Is Oracle on crack?

I spoke with two very nice gentlemen from Oracle today regarding the acquisition of a new Oracle database server suitable for back-ending ArcSDE for our Tampa office. To be honest, I am shopping Oracle against MS-SQL and DB2 and I shared that with him also.

It seems that Oracle, in their infinite wisdom created three edtions:

  • Enterprise
  • Standard Edition
  • Standard Edition One

The price that they advertise on the back of trade magazines like InfoWorld and Information Week is for Standard edition which MSRP's for about $5K/processor or $149/user depending upon how you license it. That pricing structure is comparable to that of MS SSQL Server Standard. What Oracle doesn't say, is that only the Enterprise edition is capable of supporting databases larger that 500GB!

500GB! Now to be fair, that is a good size for a ERP solution for a SMB client. Ours is about 8GB all told (MS SQL-Server). For GIS however, that size is a pittance. Our inital intended data load for that server will be over 1TB. For that apparently, you need the Enterprise edition which comes out to roughly $40,000 at MSRP per Processor! What a rip-off.

Unless they come back with some excuse like "Uhh, we wanted to see how dumb you were...", it's very likely that I'll be implementing another MS-SQL or a DB2 database here for ArcSDE duty. What would be nice would be for ESRI to add support for MySQL with its Spatial Extensions to ArcSDE 9.2. That would be a hoot.

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