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Oracle Unveils Version Of Its Public Cloud That Runs In Customers' Data Centers

Oracle is treading a well-worn path by introducing a hybrid cloud offering that lets highly regulated customers run a version of its public cloud within their own data centers.

Oracle unveiled a new hybrid cloud service this week that lets customers in highly regulated industries move to its cloud at their own speed.
The new service, called Oracle Cloud Machine, involves a server that runs in the customer's data center and is managed and maintained by Oracle. It's basically a version of the Oracle public cloud software stack that runs on-premises and behind the firewall.
Oracle debuted the Cloud Machine service Thursday at its Oracle CloudWorld event in Washington, D.C., pitching it as a way for companies in finance, health care and other industries to get the benefits of public cloud without putting regulated data at risk.
Troy Lutes, a principal in the Oracle practice at PricewaterhouseCoopers, told CRN he thinks the Cloud Machine will appeal to industries whose usage of cloud so far has been constrained by regulatory concerns.
"A good example is the validated environment requirement in life sciences," Lutes said. "Now clients can control the timing and validation of point releases of functionality in Oracle cloud applications. I think that a lot of IT renovation is coming, and this offering will spur that demand by giving customers more flexibility in how they not only move to the cloud, but also how they support these environments."
Oracle, in its documentation for Cloud Machine, said customers can use the service for tasks like software development and testing and disaster recovery, and to tap into the public cloud for extra compute and storage capacity. Cloud Machine includes infrastructure, database, big data and application development services, as well as a service that integrates on-premises apps with public cloud apps.
While the public cloud market is dominated by Amazon Web Services and Microsoft, the technology itself is still in its early stages of market adoption. Market researcher Gartner recently estimated that the worldwide public cloud services market will expand 17 percent this year, to $204 billion.
Like many of its enterprise vendor brethren, Oracle has a large number of customers that have made huge investments in data center infrastructure and aren't ready to fully embrace the public cloud just yet. In adopting hybrid cloud, Oracle is following a well-established path of letting customers use a mix of on-premises and public cloud infrastructure.
Microsoft, the public cloud player with the most well-developed enterprise business, that lets customers run a version of the Azure public cloud in their data centers. VMware's vCloud Air public cloud was established around similar principles.
Oracle, despite its late entry to the public cloud space, has apparently made solid progress so far. In a news release Thursday, Oracle said its cloud "supports" more than 70 million users, handles more than 34 billion transactions daily, and runs in 19 data centers worldwide.
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