Re: Licensing

Date: Fri, 9 Jan 2015 12:52:43 -0500
Message-ID: <>


Yes. I always encourage people to consult a (qualified) lawyer on questions of licensing. When I *do* provide advice, it is always limited to comments like "this is what the license agreement says you need to do". I would never presume to discuss (nor think that I know) what is or is not actually enforceable. I usually do point out, though, that Oracle corp can afford to spend a billion dollars on legal fees if they want to, and for people like that, I suspect that more things are enforceable than you would probably expect.

Even for those who *try* to read and thoroughly understand the (standard) license agreements, there is a large body of *law* that can substantially affect what the license *really* means (for example, can Oracle *really* incorporate their entire documentation set into the license, simply by mentioning a URL?) and these laws will vary by region.

Of one thing, though, you can be reasonably certain -- if you step outside the bounds of what Oracle lays out in their OLSA, it is highly likely that the LMS people are going to come after you with some unwelcome requests following your next audit.

Unless you are certain that your lawyers are smarter than Oracle's lawyers, you may want to take a conservative approach to licensing.

In the meantime, I would *love* to see some examples of points in Oracle's licenses that your lawyers consider contradictory. It should be good entertainment, if nothing else.

As for me, I have never noted any overt contradictions (although there may be significant differences between licenses, for example, if you have negotiated special agreements for development databases). I have, however, noticed lots of points where it could be almost impossible to demonstrate (let alone *prove*) that you are compliant.

On Fri, Jan 9, 2015 at 8:08 AM, Dave Morgan <> wrote:

>> As for how long I have been involved in licensing Oracle's products?
>> Well, I have never been an employee of Oracle, nor have I actually
>> *written* one of their license agreements. I have, however, been *using*
>> Oracle databases for close to 20 years, and reading the license agreements
>> and advising customers on how to (correctly) comply with their licenses
>> for
>> much of that time. I am not a lawyer, but I am fairly widely perceived as
>> "quite knowledgeable" on this subject. (Sadly, though, much of that
>> perception may be due to the fact that few others actually *read*
>> Oracle's license agreements, as I do.)
> It blows my mind how many people think they "know" what the Oracle
> licensing
> obligations are. Would you ask a lawyer to run an Oracle database? So why
> would
> a DBA know anything about licensing?
> On every site I write up a list of databases with their associated
> licenses and send it to
> the corporate lawyer along with the related license agreements,
> RMAN DB RMAN license
> OEM DB OEM License
> STG DB Oracle Development license
> DEV_DB Oracle Development Database
> .....
> In every case the lawyer (USA, UK and Canada)has come back to me and said
> the licenses
> contradict each other.
> In other words, it was impossible to correctly comply with all the
> licenses.
> Dave
> --
> Dave Morgan
> Senior Consultant, 1001111 Alberta Limited
> 403 399 2442
> --

Received on Fri Jan 09 2015 - 18:52:43 CET

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