back to article Oracle sues support firm over 'massive theft'

Oracle is suing third-party support provider Rimini Street, alleging "massive theft" of its software and support materials via illegal access to its technical support websites. Rimini Street sells enterprise software support for Oracle SAP, Siebel, PeopleSoft, and JD Edwards-branded software, boasting 50 per cent savings in …


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  1. lansalot

    foot in mouth..

    ....uses automated crawlers to download "hundred of thousands" Oracle's materials at a time, "causing the databases which host the Software and Support Materials to freeze...

    Nice one, Oracle - you aren't admitting that your support database can't handle some automated crawlers without freezing, are you.. ?

    Metalink is slow-as anyway.. Not the best of systems from the users-endpoint. IMHO.

    1. Petey
      Black Helicopters

      Hmm - not sure on that one

      Maybe Rimini are the REASON metalink was so bloody slow! It has improved somewhat since classic metalink has retired. Again, just my opinion!

      I back Oracle on this one (not an employee) but I can see how Rimini have managed to garner a share of the market as Oracle Support is sometimes appallingly unreactive. Personally, I have got a ton of support and development guides on an external HDD just because I can't be arsed to keep logging in and searching for them!

      Will be keeping a beady eye on this if I can. It might set a precedent!

      1. Matt Bryant Silver badge

        RE: Hmm - not sure on that one

        I'm not condoing the theft of intellectual property or the like, but Oracle's support process is very closed compared to other vendors. We're not talking about downloading Oracle apps without a license, we're talking about robots that need to login to check the technical support pages - why do they need to use a customer login?. Other vendors (such as Microsoft) have plenty of free access to their knowledge base. Just try a Yahoo search (sorry, stopped Googling on principle) for a M$ SQL Server problem and up will pop the official M$ support page, along with hundreds of third-party "advisory" and user community sites that M$ doesn't seem to feel threatened by in the same way Oracle does. Same goes for IBM software - as long as it's not mainframe stuff ;) And hp's knowledge base is available and will appear in any number of searches, so that doesn't seem to be "crippled" by robots.

        In fact it highlights something I've never really noticed until now - there isn't really an Oracle "community", just ways that Oracle makes more money from their users. Anything free is completely dissociated from Oracle. Which doesn't bode well for the Sun users that will soon have to be logging into the Oracle site to get access to Sun support.

        1. Ed Gould

          re: Not sure on that one

          IBM's Mainframe database *usually* does not contains fixes or if they do they are one or two line source fixes or byte updates to IBM modules.

          SInce just about the only source IBM offers is to the JES system fixes tend to be small. There are exception to fixes for JES but then those longer ones are not posted publicly (although you might get level 2 to fax them to you).

          Almost all IBM fixes replace then entire module and the applicability of the fix is determined by SMPE (maintenance program). At one time IBM shipped thousands of fixes every month and the maintenance program would figure out which fix applies to you level of the nodule being fixed, it really does not do any good to "copy" modules as the maintenance program will figure out if its applicable to your system.

          IBM no longer does this (for reasons other that fear of stealing).

          Some portions of JES are OCO and then IBM sends out complete module replacement for that portion.

          OCO is Object code only NO SOURCE.

          Having a module does not help you what so ever as it must match the other modules at the same level. This is extremely tricky to do but IBM does do it and without SMPE the million(this is a WAG) plus modules in an IBM system would be impossible to maintain.

  2. Harry

    Eh ?

    "using a customer credential, then downloads Software and Support Materials in excess of the customer's authorization"

    If the support site allows the a logged in customer to download unauthorised material, that's surely the fault of the webmaster and not the third party that's installing software on its behalf.

    1. snellasaurus


      Hmmm you don't understand how Oracle 'licensing' works

      You can download and use all of their products (I am sure there are some exceptions) for free and without needing to use a license key. You can even put them into production (if you are stupid enough). That does not make it legal or within license conditions!!!!!

      It is, however, very handy when you know that you have appropriate licenses in place just to be able to go to the main Oracle site and download / install whatever you need without having to worry abpout sales droids or license keys.

      In my experience when Oracle acquire products with such restrictions they are removed as soon as possible in the first 'Oracle' release.

  3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
    Thumb Up

    Good criminal self-esteem

    Does bad stuff.

    Makes money at it.

    Gets away with it.

    Why would'nt he do it again?

    OTOH this would *never* fly if Oracles support charges were quite reasonable.

    But I suspect they are anything but.

  4. 1of10

    Oracle support database

    Oracle will soon be replacing their support database with Sybase

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Now I'm no expert ...

    but I'd have thought that Oracle could implement a scheme that detects this sort of behaviour and shuts it out or at least throttles it.

  6. Is it me?

    Taken a bit of time hasn't it?

    This isn't the only site, just do a few searches on Google for a problem and quite often you'll find one site has skimmed another, usually one that wants to charge.

    In fact if I ran a legitimate site, I'd do some searches on my problem base and see who else had exactly the same answer.

  7. daemon

    ravin rakes in the resources

    ..and Oracle rants about how its databases really cannot handle the load.

    Surely a major database provider would be able to handle without a kink a few crawlers, or a few hundred...

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