Oracle to customers: 'Sun? Sun who?'

Oracle had better get a grip on support for Sun products before Sun customers jump ship en masse

Plenty of people have been cautiously optimistic about Oracle's acquisition of Sun. Many, like myself, have resigned ourselves to the idea -- and have been hoping against hope that the fallout wouldn't be that bad.

Well, guess what? It's that bad.

[ Just a rough transition? Or have our worst fears for Sun been realized? If you're feeling nostalgic for the former darling of the Valley, check out InfoWorld's memorial Sun slideshow. ]

Head over to Sun.com. You'd expect to find a nice Sun-centric site to help all the Sun folks make the transition. Nope -- in fact, Sun.com redirects to the Oracle.com home page. Look closely; if you have good eyes, you'll see a little column of links to Sun products. Now click the Support link. It's Oracle support -- and my age-old Sun logins don't work there. The process of signing up for a new account was fraught with disaster, with the registration app wildly throwing out 500 application errors and redirections to nowhere.

Data Explosion iGuide

All I wanted was a support link for some Sun hardware. It took me the better part of 30 minutes to find what I was looking for -- via carefully crafted Google queries. (There's a Sun link on the main support page now, but that didn't exist a few weeks ago when I was poking around.)

When I finally located the information I needed, it turned out that I needed to call support anyhow. After another 30 minutes of holding, transferring, and waiting in various queues, I got a support ticket -- and was told I'd have to wait eight business hours for a callback from a support tech. The call never came.

The problem was abysmal NFS write performance on a brand-new Sun storage box. Lacking a dedicated ZIL (ZFS Intention Log) device, I was expecting lower performance than if I did have the ZIL, but I didn't think NFS write performance would be on par with a USB flash drive -- yet that's what I saw. After the first-tier support request, I submitted a diagnostic bundle from the device and waited for my callback.

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