We're in the process of phasing out our HP-UX Itanium boxes for running Oracle databases. We have chosen x86_64 platform with Linux O/S - so far we have agreed :-)
The consultants we use for DBAs state that Oracle Linux is the obvious choice - Oracle database is developed on that O/S (not ported), it is basically a redhat, but Oracle can make small fixes/tweaks particularly to support the database.
Our server guys are mainly windows people but they have "talked to friends", who claim SUSE is the best choice. (And we get some free SUSE licences with VMWare.)
The unix/linux consultant we often use has a great worry that IBM Tivoli TSM agent is not supported on Oracle Linux. He deems it highly questionable to run business critical databases on an O/S that our backup system does not support, so he prefers Redhat (or alternatively SUSE.) And he worries too that with Oracle Linux we bind ourselves to a commercial platform.
I'm the SQL developer/architect and no O/S expert - I try to mediate :-) I am not the decision maker, but my word carries weight on the decision - I don't claim anything without having researched it.
So I have researched OTN and IBM sites and googled a lot. I have not found anything that states TSM will work on Oracle Linux (except a university that claimed - with no source - that IBM has certified OEL for TSM use, and I think I found clues on IBM site on a document history that seemed like IBM used to have mentioned OEL in a paper of theirs but have removed it.)
On the other hand I have not found anything that states it won't work - and a lot of whitepapers and FAQ on Oracle Linux site that states that any binary that will run on Redhat will run on OEL. But is that the same as stating that because TSM is certified for Redhat, then it is also "certified" for OEL because it is really a Redhat?
I now try to ask here:
- Are there known installations of OEL that use TSM agent for RMAN backups successfully?
- Is there any document/whitepaper I can quote that calms the server guys worries about TSM backup on OEL?
- I have Oracles [url http://www.oracle.com/us/technologies/linux/product/comparisons/index.html]comparison of OEL and Redhat, but what is usually the deciding factor for choosing OEL, Redhat or SUSE?
Thank you for any insight you may bring to help us stop arguing and make a decision ;-)
I think choosing the right Linux distribution for running Oracle software was never easier. Perhaps the following can help you. It's mainly a cut and paste from my own notes.
Oracle Linux is distributed as Open Source under the terms of GNU General Public Licensing (GPL). You can use the software free of charge for all purposes, even for running your business. Since March 2012, also Oracle Linux updates and errata are distributed for free and do not require a paid subscription.
With Oracle Linux you have only one vendor for your OS and Database product support and you can opt to choose a ULN subscription. Basic support will give you full access to use the Management Pack for Linux built into the Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c. And last not least, check the Linux vs. Red Hat Enterprise Linux cost calculator. If you are a Oracle database customer, Oracle Linux is probably a much better deal anyway.
Other reasons for running Oracle Linux:
If you need kernel driver support for Oracle specific products such as OCFS, Btrfs, ASMlib, DTrace, Ksplice, then you need the Oracle UEK kernel. There is no support for RHEL 6. To my understanding, this is not because of Oracle forcing you to use Oracle Linux, but because of Red Hat politics to undercut Oracle and Novell (SUSE) with hidden patches trying to hide information from competitors that is essential to providing support for RHEL specifically.
For information about the Oracle UEK kernel:
If you want virtualization for an Oracle production environment, check out Oracle VM server for x86, which is free.
Your question about TSM support requires more in-depth analysis about your TSM licenses and implementation. I suggest to contact IBM support. I have no doubt that IBM will want to support Oracle Linux. If it does not, or not yet, there are most likely ways around installing the TSM agent on your Linux server. I would rather not want to dismiss all the benefits of Oracle Linux because of Tivoli TSM. The Oracle UEK2 kernel is based on the 3.0 mainline Linux kernel. Oracle Linux also installs the original RHEL kernel and is fully binary compatible.
I think the above leaves no doubt that Oracle Linux is your best option.
Just a short followup if anybody else stumbles upon this thread:
Tim Hall of ORACLE-BASE has just now written a [url http://www.oracle-base.com/articles/linux/oracle-linux-frequently-asked-questions.php]FAQ about this topic. Like Dude's answer above it is useful if you need arguments for OEL ;-)