My Oracle Support and Oracle Configuration Manager
By Eric P. Maurice on Dec 03, 2008
Hi! My name is Joshua Solomin. I am the Product Manager for Oracle Configuration Manager.
Oracle recently launched its new Web support portal My Oracle Support (previously known as MetaLink). More than just providing a slick interface, the new site also delivers additional benefits to customers, including a personalized support experience, resulting in faster time–to-resolution of technical issues.
Some of the most significant benefits of the new My Oracle Support portal are the integrated configuration management capabilities – formerly known as Software Configuration Manager – which are provided through the use of Oracle Configuration Manager. Now bundled with most new Oracle product releases and utilities like OPatch, Oracle Configuration Manager can automatically gather the configuration information of Oracle product installs, and upload this information onto Oracle’s support systems. The configuration information being collected by Oracle Configuration Manager includes:
• Installed patches
• Deployment platforms, dates, versions, and type
• Deployed components and applications
• Content of configuration files
• Information about network configurations
Note that the information collected by Oracle Configuration Manager is limited to configuration information. The utility does not collect sensitive data such as actual customer data (that is any data other than configuration information, including actual applications or database transactions), password hash values, log on events, etc. My Oracle Support note 728985.1 provides a list of all the data collected by Oracle Configuration Manager.
Once collected, this configuration data can be used to populate the customer’s private My Oracle Support dashboard. The dashboard will then display a detailed list of systems in the enterprise, not only allowing the customer to view their configuration settings, but also enabling change history tracking that will identify any changes made to system configurations over time. Furthermore, the uploaded data allows Oracle Support to provide customized information about the overall health of the customer’s systems (including information about release and patch levels currently installed in the environment) and recommendations to ensure that each system operates in peak condition.
Note that customers need to specifically enable Oracle Configuration Manager in order for it to start collecting configuration information and securely sending this information to Oracle Support. Furthermore, if a customer’s security policies prohibit the automatic sending of configuration information outside of the organization, Oracle Configuration Manager can be configured to work in a “disconnected mode”, allowing the customer’s systems and security administrators the ability to review the information prior to it being sent out to Oracle Support.
A great feature provided by Oracle Configuration Manager to My Oracle Support users is the ability to quickly create Service Requests with accurate and complete system configuration information attached. In other words, customers can use My Oracle Support to see recent changes that could have been made to their environment to troubleshoot technical issues, and if unable to solve the problem themselves, customers can then open a Service Request with Oracle that will come pre-populated with the configuration information that is typically required by Oracle support in order to initiate a service ticket.
The combination of Oracle Configuration Manager with the My Oracle Support portal provides Oracle customers with tremendous benefits. Oracle Configuration Manager is available at no additional charge to current Oracle Support customers. My Oracle Support access is included with the annual paid Oracle Premier Support subscription. This combination can provide customers with a complete view of the configuration of their Oracle environment and with environment-specific recommendations in order to yield maximum benefits from their Oracle systems while maintaining a positive security posture. The various reports available in the My Oracle Support portal can help customers prevent outages, troubleshoot systems, and identify trends across their systems.
A short video explaining the benefits of Oracle Configuration Manager is available online. In addition, the Collector tab on My Oracle Support is dedicated to explaining how to use Oracle Configuration Manager and gaining the most value out of My Oracle Support. In order to get started, just make sure that the Oracle Configuration Manager which was installed with your Oracle product has been configured and is running. You can also download the software from My Oracle Support if your recent product installs didn’t come bundled with Oracle Configuration Manager.