Monday Jan 06, 2014

Low Downtime E-Business Suite Migrations using Oracle GoldenGate

Who likes to work work weekends and holidays to migrate a production database to new hardware or to upgrade to a new version?      In many cases working the weekend is unavoidable and often these types of activities have to be done while minimizing business activities that generating revenue.   But let’s face it, current migration methods haven’t changed a whole lot in twenty years;  take the system down Friday night, migrate the data to the new system in bulk or upgrade the database in place,   bring the system back up, unit test and hope Monday morning that everything works.    The techniques have changed and things have definitely improved on the efficiency side of the equation, but downtime for the business still exists.   As IT professionals and DBAs all know, months of planning and preparation go into making these types of event successful but things can go wrong.    “The best laid schemes of Mice and Men oft go awry, And leave us nothing but grief and pain, For Promised Joy - Robert Burns 1785."    For years customers have been asking for a better way to migrate or upgrade the underlying Oracle database for E-Business Suite with a low amount of downtime.    

Oracle ACS (Advanced Customer Services) developed a services based solution to  deliver low downtime, low risk migrations and upgrades using Oracle GoldenGate as the enabling technology. Oracle GoldenGate has a long track record of successful migrations and upgrades with little or no downtime. Combining this technology with the services provided by Oracle ACS and customers now have an option significantly reduce their downtime when migrating or upgrading their Oracle databases. The Oracle ACS Migration Service uses functions integrated in the Oracle Database for the initial load of the target system and Oracle GoldenGate for ongoing data synchronization (see image below). The process is suitable for all Oracle E-Business Suite products on an Oracle Database of any size. The end result is a database migration with low amount of downtime for business users. 

One common question that comes up regarding this specific migration service is “Oracle GoldenGate provides zero downtime migrations for other applications, why not E-Business Suite?”   The reason why the migration service is a low downtime solution and not zero is that E-Business Suite uses Oracle Advanced Queues, which under meta data tables use the ANYDATA data type. This particular data type is not currently supported by Oracle GoldenGate and as such has to be moved in bulk. These tables typically have a very small amount of data and prior to cutting over to the new target environment, these tables are moved from the source to target as a complete unit.   A small amount of time is needed to perform this action. 

For additional details about the Migration Services available for Oracle E-Business Suite, please refer to this Oracle Migration Service for Oracle E-Business Suite data sheet. You can hear about this new solution and Oracle GoldenGate 12c on Feb 12th 10am PT in our upcoming webcast: Introducing Oracle GoldenGate 12c: Extreme Performance Simplified.


Welcome Oracle Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator! Let’s maximize the value of your Oracle Data Integrator investments!

To help you make the most of Oracle Data Integrator, and to deliver a superior ownership experience in an effort to minimize systems management costs, Oracle recently released Oracle Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator. This new product leverages Oracle Enterprise Manager Cloud Control's advanced management capabilities to provide an integrated and top-down solution for your Oracle Data Integrator environments. Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator supports both 11g (11.1.1.7.0 and higher) and 12c versions of Oracle Data Integrator.

Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator provides a consolidated view of your entire Oracle Data Integrator infrastructure. This enables users to monitor and manage all their components centrally from Oracle Enterprise Manager Cloud Control.

Performance Monitoring and Management

Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator streamlines the monitoring of the health, performance, and availability of each and all components of an Oracle Data Integrator environment – this includes Master and Work Repositories, Standalone and JEE agents, as well as source and target Data Servers.


Figure 1 – Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator - Dashboard

Through an easy-to-use graphical interface, administrators and operators are able to quickly asses the status of their Oracle Data Integrator environments. The Dashboard page provides a summary of the health of each Oracle Data Integrator components, and clearly highlights potential issues with links for drill-down such that users can easily further investigate and assess more details.


Figure 2 – Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator– Repositories Page

The Repositories page clearly offers key database statistics and performance metrics, where users can easily track the growth of the repository tablespace and purge the Oracle Data Integrator logs when needed – one of Oracle Data Integrator’s best practices!


Figure 3 – Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator– Database Execution Details Page

The Load plan Executions/Sessions page allows developers and operators to view the entire Oracle Data Integrator Sessions activities and review detailed execution statistics; such as the overall duration of processes, or the number of inserts, updates, deletes performed. Users can click to access database details on Oracle, or to view a relevant entire SQL statement generated by Oracle Data Integrator.


Figure 4 - Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator– Agents Details Page

The Agents Page provides the list of Oracle Data Integrator Agents and the ability to drill down into each one. Recently triggered alerts or warnings can also be viewed. Overall metrics for agent performance, with quick links to session details are provided.

Configuration Management

To ensure that the configurations of all critical Oracle Data Integrator components in production environments are consistent with staging or test environments, Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator provides Configuration Snapshots to save working configurations into the Management Repository or into an external XML file. These snapshots can then be compared with the active configuration in staging or test environments, or against any historical snapshot. Configuration Comparison is the next logical step which thus allows you to ensure the consistency of configurations in your application environment. Going one step further, Configuration History keeps track of all configuration changes, which can help in diagnosing performance problems that may be related to configuration changes along the way.

Service Level Management

Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator allows for a proactive method to monitor Oracle Data Integrator environments at all levels. Many out of the box metrics are automatically collected for each Oracle Data Integrator component (repositories, agents, sources, targets…) which then provides users the ability to set up alerts based on critical or warning thresholds. Notifications can be provided to users in various ways through emails or Simple Network Management Protocol (SNMP) options.

Historical Analysis and Reporting

While real-time metrics certainly come in handy, there is also something to be said for historical collection of data! Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator stores collected metrics and configurations data in a central repository –allowing users to thus analyze the metrics in various incremental views that include; last 24 hours, last 7 days, last 31 days. In addition, customizable service and system dashboard functionality allows users to create reports on various services and systems for service level availability, usage, performance, and business indicators – all in an effort to facilitate strategic trend analysis and reporting.

In a nutshell, Oracle Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator benefits include: reducing the costs associated with monitoring the overall Oracle Data Integrator infrastructure and providing visibility into complex Oracle Data Integrator deployments across the enterprise, minimizing troubleshooting and performance tuning efforts as well as improving the overall ability to efficiently monitor Service Level Agreement compliance using powerful alerting capabilities.

Oracle Management Pack for Oracle Data Integrator is a new Management Pack, licensed separately. From an installation perspective it is packaged in the Fusion Middleware plug-ins for Enterprise Manager (version 12.1.0.4 and higher) and comes with the base Enterprise Manager 12c download. There is no separate installation file to download.

Try it out! Getting Started with Oracle Fusion Middleware Management Plug-in

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