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Using Oracle on OS X? Instant Client 12.1 is here

Christopher Jones
Senior Principal Product Manager

Oracle Instant Client 12.1 for OS X was just released and is now available for free download from OTN for 32-bit and 64-bit applications. Update: the bundles were re-released 14 June 2016 with a connectivity fix.

Instant Client provides libraries and tools for connecting to Oracle Database. Among other uses, languages such as C, Python, PHP, Ruby, Perl and Node.js can use Instant Client for database connectivity.

In addition to having Oracle 12.1 client features like auto-tuning, new in this release is an ODBC driver.

The install instructions have been updated to reflect the resolution of the linking issues caused by the OS X El Capitan changes with SIP to ignore DYLD_LIBRARY_PATH in sub processes. The ~/lib location required for Instant Client 11.2 on El Capitan is no longer needed with Instant Client 12.1. Note if you are creating your own apps, you should link with -rpath.

This release of Instant Client supports Mavericks, Yosemite, and El Capitan. Applications can connect to Oracle Database 10.2 or more recent. You should continue using the older 11.2 client if you need to connect to Oracle Database 9.2.

Update: Official installation doc and release notes are now on the doc portal: Oracle Database Online Documentation 12c Release 1 (12.1).

Questions and comments can be posted to the OTN forum for whichever component or tool you are using. General questions about Instant Client are best posted to the OCI Forum.

If you are interested in running Oracle Database itself on OS X, see my earlier post The Easiest Way to Install Oracle Database on Mac OS X.

Join the discussion

Comments ( 13 )
  • guest Monday, May 30, 2016

    Any word on Kerberos and EUS support for the instant client? Mac users have no way to take advantage of EUS at this time

  • Chris Jones Monday, May 30, 2016

    I'll followup by email.

  • guest Friday, June 3, 2016

    I can get the 11.2 instant client to work just fine. However with the 12.1 instant client connecting to an 11.2 DB I'm always getting ORA-01017: invalid username/password; logon denied.

    I am definitely using the same (and correct) credentials in both instances.

  • Chris Jones Friday, June 3, 2016

    I found that for 11.2 XE, I could connect from OS X 12.1 after I ran: ALTER SYSTEM SET SEC_CASE_SENSITIVE_LOGON = FALSE;

  • guest Wednesday, June 8, 2016

    I am getting the same problem as guest 2. I can connect to my oracle db just fine with sql developer, but I get ORA-01017: invalid username/password; logon denied using the instant client. I checked my db log and the username and password, and database info is making it there correctly. Did anyone find a solution to this?

  • guest Wednesday, June 8, 2016

    @chris is there a another work around then ALTER SYSTEM SET SEC_CASE_SENSITIVE_LOGON = FALSE;
    Why do I have to set that to false now in the new instantclient versions?

  • Steve Baldwin Wednesday, June 8, 2016

    Turns out this is happening due to a bug in the new Instant Client. It is basically broken for connecting to 11g DB's where SEC_CASE_SENSITIVE_LOGON = TRUE (which is the default).

    Unless it is a 'personal' DB (e.g. XE) you really don't want to be changing the parameter.

    Until it is fixed you will need to use the previous IC version.

  • guest Thursday, June 9, 2016

    Another workaround is to upgrade to 12.1 DB . . .

    You can track Oracle bug 23522626. I'll update this post when there is any news.
    This issue only affects the OS X Instant Client.

  • Steve Baldwin Tuesday, June 14, 2016

    The new version (Updated 6/14/16) is out and appears to have fixed the bug.

  • Bala Tuesday, August 8, 2017
    sqlldr is found on instant client.
  • Chris Jones Wednesday, August 9, 2017
    @Bala, sqlldr was added to Instant Client 12.2, which is available for platforms like Linux & Windows, but isn't yet available on macOS.
  • Deepanshu Rana Sunday, July 8, 2018
    I have downloaded the instant client , but i can't connect to the server "ERROR: NO TNS LISTENER".

    I am working on macOSX environment.
  • Christopher Jones Sunday, July 8, 2018
    @ Deepanshu It seems Instant Client is installed OK. Speak to your DBAs about the connect string to use.

    The Oracle Developer Community is the best place to get technical help from the community https://community.oracle.com/welcome
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