database licensing

Oracle Enterprise Manager Licensing and Challenges

database licensing

Oracle Enterprise Manager Licensing and Challenges

Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM) licensing works as follows:

  • Included with Oracle Database: OEM’s basic functionalities are part of the Oracle Database license.
  • Separate Licenses for Premium Functions: Advanced features, known as OEM Packs (e.g., Diagnostics, Tuning Packs), require an additional license.
  • Default Enabled Packs: During installation, several OEM Packs are enabled by default.
  • Disabling Unlicensed Packs: Users must manually deselect unlicensed packs post-installation to avoid non-compliance.
  • Usage-Based Licensing: Licensing depends on using specific features within OEM Packs.

An Expert Guide to Oracle Enterprise Manager Licensing and Challenges

what is oracle enterprise manager


Oracle Enterprise Manager licensing (OEM) is a powerful tool widely used to manage the Oracle environment, including the database and applications tiers.

It provides monitoring capabilities and automates repetitive administrative tasks through intelligent agents known as Oracle Management Agents.

However, OEM Packs can lead to licensing compliance issues during Oracle audits. In this article, we’ll dive into the details of OEM licensing and common challenges Oracle customers face.

Oracle Enterprise Manager Licensing Explained

oracle enterprise manager installation

The OEM Installation Process


Oracle Enterprise Manager is installed with the Oracle Database and can be deployed in the following three architectures:

  • Database Control.
  • Grid Control.
  • Cloud Control.

While the OEM functionality is included with the Oracle Database license, the premium functionalities within OEM require a separate license, known as the “Oracle Database Enterprise Edition Management Packs” or “OEM Pack.”

Technically, these are a suite of database features that Oracle classifies as licensable features.

By default, during the installation process, the Oracle Management Agent (OMA) enables several “Database Enterprise Edition Management Packs” without any connection to what a customer has licensed, including:

  • The Diagnostics Pack.
  • Tuning Pack.
  • Database Lifecycle Management Pack.
  • Data Masking & Subsetting Pack.
  • & Cloud Management Pack for Database

As an end-user, you must deselect the unlicensed packs after installing the agent on a database to avoid unlicensed use.

The Features of Diagnostics and Tuning Packs

The Diagnostics Pack includes:

  • Automatic Workload Repository (AWR)
  • Automatic Database Diagnostic Monitor (ADDM)
  • Performance monitoring (database and host)
  • Event notifications
  • Blackouts, and much more.

The Tuning Pack includes:

  • The SQL Access Advisor.
  • SQL Tuning Advisor.
  • SQL Tuning Sets.
  • Reorganize objects.
  • Automatic SQL Tuning, and much more.

Using the “Tuning Pack” requires a license for the “Diagnostics Pack” as well. Therefore, licensing of OEM Packs can be subjective if no explicit usage can be identified in the Oracle Database.

If an end-user has enabled and agreed to use the Packs, the end-user needs to be licensed in most cases.

Common Challenges with Oracle Audits

oracle oem compliance risks

Many end-users are found to be non-compliant during Oracle audits because the “Pack Access” was agreed on or Automatic Workload Repository reports were used. Many end-users, however, do not have a clear view of what this means.

Features such as Automatic Workload Repository (AWR) or Automatic Database Diagnostics Monitor (ADDM) are often used by end-users, who may not recognize the use of these features when confronted with them during an Oracle audit.

OEM Oracle Enterprise Manager (FAQs)

Is Oracle Enterprise Manager included in the Oracle Database license?

Yes, the OEM functionality is included in the Oracle Database license.

Are OEM Packs installed by default during the OEM installation process?

Yes, by default, during the installation process, several Database Enterprise Edition Management Packs are enabled.

Can disabling Pack access avoid licensing compliance issues?

Yes, disabling Packs access can avoid licensing compliance issues. However, disabling the Pack’s usage is different from de-installing the Pack.

How can the Oracle Enterprise Management Packs be disabled?

The OEM Packs can be enabled and disabled from the GUI interface. Disabling the Packs access for all the OEM Packs that are not licensed is a simple task that can be performed by a DBA and will not require the DB to be reinstalled.

What should I do if I am not licensed for the OEM Packs and don’t recognize their use?

In most cases, if an end-user has enabled and agreed to use the packs, they must be licensed. However, you can decide which OEM Packs you want to keep and buy the appropriate licenses or disable the Packs access for all the OEM Packs that are not licensed.

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Author

  • Fredrik Filipsson

    Fredrik Filipsson brings two decades of Oracle license management experience, including a nine-year tenure at Oracle and 11 years in Oracle license consulting. His expertise extends across leading IT corporations like IBM, enriching his profile with a broad spectrum of software and cloud projects. Filipsson's proficiency encompasses IBM, SAP, Microsoft, and Salesforce platforms, alongside significant involvement in Microsoft Copilot and AI initiatives, improving organizational efficiency.

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