Monday Aug 26, 2013

Application Management Pack Certified with Enterprise Manager 12cR3

We released Oracle Application Management Pack last year. At that time, that release was certified with the base release of Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c. 

Oracle Application Management Pack is now certified with the latest Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c patchset:  version (a.k.a. "EM 12c Release 3" or "12cR3").

EM12c AMP screenshot

Upgrading from previous Enterprise Manager releases

Customers upgrading to Enterprise Manager Cloud Control 12c Release 3 from Enterprise Manager 10g Release 5 or Enterprise Manager 11g Release 1 must follow Section 5 Step 6 in this document:

Understanding our product names

  • "Oracle Application Management Pack" now includes functionality previously released separately as "Oracle Application Change Management Pack"
  • "Oracle Application Management Pack" is the same as "Oracle E-Business Suite Plug-in"
  • You cannot purchase a licence for "Oracle Application Management Pack"
  • "Oracle Application Management Pack" is included in a larger suite of products called "Oracle Oracle Application Management Suite for Oracle E-Business Suite"
  • Licences for "Oracle Oracle Application Management Suite for Oracle E-Business Suite" include "Oracle Application Management Pack"


Wednesday Aug 21, 2013

Help Shape the Next E-Business Suite User Interface

Usability testing at conferencesUndertaking a major overhaul of the E-Business Suite user interface is a huge project.  We’ve delivered incremental updates but it’s time for another big refresh. 

We’d like your feedback on some of our new designs:

  • New color palettes
  • New layouts
  • New table and column behaviors
  • Mobile applications
  • ... and many other things 
Influence the next EBS user interface

Our next round of usability tests will be in September during Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco, California.  We are looking for participants.

You will get the satisfaction of seeing some of what we are working on, telling us what you think of our designs, and helping shape the future of Oracle E-Business Suite! 

Besides, many of our users find that it’s fun.  We tested designs with some users who attended Collaborate 13 and we’ve already incorporated much of their feedback into our work. 

The ideal users for these usability tests

We are testing the ease of using Oracle E-Business Suite on a mobile device (iPad), both for mobile-enabled Oracle Application Framework-based applications and for a native mobile application.  For this round of testing, we are looking for the following types of Oracle E-Business Suite users:
  • End-users who work on Oracle E-Business Suite self-service applications regularly (at least once every month) for submitting requisitions, time cards, or expense reports. 
  • Managers who approve workflows (requisitions, expense reports, and so on) raised by their employees.

The fine print

  • Sessions will be held September 23rd - 25th, 2013. 
  • Participants will need to sign up well ahead of time.
  • Participants’ companies will have to sign a Customer or Partner Participation Confidentiality Agreement (CPCA or PPCA) if one is not already on file.
  • Participants need to be in San Francisco (an OpenWorld conference pass is not required)
I want to participate, but I can’t do this one

Other User Experience tests being conducted during Oracle OpenWorld in San Francisco include Oracle Fusion HCM, getting started for new users, mobile applications, and so on.  They all require different types of users.

Oracle E-Business Suite will be doing more usability testing in the future, and the Oracle User Experience Team does usability testing regularly for products across Oracle, so we’re always interested in getting more users on our list of people to call.  Different tests need different types of users: managers, non-managers, new users, experienced users, developers, and so on.  Locations for possible tests include the San Francisco Bay Area, Boston, Denver, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Reading (England), London, and opportunities for remote participation depending on the test.

How to sign up

If you want to join our user list for this test or future tests, please send the following information to Angela DOT Johnston AT Oracle DOT Com, with the subject line “EBS Blog for UX testing” and one of our Usability Apps specialists will get in touch with you for further information.

  Company Name:      
  Work Phone:
  Mobile Phone:

When will the new user interface be released?

Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog. I'll post updates here as soon as soon as they're available.    

The preceding is intended to outline our general product direction.  It is intended for information purposes only, and may not be incorporated into any contract.   It is not a commitment to deliver any material, code, or functionality, and should not be relied upon in making purchasing decision.  The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described for Oracle’s products remains at the sole discretion of Oracle. 

Friday Aug 09, 2013

Internet Explorer 10 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

MS IE logoMicrosoft Internet Explorer 10 is now certified as a desktop client browser for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i, 12.0, and 12.1.  The certified desktop operating systems are:

  • Windows 7
  • Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (32-bit or 64-bit)

EBS 12.1 Prerequisites

  • EBS 12.1.1 or higher
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (32-bit) and higher
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_32 (64-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (64-bit) and higher

EBS 12.0 Prerequisites

  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or higher.
  • Oracle Forms Version or higher.
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (32-bit) and higher
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_32 (64-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (64-bit) and higher

EBS 11i Prerequisites

  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or higher
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or higher.
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 ( (see Note 125767.1)
  • MLR patch 8888184 or higher (see note 125767.1 for the latest release)
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (32-bit) and higher
  • Java Plug-in JRE 1.6.0_32 (64-bit) or higher, or JRE 1.7.0_10 (32-bit) and higher

Compatibility Mode for IE 10 + EBS 12

To prevent issues with certain OA Framework pages, you should run IE 10 in "Compatibility Mode." See the "Known Issues" section in Note 389422.1 for more details.

JRE 1.7 is certified with EBS

There appears to be some inaccurate information lying about on the web that claims that JRE 1.7 is not certified with the E-Business Suite. 

This is incorrect.  Our standard policy is that all E-Business Suite customers can apply all JRE updates to end-user desktops from JRE 1.6.0_03 and later updates on the 1.6 codeline, and from JRE 7u10 and later updates on the JRE 7 codeline.  We test all new JRE 1.6 and JRE 7 releases in parallel with the JRE development process, so all new JRE 1.6 and 7 releases are considered certified with the E-Business Suite on the same day that they're released by our Java team. 

You do not need to wait for a certification announcement before applying new JRE 1.6 or JRE 7 releases to your EBS users' desktops.

"JInitiator version too low" errors

Some non-Oracle staff are claiming that "JInitiator version too low" errors confirm this incompatibility and lack of certification.

In fact, if you're getting a "JInitiator version too low" error, it means that you've missed applying the Forms patch required to enable JRE 1.7 compatibility. Simply apply that patch and your EBS environment is ready for JRE 1.7 clients.


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Tuesday Aug 06, 2013

You're Closer to EBS 12.1.3 Than You Think

Congratulations -- you're running EBS 12.1.1 or 12.1.2 in production.  Our standing recommendation is to apply the EBS 12.1.3 suite-wide Release Update Pack (RUP), despite the relaxed requirements in the recent changes to our Error Correction Support Policy.

If you can't apply the suite-wide 12.1.3 Release Update Pack, you should apply the individual 12.1.3 Family Packs for the EBS products that you've deployed.

Here's our best-kept secret:  this will change your environment less than you think.  If you've applied any patches to your 12.1.1 or 12.1.2 environment, you probably already have much of 12.1.3 already in production today.  

A glimpse behind the curtain

This is due to the way that our EBS source code control system works: we deliver patches based upon the latest versions of code in our source control system.  Developers sometimes refer to this as "delivering code on the tip of the codeline."

If "source control systems" are unknown territory to you, here's an example to illustrate this:

Let's imagine that you're running 12.1.1 and report an issue with a Financials screen. 

That Financials screen was first released in 12.1.1, updated in 12.1.2, and updated again in 12.1.3.

Whatever patch you apply will deliver the latest version of the 12.1.3 code and all of the related dependencies in other screens or packages

In this particular case, you might think you're on 12.1.1, but applying that patch has raised your code level for the updated files to the 12.1.3 level or even later.

Apps DBA Tip: Check which files a patch changes

Here's how to check this out yourself.  The Oracle Applications Manager contains a tool that all Apps DBAs should use:

The Patch Wizard has an "Analyze Specific Patches" function that tells you how a specific patch will affect your system.

Patch Wizard Analyse Specific Patches screenshot

The resulting "Patch Impact Analysis" report provides you with a summary of:

  • Applications patched
  • New files introduced
  • Existing files changed
  • Existing files unchanged

Screenshot of Patch Wizard Impact Analysis Report

Power users tip:  identify affected customizations

Patch Wizard Register Flagged Files screenshotIf you've flagged your customized files using the Oracle Applications Manager "Register Flagged Files" function, the Patch Wizard will also identify which of your customizations are affected by a given patch.

This allows you to reassure your developers and end-users that you have very-granular control over the impact of a given patch on critical customized functionality.

A case study: Financials and Procurement 12.1.3 vs. 12.1.1

A major steel manufacturer running EBS 12.1.1 approached us with their concerns about applying the suite-wide EBS 12.1.3 Release Update Pack to their environment.  Like many manufacturers, every hour of EBS downtime meant lost productivity so they wanted to minimize the amount of retesting triggered by 12.1.3.

They had been running 12.1.1 Financials and Procurement in production for quite some time.  They had stabilized their environment with a number of one-off patches on top of 12.1.1.  

We used the Patch Wizard's "Patch Impact Analysis" report to assess the number of files that would be affected by the 12.1.3 Family Packs for Financials and Procurement.  Here's what we found:

  • They already had applied 81% of the 12.1.3 Procurement Family Pack.  The 12.1.3 Procurement Family Pack has ~3,800 files, which means that over 3,100 files were unchanged.  Only 3 of the files that they'd customized needed review.

  • The 12.1.3 Financials Family Pack contains ~12,000 files.  They had already applied 72% of the 12.1.3 Financials Family Pack, leaving over 8,600 files unchanged.  Only one of their customized files needed review.

Do your own 12.1.3 impact analysis

Your mileage will vary.  Run the Patch Wizard comparing the 12.1.3 Family Packs to see how close you are.

I'd be interested in hearing your reports.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email with your results.


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Thursday Aug 01, 2013

New Source Database Added for EBS 12 + 11gR2 Transportable Tablespaces

The Transportable Tablespaces (TTS) process was originally certified for the migration of E-Business Suite R12 databases going from a source database of 11gR1 or 11gR2 to a target of 11gR2.

This requirement has now been expanded to include a source database of 10gR2 ( - this will potentially save time for existing 10gR2 customers as they can remove on a crucial upgrade step prior to performing the platform migration.

Transportable Tablespaces supported options

The migration process requires an updated Controlled patch delivered by the Oracle E-Business Suite Platform Engineering team, i.e. it requires a password obtainable from Oracle Support. We released the patch in this manner to gauge uptake, and help identify and monitor any customer issues due to the nature of this technology. This patch has been updated to now include supporting 10gR2 as a source database.

Does it meet your requirements?

Note that for migration across platforms of the same "endian" format, users are advised to use the Transportable Database (TDB) migration process instead for large databases. The "endian-ness" target platforms can be verified by querying the view V$DB_TRANSPORTABLE_PLATFORM using SQL*Plus (connected as sysdba) on the source platform:

SQL>select platform_name from v$db_transportable_platform;

If the intended target platform does not appear in the output, it means that it is of a different endian format from the source. Consequently. database migration will need to be performed via Transportable Tablespaces (for large databases) or export/import.

The use of Transportable Tablespaces can greatly speed up the migration of the data portion of the database. However, it does not affect metadata, which must still be migrated using export/import. We recommend that users initially perform a test migration on their database, using export/import with the 'metrics=y' parameter. This will help identify the relative amounts of data and metadata, and provide a basis for assessing likely gains in timing. In general, the larger the amount of data (compared to metadata), the greater the reduction in downtime that can be expected from using TTS as a migration process.

For smaller databases or for those that have relatively small data compared to metadata, TTS will not be as beneficial for cross endian migration and the use of export/import (datapump) for the whole database is recommended.

Where can I find more information?

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