Case Study: Oracle's Own Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 Upgrade

[Oct. 27, 2008 Update:  The latest version of this popular presentation from OpenWorld 2008 is now available for download.  For links to the latest version, see this article.]

I've heard anecdotal reports suggesting that some customers hold off on upgrading to a given E-Business Suite release until we've done so ourselves here at Oracle. Oracle went live on R12.0.3 in January 2008, and a reader reminded me that I haven't highlighted this adequately. Here's a critical presentation from Eugene Weinstein and Sharon Leong at OAUG Collaborate 2008 (Denver) that I've been remiss in profiling:

Eugene and Sharon cover a lot of ground in this technically-oriented presentation, including:

  • A primer on the R12 file system
  • Supported upgrade paths from earlier Apps releases (11.5.x, 11.0)
  • A detailed step-by-step flowchart of the upgrade process
  • Applications DBA (AD) improvements relating to the upgrade process
  • Performance improvements relating to the upgrade
  • Best practices for:
  • Reducing downtime
  • Performing pre-upgrade, upgrade, and post-upgrade steps


The Inside Track

Perhaps most significantly, Eugene and Sharon review Oracle's own Global Single Instance (GSI) experiences in upgrading to Release 12. This discussion includes:

  • An overview of Oracle's production R12 architecture
  • A summary of Oracle's preupgrade statistics (12 Terabytes, 25.8 billion rows of data, and more)
  • EBS applications in use at Oracle
  • Project planning
  • Pre-upgrade planning, the actual upgrade itself, datafile management, and post-upgrade planning
  • Keys to success in Oracle's own upgrade

Eugene and Sharon make a point of emphasizing that their experiences are specific to Oracle's internal implementation and may not apply to all upgrades. As you'd expect, our internal Applications IT organization has direct access to everyone in Oracle Development. Their notes represent an insider's glimpse into how an organization with access to the most-skilled EBS talent on the planet performed this upgrade. This is mandatory reading for all Apps architects and DBAs interested in Release 12.

If you have questions about Oracle's own upgrade, feel free to post them here.

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thank you steven,
its a very informative post.


Posted by fadi hasweh on July 15, 2008 at 05:41 PM PDT #

thanks for the initiative

really.. its a timely information to convince clients who are still insisting to their upgrade to and restricting themselves to not to go for R12, which is the real world's most effective ERP.
expecting these kind of articles/initiatives in the coming days to so that most clients can understand about the competative features of R12 rather than looking about the complexity.
efforts are heartly appriciated.

kumar sana

Posted by kumar sana on July 16, 2008 at 12:31 PM PDT #


Glad to hear that you found this useful. We're eager to keep track of everyone's progress with R12, so feel free to drop me a line with details if you've been involved with an upgrade.


Posted by Steven Chan on July 17, 2008 at 01:25 AM PDT #

Useful summary. We are on our 3rd iteration of testing the upgrade. We hit this time the magical point of *0* invalid objects for the first time ever.

We went from 11.5.10 CU2 (on db) to R12. The database tier side has been the most problematic in this respect. Although you can use the existing db tier files, you need the jre from the adutils and clone directories (as its 1.5). We found just copying them over was sufficient.

What we are struggling with now is Configuration Manager (OCM). Its fine on the apps tier but the old 11i db tier does not come with it. Now we are at the dilema, do we apply the 11i OCM patch or copy over the R12 db tier ccr_stage and use that? The problem being that the R12 OCM documentation says you can only use the Rapid Install provided version and not the patch version but the 11i documentation says download the patch and apply...

Posted by Richard Halford on July 22, 2008 at 01:01 AM PDT #


Thanks for the additional background about your R12 upgrade. Congratulations on hitting the "Zero Milestone"!

Earlier versions of OCM didn't support some specific E-Business Suite database configurations, hence the need to apply a "special" OCM version to your environments.

This has changed with the most recent OCM release. The OCM team has built in new support for E-Business Suite environments natively into the tool. I am trying to verify the specific OCM version number for this. I'll post an update either here in this comment thread or as a separate article as soon as I have more details on this.


Posted by Steven Chan on July 22, 2008 at 03:41 AM PDT #


I've confirmed that you can apply the "native" version of OCM 10.2.7 or higher to your database ORACLE_HOME. As of that OCM release, no special version is required for the E-Business Suite's database ORACLE_HOME.

I'm still trying to hunt down the actual documentation where this is stated. In the interim, if you have any problems with this installation, please feel free to log a formal Service Request and send me the details. I'll have one of our developers assist Support, as needed.


Posted by Steven Chan on July 23, 2008 at 04:26 AM PDT #

Thanks for the update. As a test I got our dba to copy the rapid install ccr_stage directory over then run autoconfig. As if by magic it just worked, which we were pleased by and now have a few instances registered.

I'll be very interested when the official documenation it out to support using the "vanilla" OCM version (currently the official docmentation states don't download) as this will be the way we will go in future I expect.

Posted by Richard Halford on July 24, 2008 at 06:08 PM PDT #

Hi, Richard,

Glad to hear that worked for you; I'll pass on the good news to my developers. We're about to publish a new Note with more details about using OCM in E-Business Suite environments. Stay tuned -- I'll be putting the word out on this soon.


Posted by Steven Chan on July 25, 2008 at 07:26 AM PDT #


In the presentation there's an sheet giving "Data Statistics before R12 Upgrade" is there a way to find the figures after the upgrade ?.

Also I'm wondering if I could find somewhere the statistics about the time of different steps of the upgrade.



Posted by maurice weiss on August 11, 2008 at 06:17 PM PDT #

Can anybody list me the tables..or in general all the objects that get affected when i do a upgrade from Oracle 11.5.9 to R12.

To put it simple please tell me what are the objects that is affected/impacted during a 11.5.9 to R12 upgrade?

Posted by Rakesh kumar on August 12, 2008 at 04:42 AM PDT #

Hi, Maurice,

I've passed your question on to Eugene Weinstein. I'll provide an update here once I hear back from him.


Posted by Steven Chan on August 12, 2008 at 05:58 AM PDT #

Hi, Steve,

Did Oracle perform any feasibility study that may be public record for their upgrade from 11i to 12R?

Kem Haskett

Posted by Kem Haskett on September 14, 2008 at 03:59 AM PDT #

Hi, Kem,

I'm not aware of any feasibility study having been performed prior to the upgrade. As far as I'm aware, they just followed the generic R12 upgrade guide and did a trial upgrade to identify any potential issues.


Posted by Steven Chan on September 16, 2008 at 03:07 AM PDT #

Hi Steven,

I'm interested in this case study, as we will upgrade from 11i to 12 in 2009Q1, could you please send me the complete presentation.
Many thanks.

Best regards,
Mohamed Ali.

Posted by Mohamed Ali on September 21, 2008 at 08:07 PM PDT #

"Hi, Maurice,

I've passed your question on to Eugene Weinstein. I'll provide an update here once I hear back from him.


That was your reply on the 12th of August, I haven't seen anything so far... did I miss something ?



Posted by maurice weiss on September 22, 2008 at 05:38 PM PDT #

Hi, Maurice,

No, you haven't missed anything. I'm afraid that our internal Apps IT team didn't have any statistics collected in any document that could be shared externally.


Posted by Steven Chan on September 30, 2008 at 07:32 AM PDT #

In looking at the diagram of Oracle's SGI, It's not clear if we are using ASM in the database tier. Could you verify if this is the case?

Posted by Jeff Ritschel on October 10, 2008 at 12:23 AM PDT #

Hi, Jeff,

We are not using ASM in our internal E-Business deployment yet. Our Global IT team has been looking into this, but I think their needs were already been met by another clustering technology that they'd already licenced previously.


Posted by Steven Chan on October 10, 2008 at 04:55 AM PDT #

Hi, I'm working with a Large UK Engineering company and they have had issues recently with the amount of downtime required to apply Family Packs (Oracle Projects in particular). We are now talking to them about moving to R12 and I know they will ask about downtime, do you know how long it took us to do our upgrade to R12 ?

Posted by Andrew Travell on October 24, 2008 at 02:24 AM PDT #

Hi, Mohamed,

This presentation was updated for OpenWorld 2008. It has just been posted externally. You can find links to the latest download in this new article:

Case Study Redux: Oracle's Own Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 Upgrade (OpenWorld 2008 Recap) -


Posted by Steven Chan on October 27, 2008 at 03:43 AM PDT #

Hi, Maurice,

This latest update to the Applications IT's OpenWorld presentation about EBS 12 has post-upgrade database size statistics and a host of other interesting metrics:

Case Study Redux: Oracle's Own Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 Upgrade (OpenWorld 2008 Recap) -


Posted by Steven Chan on October 27, 2008 at 04:13 AM PDT #

Hi, Andrew,

I don't think our Applications IT group has published any metrics about how long the actual upgrade took. You can review Nigel Cooper's latest presentation for other useful statistics, however:

You may be able to coordinate a meeting with Nigel Cooper, who's also based in the UK, to discuss this further with your customer.


Posted by Steven Chan on October 27, 2008 at 06:22 AM PDT #

What is the difference between Oracle 11i and Oracle 12r (The new release coming up) in the financial area especially the General Ledger (GL) aspect.

Posted by ikp on June 23, 2010 at 03:42 AM PDT #

Hello, IKP,

This is a good starting point for your research:

I'd recommend that you ask your Oracle account manager for a detailed breakdown of the new Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 features that are of interest to you.


Posted by Steven Chan on June 23, 2010 at 06:31 AM PDT #

Hi Stephen,

Would you please let me know of any information relating to the benefits and procedures for R12 upgrade. We would like to consider recommendations from Oracle on the upgrade of Order Management from R11i to R12.



Posted by SM on December 10, 2010 at 06:55 AM PST #

Hi, SM,

Glad to hear that you're considering upgrading to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12. I'd recommend starting here:

Five Key Resources for Upgrading to E-Business Suite Release 12

Good luck with your analysis.


Posted by Steven Chan on December 10, 2010 at 07:53 AM PST #

we are currently planning to upgrade our EBS from Rel 11 to Rel 12. Can we perform fresh installation of EBS and yet maintain our historical data?



Posted by william sawe on July 25, 2011 at 06:13 PM PDT #

Hi, William,

No, speaking generally. A fresh install means starting with an empty EBS database. There are ways of exporting/importing selected historical data from an existing EBS database into a new database, but that's a specialized approach that requires Consulting involvement.

If you'd like to explore that option, drop me an email and I can connect you with our R12 Center of Excellence team -- they specialize in R12 upgrades.


Posted by Steven Chan on July 27, 2011 at 03:34 AM PDT #

Hi Steven,

Do you think we can upgrade to R12 (12.1.3) from 11i and then apply the NLS patches 12.1.1 and 12.1.3

We are trying to separate these two steps.

Or is it advisable to Upgrade the base language US to 12.1.3 from and request translation patches from Oracle and apply them.

Please comment on the approaches.


Posted by Chenthil Murugan on April 13, 2012 at 03:14 PM PDT #

Hi Chenthil,

I suggest that you first go through
Oracle® E-Business Suite Upgrade Guide Release 11i to 12.1.3

In particular:

1)"NLS Upgrade Considerations" section page 1-15
2) "Perform the Upgrade" Section, chapter 3 pages 3-1, 3-2.
In the summary, it's clearly documented that

Run the American English upgrade patch driver (required) , page 3-5
Run the NLS upgrade patch driver (conditional) , page 3-5
Apply latest product patches (required) , page 3-5
Synchronize NLS and American English product patches
The above (conditional) tasks are actually (required) in your case since you have installed languages.


Posted by Maher Alnubani on May 01, 2012 at 07:12 PM PDT #

Exactly i want to know about R12, definition.

Posted by Alok Mishra on May 28, 2012 at 01:33 AM PDT #

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