Oracle buys Xsigo for software-defined networking

Move comes shortly after VMware announced plans to buy Xsigo competitor Nicira

Oracle said Monday it has inked a deal to buy software-defined networking vendor Xsigo Systems, in a move that will support Oracle's ongoing foray into cloud computing. Terms of the acquisition, which is expected to close within a few months, were not disclosed.

The announcement comes a week after VMware said it would buy Xsigo competitor Nicira for $1.26 billion.

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Software-defined networking has become one of the hottest topics in the networking industry of late.

Xsigo's technology can create virtualized pools of networking capacity, allowing resources to be delivered dynamically according to computing needs, and used much more efficiently, according to its website.

Its customers include Verizon, Softbank, and British Telecom.

Xsigo's tools will be combined with Oracle's Oracle VM server virtualization technology, according to a statement.

This year, Oracle began moving aggressively into cloud computing with a public cloud service that will deliver on-demand business applications as well as a Java PaaS (platform as a service) and cloud database.

Oracle's approach to cloud computing relies heavily on virtualization. While the Xsigo acquisition seems focused on increasing performance and cost savings within Oracle's data centers, the vendor is also seeking to use virtualization as a point of differentiation.

For example, Oracle CEO Larry Ellison has criticized the multitenant software architectures used by many cloud vendors, which allow a number of customers to share a single application instance.

On Oracle's cloud, applications get their own virtual machines, both for more flexibility over upgrades and for additional security, Ellison said during an event earlier this year. "Modern virtual technology is how we offer safety."

Chris Kanaracus covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Chris's email address is Chris_Kanaracus@idg.com.

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