Oracle has moved quickly to provide virtualisation support for its new 12c database, saying this week that a set of virtual machine templates for the product are now available.

Templates are also now available for database version 11g, said Wim Coekaerts, senior vice president of Linux and virtualisation engineering.

"A very important new feature added is the ability to deploy a single instance database," he said. "In the past the database templates were focused on RAC deployments (Real Application Cluster) but because of popular demand, we also added support for Single Instance. With Single Instance you can really create a new VM with the database up and running in a matter of a few (very few) minutes, and with a very simple config file."

The templates give users virtual database appliances that are "production ready, not trial, not using a random OS, all ready to go," he added.

Database 12c includes a series of improvements aimed at cloud computing, including the concept of "pluggable" databases, where many databases reside inside a single instance, streamlining management and cutting system overhead, according to Oracle.

Like RAC, however, that feature is a separately priced option.

Other new features focus on high availability, security and "automatically optimising data storage and compression according to usage patterns, according to Oracle.

The virtual template releases come shortly after news emerged that Oracle's next "engineered system" will focus on virtualisation.