG, OAUG and Quest. Collaborate 11 will be April 10-14 in Orlando. This is a great way to learn about the latest trends in the industry and learn the latest technology from experts that do it every day. I will be presenting my paper about moving from Itanium to Oracle RAC on Linux. Register today!