Top 7 Reasons You’re Getting Audited by Oracle

Friday, 22 March, 2019

Let’s face it, if you’re an Oracle® customer, you’ve heard about Oracle License Management Services (LMS). And you for a fact know that they come in and perform Oracle software license compliance audits. If you have been subject to an audit yet, rest assured they have you on the list. Here are the top reasons you’re getting audited by Oracle.

Reason #1 – Oracle on VMware

Oracle LMS loves to target customers virtualizing Oracle on VMware® vSphere. If Oracle hears you are thinking of migrating onto VMware vSphere, it seems to be a quick way to make the audit list. With VMware vSphere, it’s effortless to migrate workloads to different hosts while the application is running, and Oracle LMS knows this. The latest versions of vSphere do predictive workload balancing automatically. It is very important that steps are taken to configure Oracle workloads so they don’t accidentally run on an unlicensed host.

To add to the problem, there is a lot of fear, uncertainty, and doubt (FUD) concerning the proper way to license Oracle on VMware. It’s vital that you work with a firm that understands the appropriate way to architect and licenses Oracle on VMware. A firm that can teach your staff the proper way to configure database workloads so they can never run on an unlicensed host is invaluable. A component of the ArxPlatform is educating your DBAs and system admins on the proper way to configure Oracle on VMware. LicenseFortress is one of three companies in the world identified by VMware as experts on how to license Oracle on VMware without licensing issues properly.

Reason #2 – Dismissal of Oracle Sales Recommendations

Eveyone knows Oracle for its aggressive sales force — establishing a name for comments such as:

  • “Oracle RAC is not supported on VMware.”
  • “You are on the audit list; make ‘X’ purchase. I can take care of it.”
  • “You need to license every physical node in the cluster that Oracle might run on.”

It should not surprise you to learn that rejecting an Oracle deal may trigger an Oracle LMS Audit.

Reason #3 – Merger and Acquisition or High Growth

Oracle pays attention to financial filings and the news. In our experience, an M&A event may trigger an audit. A company that makes headlines for high growth may trigger an audit. Oracle LMS equates rapid growth with the need for more Oracle licenses. If you meet with an Oracle sales representative, and they make a statement such as, “We expected a company of your size to have more Oracle licenses,” that should be a red flag warning and expect that you will be getting audited by Oracle very soon.

Reason #4 – Customer Hardware Refresh

In the past two years, if you have undergone a hardware refresh cycle, then you should prepare for an audit. Oracle LMS understands that a hardware refresh most likely means an increase in processor counts. A standard way to license Oracle databases is by the processor. During a hardware refresh, it’s common to increase the processor count. If your organization changed the server types you were using, it’s crucial to check the Oracle Processor Core Factor table to make sure you are applying the correct license requirements. It is very common for customers to forget to do this. At LicenseFortress, we made education a standard part of our product offering. The better educated your DBAs and system admins are concerned with licensing, the less likely you are to make a mistake. And remember, don’t forget to consider the implications of an Oracle audit when undergoing a hardware refresh.

Reason #5 – Currently Under an Oracle ULA

An Oracle ULA provides unlimited licenses for a specified period of time for a set of technology, products, and/or applications. Oracle may audit you for products or applications not covered by the ULA. When a ULA is close to expiration, this may trigger an audit. A common mistake is not managing the use of technology when they are under the ULA agreement. It’s imperative to know what and how many Oracle products you are using. Don’t wait until the ULA is about to expire to figure it all out. It’s essential to be prepared for the possibility of getting audited by Oracle while under an Unlimited Licensing Agreement.

Reason #6 – Displacing an Oracle Solution in the Last Two Years

Oracle does not want to lose any of your business. They will use the leverage of an Oracle LMS audit to discourage you from displacing an Oracle hardware and/or software solution. They will look to see if the use of third-party software triggered additional use of Oracle licenses. There is a lot of FUD concerning the proper way to license Oracle. Often sales reps use statements like: “That solution is not certified by Oracle.” Displacing an Oracle solution in the last two years can potentially put you on the radar for an audit.

Reason #7 — Being an Oracle Customer

Being an Oracle customer is what ALL Oracle audits have in common. It’s not a matter of IF Oracle LMS will audit you; it’s a matter of WHEN. Recent trends indicate software audits are on the rise. The motivation for increasing the number of audits performed each year is quite simple; audits are an easy source of additional revenue. Many vendors, including Oracle, are using authorized third parties to perform the checks. Therefore, as an Oracle customer, it is important to prepare for the possibility of an audit by Oracle or their authorized representatives.

In conclusion, being an Oracle customer means being at risk of getting audited by Oracle License Management Services (LMS). Whether it’s virtualization, dismissing sales recommendations, mergers, hardware refresh, ULAs, displacing solutions, or simply being a customer, the reasons vary. It’s important to stay informed, proactive, and work with experts to navigate the complexities of Oracle licensing and minimize audit-related risks.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have. Contact us today.