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Top 9 Frequently-Asked Questions About Online Patching

Steven Chan
Senior Director

Online Patching allows you to apply patches to an EBS 12.2 system while it is still up and  running.  If you're just getting started with Online Patching, you'll find this document useful:

We update this document regularly.  It currently covers frequently asked questions about core Online Patching concepts, resource requirements, functionality, patch application, and handling of customizations and third-party integrations.  We intend to add troubleshooting information to this document soon.

As a preview of that document, here are the top 9 frequently-asked questions about Online Patching:

Which Oracle E-Business Suite releases can Online Patching be used with?

Online patching is used with Oracle E-Business Suite 12.2 and higher.

What types of patch are applied online?

All Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.2 patches are applied online. This includes one-off patches, patch rollups, consolidated updates and security patches.

What is the Online Patching cycle?

The Online Patching cycle is a sequence of inter-related steps (phases) used to apply patches to an Oracle E-Business Suite system.

EBS 12.2 online patching cycle

What tool is used to apply online patches?

The AD Online Patching (adop) command-line utility is used to manage the Online Patching cycle.

Is there any downtime in Online Patching?

There is a short period of downtime when the application tier services are shut down and restarted. The database remains open all the time.

Do I upgrade to Release 12.2 with Online Patching?

No. After you upgrade to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.2, you will enable Online Patching.

Once I upgrade to Release 12.2, can I still apply patches in the traditional way?

No. All patches for Release 12.2 will be online patches. The traditional, pre-12.2 method of applying patches will not work.

Can I still use adpatch in the Release 12.2 Online Patching environment?

No. While the Oracle tools may internally invoke the adpatch utility, direct user invocation of adpatch is not allowed.

Are there any plans to make Online Patching available with pre-12.2 releases?

No. Online patching can only be used with Release 12.2.

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Comments ( 38 )
  • guest Friday, December 12, 2014

    Hi,

    This FAQ is somewhat (1) outdated and answers are closer to (2) marketing material than technical documentation.

    Examples:

    (1) "Once I upgrade to Release 12.2, can I still apply patches in the traditional way?

    No. All patches for Release 12.2 will be online patches. The traditional, pre-12.2 method of applying patches will not work."

    -- Well, this is luckily not true as we have hotpatch and downtime apply modes which are both used on the Run system. This is a great feature as for a patch which applied in one hour on 12.1 now with the stopping/starting and adop overhead takes less than 2 hours instead of nearly 24 hours going through the whole online patching cycle.

    (2) "Is there any downtime in Online Patching?

    There is a short period of downtime when the application tier services are shut down and restarted. The database remains open all the time."

    -- Well, just restarting 12.2 takes lot longer than 12.1 due to usage of WLS, never less than half an hour. Together with other adop cutover activities, this is rather an hour or more. As for the database remaining open, it is the truth but being very economical with it. Any existing connection to edititoned schema like APPS will be disconnected but yeah SYS and SYSTEM connections will stay up.

    It is never mentioned that online patching takes much more time and effort from the Apps DBA. So if you had 3 Apps DBAs managing 11i/12.0/12.1 environments, for the same number of environments you need at least 5 of them to do the same amount of patching/configuration work. Applying patches online only makes sense for large patches like Family Packs which are rarely released for 12.2.x outside of the full release cycle of 12.2.3, 12.2.4, etc.

    Thank you!


  • Steven Chan Friday, December 12, 2014

    Hi, Guest,

    Thanks for your comments. FAQs are meant as introductory material that new users can scan quickly. FAQs must (necessarily) omit much of the detail and nuances that you'll find in the core documentation. Readers should always go to the core documentation to learn more.

    I'm interested in hearing more about your experiences with EBS 12.2, particularly why it is taking more DBA time for you. We're working hard to improve all of the Online Patching tools, and your feedback can help. Please drop me a line with your contact details if you'd like to discuss this.

    Regards,

    Steven


  • Periyasamy Sunday, December 21, 2014

    Hi,

    Yes, that's true for smaller patches we are spending more time in Online patching compared to 12.1

    12.1 patching was so simple, now we are doing it in multiple steps (prepare, cutover, etc) which makes it complicated.

    From multiple drivers to unified driver to multiple phases again :)

    In the adop patching session we don't get the patching progress as in 12.1, we must go to patch log file to see the progress. Initially i thought adop hung.

    Understood its because adop invokes adpatch in background.

    Regards,

    Periyasamy


  • Periyasamy Sunday, December 21, 2014

    From my experience,

    R12.1: Bouncing barely takes 2 minutes.

    R12.2: Minimum 15 minutes required.


  • Kumar Saturday, August 22, 2015

    With adpatch we have the distrubuted ad option available. Is such an option available with adop. Looking at FAQ I did not find an option

    Thanks

    Kumar


  • Santiago Bastidas Wednesday, August 26, 2015

    Kumar,

    The main purpose of the distributed AD option pre-12.2 is to reduce the patch application downtime. In 12.2 you apply patches while the system is up and running, there is no downtime during this process hence, downtime during patch application is not the overriding concern. Additionally, one of our goals with Online Patching is to not affect the running application, to accomplish this "adop" uses the fewest number of workers possible to apply patches, and it does not distribute the load because we want to dedicate most of the available resources to process End Users requests.

    Regards,

    Santiago


  • guest Thursday, August 27, 2015

    Hi Steven,

    Can we disable online patching cycle for the time being? and after that enable the same.

    thanks

    jatin


  • Santiago Bastidas Thursday, August 27, 2015

    Hello Guest,

    The Online Patching cycle is a series of steps used to apply patches in R12.2, it is not a feature that can be disabled. Having said that, the way to apply patches in R12.2 is using this cycle.

    Could you clarify your question? Were you in the middle of a patching cycle and want to discard the cycle? or, do you want to apply patches in another fashion?

    Regards,

    Santiago


  • Kumar Sunday, September 6, 2015

    Hello

    Our development teams dont want to use the features available with online patching for few reasons

    (a) They h