Wednesday Sep 09, 2015

What is patching and why do you need to patch Weblogic Server?

Patching is the process of applying a new piece of software over an existing installation in order to solve some known bugs or add enhanced features. 

It isn’t a major version change. Installing patches, whether one-off patches or bundle patches, should be a routine process while administration WebLogic Server domains. 

Installing patches, whether one-off patches or bundle patches, should be a routine process while administration WebLogic Server domains.

Information Center: Weblogic Server Patching & Maintenance (Doc ID 1573509.2) provides information on installation, uninstallation, usage of tools like SmartUpdate or OPatch, known issues among other content.

Wednesday Oct 08, 2014

A Sample Install Plan for Oracle HTTP Server 12c

Even when a task appears straightforward, there can be a little more to it than meets the eye. So some research / planning upfront can save time and avoid mistakes / misunderstandings. Here is a sample plan for installing Oracle HTTP Server (OHS) 12c.


  • Install Oracle HTTP Server 12.1.3 on MS Windows 2008 (64bit)
  • OHS will front end an custom java servlet application deployed in WebLogic Server.
  • The connection to the application must be secure, therefore the final solution should feature SSL terminating at OHS.
  • Administrators would like to have the option to manage Oracle HTTP Server (configuration, start / stop etc) via Fusion Middleware Enterprise Manager Control.

Additional Comment

  • The build is for a production system
  • Oracle Database  has already been installed and can be used to host any database objects required

Software Download


JDK SE 7U55+

  • Download latest JDK 7 version e.g. “jdk-7u67-windows-x64.exe”

Oracle Database : or or

Fusion Middleware Product Download

As this build is for production system, in order to comply with licensing the software should be downloaded from Oracle Software Delivery Cloud

After sign in, choose:

Product: Oracle Fusion Middleware
Platform: Microsoft Windows x64 (64bit)

Click on “Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c Media Pack (12.1.3)”

The choice of software depends on the administrator's requirement:

Option A: Manage / administer Oracle HTTP Server via Fusion Middleware Enterprise Manager Control

  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c ( Infrastructure
  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c ( HTTP Server for Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit)

Note : An Infrastructure requires Metadata schemas to be installed in an Oracle Database (see comments in "pre-requisites")

Option B: Manage / administer Oracle HTTP Server via command line only

  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c ( WebLogic Server and Coherence
  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c ( HTTP Server for Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit)


At the time of writing, there are currently no recommended patches or patch set updates for WebLogic Server 12.1.3. Also currently, no recommended patches or patch set updates for OHS 12c.

Release dates for critical patches and patch set updates can be found in the Critical Patch Updates, Security Alerts and Third Party Bulletin . The next critical patch update release may or may not include a call to action for patching some or all of the components in the target build : JDK, WLS, Infrastructure, OHS.

Bookmark and regularly review the following support documents:

  • Master Note on WebLogic Server Patch Set Updates (PSUs) [ID 1470197.1]
  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c Release Announcements [ID 1567707.1]

Prepare for future patching of 12.1.3 by reading this note:

  • Using OUI NextGen OPatch 13 for Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c (12.1.2+) [ID 1587524.1]

Product Documentation

 Title  Comment
Oracle Fusion Middleware Download, Installation, and Configuration ReadMe 12c (12.1.3) A step by step guide to finding the software and related collateral
Oracle Fusion Middleware Supported System Configurations Web Page containing links to all the FMw certification spreadsheets (xls)
Oracle Fusion Middleware System Requirements and Specifications 12c (12.1.3) Document specifying the pre-install system requirements
Installing and Configuring the Oracle Fusion Middleware Infrastructure
Chapter 1 Planning the Oracle Fusion Middleware Infrastructure Installation
Product Documentation

An Infrastructure install is needed if you want to manage / administer the Oracle HTTP Server via Fusion Middleware Enterprise Manager Control. This makes the build more complex. An alternative approach is to install Oracle HTTP Server ‘standalone’ and manage the OHS via the command line (WLST)

Installing and Configuring Oracle HTTP Server
Chapter 1 Planning Your Oracle HTTP Server Installation
Product Documentation
Release Notes for Oracle Fusion Middleware Infrastructure
Chapter 1 Install and Configure
Product Documentation

List of known issues to review .. many however will not be applicable to simple Web Tier + Infrastructure Build.
Release Notes for Oracle HTTP Server
1.1 Known Issues in Oracle HTTP Server 12c (12.1.3)
Product Documentation

List of known issues can be here
Administering Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c (12.1.3)
New and Changed Features for Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c (12.1.3)
Product Documentation

There is no OPMN in 12c. Therefore, OHS administrators, especially those who are familiar with the workings of 10g or 11g, will need to learn the new command line administrative mechanism - WLST.

Support Documents

Related to Install and Patching

  • Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c Release Announcements [ID 1567707.1]
  • Master Note on WebLogic Server Patch Set Updates (PSUs) [ID 1470197.1]
  • Announcing Oracle WebLogic Server PSUs (Patch Set Updates) [ID 1306505.1]
  • Using OUI NextGen OPatch 13 for Oracle Fusion Middleware 12c (12.1.2+) [ID 1587524.1]
  • How to Create a Fusion Middleware 12c Oracle HTTP Server Standalone Domain In Silent Mode Using WLST Scripts [ID 1627341.1]

Related to SSL configuration

  • Master Note for SSL Configuration in Fusion Middleware 12c [ID 1628909.1]
  • Configuring Oracle HTTP Server to use SSL in Fusion Middleware 12c (12.1.X) [ID 1662675.1]
  • How to Configure mod_wl_ohs to use SSL between Oracle HTTP Server (OHS) and Oracle WebLogic Server (12.1.X) in Fusion Middleware 12c [ID 1665711.1]
    • This article is only relevant if a decision is made to have SSL end to end

Monday May 21, 2012

Which JDK is my FMW 11g WebLogic Domain Configured to Use?


If you are the administrator who ran the Fusion Middleware Installer or Configuration Wizard, the question in the title may seem a little daft. But, in fact the advice below may become handy should you face one of the following situations:

  • You have been asked to look after a Middleware Home which was previously built by someone else
  • You are configuring a new FMW 11g AS Instance, and unexpectedly hitting errors or hanging at the WebLogic Domain Creation time. For example, see:

    FMW 11g "IDM" or "Portal/Forms/Reports/Discoverer" Configuration Wizards on 64bit Platforms Hang at 0% 'Creating Domain'  [ID 865462.1]

    This support document describes what happens if you inadvertently attempt to configure an AS Instance with a mixture of 64bit (Oracle Home Binaries - ORACLE_HOME) and 32bit JDK (WebLogic Binary Home - WL_HOME)

There are two parts to the question:

  1. What version of JDK will the Configuration Wizard, by default, configure a new WebLogic Domain to use?
  2. Which JDK and version is being used by an existing WebLogic Domain?

JDK Used at WebLogic Domain Creation Time

The answer is in the default WebLogic environment script:



MS Windows


(e.g WL_HOME is typically - MW_HOME/wlserver_10.3/common/bin/

Look for lines like the ones below (examples are from a WLS install on a Unix machine)

#JAVA_USE_64BIT, true if JVM uses 64 bit operations
if [ -z "${JAVA_HOME}" -o -z "${JAVA_VENDOR}" ]; <---- This line means if 
JAVA_HOME OR JAVA_VENDOR is NOT set, so if either of them are empty 
the settings in the "then" part of the statement are applied. 
If JAVA_VENDOR and JAVA_HOME are both set then the if statement is skipped
      # Set up JAVA HOME
      # Set up JAVA VENDOR, possible values are
      #Oracle, HP, IBM, Sun ...
      # PRODUCTION_MODE, default to the development mode

Important to Note: It is possible to set JAVA_HOME, JAVA_VENDOR environment variables prior to launching the Installer or Configuration Wizard. Therefore you cannot always assume that is the source of these environment variable values. In the same session from which you launch the Installer or Configuration Wizard double check whether JAVA_HOME and JAVA_VENDOR have values e.g.



MS Windows:


If either of these environment variables are not set then you know that the values will be derived from the

The JAVA_HOME and JAVA_VENDOR values do not tell you whether the JDK is 32bit or 64bit. To find out this detail you need to run a switch to the bin directory where the JDK resides e.g

cd /oracle/SOAWC/jdk1.6.0_24/bin 

and then run the java version command. To quote from:

How to tell if Weblogic Server is running in 32-bit or 64-bit mode [ID 1066808.1]

"To identify if you have a 32-bit or 64-bit JDK installed you can run"

java -version

which will give you more information.

By running

java -d64 -version

you can test if the 64-bit mode is supported by your JVM. You will get an error message if this is a 32-bit only JVM. 32/64-bit-hybrid JVMs exist for some platforms. In this case you would have to include the -d64 flag to tell the JVM to run in 64-bit mode."

Which JDK is my existing WebLogic Domain using?

Typically, the JDK used by a WebLogic Domain will be the same as specified by However, you must check the domain's environment variable setting file:



MS Windows:


(e.g A DOMAIN_HOME might look something like MW_HOME/user_projects/domains/myDomain/)

Couple of examples (taken from installs on a Unix machine)

A Portal / Forms / Reports and/or Discoverer WebLogic Domain; the setDomainEnv has these lines



    if [ "${JAVA_VENDOR}" = "Oracle" ] ; then
        export JAVA_HOME
    if [ "${JAVA_VENDOR}" = "Sun" ] ; then
        export JAVA_HOME
        export JAVA_VENDOR
        export JAVA_HOME

A FMW 11g SOA Suite, the setDomainEnv has these lines

    if [ "${JAVA_VENDOR}" = "Oracle" ] ; then
            export JAVA_HOME
            if [ "${JAVA_VENDOR}" = "Sun" ] ; then
                    export JAVA_HOME
                    export JAVA_VENDOR
                    export JAVA_HOME

The JAVA_VENDOR environment variable is not normally set prior to running, in which case the JAVA_VENDOR will default to the "else" part of the statement (highlighted in Red)

The commEnv (.sh or .cmd) is invoked later on in the setDomainEnv script. In the commEnv script the if statement

if [ -z "${JAVA_HOME}" -o -z "${JAVA_VENDOR}" ]; 

is bypassed because both JAVA_VENDOR and JAVA_HOME have been set.

Again, the does not tell you whether the specified JAVA_HOME is 32bit or 64bit. The only way to find this information is to run the "java -version" as previously described.

Additional Useful Reference:

How To Change Type of JDK (Sun / JRockit) for FMW 11g Domain (ID 1058804.1)

Note - however I have added a comment to this support document as I believe the advice does not take into account the possibility of JAVA_VENDOR and JAVA_HOME being set before commEnv is launched.

Tuesday Mar 27, 2012

Guide to Downloading Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g Products


The idea of writing a blog about downloading software seems a bit strange .. right? After all, surely just give me the web download link and away I go!? Unfortunately, life is not so simple if you are a DBA or Systems Administrator tasked with staging Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g products for your chosen business technology stack. Here are the challenges:
  1. Oracle Fusion Middleware is not a single product, it is a family of products - a media pack with many many "disks" - which ones do I pick?
  2. Are the products I pick certified / supported on my chosen platform?
  3. Which download site do I use?
  4. I need to be on the latest and greatest - how do I get hold of the latest product patch set?
The purpose of this blog is to give you a roadmap to get you through these challenges.

Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g - A Product Suite

The first thing to appreciate is that Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g is not a single product. It is a product suite, an umbrella label for many products. Typically you don't download the whole media pack - well not unless you want to stage 124 Parts - a total of 68 Gig  - instead you pick the pieces that are required for your chosen Middleware solution. Therefore, you need to research / understand which products are required to build your solution. In this respect, before you go looking for the software pick and persue the product guide from the table below which matches your situation:

 Installing a New / Vanilla FMW 11g architecture
Oracle Fusion Middleware Installation Planning Guide 11g
 Upgrading Oracle Application Server 10g to FMW 11g
Oracle Fusion Middleware Upgrade Planning Guide 11g
 Patching an existing FMW 11g architecture
Oracle Fusion Middleware Patching Guide 11g

Certification Information

Ok, so now you have an idea of what Fusion Middleware products you need. It's time to check whether these products are certified against your chosen platform. There are two places to find this information:

My Oracle Support Certification Tab Page

Figure 1.1 My Oracle Support Certification Tab Page - "Search on SOA Suite"

Figure 1.2 My Oracle Support Certification Tab Page - "SOA Suite Search Result"

The FMW 11g Certification Central Hub (in the format of xls spreadsheet)

Figure 2: Screenshot of FMW 11g Release 1 Certification xls spreadsheet

Hints / Tips:

Fusion Middleware 11g certification information has only recently been added into the Certification Tab page and I think it is the more friendly way to access the information. However, due to some restrictions with the Certification Tab page interface some of the more, let's say obscure certification information, is still to be only found in the Certification spreadsheet.

Be aware that to find certification information via the My Oracle Support Certification Tab page you must enter the FMW 11g product name e.g.

"Oracle SOA Suite".

Do NOT enter "Oracle Fusion Middleware". The certification information does not exist at this product suite level.  For example, if you are building a solution which includes

  • Oracle SOA Suite
  • Oracle WebCenter

then you will have to look up the certification information for each product in turn.

After choosing the product name, select the latest patch set version. This will not only tell you whether your chosen product is available at that patch set version but provide the certification information relevant to that version.  If the product is not available under the latest patch set version, seek the information under previous patch set versions.

Important: Make a careful note of the Oracle WebLogic Server version which is certified with your chosen product and patch set version. Oracle WebLogic Server is the core component of a Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g home. It is important therefore to ensure later on that you download the version of Oracle WebLogic Server which is compatible and certified with your chosen product and patch set version.

Also - sorry to state the obvious, but please do not take certification information from the screenshots above. The screenshots are only good for the time they were entered into the blog. To ensure you have the latest information, interactively look up the certification details.

For more information about finding certification information, bookmark and read

My Oracle Support Certification Tool for Oracle Fusion Middleware Products [Doc ID 1368736.1]
How to Find Certification Details for Oracle Application Server 10g and Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g [Doc ID 431578.1]
Oracle Blog - Certification News

Downloading the Software

Now you should be ready to download the software. There are two download locations

Oracle Software Delivery Cloud (formerly known as E-Delivery)

Figure 3 - Screenshot of Fusion Middleware Download from Delivery Cloud

Oracle Fusion Middleware Download Page on Oracle Technology Network

Figure 4 - Screenshot of OTN Product Download Screen

Hints / Tips:

Your choice of download location should be primarily driven by your licensing needs. Take note of the wording on the OTN site - to quote:

"The downloads below are provided for evaluators under the OTN License Agreement. Licensed customers should download their software via our Oracle Software Delivery Cloud site, which offers different license terms."

However, it has to be said that the presentation of the most of the product download pages on OTN does make the job easier. The Software Delivery Cloud provides you with a flat list of the Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g media pack. You have to know what you are looking for and pick out the right pieces :-( The OTN product download pages present not only the download for the product you want but also its dependencies such as WebLogic Server and Repository Creation Utility. So, even if your licensing requirements drive you towards the cloud, it is still worthwhile checking the OTN pages if only as a guide to what you need to pick out from the flat list found on the cloud site.

Latest Patch Set

This is an area which may cause you confusion - especially if you are more familiar with the Oracle Application Server 10g patching story. From Patch Set and higher, the majority of FMW 11g products (N.B there are exceptions) provide installers which can be used both to update existing FMW 11g product installs or build brand new ones. This is good news because, unless you are dealing with one of the exceptions, it means you do not have to download base software and a patch set.

At the time of the writing, the two significant exceptions are:

  • Portal/Forms/Reports/Discoverer 11g Release 1 (11.1.1.x)
  • Identity Access Management 11g Release 1 (11.1.1.x)

The other key message here is ensure you are grabbing a version of Oracle WebLogic Server which is compatible with your chosen product patch set version. Get this wrong and you will hit errors / problems at AS Instance Configuration Time.

The go to place is this document - Oracle Fusion Middleware Download, Installation, and Configuration Readme Files

In fact, this README document pretty much takes you through what I have blogged above. The only thing is you need to know which README to choose, and that's why planning your FMW 11g technology stack and viewing certification information comes into play beforehand.

And Finally

As the Oracle Fusion Middleware Download, Installation, and Configuration Readme Files states don't forget to check

Monday Mar 26, 2012

Getting Started with FMW 11g - Advisor Webcast Recordings

Predating the creation of this blog there have been two Oracle Support Advisor Webcasts which are worth reviewing - especially if you tackling install and/or patching of Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g for the first time.

 Topic  Web Links
How to Plan for a New Installation of Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g Webcast Recording
Slides (PDF)
Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g Patching Concepts and Tools Webcast Recording
Slides (PDF)


Ignore the duration of the recording indicated by the link. You can skip forward to the main presentation and demo .. which shapes up at 45 minutes long, the rest is Q/A and blurb.

Support Advisor Webcast Schedule and Recordings are found via these support documents

Note: You will need a My Oracle Support login to access these documents.


This is the blog of the Oracle Fusion Middleware Support Team. Here we will provide information about new patches, articles, product releases and features, as well as FAQs from Support

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