Microsoft offers free SQL Server licenses to replace Oracle Database

We stand at the beginning of a technological revolution that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to each other. The First Industrial Revolution used water and steam power to mechanize production. The Second Revolution used electric power to create mass production.

The Third Revolution used electronics and information technology to automate production. Now a Fourth Industrial Revolution is building on the Third, the digital revolution that has been occurring since the middle of the last century. Although it is not sure exactly which will be the object of this new revolution, some can already make predictions about this. So is the case for Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella who says that “Data is the new electricity” at the Data Driven event in New York.

With the continuous rise of IT and technologies such as the Internet of Things, we have generated an estimate of 10 zettabytes of data so far, and by 2020 it is estimated that we will have 50 zettabytes of data. Having everything connected, generating big amounts of data, and having a new form of computing (cloud computing) that can process all of that data is what’s bringing forth this digital transformation.

Microsoft defines its role in the data revolution with the launch of the new SQL Server 2016 saying that, it’s not data by itself that will make the change, it is the ability to unlock from data the insights and intelligence that is going to create that transformative power. This is the most significant release of SQL Server that Microsoft has ever done, some say, and the functionality changes that it brings are fantastic:

Groundbreaking security encryption capabilities that enable data to always be encrypted at rest, in motion and in-memory to deliver maximum security protection;

In-memory database support for every workload with performance increases up to 30-100x;

Incredible Data Warehousing performance with the #1, #2 and #3 TPC-H 10 Terabyte benchmarks for non-clustered performance, and as of March 7, the #1 SAP SD Two-Tier performance benchmark on Windows;

Business Intelligence for every employee on every device – including new mobile BI support for iOS, Android and Windows Phone devices;

Advanced analytics using new R support that enables customers to do real-time predictive analytics on both operational and analytic data;

Unique cloud capabilities that enable customers to deploy hybrid architectures that partition data workloads across on-premises and cloud based systems to save costs and increase agility;

Extending SQL Server to also run on Linux OS’s (announced availability in mid-2017).

Focusing on the last item on the list I would comment and say, that this indeed is a very important moment for IT history but also a moment to remember in Microsoft’s history. Looking at the huge number of Linux servers, both physical and virtual, that are now in datacenters we can say that the decision had an important financial factor multiplied by the ever-growing number of Linux servers.

It is too early to comment on any future licensing aspects that will surround SQL Server on Linux, but I would be very curious to see how this is treated.

Another shocking move made by Microsoft is the migration offer directed to Oracle customers. Microsoft has made the offer at the Data Driven day in New York City, and has taken out full page advertisements in the national press to woo customers. The Windows giant claims it can build a database system for less than a tenth of the cost of a comparable Oracle system.

SQL Server leads the industry on security, performance, and price. And we want to prove to you that there is no equal. Move your Oracle databases to SQL Server and receive the necessary licenses of SQL Server—free with software assurance. Take advantage of this offer and get the one data solution that has everything you need built in. (See this directly on the SQL License Migration page)

Yes, you have read correctly. If you move your Oracle DB licenses to Microsoft you will get a true up, namely the SQL Server license equivalent for free*.

There are, of course, some caveats to the offer. You’ll have to be signed up to Microsoft’s Software Assurance program, and if you want Microsoft techies’ onsite to help with the migration and train your staff, you’ll have to sign up before June 30 at the latest.

This is a very interesting offer, from a licensing perspective, the total cost of ownership for an Oracle DB license can be 10 times higher than the total cost of ownership for an SQL Server 2016 license. In addition, to make the migration process smooth Microsoft provides the SQL Server Migration Assistant (SSMA) tool. SSMA simplifies the database migration process from Oracle to SQL Server and Azure SQL DB. It automates all aspects of migration including migration assessment analysis, schema and SQL statement conversion, data migration as well as migration testing.

The migration process is simplified, in 5 steps:

Step 1. Engage your account executive to begin the process.

Step 2. Identify application workloads to migrate and specify the SQL Server cores required.

Step 3. Enroll in a new/renewed Server Cloud Enrollment (SCE)**

Step 4. Receive free licenses and services package to kick-start your migration***

Step 5. Prove migration via deployment report, letter from CIO, or partner proof of execution (POE)

* Software Assurance required.

** SCE has a minimum requirement of 50 cores and requires entire SQL Server installation to carry SA coverage.

*** Software Assurance subscription is required and services only available through June 30, 2016.

If you are in need of extra expertise and a structured approach, feel free to contact B-lay. We will help you make software compliance an exciting opportunity to improve your business!


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