Monday Dec 03, 2012

Migrating from Oracle Content DB to WebCenter Content

Someone asked about migrating from Oracle Content DB (CDB) to WebCenter Content (WCC)

There is no product offering that supports migrating content from CDB to WCC. Oracle Consulting has done some migrations for customers and has some internal tools that are available to assist with the migration. If you need assistance migrating from CDB to WCC you should contact Oracle Consulting.

Friday Oct 05, 2012

Solving Inbound Refinery PDF Conversion Issues, Part 1

Working with Inbound Refinery (IBR)  and PDF Conversion can be very frustrating. When everything is working smoothly you kind of forgot it is even there. Documents are cheeked into WebCenter Content (WCC), sent to IBR for conversion, converted to PDF, returned to WCC, and viola your Office documents have a nice PDF rendition available for viewing.

Then a user checks in a bunch of password protected Word files, the conversions fail, your IBR queue starts backing up, users start calling asking why their document have not been released yet, and your spend a frustrating afternoon trying to recover and get things back running properly again.

Password protected documents are one cause of PDF conversion failures, and I will cover those in a future blog post, but there are many other problems that can cause conversions to fail, especially when working with the WinNativeConverter and using the native applications, e.g. Word, to convert a document to PDF. There are other conversion options like PDFExportConverter which uses Oracle OutsideIn to convert documents directly to PDF without the need for the native applications. However, to get the best fidelity to the original document the native applications must be used. Many customers have tried PDFExportConverter, but have stayed with the native applications for conversion since the conversion results from PDFExportConverter were not as good as when the native applications are used.

Of course it is important to mention that most IBR "problems" are not really problems with the IBR itself, but more likely problems with the documents being converted or problems with the third-party applications IBR is using to convert the documents to PDF.

One problem I ran into recently, that at least has a easy solution, are Word documents that display a Show Repairs dialog when the document is opened. If you open the problem document yourself you will see this dialog.

This will cause the conversion to time out. Any time the native application displays a dialog that requires user input the conversion will time out. The solution is to set add a setting for BulletProofOnCorruption to the registry for the user running Word on the IBR server. See this support note from Microsoft for details. The support note says to set the registry key under HKEY_CURRENT_USER, but since we are running IBR as a service the correct location is under HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT. Also since in our environment we were using Office 2007, the correct registry key to use was:

HKEY_USERS\.DEFAULT\Software\Microsoft\Office\11.0\Word\Options

Once you have done this restart the IBR managed server and resubmit your problem document. It should now be converted successfully.

For more details on IBR see the Oracle® WebCenter Content Administrator's Guide for Conversion.

Wednesday Sep 19, 2012

When is the default storage rule not really the default storage rule?

In 11g WebCenter Content (WCC) introduced dispersion rules in the vault and weblayout directory paths to better distribute content across the directories. The dispersion rule was based on dRevClassID. The only problem with this is that dRevClassID did not remain the same when you copied content from one WCC instance to another using Archiver like in a contribution-consumption scenario. This could cause problems because the web-viewable path would not be the same between the contribution and consumption instances.

In the PS5 (11.1.1.6.0) release of WCC they addressed this by configuring the File Store Provider (FSP) so that all new content would use a storage rule with a dispersion rule based on dDocName, which would stay the same when content was copied to another WCC instance. To support migration from older versions of WCC they left the default storage rule unchanged and created a new storage rule called DispByContentId and made that the default storage rule for all new content.

I only stumbled upon this a while back when I was trying to change the FSP configuration so that all content used a webless storage rule. I changed the default storage rule, restarted WCC, and checked in a new content item. To my surprise the new content was not created as webless. I struggled with this for a while until I noticed there were multiple storage rules defined in the FSP configuration. When I looked at the default value for the xStorageRule field in Configuration Manager, sure enough it was no longer default, but was now DispByContentId.

Once I updated the DispByContentId storage rule to webless and restarted WCC all my new content was now created using the webless storage rule, just like I wanted.

I noticed when I was creating this blog post that the default storage rule is also listed on the File Store Provider Information page, but I guess I didn't see that when I originally did this.

Wednesday Jul 25, 2012

ScriptDebugTrace is now IsPageDebug in 11g

I keep forgetting what they changed this option to in 11g. Luckily Kyle has a nice blog post on it.

http://blogs.oracle.com/kyle/entry/page_debugging_easier_in_ucm_11g

Friday May 27, 2011

WebDAV in UCM 11g

The format for the WebDAV URL has changed in 11g. It is now

   http://server:16200/_dav/cs/idcplg/webdav/

If you are using OHS in front of UCM it will be

   http://server/_dav/cs/idcplg/webdav/

and you will have to add _dav location to themod_wl_ohs.conf file

   <Location /_dav>
   .
   .
   .
   </Location>

P.S. If you are creating a connection from the Desktop Integration Suite to WebCenter Content make sure to include the / at the end of the URL. I left it off by mistake and it would not connect.

Friday May 20, 2011

More on File Store Provider

In PS4 (11.1.1.5.0) you can now fully edit the FSP storage rule using the web interface instead of having to edit the hda files. I think this was actually added in a patch for PS3 (11.1.1.4.0). This makes it easier to manage FSP storage rules.

When I was researching the FSP behavior I found this in the Admin User's Guide.

4.3.2 FileStoreProvider Upgrade

The FileStoreProvider component is installed, enabled, and upgraded by default for a new Oracle Content Server instance (with no documents in it). The upgrade includes creation of metadata fields with default values for the file store system (DefaultFileStore). Earlier versions of the Oracle Content Server software did not automatically upgrade the file store system, and sites could choose to not use the file store system, to not upgrade to use FileStoreProvider, and to uninstall the FileStoreProvider component and metadata fields. If you do not want to upgrade FileStoreProvider from your current settings, prior to installation you must enter the configuration variable FsAutoConfigure=false in the Additional Configuration Variables field on the General Configuration page of the Oracle Content Server Admin Server page.

I'm not exactly sure how you get to the Admin Server before you actually do the install. That would be quite a trick if you could do it. What I think they mean is that you need to add it to the config.cfg file that exists before you start the install, or actually before you create the WebLogic domain or add UCM to an existing domain. I have not tried this myself, but I would suspect that you would add it to the following file:

Oracle_ECM1/ucm/idc/config/config.cfg

The other place you might want to try adding it is to the config.cfg that is created in the ucm/cs/config directory AFTER you add UCM to a WebLogic domain, but BEFORE you start it for the first time. I suspect that the FSP upgrade is done as part of the initial start up of UCM.

You would do this if you were installing a new 11g UCM instance and wanted it to work that same way as a 10g instance that was not using  the FSP.

Wednesday Feb 09, 2011

Changes to File Store Provider in UCM PS3

In the recent PS3 release of UCM (11.1.1.4.0) there are some significant changes to the File Store Provider (FSP) configuration. For new PS3 installs (not upgrades from PS2) the FSP default storage rule includes a dispersion rule that will change the web-layout and vault paths by adding dispersion directories to the paths to limit the number of files in the vault and web-layout directories. What that means is that if you install a new PS3 UCM instance and migrate content in from a previous version of UCM the web URL will change. That is a critical problem for web sites and just general document management. Read the rest of this post where I describe the issue in detaill and provide instructions for how to modify a PS3 instance to use the old format for the web-layout path.[Read More]
About

Kevin Smith is a Technical Director in Oracle Consulting's WebCenter practice. He has been working with content management products since 2004 when he joined Stellent.

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