Choosing Between Release 12 or 11i

One of the most frequently asked questions at OpenWorld was, "Should I upgrade to 11.5.10 or Release 12?"  Release 12 wasn't available at that time, and we couldn't even discuss possible release dates, so the answer was further complicated by the uncertainty of when an upgrade could actually be started.  Now that Release 12 is available, the answer is a bit simpler. 

Release 12 website screenshot:

Not About the Technology Stack

First, I should emphasize that even though you're reading a website dedicated to technology stack topics, the answer to this question is not about the relative merits about the technology stack for the respective E-Business Suite releases.  At the heart of the choice between Release 11i and 12 is a hierarchy of business decisions, decisions that require broad and deep input from the stakeholders in your end-user community.

Assessing the Business Benefits

Back in the days when I was a management consultant, a system selection project could run for months (if not years).  As with all business decisions in large organizations, your costs and benefits will likely be weighted by qualitative and political considerations, too.  With that in mind, I should emphasize that a comprehensive system selection framework is far beyond the scope of this article. At minimum, if you're deliberating between a Release 11i (11.5.10) or 12 upgrade, I would recommend checking that your existing system selection framework includes variants of the following questions:
  1. What's the prioritized list of applications that your business users use today?  What are the differences in Release 11i and Release 12 functionality for those applications?

  2. What business advantages, process improvements, and new organizational capabilities will be possible with the new Release 12 features?

  3. What are the new architectural or deployment capabilities in Release 12?  How will these new capabilities improve system performance, scalability, availability, manageability, and security?

  4. What investments have you made in adapting your organization to Release 11i, and vice versa?  This might include:
    • Employee, partner, vendor, and supplier training
    • Customizations and personalizations, including custom Forms, OA Framework screens, workflows, concurrent programs, and reports
    • Integrations with third-party systems

  5. Which of your customizations, extensions, and personalizations can be replaced with new Release 12 features?  What savings will these represent?  How much of those investments will carry over to Release 12? 

  6. How will Release 12 help reduce your operational costs?  What are the incremental costs of Release 12 infrastructure, relative to your current Release 11i infrastructure costs?  These costs might include server, storage, and networking hardware and licencing
Getting Help from Oracle

This might seem like a daunting task, but you're not on your own.  Remember that Oracle has field specialists who can help you work through these questions.  If you haven't already done so, you shouldn't hesitate to contact your Oracle account manager for help.  He or she can bring in specialists to describe the new features for your key applications, and even engage Development in those discussions, if  necessary.



What about the question......

Upgrade to or
re-implement at R12?

Many old installations might find this useful.

Posted by maz on February 16, 2007 at 01:20 AM PST #

Maz,The general system selection questions apply to both fresh installs of 11i (11.5.10) as well as upgrades from earlier releases.Regards,Steven 

Posted by Steven Chan on February 16, 2007 at 01:43 AM PST #

i would like to infrom you that we have a plan to upgrade to R12, we arlerady started the upgrade process on a clone instance to majre the time needed to it the production (out prod system is 24/7 system) so i was wondering if you can post some hints in how can we reduce the down time.

with regards
fadi hasweh

Posted by Fadi Hasweh on February 16, 2007 at 09:31 PM PST #

Fadi,Glad to hear that you're working with this release.  The best documentation to support your upgrade is the R12 Upgrade Guide, available here: document details recommendations around best practices for upgrading to Release 12.Good luck with your upgrade.Regards,Steven 

Posted by Steven Chan on February 19, 2007 at 02:51 AM PST #

Do you have any documentation for Re-Implement R12 by coversion of data from another 11i instance?


Posted by Bibs on January 13, 2009 at 11:38 AM PST #

Hi, Bibs,

I'd recommend checking out the upgrade-related resources listed in this article:

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


Posted by Steven Chan on January 14, 2009 at 05:29 AM PST #


I am currently involve in implementing Oracle e-business suite financials. As you all know, the first step is to deifne de general ledger. I have a general ledger template baes on 11i. I want to updat emy template to r12. Does anyone know if a document exist that can help me?



Posted by Din on June 30, 2009 at 10:30 PM PDT #

Hello, Dirk,

I'm a techstack architect and don't have much hands-on experience with functional EBS product setups like Financials. You might wish to cross-post your question to the Financials discussion forum on the Oracle Technology Network, where other Financials specialists hang out:


Posted by Steven Chan on July 01, 2009 at 06:44 AM PDT #

Hey, we have a plan to migrate Oracle db from 10g to 11gR2 and fresh Installation of Oracle Apps 12.1.1, wondering if you can post some hints in how can we reduce the down time and apply best practises, appreciate if any documents are shared or pointer provided

Posted by Ram on March 18, 2010 at 11:51 AM PDT #

Hi, Ram,

If you're upgrading an existing E-Business Suite environment, see:

Top 7 Ways of Reducing Patching Downtimes for Apps

If you're doing a fresh install of Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1, just follow the published documentation:

E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 Now Available

If you're upgrading an Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i environment to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1, see:

E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 Consolidated Upgrade Patch 1 Now Available


Posted by Steven Chan on March 19, 2010 at 03:10 AM PDT #

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