One of the principal talking points at last month’s IOUG conference was how Oracle is going to integrate Sun and what the roadmap for that integration would be.

Since then, work has already been done on moving this forward. The first instance of this was with the upgrade to Oracle’s (news, site) Enterprise Management platform to 11g. The second, which has just been announced, is the extension of its PartnerNetwork (OPN) with training modules encompassing both Oracle and Sun technologies.

Even taking into account assertions by Oracle executives that the integration of the two would be a relatively speedy process, it is not going to be without difficulties and the extension of the OPN is designed to iron out some of those expected issues.

Partner Programs

Broadly speaking, there are two principal elements to this enhancement: Partner Enablement and Sun Enablement resources.

Partner Enablement

Designed for Oracle partners, the training consists of Oracle technology “boot camps” where partners will be given role-based training in Oracle technologies -- and Sun technologies too -- involving hands on exercises and case studies around the technologies.

Applications-to-disk training will also be provided as well as technical support, resources and tools that will give them the necessary skills to expand Oracle’s marketplace.

Sun Enablement

From a Sun perspective, Oracle has developed Oracle Sun Knowledge Zones and specialization in server and storage technologies that will include training modules and data sheets on how to migrate from Sun to Oracle’s PN.

To support these training programs, Oracle has also developed specialized webcasts that will provide information about different aspects of Oracle and Sun technologies.

In addition to this, Oracle PN will also enable certain partners in certain countries to resell Sun products. This is to be extended worldwide in the coming months, although when exactly has not been announced.

While this in itself may be a small step forward on the integration path, it does show that Oracle is not letting the grass grow under its feet.

EM 11g And Sun

Last month’s upgrades to 11g also made a step forward in this regard. As well as extensive upgrades in Integrated Application-to-Disk Management it also upgraded its management of Sun hardware.

In particular, upgrades to Oracle Solaris include the lifecycle of physical and virtual Sun environments, including Oracle VM for SPARC and Solaris Container (formerly known as Logical Domains or LDoms) and Solaris Containers, enabling customers to maximize the utilization of their Sun systems.

If delegates at the IOUG conference were looking for positive affirmation of Oracle’s intentions towards Sun, and if actions speak louder than words, then these recent actions are sending out the right signals.