Oracle embraces open source Xen for virtualization

Phillips says Oracle is trying to be integrated yet open

Oracle President Charles Phillips showcased a raft of new technologies on Monday -- key among them a virtualization product, Oracle VM -- during the opening keynote of the company's OpenWorld 2007 conference in San Francisco.

Phillips repeatedly stressed that Oracle's aim is to create "best-of-breed" applications that are well-integrated into a unified product stack, yet are based on open standards and therefore extensible by customers.

"Instead of having proprietary integration, we wanted an open middleware stack," Phillips said.

The company even wants to help its customers integrate with "third-party applications made in Germany, for instance, if that's needed," Phillips said in an apparent reference to rival SAP.

Phillips and other presenters discussed the company's range of new products.

"We have the answer to virtualization," Phillips said of Oracle VM, which the company claims is "three times as efficient" as competing offerings. The core technology is based on the open source Xen hypervisor, to which Oracle has added a Web-based management console. The company is billing the product, which has support for both Windows and Linux, as something that can cater to all of a customer's virtualization needs.

It will be available as a free download on Wednesday, with the company charging for support.

Other products announced Monday include:

-- The Application Integration Architecture Foundation Pack, which contains tools customers can use to model their own composite business processes that straddle multiple applications. The product is expected to be released in about a month, according to Oracle.

-- A trio of Process Integration Packs for the communications industry. These provide prebuilt integrations for connecting Oracle Financials applications, Oracle Siebel CRM, and Oracle Communications Billing and Revenue Management.

Phillips said more than 40,000 people are attending OpenWorld this week.

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