Oracle in the Amazon Web Services Cloud

Frequently Asked Questions


Amazon EC2 and AMIs for Oracle Products

Database Backup in the Cloud

Database Development in the Cloud

What is the nature of the relationship between Oracle and Amazon Web Services (AWS)?

AWS is a popular cloud infrastructure provider today and the first cloud vendor that Oracle partnered with. Oracle works with AWS to provide customers with the best experience when running Oracle technology on AWS. Because using a cloud infrastructure is different from using an on-premises data center, Oracle recommends that customers take time to fully understand AWS offerings when deploying Oracle products and services there.

Is Oracle open to working with other cloud infrastructure and service providers?

Yes. Oracle is already working with a number of cloud infrastructure and service providers. Oracle's intent is to protect customer investments in Oracle technologies by expanding support for its offerings across many platforms. The decision regarding which cloud platforms Oracle will support next and the associated time lines will be primarily based on customer demand.

What kind of support does Oracle provide for its offerings on AWS?

  • Oracle fully supports deploying Oracle Database and Oracle Linux on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2).
  • Oracle fully supports Oracle E-Business Suite; Oracle's PeopleSoft Enterprise, Siebel CRM, and JD Edwards applications; and other Oracle enterprise applications certified on Oracle VM, and Oracle Enterprise Manager and Oracle Fusion Middleware on the portion of Amazon EC2 that can support Oracle VM.
  • Oracle will help resolve any issues that customers might encounter while using Oracle software. However, Oracle assumes no responsibility for issues directly relating to Amazon EC2, Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS), or Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). Oracle customers will be directed to AWS for any issues related to infrastructure. Customers are encouraged to sign up for Amazon Web Services Business or Enterprise Support to get prompt and personalized technical assistance for any issues related to the AWS infrastructure. Customers can also buy support for Oracle Database or Oracle Linux deployments on EC2.

Does Oracle offer short-term licenses?

As a part of Oracle's standard licensing practices, Oracle offers term licenses for periods ranging from one to five years. A one-year term license, for example, can be purchased for as little as 20 percent of the product list price.

What is Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and what are Amazon Machine Images (AMIs)?

Amazon EC2 provides compute capacity in the cloud. It enables users to rent virtual machines by the hour. Using Amazon-provided web services APIs, users can dynamically provision virtual machines to develop and deploy their applications. Click here for more information about Amazon EC2.

An AMI is a virtual machine image that enables quick provisioning of a preinstalled and preconfigured Oracle software environment on Amazon EC2. Click here for more information about AMIs for Oracle software environments.

I heard that Amazon EC2 storage is ephemeral and my data will be wiped out once I shut down the EC2 instance. Is that true and how can I ensure that my data is accessible beyond the life of an EC2 instance?

An EC2 instance comes with a certain amount of "local" storage, which is ephemeral and any data placed on EC2 storage will not be available after that instance is shut down. However, Amazon also provides another service called Elastic Block Storage (EBS) that provides block-level storage volumes for use with Amazon EC2 instances. Amazon EBS volumes reside on off-instance storage that persists independently from the EC2 instance. Oracle highly recommends using Elastic Block Storage to house database files.

Does Amazon EC2 provide static IP addresses?

Yes. You can use Amazon EC2's Elastic IP address functionality to assign a static IP address to your EC2 instances. Note that the Elastic IP address is associated with your Amazon EC2 account, not to an EC2 instance.

Can I run Oracle Real Application Clusters (Oracle RAC) on Amazon EC2?

No. Amazon Web Services currently does not directly provide the clustering infrastructure required to run Oracle RAC. However, there are third-party services that provide this service via co-location services and AWS Direct Connect.

How secure is the Amazon EC2 environment for running Oracle Database?

The Amazon Web Service security white paper contains details about EC2's security infrastructure. Additionally, Oracle always recommends encrypting your data at rest and in transit by using Oracle Database's rich encryption capabilities to protect it from any unauthorized access.

How do I connect to my EC2 machine? How do I FTP data to and from EC2?

Amazon EC2 supports Secure Shell (SSH) connection using tools such as PuTTY. You can also establish a Secure FTP connection to EC2 using WinSCP or any other SFTP tool.

Am I required to use Oracle-provided AMIs to deploy Oracle products on EC2 and does Oracle support AMIs?

The Oracle-provided AMIs are for the convenience of deployment. You are not required to use these AMIs to install and run Oracle software on EC2. However, they provide a preconfigured and pretested environment to get you started. You can also download the Oracle software and install it manually using the standard installation process. Oracle provides support for customers with an active Oracle Support contract in place, regardless of which method is used to set up the software.

What is Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3)?

Amazon S3 is Amazon's storage cloud. It provides a simple web-services interface that can be used to store and retrieve any amount of data, at any time, from anywhere on the web. More details can be found here.

Why should I consider backing up my database to the cloud? What are the benefits?

Enterprises have traditionally relied on tape for offsite backups. Tape still plays a significant role for many enterprise backup infrastructures; however, the combination of advanced disk-based storage capabilities and compelling price points offered by storage cloud vendors present new opportunities to make offsite backups more accessible and reliable.

Oracle Secure Backup provides the following advantages over traditional tape-based offsite backups:

  • Continuous Accessibility: Backups stored in the cloud are always accessible—in much the same way local disk backups are. As such, there is no need to call anyone, and no need to ship or load tapes before a restore can be performed. Administrators can initiate restore operations using their standard tools (Oracle Enterprise Manager, scripts, and so on) exactly as if the offsite backup was stored locally. This process can restore data faster and reduce downtime from days to hours or even minutes in many cases.
  • Better Reliability: Storage clouds are disk-based and, thus, inherently more reliable than tape devices. Additionally, cloud vendors typically keep multiple redundant copies of data for availability and scalability purposes.
  • Cost Savings: Cloud storage backups reduce or eliminate upfront capital expenditures, as well as tape backup licensing and offsite storage costs.

Do I need to license any Oracle products to be able back up my database to the cloud?

The Cloud Backup module is a part of the Oracle Secure Backup family. Oracle Secure Backup is Oracle's next-generation backup management solution, and it now provides customers the flexibility to back up data to disk, tape, or the cloud.

Does Cloud Backup work only with databases running within Amazon EC2, or can I use it to back up my on-premises database as well?

The Cloud Backup module of Oracle Secure Backup can be used to back up databases in the cloud as well as to back up on-premises databases to the cloud. For on-premises databases, Oracle recommends customers first create a local disk-based backup and use the cloud as an offsite backup location that's accessible on-demand.

Which Oracle Database versions can be backed up to the cloud?

The Cloud Backup module can be used with all supported versions of Oracle Database, that is, Oracle9i Release 2 or higher.

Which operating systems and database versions are supported for the Cloud Backup module?

The Cloud Backup module of Oracle Secure Backup is currently available on Linux and Windows platforms. It can be used with all supported versions of Oracle Database (Oracle9i Release 2 or higher).

Can I back up image copies to the cloud?

No. The Cloud Backup module of Oracle Secure Backup currently supports only backup sets.

Can I use Oracle Enterprise Manager to perform cloud backups?

Yes. Once you have installed and configured the Cloud Backup module by running the Cloud Backup Installer, you can use Oracle Enterprise Manager's tape backup management interface to back up your data to the cloud.

Do I need to install Oracle Secure Backup media and administrative servers in order to perform cloud backups?

No. You just need to download and run the Cloud Backup module installer to install the required software and configure your environment for backing up your data to the cloud.

Can I use Oracle Enterprise Manager to manage Oracle Database running on EC2?

Yes, with an Oracle Enterprise Manager plugin.

Can I use Oracle SQL Developer and SQL*Plus to connect to Oracle Database running on EC2?

Yes. Use the same process that you would use to connect to an on-premises or local database. Just use the connect string to your running EC2 instance.

Can I use Oracle JDeveloper for development on Oracle Database running on EC2?

Yes. It's the same process that's used with an on-premises or local database. Just use the connect string to your running EC2 instance.