Oracle Database 23c Generally Available – Sort Of


Oracle Cloud World is happening, which typically means lots of announcements. One of the welcome announcement was the release of Oracle 23c on OCI Oracle Base Database Service, so there is a production version generally available… Sort of… Why do I say “sort of”?

OCI Oracle Base Database Service

This is a single cloud service, and it’s not available on the free tier, so it’s only available for paying customers that want to use this particular service.

At the time of writing there is no Autonomous Database service for this version, and there is still no full on-prem release.

I thought it was unavailable in my data centre, but Jeff Smith told me 23c GA is only available for Intel shapes at the moment. Once I switched from the default AMD shape to an Intel shape and 23c release was in the database version list. Happy days.

Oracle Database 23c Free

In addition to the OCI Oracle Base Database Service, the announcement post mentions a new version of Oracle Database 23c Free. It is now a “Developer Release”, not a “Developer Preview”. You can get hold of it here.

The slightly confusing thing is there is no difference in the file name, so my immediate impression was it had not actually been released yet. I downloaded the file and did an installation, and sure enough it was version 23.3. It would have been nice if there was an indication of the update on the page, or a version number in the file name…

For those that previously used Oracle XE, Oracle Database 23c Free is now the natural replacement, so go crazy with it. ๐Ÿ™‚

Here’s how you can get started.

  • Install documentation here.
  • My installation article here.
  • My Vagrant build here.
  • VirtualBox appliance from Oracle here.
  • Docker image from Oracle here.


The documentation links we’ve been using for 23c Free are no longer marked as “Free”. It is the normal GA documentation now.

My 23c Articles

You can see all my 23c articles here. There are still some I can’t publish until the on-prem GA release happens…

On-Prem Release

As mentioned previously, there is no full on-prem release for Oracle 23c, so you can’t start planning your upgrades from 19c yet. It’s really good to have an updated version of Oracle Database 23c Free so quickly for home use, but from a work perspective 23c won’t really exist for me until there is an on-prem release.

I’m hoping that won’t be long, but time will tell.



Update: Someone pointed me to Release Schedule of Current Database Releases (Doc ID 742060.1), which has now been updated to include 23c. It says the on-prem releases for 23c will start appearing during 1H CY2024, which is the first half of 2024.

Author: Tim...

DBA, Developer, Author, Trainer.

13 thoughts on “Oracle Database 23c Generally Available – Sort Of”

  1. Tim,

    THANK YOU! I was blathering on Xwitter about the Free version not being available in VirtualBox, because the page describing the content still mentions 23.2 as of 2023-09-21 14:37 UTC.

    After reading this post, I downloaded the version and the Oracle Database does indeed say it is version 23.3.

    Best regards,

  2. Hi Tim,
    Maybe you’ve missed that, but in the official release schedule, oracle 23c onprem is announced first half year 2024 on linux.

    Regards Marcus

  3. Oracle Database 23c is available on OCI Base Database Service for AMD and Intel shapes running OL8 or RHEL8 (OL9/RHEL9 support will come when 23c ships on-prem). It is not yet available on Ampere shapes. Support for Arm Linux64 will be available some time after Oracle Databse 23c on-prem ships.

    Regarding Oracle Database@Azure, the network latency (microseconds) is at least 10x lower than OCI Azure Fast Interconnect (2 miliseconds). This was achieved by placing Oracle Exadata hardware inside the Azure DCs.

  4. Jenny Tsai-Smith: Thanks for the update. I’ve just checked and it’s still limited to Intel shapes in a couple of DCs I’ve tried. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. MOS Note 742060.1 states
    Availability On-Premises Exadata: 1H CY2024
    Availability On-Premises Linux X86-64: 1H CY2024
    Exadata Cloud Service + Exadata Cloud at Customer: 2024

  6. Hi Tim, I was able to create a DB System with 23c last Thursday using AMD (VM.Standard.E4.Flex) hardware in the Ashburn region.

  7. Markus: At the time of writing I had not seen the updated version of that note. I’ve put a link to it in an update of the post. Thanks.

    Lisandro: It seems to vary a little, depending on the shape selected, and the region.

  8. Is there any difference in product features/functionality between the oracle database 23c available as free for developers and 23c released as OCi base database service.

  9. Rajeevkg: Everything in Free is available in OCI. The difference is licensing. Free is free. The database running on OCI needs to be licensed. It is not free.

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