Friday May 27, 2016

New ORAchk Version 12.1.0.2.7 Released

Those awfully nice ORAchk/EXAchk folks have a new release with extra goodies. 

BTW: In case you're wondering, EXAchk is for Engineered Systems such as SuperCluster and Exadata, while ORAchk is the equivalent for generic systems.

The new release: ORAchk 12.1.0.2.7 is now available to download. New Features in ORAchk 12.1.0.2.7:

Easier to Configure & Maintain Large Enterprise-Wide Collection Data

If you have a large number of systems, these can now be mapped quickly to business units in Collection Manager via an XML bulk upload. Additionally, you can selectively choose if details of new LDAP users are automatically captured on login.

Collection Manager upload configuration has been simplified to only require the database connection string & password. To configure many ORAchk instances:

  1. Create wallet once with: -setdbupload all then enter values when prompted
  2. Copy resulting wallet to each ORAchk location

If Collection Manager uploads fail for some reason, you can easily find out using -checkfaileduploads, then any failed uploads can be reattempted with -uploadfailed all.

Collections uploaded to Collection Manager are now purged every 3 months by default. The frequency of purging can be adjusted or disabled altogether as necessary.

Keep Track of Changes to the Attributes of Important Files

Track changes to the attributes of important files with -fileattr. This will take snapshots of specific directories, which measure the ownership and permissions on the directory and all contents. By default -fileattr will snapshot the Grid Infrastructure and Database homes. The list of directories to be tracked can be configured to your specific requirements.

Quickly Find Which Checks Require Privileged Users

The Health Check Catalog has a new filter for Privileged User, allowing you to quickly find Health Checks which need to be run by a specific privileged user, such as root.

Broader Stack Support

Health Check support has been broadened to include Linux Operating System Health Checks and Oracle Enterprise Manager Cloud Control 13.1.

New Checks

New Health Checks have been added across the stack, including checks for Oracle ZFS Storage, Linux, Oracle Solaris Cluster, Oracle Database & Grid Infrastructure, Oracle Enterprise Manager Cloud Control OMS & Repository.

To see new checks for specific systems review the ORAchk Health Check catalog.

For more details and to download the latest release of ORAchk see Document 1268927.2

Tuesday Feb 09, 2016

The new ORAchk 12.1.0.2.6 is now available to download

The new ORAchk release 12.1.0.2.6 is now available to download.

New Features in ORAchk 12.1.0.2.6

Faster Execution

Significant performance improvements have been implemented in ORAchk's discovery, execution, and report generation.

Testing shows this release of ORAchk runs up to 45% faster than the previous release.

Quickly see the issues that require attention

The report format has been enhanced:

  • All related checks are listed in the same section. For example, all Database Server checks (passed or failed) are now shown together under the Database Server section.
  • There are new check boxes at the top of the report to allow you to focus on what you need to fix.
  • Check status is color coded for quick visual reference.
  • Each check now expands in place when you click on the "View" link allowing you to easily see the recommendations and details in-line without the need to jump around to different areas of the report.
  • E-Business Suite checks are now grouped by the module they apply to and the E-Business Suite version number is shown in the report summary as well as at the top of the E-Business Suite section.

Improved Security

Security of ORAchk files and directories has been enhanced and Collection Manager Database connections are now stored in an encrypted wallet.

Health Check Catalog

ORAchk now has a searchable Health Check Catalog, which lets you quickly view and filter available checks by Product, Level, Release Authored, and Platform.

The Health Check Catalog is available via the "Health Check Catalog" tab of Document 1268927.2 and also bundled within the ORAchk distribution.

Health Verification for Oracle Solaris Clusters

Initial support has been implemented in this release for some Oracle Solaris Cluster Checks, which verify best practice for configuration and runtime Oracle Solaris Cluster details.

Save time configuring and accessing ORAchk reports

  • Orachk allows you to verify Collection Manager database configuration before ORAchk automated execution, ensuring results can be stored correctly the first time.
  • You can receive an email html report when running ORAchk in adhoc mode, meaning you no longer need the extra step of transferring the report to your local machine for viewing.
  • Verify email configuration by using ORAchk to send a test email ensuring the ORAchk report will be received correctly the first time.
  • Quickly subscribe or unsubscribe to email notifications of automated collection results, comparisons and ORAchk Collection Manager tablespace free space warnings.

Support to integrate with Kibana, Elastic Search & Others

ORAchk output is now also available in JSON format, allowing it to be consumed by many different log monitoring and analytics tools.

For more details and to download the latest release of ORAchk see Document 1268927.2

Thursday Nov 05, 2015

ORAchk 12.1.0.2.5 now available

The new ORAchk release 12.1.0.2.5 is now available to download.

New Features in ORAchk 12.1.0.2.5

Create your own checks

Would you find it useful to easily run your own environment or business specific checks?

Now you can use ORAchk to write, execute and report on your own custom user defined checks.

  1. Use the Collection Manager interface to write your checks
  2. ORAchk’s built-in email notification and diff reporting
  3. View the results of your checks in the new “User Defined Checks” section in the ORAchk html report
  4. Collect and easily view all results enterprise wide using the ORAchk Collection Manager

Expanded Oracle Product Support

ORAchk 12.1.0.2.5 now brings wider and deeper support throughout the Oracle product stack, with newly added support for the following product areas:

  • Oracle Identity Manager
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Customer Relationship Management
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Project Billing
  • Oracle ZFS Storage Appliance
  • Oracle Virtual Networking
  • Oracle PeopleSoft Applications
  • Application Continuity

Easily Run or Exclude Specific Individual Checks

New command line switches have been added so you can easily exclude or run only specific checks.

Shorter ORAchk Execution Time

ORAchk now has the ability to cache discovered databases, meaning database rediscovery is skipped and execution time is faster. If databases change you can simple issue one command to have ORAchk refresh the cache.

Support for Custom EBS APPS User

ORAchk will now dynamically determine the APPS user, enabling all EBS checks to be used even if you have changed the name of the APPS user.

See Document 1268927.2 for further details of the new product support.

Over 100 New Health Checks

This release of ORAchk adds more than 100 new checks for some of the most impactful problems seen to Oracle Customer Support specifically in the areas of:

  • Database best practices for patching, performance, scalability and high availability.
  • Oracle Identity Management pre-install settings, post-install configuration and runtime environment.
  • E-Business Suite best practice configuration settings for Human Resources and CRM (forecast, payment worksheets and service contracts).
  • E-Business Suite early detection of incompatible configurations in Project Billing.
  • Oracle ZFS Storage Appliance best practice configuration for performance and resilience.
  • Oracle Virtual Networking best practice configuration settings.
  • PeopleSoft Applications database best practices.

For more details and to download the latest release of ORAchk see Document 1268927.2

Friday Oct 23, 2015

How to reduce your production lifecycle issue rate by over 70% in one simple step

Hi Folks,

I'm presenting @ Oracle Open World this Monday, Oct 26, 5:15pm in the Intercontinental, Room B.

The title is CON4940 "Spending Less Time Maintaining And More Time With Your Family".

I'll share data on how with one simple installation decision you can reduce your subsequent production lifecycle issue rate by over 70%, both in terms of Service Requests and underlying Bugs.

I'll also share data on two other easy ways you can dramatically reduce your operational risk and your maintenance workload AT NO EXTRA COST - both items are covered by Premier Support. 

Indeed, we'll patch your systems for you, so you don't have to! 

How's that for a cost saving ?

I call it the "Maintenance rEvolution".   You can decide whether it's Evolution or Revolution.

I'll also briefly update you on recent security vulnerability process improvements and progress on Ksplice (and more) for Solaris.

If you can't make it to OpenWorld, there'll be another opportunity to catch an updated version of the presentation at the DOAG conference in Nuremberg in November.

I'll then publish it here.

Best Wishes,

Gerry.

Monday Jul 06, 2015

ORAchk 12.1.0.2.4 now available

The new ORAchk release 12.1.0.2.4 is now available to download.

New Features in ORAchk 12.1.0.2.4

Auto update ORAchk when newer version is available

New in this release, if ORAchk is older than 120 days and a newer version is not available locally it will check to see if a newer version is available on My Oracle Support and automatically download and upgrade.

Download of latest version directly from My Oracle Support can also be specifically triggered with “./orachk –download”.

If ORAchk is running in automated mode the daemon will automatically upgrade from local location defined by RAT_UPGRADE_LOC just before the next scheduled run. Email notification will be sent about the upgrade then ORAchk will continue with the scheduled run using the upgraded version, all without requiring you to restart the ORAchk daemon.

Expanded Oracle Product Support

ORAchk 12.1.0.2.4 now brings wider and deeper support throughout the Oracle product stack, with newly added support for the following product areas:

  • Enterprise Manager OMS
  • E-Business Suite Oracle Fixed Assets
  • E-Business Suite Oracle Human Resources
  • E-Business Suite Oracle Receivables
  • Siebel CRM Application

See Document 1268927.2 for further details of the new product support.

Over 60 New Health Checks

This release of ORAchk adds new checks for some of the most impactful problems seen to Oracle Customer Support specifically in the areas of:

  • Systems hardware settings to optimize encryption performance for the Database and E-Business Suite.
  • Solaris & Siebel CRM Object Manager to ensure page sizes are set appropriately for Siebel CRM to handle large numbers of users.
  • Database optimization of memory and resource related configurations and Application Continuity checks.
  • Enterprise Manager OMS High impact problems that cause functional failure or difficulty with patching or upgrade.
  • E-Business Suite Receivables detection of non-validated Receivables Accounting Definitions, which might prevent the Create Accounting process from functioning.
  • E-Business Suite Fixed Assets checks for any books with an errored or incomplete depreciation run, to allow for resolution prior to month end close.
  • E-Business Suite Human Resources verification of Setup Business Group configuration.
  • Siebel Applications verification of the database configuration for stability, best practices and performance optimization.

For more details and to download the latest release of ORAchk see Document 1268927.2

Tuesday Jun 03, 2014

ORAchk version 2.2.5 is now available for download

Those awfully nice ORAchk folks have asked me to let you know about their latest release...

ORAchk version 2.2.5 is now available for download, new features in 2.2.5:

  • Running checks for multiple databases in parallel
  • Ability to schedule multiple automated runs via ORAchk daemon
  • New "scratch area" for ORAchk temporary files moved from /tmp to a configurable $HOME directory location
  • System health score calculation now ignores skipped checks
  • Checks the health of pluggable databases using OS authentication
  • New report section to report top 10 time consuming checks to be used for optimizing runtime in the future
  • More readable report output for clusterwide checks
  • Includes over 50 new Health Checks for the Oracle Stack
  • Provides a single dashboard to view collections across your entire enterprise using the Collection Manager, now pre-bundled
  • Expands coverage of pre and post upgrade checks to include standalone databases, with new profile options to run only these checks
  • Expands to additional product areas in E-Business Suite of Workflow & Oracle Purchasing and in Enterprise Manager Cloud Control
  • ORAchk has replaced the popular RACcheck tool, extending the coverage based on prioritization of top issues reported by users, to proactively scan for known problems within the area of:

    • Oracle Database
      • Standalone Database
      • Grid Infrastructure & RAC
      • Maximum Availability Architecture (MAA) Validation
      • Upgrade Readiness Validation
      • Golden Gate
    • Enterprise Manager Cloud Control
      • Repository
    • E-Business Suite
      • Oracle Payables (R12 only)
      • Oracle Workflow
      • Oracle Purchasing (R12 only)
    • Oracle Sun Systems
      • Oracle Solaris

    ORAchk features:

    • Proactively scans for the most impactful problems across the various layers of your stack
    • Streamlines how to investigate and analyze which known issues present a risk to you
    • Executes lightweight checks in your environment, providing immediate results with no configuration data sent to Oracle
    • Local reporting capability showing specific problems and their resolutions
    • Ability to configure email notifications when problems are detected
    • Provides a single dashboard to view collections across your entire enterprise using the Collection Manager

    ORAchk will expand in the future with high impact checks in existing and additional product areas. If you have particular checks or product areas you would like to see covered, please post suggestions in the ORAchk subspace in My Oracle Support Community.

    For more details about ORAchk see Document 1268927.2

    Monday Mar 10, 2014

    ORAchk Health Checks for the Oracle Stack (including Solaris)

    My colleagues, Susan Miller and Erwann Chénedé, have been working with the nice people behind the ORAchk tool (formerly RACcheck) to add Solaris health checks to the tool.

    ORAchk 2.2.4, containing the initial 8 Solaris health checks, is now available:

    ORAchk includes EXAchks functionality and replaces the popular RACcheck tool, extending the coverage based on prioritization of top issues reported by users, to proactively scan for known problems within:

    • E-Business Suite Financials Accounts Payables
    • Oracle Database
    • Sun Systems

    ORAchk features:

    • Proactively scans for the most impactful known problems across your entire system as well as various layers of your stack
    • Simplifies and streamlines how to investigate and analyze which known issues present a risk to you
    • Lightweight tool runs within your environment; no data will be sent to Oracle
    • High level reports show your system health risks with the ability to drill down into specific problems and understand their resolutions
    • Can be configured to send email notifications when it detects problems
    • Collection Manager, a companion Application Express web app, provides a single dashboard view of collections across your entire enterprise

    ORAchk will expand in the future with more high impact checks in existing and additional product areas. If you have particular checks or product areas you would like to see covered, please post suggestions in the ORAchk community thread accessed from the support tab on the below document.

    For more details about ORAchk see Document 1268927.1

    About

    This blog is to inform customers about Solaris 11 maintenance best practice, feature enhancements, and key issues. The views expressed on this blog are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Oracle. The Documents contained within this site may include statements about Oracle's product development plans. Many factors can materially affect these plans and the nature and timing of future product releases. Accordingly, this Information is provided to you solely for information only, is not a commitment to deliver any material code, or functionality, and SHOULD NOT BE RELIED UPON IN MAKING PURCHASING DECISIONS. The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described remains at the sole discretion of Oracle. THIS INFORMATION MAY NOT BE INCORPORATED INTO ANY CONTRACTUAL AGREEMENT WITH ORACLE OR ITS SUBSIDIARIES OR AFFILIATES. ORACLE SPECIFICALLY DISCLAIMS ANY LIABILITY WITH RESPECT TO THIS INFORMATION. Gerry Haskins, Director, Software Lifecycle Engineering

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