Oracle’s oldest and very popular cloud, CRM on Demand, suffered an outage last week with “multiple pods” going offline, meaning multiple customers were affected, Business Insider has learned.
While that’s not a good thing, cloud outages do happen. The interesting thing about this one was the timing. The outage occurred around the time Oracle was announcing that cofounder Larry Ellison was stepping down as CEO to become CTO, sources told Business Insider.
We heard wild rumours that Oracle had been under a hacker attack, someone trying to embarrass the company at the moment when all eyes were turned on it.
The hack attack rumours are unfounded, Oracle spokesperson Deborah Hellinger confirmed to us.
It was NOT a Denial of Service (DOS) or Distributed Denial of Service (DDOS) attack on Oracle by an outsider and in fact involved a minor configuration error by an Oracle employee. This had nothing to do with Fusion, or any other platforms or applications. This only impacted a few systems running a legacy version of CRM OnDemand. Even those impacted systems were only affected for a short time. We executed our standard back-out procedures within minutes of identifying the problem and resolved all, but a very few, in minutes.”
Like all the other big IT companies, Oracle is in the process of ramping up its cloud-computing business, as companies stop buying software to install in their own data centres, and instead rent it and use it over the internet.
It’s a huge change going on in the industry, involving billions of dollars. Tech companies that do cloud well will captures those billions. Those that don’t will be toast.
Fusion is Oracle’s latest cloud push. It’s an online version of some of Oracle’s most popular apps, like the financial apps that compete with SAP, the HR apps that compete with Workday, and Oracle Sales Cloud that competes with Salesforce.com.
CRM on Demand also competes with Salesforce.com but it’s different. It is the cloud version of Siebel, a software company that Oracle bought in 2005. Oracle has offered CRM on Demand since 2006. Although Oracle doesn’t report revenues for this product, insiders tell us it is a significant portion of Oracle’s cloud revenue (which was $US337 million last quarter).
We rarely hear about outages with Oracle’s cloud, and but that’s partially because Oracle doesn’t publicly share uptime/downtime info, whereas many of its rivals do
The biggest fear that enterprises have with cloud computing is reliability. Oracle’s biggest cloud CRM competitor, Salesforce.com, tries to combat this fear head on by publishing a status page on the web. (It calls this page “Trust.”)
Meanwhile, IBM just this week opened a huge new facility in North Carolina it calls “the cloud resiliency center,” which will serve as a massive backup facility. If its cloud ever go down, it can have it back up, with customer data intact, in minutes.
Next week, 70,000 people will descend on San Francisco for Oracle’s annual customer conference. Executives will be talking all about Oracle’s cloud and its plans for the future. We’ll be there covering and listening for news of how Oracle will be addressing this uptime/trust issue, too.
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