Oracle 10 Day Rule

The question of needing to license Oracle’s technology products on a failover server comes up very often. Customers are interested in knowing whether they absolutely need to pay for Oracle licenses on a server that they do not use very often and is kept for emergency situations.

Oracle’s answer to the above question is: You do not need to license a failover server if you are compliant with the ten-day rule.

Hmm…what is this ten–day rule?

The rule applies to:

Server deployment that are in a single clustered environment with access to a single storage or SAN.
One of the nodes of the cluster is a designated failover server for data recovery
The rule states:

Licenses can be used on an ‘unlicensed spare computer in a failover environment’ for upto ten separate days in any calendar year. [ a node is down for 2 hours on Thursday and 1 hour on Friday & the failover is used – it counts as 2 days ]

Caveat: Please see your own agreement with Oracle for the correct language and terms to this rule. The explanation provided above is the current 10-day rule. Some earlier OLSAs that we have come across with customers does not state the need of sharing the same storage and also allows for systems to be in different geographic locations.


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Sheshagiri helps companies reduce Software License & Support costs through deployment optimization and risk management in software license compliance audits. His core skills are Software License Management, Enterprise Software Sales & Sales Management.

Sheshagiri is, currently, the Managing Partner & Principle Licensing Advisor at Rythium Technologies. Prior to this, he was a Vice-President in Oracle Corporation.