Can You Migrate EBS To Cloud Without Oracle MDS?

December 15, 2021

Continuous Innovation For Oracle EBS

Here’s the thing: with an outpour of Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) clients scrambling to find ways to quickly secure support for outdated versions of their EBS software, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to ignore the elephant in the room, which is purchasing Market Driven Support (MDS) as a lifeline to at least secure a partial, albeit far from comprehensive, form of support for the years 2022 and 2023.

So, what happened and why are we here? Back in 2018, Oracle announced that Oracle EBS release 12.2 would be the last major upgrade that EBS clients would ever have to make, introducing the Continuous Innovation model as the master plan behind all of it. Essentially, the Continuous Innovation model offers Oracle Premier Support for Oracle applications running the latest software versions, including EBS. As of now, Premier Support is offered through at least the year 2032 for Oracle EBS R12.2.

Oracle EBS R12.2 is a major release, one that includes underlying changes for the file system, the database, and the application as a whole. All in all, it’s packed with the biggest collection of innovations and software enhancements the application has to offer throughout its 20+ years of existence.

There are variables in the EBS application that need to be accounted for when considering an upgrade plan. These include:

  • Volume and extent of CEMLIs
  • Assessment of CEMLIs to determine how many need to be remediated and how many can be replaced with standard functionality of the EBS R12.2 version
  • Database version. Currently, the Long Term Release for Oracle Databases is 19c and it’s the recommended database to have for the upgrade to EBS R12.2
  • Number of instances, legal entities, multi-language support, and more
  • Operating System version
  • Data Retention policies
  • Archive and Purge strategy
  • Latest patching status
  • Documentation
  • Internet application server version

So as you can see, there are a lot of moving parts that need to be assessed when strategizing for an EBS system upgrade.

What Market Driven Support Means for Your Upgrade or Migrate Efforts

Of course, for many EBS clients, staying on-premises is the right choice while for others, the right choice is to move to the cloud. When having that conversation and looking at everything that needs to be done when migrating to the cloud, one cannot leave out Market Driven Support out of the equation.

Market Driven Support is Oracle’s temporary solution for those on-premises clients that haven’t upgraded their EBS yet. Unfortunately, time is virtually over for EBS clients below Release 12.2 as the deadline to upgrade and stay under the Premier Support umbrella is the end of calendar year 2021.

With a few weeks left, clients below R12.2 will be automatically cut off from Premier Support and entered into Sustaining Support which offers very, very limited support. In anticipation of this, Oracle in collaboration with Advanced Customer Services (ACS), devised Market Driven Support, or MDS for short, as part of their offering to bridge the gap for those clients that would lose support starting 2022.

MDS offers partial support for the years 2022 and 2023. While it’s far from being the perfect solution or a comprehensive form of support, it is better than only staying on Sustaining Support.

Many clients are using MDS as a way to plan their EBS upgrade and mitigate support gaps for the two years it covers. Still, there are many clients who have no clear path for upgrading or that haven’t purchased MDS.

Can You Migrate to the Cloud Without Oracle MDS?

There is a niche of clients who are interested in moving to the cloud without having to pay for MDS, and we know it’s a lingering question for many whether this can actually be done.

To that we say, yes, you can stay on older versions of EBS and move directly to SaaS without having to purchase MDS. But it’s not as simple. There are a lot of risks in doing so and it’s strongly recommended that you don’t take this approach as you may be exposing your hefty EBS investment and the wellbeing of your business to costs and unwanted risks which could cost you millions of dollars.

Instead, the recommendation is to pay for MDS, and either upgrade to EBS R12.2 or migrate to Oracle SaaS solutions as it’s really unwise to upgrade or migrate with only Sustaining Support.

If staying on-premises is the right choice for your unique business needs, keep in mind that in November 2021, Oracle announced the release of Oracle EBS 12.2.11, the latest version of this major release. If you’d like to know about the Oracle EBS 12.2.11 Application Technology Innovations this release packs, be sure to check out our ebook.

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