Thursday Sep 01, 2011

Do You Need to Bounce E-Business Suite Application Servers Regularly?

A customer recently reported an issue where they needed to bounce their E-Business Suite application tier (mid-tier) servers once a week to resolve stability issues.  This shouldn't be necessary.  We recommend against bouncing EBS application servers regularly.  We've done a lot of work with the E-Business Suite to ensure that regular bounces are not required with the latest releases.

Bouncing your system can reduce performance

It seems counter-intuitive, but bouncing your EBS application tier servers can actually reduce your system's performance rather than improve it.  Oracle E-Business Suite is explicitly designed to minimize round trips between the application tier and the database.  We make extensive use of caches:

  • JDBC cache buffers
  • Java object cache
  • MSD cache for OA Framework pages
  • ... and others
Every time you bounce your mid-tier, you clear these caches.  The longer your mid-tier remains up and running, the better-populated these caches will be, and the better your overall system performance.

Treat the symptoms but miss the real problem

If you need to bounce your EBS application tier server regularly, there's a deeper problem with your environment. 

Here are some issues that can be deceptively-masked by bouncing your EBS mid-tier:

  1. Improperly-tuned heap space (e.g. insufficient heap space, insufficient space for perm generation)
  2. Memory leaks (usually the result of poorly-designed customizations)
  3. Memory hemorrhage (usually the result of infinite loops or poorly-designed custom queries)
  4. Heap space fragmentation (usually the result of running older Java releases)
  5. JDBC connection leaks (resolved in 11.5.10.2 and all R12 releases)

If you're experiencing problems that seem to go away when you bounce your mid-tier, that's a red flag.  You should log a formal Service Request with Oracle Support so that we can help you identify the root cause.

References

Related Articles


Wednesday Aug 31, 2011

Using Single Client Access Name (SCAN) Listeners with Oracle E-Business Suite

[July 30, 2012 update: Corrected Note reference to 823586.1]

[Sept. 2, 2011 update:  Our Maximum Availability Architecture architects have pointed out two additional considerations that are documented in our existing documentation:  1)  Although SCAN listener is supported with EBS 12, if scan_name resolves in DNS to IP1 and IP2, the client-side 10.1.2 network code does not use round robin on the underlyng IPs if the first IP fails.  An Autoconfig solution for this is being tracked through bug 10427234. The only existing workaround is to create custom TNS aliases configured with multiple SCAN IP addresses (Note 823587.1); 2) EBS does support use SCAN functionality, it cannot make complete use of the SCAN since the EBS clients are pre-11.2.  For more details, see this Exadata whitepaper.]

Oracle database 11g logoSingle Client Access Name (SCAN) is a new feature of Oracle Real Applications Clusters (RAC) 11g Release that provides a single name for the clients to access Oracle Database running in a cluster.  The benefit of the SCAN Listener is that the client's connection data does not need to changed if you add or delete a node from a cluster.

The Single Client Access Name is configured during the installation of Oracle Grid Infrastructure. Once configured, application tier connection descriptors just specify the SCAN name rather than all the [virtual] hosts in the cluster.

Without the Single Client Access Name, the descriptor for a two-node cluster would be

VISION =
(DESCRIPTION=
(ADDRESS_LIST=
(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=tcp)(HOST=C1-vip)(PORT=1521))
(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=tcp)(HOST=C2-vip)(PORT=1521)))
(CONNECT_DATA=(SERVICE_NAME=VISION)))  

With the Single Client Access Name, just the SCAN name needs to be specified:

VISION = (DESCRIPTION=(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=tcp)(HOST=C-SCAN)(PORT=1521))(CONNECT_DATA=(SERVICE_NAME=VISION)))

The benefit of the Single Client Access Name becomes apparent as the number of nodes in the cluster increases.

Which E-Business Suite releases can be used with SCAN Listeners?

You can configure E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12 environments to take advantage of Single Client Access Name functionality.  The use of SCAN Listener is optional.

EBS 11i

AutoConfig in E-Business Suite 11i does not  support automated handling of SCAN Listeners.  If you would like to use SCAN Listeners with EBS 11i environments, a manual setup process is described in:

EBS 12

AutoConfig in Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 supports automated handling of SCAN Listeners.  If you would like to use SCAN Listeners with EBS 12 environments, see:

References

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    Tuesday Aug 30, 2011

    WebCast Replay Available: Tuning All Layers of EBS (Part 1)

    I am pleased to release the replay and presentation for the latest ATG Live Webcast:

    Lester Gutierrez, Senior Architect, and Deepak Bhatnagar, Senior Manager, from the E-Business Suite Application Performance team, lead Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite (Part 1 of 3). This webcast provides an overview of how Oracle E-Business Suite system administrators, DBAs, developers, and implementers can improve E-Business Suite performance by following a performance tuning framework. Part 1 focuses on the performance triage approach, tuning applications modules, upgrade performance best practices, and tuning the database tier. This ATG Live Webcast is an expansion of the performance sessions at conferences that are perennial favourites with hardcore Apps DBAs. (August 2011)

    Stay tuned for Part 2 after OpenWorld

    There will not be an ATG Live Webcast on the last Thursday in September. The normally scheduled event would be just days prior to Oracle Open World 2011. ATG Live Webcasts will resume on October 27th, 2011 with Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite (Part 2 of 3), with Lester Gutierrez, Senior Architect, and Deepak Bhatnagar, Senior Manager, continuing on in the series of performance tuning presentations. Look for the announcement of the October 2011 webcast in late September.

    Finding other recorded ATG webcasts

    The catalog of ATG Live Webcast replays, presentations, and all ATG training materials is available in this blog's Webcasts and Training section.


    Wednesday Aug 24, 2011

    Reminder: ATG Live Webcast Aug 24: Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite (Part 1)

    Reminder: Our next ATG Live Webcast is happening tomorrow, Thursday, Aug. 24:

    •  Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite (Part 1)

    This one-hour webcast provides an overview of how Oracle E-Business Suite system administrators, DBAs, developers, and implementers can improve E-Business Suite performance by following a performance tuning framework. 

    Screenshot of EBS performance-related database metrics

    We have an Applications Performance Group whose raison-d'etre is to ensure that the E-Business Suite runs at peak performance in all circumstances.  This team has helped tune the world's largest companies and their E-Business Suite environments handle staggering amounts of transactional volume in enormous databases.  This is the same group that publishes all of the official Oracle Apps benchmarks, white papers, and performance metrics.

    This session at conferences is a perennial favourite with hardcore Apps DBAs looking to squeeze out the last ounce of performance out of their existing hardware.  This session will cover:

    PART 1:  Aug. 25, 2011 Webcast

    • The EBS Release 12 technology stack
    • Database Tier Tuning
      • Recommended init.ora settings
      • Tips for optimizing I/O
      • Using Automatic Workload Repository (AWR) data
      • Debugging waits from latch contention, I/O, and enqueue or buffer busy conditions
      • Memory management recommendations
      • Using the DB Console
      • Techniques for gathering and analyzing statistics
      • Benefits for converting to Oracle Applications Tablespace Model (OATM) -- with examples of database savings!
    • Tuning Applications modules
      • Recommended performance patches and Release Update Packs (RUP)
      • Optimizing Workflow
      • Optimizing Order Management
      • Tuning Payroll
      • Speeding up Financials
      • Logging levels
      • Purging and archiving recommendations
      • System administration using Oracle Applications Manager and the Applications Management Pack Grid Control  Plug-in for Oracle Enterprise Manager
    • Upgrade Performance tips
      • Tips for preparing and executing your R12 upgrade

    Part 1: Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite

    Date: Thursday, August 25, 2011
    Time: 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Pacific Standard Time (4.00 PM - 5.00 PM GMT)
    Presenters:  Lester Gutierrez, Senior Performance Architect, ATG Development
                          Deepak Bhatnagar, Senior Performance Architect, ATG Development

    Webcast Registration Link (Please pre-register):

    The dial-in numbers are:
    Domestic Participant Dial-In Number:     877-697-8128
    International Participant Dial-In Number:     706-634-9568
    Additional International Dial-In Numbers Link:     http://www.intercall.com/national/oracleuniversity/gdnam.html
    Dial-In Passcode:     95669


    If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email Bill Sawyer (Senior Manager, Applications Technology Curriculum) at BilldotSawyer-AT-Oracle-DOT-com.

    Related Articles


    Thursday Aug 18, 2011

    ATG Live Webcast: Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite

    [Aug 22, 2011 Update:  Our Performance Group has decided to take advantage of the greater freedom of the webcast format and take the time to dive deeper into these subjects.  Instead of a single webcast, we're going to break this up into three parts.  Part I will be held on Aug. 25.]

    I am pleased to announce our next ATG Live Webcast, scheduled for Thursday, 25-Aug-2011. The event is titled:

    • Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite

    This one-hour webcast provides an overview of how Oracle E-Business Suite system administrators, DBAs, developers, and implementers can improve E-Business Suite performance by following a performance tuning framework. 

    Screenshot of EBS performance-related database metrics

    We have an Applications Performance Group whose raison-d'etre is to ensure that the E-Business Suite runs at peak performance in all circumstances.  This team has helped tune the world's largest companies and their E-Business Suite environments handle staggering amounts of transactional volume in enormous databases.  This is the same group that publishes all of the official Oracle Apps benchmarks, white papers, and performance metrics.

    This session at conferences is a perennial favourite with hardcore Apps DBAs looking to squeeze out the last ounce of performance out of their existing hardware.  This session will cover:

    PART 1:  Aug. 25, 2011 Webcast
    • The EBS Release 12 technology stack
    • Database Tier Tuning
      • Recommended init.ora settings
      • Tips for optimizing I/O
      • Using Automatic Workload Repository (AWR) data
      • Debugging waits from latch contention, I/O, and enqueue or buffer busy conditions
      • Memory management recommendations
      • Using the DB Console
      • Techniques for gathering and analyzing statistics
      • Benefits for converting to Oracle Applications Tablespace Model (OATM) -- with examples of database savings!
    • Tuning Applications modules
      • Recommended performance patches and Release Update Packs (RUP)
      • Optimizing Workflow
      • Optimizing Order Management
      • Tuning Payroll
      • Speeding up Financials
      • Logging levels
      • Purging and archiving recommendations
      • System administration using Oracle Applications Manager and the Applications Management Pack Grid Control  Plug-in for Oracle Enterprise Manager
    • Upgrade Performance tips
      • Tips for preparing and executing your R12 upgrade

    Part 1: Tuning All Layers of E-Business Suite

    Date: Thursday, August 25, 2011
    Time: 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Pacific Standard Time (4.00 PM - 5.00 PM GMT)
    Presenters:  Lester Gutierrez, Senior Performance Architect, ATG Development
                          Deepak Bhatnagar, Senior Performance Architect, ATG Development

    Webcast Registration Link (Please pre-register):

    The dial-in numbers are:
    Domestic Participant Dial-In Number:     877-697-8128
    International Participant Dial-In Number:     706-634-9568
    Additional International Dial-In Numbers Link:     http://www.intercall.com/national/oracleuniversity/gdnam.html
    Dial-In Passcode:     95669


    If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email me: Bill Sawyer (Senior Manager, Applications Technology Curriculum) at BilldotSawyer-AT-Oracle-DOT-com.

    Related Articles


    Wednesday Aug 17, 2011

    Sun JRE 1.6.0_27 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

    Java logoSome questions following our last JRE certification indicated that there's still lingering confusion about which JRE releases are safe to use with E-Business Suite environments.  To recap: JRE releases 1.6.0_18 through 1.6.0_22 had issues with mismanaging session cookies that affected some users in some circumstances.

    The fix for those issues was first included in JRE 1.6.0_23. These fixes will carry forward and continue to be fixed in all future JRE releases.  In other words, if you wish to avoid the mismanaged session cookie issue, you should apply any release after JRE 1.6.0_22:  for example, JRE 1.6.0_23, 1.6.0_24, 1.6.0_25, and 1.6.0_26.

    As of today, you can also apply Sun Java Runtime Environment 1.6.0_27 (a.k.a. JRE 6u27-b07).  JRE 1.6.0_27 is certified with E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.

    All JRE releases are certified with EBS upon release

    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 higher.  We test all new JRE releases in parallel with the JRE development process, so all JRE 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 releases to your EBS users' desktops.  If you wish, your desktop administrators can enable the Java "Automatic updates" option on your end-users' desktops.

    What's new in Java 1.6.0_27?

    See the 1.6.0_27 Update Release Notes for details about what has changed in this release.  This release is available for download from the usual Sun channels and through the 'Java Automatic Update' mechanism.

    JRE 1.6.0_27 provides the following fixes and functionality change that may affect Oracle E-Business Suite customers:

    • The browser window opening behind the Forms window issue is now fixed for Windows Vista and Windows 7 users running IE.
    • Selecting the "Close Window" Link through Internet Explorer will no longer display a modal window with the prompt, "The webpage you are viewing is trying to close the tab, Do you want to close this tab?".
    • Due to JRE6u27 now adhering more strictly to the IE browser settings,  "File Export" and certain "Form Attachments" will now fail through IE without the correct browser setting for IE6, IE7 & IE8 users.

    This JRE release has been certified with both Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.  We recommend this release for all E-Business Suite users.

    References

    Related Articles

    Monday Aug 08, 2011

    Internet Explorer 9 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

    [Aug. 9, 2013 update: IE 10 is now certified with EBS]

    MS IE logo

    Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 is now certified as a desktop client browser for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.  The certified desktop operating systems are:

    • Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1) or Service Pack 2 (SP2)
    • 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 or higher

    EBS 12.0 Prerequisites

    • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or higher.
    • Oracle Forms Version 10.1.2.3 or higher.
    • Java plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or 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 (6.0.8.28.x) (see Note 125767.1)
    • Java plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or higher.
    • MLR patch 8888184 or higher (AIX Users should apply MLR patch 10043867 which replaces 8888184) 

    References

    Related Articles

    Wednesday Aug 03, 2011

    Why Does EBS Integration with Oracle Access Manager Require Oracle Internet Directory?

    The E-Business Suite has its own security and user-management capabilities.  You can use the E-Business Suite's native features to authenticate users, authorize users (i.e. assign responsibilities to them), and manage your EBS user repository.  The majority of E-Business Suite system administrators simply use these built-in capabilities for enabling access to the E-Business Suite.

    When EBS built-in capabilities aren't enough

    Some organisations have third-party user authentication systems in place.  These include CA Netegrity SiteMinder, Windows Kerberos, and others.  These organisations frequently use third-party LDAP directory solutions such as Microsoft Active Directory, OpenLDAP, and others. 

    We don't certify the E-Business Suite with those third-party products directly, and we don't have any plans to do so.  This article is intended to explain why Oracle Internet Directory (OID) is required when integrating with Oracle Access Manager (OAM), but you can safely infer that the same requirements prevent the use of third-party authentication products directly with the E-Business Suite.

    It's possible to integrate the E-Business Suite with those third-party solutions via Oracle Access Manager and Oracle Internet Directory.  See these articles:

    Before going on, I'd recommend reading one of those two third-party integration articles.  If you don't have those concepts under your belt, the rest of this article isn't going to make much sense.

    Architecture diagram showing Oracle Access Manager Oracle Internet Directory E-Business Suite AccessGate WebGate

    Why does EBS require OID with OAM?

    Oracle Access Manager itself doesn't require Oracle Internet Directory.  However, Oracle Internet Directory is a mandatory requirement when Oracle Access Manager is integrated with the E-Business Suite.

    Why?  The short answer is that the E-Business Suite has hardcoded dependencies on Oracle Internet Directory for this configuration. These dependencies mean that you cannot replace Oracle Internet Directory with any third-party LDAP directory for this particular configuration. 

    There are two cases of hardcoded dependencies on Oracle Internet Directory:

    1. Reliance on Oracle GUIDs

    From the articles linked above, you know that user authentication is handled by Oracle Access Manager, and user authorization is handled by the E-Business Suite itself.  This means that there are two different user namespaces. 

    These namespaces must be linked and coordinated somehow, to ensure that a particular user logging in via Oracle Access Manager is the same user represented within the E-Business Suite's own internal FNDUSER repository.

    We associate externally-managed Oracle Access Manager users with internally-managed E-Business Suite users via a Global Unique Identifier (GUID).  These Global Unique Identifiers are generated exclusively by Oracle Internet Directory. 

    The E-Business Suite has hardcoded functions to handle the mapping of these Global Unique Identifiers between Oracle Access Manager and the E-Business Suite.  These mapping functions are specific to Oracle Internet Directory; it isn't possible to replace Oracle Internet Directory with a generic third-party LDAP directory and still preserve this functionality.

    2. Synchronous user account creation

    The E-Business Suite is predominantly used internally within an organisation.  Certain E-Business Suite application modules can be made visible to users outside of an organisation.  These include iStore, iRecruitment, iSupplier, and other application modules where the users aren't necessarily restricted to an organisation's own employees.

    Users of some of those application modules expect to be able to register for a new account and use it immediately.  This makes sense.  If you're posting job openings via iRecruitment, potential applicants shouldn't need to hold off on submitting their resumes while your E-Business Suite sysadmin creates an account manually, assigns EBS responsibilities, and emails them the account login details. They'll be long gone before that happens.

    This means that EBS application modules that support self-registration must create user accounts synchronously.  A new account must be created within the E-Business Suite and the externalized directory at the same time, on demand.

    The E-Business Suite has hardcoded dependencies upon Oracle Internet Directory function calls that handle these synchronous account creation tasks.  These function calls are specific to Oracle Internet Directory; it isn't possible to replace Oracle Internet Directory with a generic third-party LDAP directory and still preserve this functionality.

    Sun is setting for Oracle Single Sign-On

    The older articles linked above refer to Oracle Single Sign-On.  All conceptual references to Oracle Single Sign-On apply equally to Oracle Access Manager.  Oracle Access Manager offers the same capabilities as Oracle Single Sign-On when integrated with the E-Business Suite.

    You may have noticed that I have specifically been referring to Oracle Access Manager rather than Oracle Single Sign-On in this article.  There's a very good reason for this.

    The Fusion Middleware Lifetime Support Policy shows that Premier Support for Oracle Single Sign-On 10gR2 ends on December 2011.  If you're using Portal 11gR1, Forms & Reports 11gR1, or Discoverer 11gR1, Premier Support for Oracle Single Sign-On 10gR2 is extended to December 2012. 

    Extended Support is not available for Oracle Single Sign-On 10gR2.  This is true regardless of whether you're using those other Fusion Middleware 11gR1 products or not.  These support policy timelines for Oracle Single Sign-On are not affected by the E-Business Suite's own support timelines.  There are no special exceptions from these Fusion Middleware support timelines for E-Business Suite customers. 

    Given that the Oracle Single Sign-On is nearing its end-of-life, anyone considering a new external authentication solution for the E-Business Suite should use Oracle Access Manager at this point.  If you're currently using Oracle Single Sign-On, I would recommend evaluating your plans for migrating to Oracle Access Manager as soon as possible.

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    Thursday Jul 28, 2011

    EBS Support Information Center + Patching & Maintenance Advisor Available on My Oracle Support

    The Knowledge Base in My Oracle Support is a sprawling database.  It can be very difficult to find the right needle in that haystack.  My Oracle Support colleagues have recently published two new resources on My Oracle Support that highlight some documents that Apps DBAs might find useful.

    Screenshot of EBS Support Information Center Noe 1322667.1

    1. EBS Support Information Center (Note 1322667.1) contains pointers to:

    • EBS Diagnostics
    • EBS Upgrade related resources
    • EBS Electronic Technical Reference Manual (e-TRM)
    • EBS Release Content Documents (RCD)
    • Oracle Support webcast series
    • Oracle Support newsletters

    2. Patching & Maintenance Advisor: E-Business Suite 11i and R12 (Note 313.1) contains pointers to:

    • EBS 11i and 12 Patching Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
    • Patching best practices
    • Methods for reducing patching downtimes
    • Patch Wizard

    Related Articles


    Wednesday Jul 27, 2011

    Reminder: ATG Live Webcast July 28: Upgrading EBS 11i Customizations to Release 12

    Reminder: Our next ATG Live Webcast is happening tomorrow, Thursday, July 28th:

    This one-hour webcast provides an overview of how Oracle E-Business Suite system administrators, DBAs, developers, and implementers can manage and upgrade existing EBS R11i customizations to R12.x.

    Topics will include:

    • Your Customization Inventory
    • Comparing Customizations - Release 11i to Release 12.x
    • Managing Common Customization Types
    • Managing Deprecated Technologies
    • Anticipating Future Customizations
    Upgrading your Customizations to Oracle E-Business Suite 12.x

    Date: Thursday, July 28, 2011
    Time: 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM Pacific Standard Time (4.00 PM - 5.00 PM GMT)
    Presenter: Sara Woodhull, Principal Product Manager, ATG Development

    Direct link to the webcast:

    https://ouweb.webex.com/ouweb/j.php?ED=164995277&UID=1269704602&RT=MiM0

    The dial-in numbers are:

    https://ouweb.webex.com/ouweb/j.php?ED=164995277&UID=1269704602&RT=MiM0

    The dial-in numbers are:
    Domestic Participant Dial-In Number: 877-697-8128
    International Participant Dial-In Number: 706-634-9568
    Additional International Dial-In Numbers Link: http://www.intercall.com/national/oracleuniversity/gdnam.html
    Dial-In Passcode: 95668

    You may optionally preregister for the webcast here.

    If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email Bill Sawyer (Senior Manager, Applications Technology Curriculum) at BilldotSawyer-AT-Oracle-DOT-com. 

    Related Articles

    Tuesday Jul 26, 2011

    What's the Best Way to Patch an E-Business Suite Environment?

    One of our senior Oracle Support engineers recently asked, "What's the best strategy for applying patches to E-Business Suite environments?"  Applying updates and patches is such a major part of an Apps DBA's responsibilities that I assumed that this was already covered in our existing documentation. In looking through our systems administration guides, I was surprised to find that this isn't discussed anywhere.

    Here's a general best practices patching strategy for all EBS environments.  In order of priority, you should:

    1. Apply the latest EBS Release Update Pack.
      For example: 12.1.3 for Release 12.1, 12.0.6 for Release 12.0, 11.5.10.2 for Release 11i.

    2. Apply the latest EBS Family Packs and all patches on the Recommended Patch List.
      This includes ATG Release Update Packs and AutoConfig updates.

    3. Upgrade all technology stack components to the latest certified levels.
      For example, as of today, the latest certified levels for EBS 12 are Database 11.2.0.2, Forms 10.1.2.3, OC4J 10.1.3.5, Oracle Internet Directory 11.1.1.3.  Check the Certifications database on My Oracle Support or this blog's one page summary of EBS certifications for a snapshot of the latest certified patchsets for technology stack components.

    4. Apply the latest Critical Patch Updates (CPU)
      You should always apply the latest security patches.  Always.  These are released quarterly.

    5. <Optional> Apply the latest Database Patch Set Updates (PSU) and the required EBS prerequisites
      It's safe to apply Database PSUs to your EBS environment.  Some customers like the convenience of PSUs.  Some don't.  It's up to you.

    6. Apply specific one-off and interim patches...
      ... but only if they're really required for your environment.  This applies to both EBS and technology stack component patches.  You're generally better-off waiting for patches to be rolled into the bigger release vehicles listed in #1 to #4, above.  Those consolidated release vehicles are tested more comprehensively with all Apps modules and configurations than one-off or interim patches. 

    Pay attention to the ranking

    The order of priority is important.  Most customers have difficulties in keeping up with the first four sets of updates.  If you do keep current with those first four categories of patches, the amount of incremental work associated with the remaining two categories is minimal and can generally be avoided entirely.

    Why bother patching?

    Because it's cheaper and safer in the long run.  I'm always surprised by customers who pay more attention to maintaining their car than a mission-critical enterprise resource planning system.

    The E-Business Suite is a large, complex system.  The further you fall behind in maintaining your system:

    • The more work it requires to isolate and resolve issues.
    • The greater the likelihood of encountering an avoidable known issue.
    • The greater the risk of upgrading from an untested configuration to a new version.
    • The greater the effort required to upgrade to new versions.
    • The greater the risk that you will not be able to get patches for your existing configuration.

    Use tools to automate your updates

    The savvy DBA takes advantage of as many tools as possible to automate these updates.  If you are still applying patches manually to every EBS environment, you're wasting a lot of time.  Check out the Application Change Management Pack for Oracle E-Business Suite (part of the Application Management Suite).  This Enterprise Manager plug-in automates the process of checking for required patches, staging those patches, then applying those patches to multiple EBS environments. 

    Yes, it requires additional licencing, but I think that most organisations can recoup those costs very, very quickly.  Patching manually is time-consuming, error-prone, and tricky to keep organized when you have multiple development, staging, QA, and preproduction environments.  In my eyes, automation is really the only solution.

    Formal documentation updates are coming

    Future versions of our formal EBS documentation will include this advice.  Our Oracle Support team is also working on a set of Life Cycle Advisor documents for the E-Business Suite.  They tell me that this will cover everything a DBA should know if you've never applied patches to EBS before.  I'll profile those new Advisor guides as soon as they're published.

    Related Articles

    Friday Jul 22, 2011

    Reminder: Database 11.1.0.7 Premier Support ends August 2012

    It's deja vu all over again.  Since I covered the Error Correction Support (ECS) dates for the 11gR2 Database a few days ago, it's also worth reminding you of an important support milestone for the 11gR2 Database codeline.

    Premier Support for Oracle Database 11gR1 (11.1) ends on August 31, 2012.  Extended Support for 11.1 continues to the end of August 2015. These support timelines are covered in the Lifetime Support Policy for Oracle Technology Products.

    The 11.1.0.7 patchset is the terminal patchset for the 11gR1 database codeline.  If you're still on the 11.1.0.6 patchset, you should note that Error Correction Support for that ended on September 18, 2009, as detailed here:

    If you're not already on 11.2.0.2, we recommend that all Apps customers make plans for a database upgrade soon.

    No support exceptions for EBS users

    Remember that all Oracle Database support timelines apply to E-Business Suite environments.  There are no special support exemptions for EBS environments.  For an in-depth discussion about how database support timelines affect EBS customers, see:

    Related Articles

    Thursday Jul 21, 2011

    Workflow Builder and XML Gateway Message Designer now certified on Windows 7

    Windows 7 logoA few desktop components were excluded from our original Windows 7 certification for E-Business Suite clients.  A subset of those restrictions have now been lifted.  The following client-server components are now certified for Windows 7 clients connecting to the E-Business Suite:

    • Workflow Builder (running in "Compatibility Mode")
    • XML Gateway Message Designer (running in "Compatibility Mode")
    • Outlook Sales Client

    References

    Related Articles

    Wednesday Jul 20, 2011

    Critical Patch Update for July 2011 Now Available

    The Critical Patch Update (CPU) for July 2011 was released on July 19, 2011. Oracle strongly recommends applying the patches as soon as possible.

    The Critical Patch Update Advisory is the starting point for relevant information. It includes a list of products affected, pointers to obtain the patches, a summary of the security vulnerabilities, and links to other important documents.

    Supported Products that are not listed in the "Supported Products and Components Affected" Section of the advisory do not require new patches to be applied.

    Also, it is essential to review the Critical Patch Update supporting documentation referenced in the Advisory before applying patches, as this is where you can find important pertinent information.

    The Critical Patch Update Advisory is available at the following location:

    The next four Critical Patch Update release dates are:

    • October 18, 2011
    • January 17, 2012
    • April 17, 2012
    • July 17, 2012

    Tuesday Jul 19, 2011

    Reminder: Database 11.2.0.1 Error Correction Support ends Sept. 2011

    The Server Technologies division supports the previous release for 12 months after the release of the latest patchset.  The 11.2.0.2 Database patchset was released in Sept 2010.  This means that 11gR2 Database patches produced after September 13, 2011 will require the 11.2.0.2 patchset as a prerequisite.  For more details about patching timelines for individual database patchsets, see:
    If you're not already on 11.2.0.2, we recommend that all Apps customers make plans for a database upgrade soon.

    No support exceptions for EBS users

    Remember that all Oracle Database support timelines apply to E-Business Suite environments.  There are no special support exemptions for EBS environments.  For an in-depth discussion about how database support timelines affect EBS customers, see:
    Related Articles

    Saturday Jul 16, 2011

    E-Business Suite Technology Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    Last updated: February 21, 2013

    Given changes to our blogging platform this year, it's gotten much harder to browse and locate previously-published articles on certain topics.  As a workaround, here's a FAQ to act as an index to our most-commonly referenced articles.


    1. EBS Technology Stack Basics

    Q: I'm completely new to Oracle E-Business Suite.  Where do I start?

    A: There's a lot to learn, but don't get intimidated.  This article is a good starting point to understand key terms.  The latest EBS 12.1 documentation is hereThis article has pointers to good resources for beginners, including formal training from Oracle University.

    Three tier architecture for EBS 12.0 and 12.1

    Q: How can I keep current on EBS technology stack news?

    A: We announce over 120 new certifications a year.  Stay current by monitoring or subscribing to this blog.  We publish roadmaps for upcoming certifications few times a year.  The latest is available here.

    Q: Where can I find documentation for EBS technology stack components?

    A:  Documentation for the EBS 12.1 is here; documentation for older releases is here.  Technology stack components that must be updated regularly are cross-referenced in these Note roadmaps:

    Q: What are the latest E-Business Suite releases?

    A: There are two types of EBS releases:  Rapid Installs and Release Update Packs.  Rapid Installs can be used to create a brand-new E-Business Suite environment.  Release Update Packs can only be applied on top of an existing environment.  The releases are:

    Q:  What technology stack versions were included in the latest EBS releases?

    A:  Here's a summary of the bundled technology stack components in the three EBS 12 Rapid Install releases that you can (and should) upgrade yourself as new versions become available.


    2. Support Policies

    Q: I'm having a problem.  How can I get help?

    A: Sadly, this blog isn't the best place to get technical support.  For technical support resources and tips on logging Service Requests with Oracle Support, see this article.

    Q: Is my third-party product supported with Oracle E-Business Suite?

    A: We test specific Oracle products with the Oracle E-Business Suite.  This is called certification. We don't certify the E-Business Suite with third-party products, but you can certainly use them.  We distinguish between certification and support.  For details, see this article.

    Q: What do I need to know about support for EBS 11i?

    A: Premier Support ended on Nov. 30, 2010.  Extended Support began on Dec. 1, 2010.  New EBS 11i patches will be created for a minimum baseline environment.

    Q: What do I need to know about EBS 12 Support dates and patching baselines?

    A:  They're governed by two interlocking policy documents.  If you're running EBS 12, you must ensure that you're on these minimum patching baselines.

    EBS Premier and Extended Support timelines


    Q: How do Server Technologies (Database) support policies affect EBS environments?

    A: Database support dates for Premier, Extended, and Sustaining support apply to E-Business Suite, too.  EBS users do not get any special exemptions from Oracle Database support dates.

    Q: How do Fusion Middleware support policies affect EBS environments?

    A:  Support policies for Fusion Middleware components used by EBS are a bit more complicated.  See this article for details.



    3. Upgrades and Migrations

    Q: I want to upgrade from EBS 11i to 12.  Where do I start?

      Q: I need to migrate my server to a different platform.  Where do I start?

      A: Verify that your target platforms are certified.  Plan your migration carefully.  Evaluate available tools for the job, including the Transportable Database process or Transportable Tablespaces.

      Q: I plan to upgrade EBS and migrate my server platforms.   Which do I do first, and what tools can I use?

      A: In general, migrating your database server to faster hardware will make your EBS upgrades faster.  There are more considerations for different endian platforms.  For more details, see this whitepaper on best practices.



      4. EBS System Maintenance

      Q: My E-Business Suite environment has slowed down.  What can I do?
      A: Start here.  Power users will love the additional tweaks and tips referenced in this article.

      Q: How can I reduce my maintenance downtimes?
      A: There are seven ways to reduce your patching downtimes.  EBS 12 users can also optimize AutoConfig execution and run AutoConfig in parallel.

      Q: What resources are available to help me test my environment?

      A: Testing is vital; your EBS environment is unique.  You can use testing tools like the Oracle Application Testing Suite.  We provide Test Starter Kits for older tools such as WinRunner and QuickTest Professional, too.

      Q: What's the best strategy for maintaining my environment?

      A: Apply EBS and technology stack updates to your environment in this order of priority.



      5. General Certifications

      Q: Is <version X> of <component Y> certified with the E-Business Suite?

      A: Check this one-page summary.  If what you're looking for isn't listed, check the official certification database on My Oracle Support.

      Q: When will the next version of <something> be released or certified with EBS?

      A:  Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates.  And, besides, it's just unwise for us to speculate about dates.  This is why.

      Q: Is my third-party product supported with Oracle E-Business Suite?

      A: We test specific Oracle products with the Oracle E-Business Suite.  This is called certification. We don't certify the E-Business Suite with third-party products, but you can certainly use them


      Thursday Jul 14, 2011

      Using Audit Vault with Oracle E-Business Suite

      Oracle Audit Vault is a database option that automates the collection and consolidation of audit data to support regulatory compliance and reduce security risks.  Audit Vault provides compliance and entitle reports, alert notifications, and centralized audit policy management.  Audit Vault provides compliance reports to address regulatory requirements for database activity monitoring and auditing for:
      • Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) Act
      • Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA)
      • Payment Card Industry (PCI) Data Security Standards (DSS)

      Conceptual diagram showing audit data tracked by Oracle Audit Vault

       From the Oracle Audit Vault FAQ:

      Audit Vault extracts audit records produced by the database's native audit facility so no special certification is required by the application since it is transparent. Any packaged application such as Oracle E-Business Suite, PSFT, Siebel, and SAP work seamlessly with Audit Vault to collect the native audit records.

      E-Business Suite suggests that auditing and monitoring of privileged users, user sessions, database links, and database changes is a key element in monitoring and securing your applications. Please see Metalink Note 189367.1. Audit Vault supports all versions of E-Business Suite that sit on top of Oracle database versions 9.2.x forward.

      In addition, the Oracle database column, client_identifier, can be used to pass the end application user to the native audit record. E-Business Suite updates client_identifier automatically starting with version 12 of the application, PeopleTools starting with 8.50, and SAP kernal version starting with 7.10. The client_identifier value can be used in the Audit Vault reports to view the application user, OS user, and database connection user information for forensic analysis.

      No special setups required for EBS

      In other words, you can use Audit Vault's generic documentation for E-Business Suite databases.  No special EBS-specific documentation or setups are required to enable Audit Vault in EBS instances.

      Related Articles


      Tuesday Jul 05, 2011

      Reminder: Important Upcoming E-Business Suite Release 12 Support Milestones

      This is a reminder that Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0 will transition from Premier Support to Extended Support on February 1, 2012.  After that date, new EBS 12.0 patches will be created and tested against the minimum patching baseline documented here:

      Diagram showing EBS 11i 12.0 and 12.1 premier and extended support timelines

      All EBS 12.0 customers must apply the minimum patches listed in that document to be eligible for Extended Support. Those patches include the  EBS 12.0.6 Release Update Pack, technology stack infrastructure updates, and updates for EBS products if they're shared or fully-installed.

      If you haven't applied any of those updates yet, the simplest solution would be to apply the suite-wide EBS 12.1.3 Release Update Pack.  That way, you bypass the 12.0 minimum patching requirements and immediately comply with the EBS 12.1 minimum requirements simultaneously.

      Don't Forget EBS Release 12.1 Support Milestones

      If you're already on EBS 12.1, you don't need to worry about the 12.0 minimum baselines described above.  However, the same note describes the 12.1 minimum prerequisites:

      • By July 1, 2011:  You must apply the Applications Technology Release Update Pack (RUP) 12.1.2 (R12.ATG_PF.B.Delta.2, Note 845809.1) 
      • By Feb. 1, 2012:  You must apply the Applications Technology Release Update Pack (RUP) 12.1.3 (R12.ATG_PF.B.Delta.3, Note 1066312.1)
      • By Feb. 1, 2013:  You must apply the suite-wide E-Business Suite 12.1.3 Release Update Pack
      If you're still on EBS 12.1.1 and haven't applied any of these updates, the simplest thing would be to apply the suite-wide E-Business Suite 12.1.3 Release Update Pack.

      Related Articles


      Tuesday Jun 21, 2011

      EBS Seed Data Comparison Reports Now Available

      Earlier this year we released a reporting tool that reports on the differences in E-Business Suite database objects between one release and another.  That's a very useful reference, but EBS defaults are delivered as seed data within the database objects themselves. What about the differences in this seed data between one release and another?

      I'm pleased to announce the availability of a new tool that provides comparison reports of E-Business Suite seed data between EBS 11.5.10.2, 12.0.4, 12.0.6, 12.1.1, and 12.1.3.  This new tool complements the information in the data model comparison tool.  You can download the new seed data comparison tool here:

      Screenshot of summary of seed data comparison report top level

      The EBS ATG Seed Data Comparison Report provides report on the changes between different EBS releases based upon the seed data changes delivered by the product data loader files (.ldt extension) based on EBS ATG loader control (.lct extension) files.  You can use this new tool to report on the differences in the following types of seed data:
      • Concurrent Program definitions
      • Descriptive Flexfield entity definitions
      • Application Object Library profile option definitions
      • Application Object Library (AOL) key flexfield, function, lookups, value set definitions
      • Application Object Library (AOL) menu and responsibility definitions
      • Application Object Library messages
      • Application Object Library request set definitions
      • Application Object Library printer styles definitions
      • Report Manager / WebADI component and integrator entity definitions
      • Business Intelligence Publisher (BI Publisher) entity definitions
      • BIS Request Set Generator entity definitions
      • ... and more
      Your feedback is welcome

      This new tool was produced by our hard-working EBS Release Management team, and they're actively seeking your feedback.  Please feel free to share your experiences with it by posting a comment here.  You can also request enhancements to this tool via the distribution list address included in Note 1327399.1.

      Related Articles

      Tuesday Jun 14, 2011

      Support Webcast Series: Making the EBS Upgrade from 11i Easier

      My colleagues in Oracle Support are launching a three-part webcast series on upgrading from Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i to 12.  Each of these one-hour sessions is recommended for technical users who are responsible for upgrading their Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i environments to Release 12:

      1. June 28 Webcast (Note 1328127.1)
        • Overview of Tools Available for Upgrading
        • Upgrade versus Re-implementing
        • Upgrade Community
        • Upgrade Product Information Center Page
        • Detailed Look at Upgrade Advisors
      2. July 12 Webcast (Note 1328139.1)
        • Recap of Part I
        • Detailed Look at Maintenance Wizard
        • Detailed Look at Patch Wizard
      3. July 19 Webcast (Note 1328140.1)
        • Overview of Tools Available for Upgrading
        • Upgrade versus Re-implementing
        • Upgrade Community
        • Upgrade Product Information Center Page
        • Detailed Look at Upgrade Advisor

      You can see webcast times and event registration details by clicking on each of the links above.  The Oracle Support Advisor Webcast series schedule is published here:

      Recorded replays of those webcasts are also available from the same Note. 

      Related Articles


      Monday Jun 13, 2011

      Using Oracle GoldenGate with Oracle E-Business Suite

      Oracle GoldenGate provides real-time capture, transformation, routing, and delivery of database transactions across heterogeneous systems.   The GoldenGate Administrator's Guide shows six supported topologies for generic databases.  Oracle GoldenGate is certified for a subset of three those methods in Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12 environments:

      1. Unidirectional (Reporting Instance):  From the E-Business Suite to a reporting instance
      2. Broadcast (Data Distribution): From the E-Business Suite to multiple external databases
      3. Consolidation (Data Warehouse/Mart/Store): From multiple sources, including the E-Business Suite, into a single external database
      Three supported GoldenGate topologies in E-Business Suite environments

      Procedures for replicating information from the E-Business Suite using GoldenGate to a secondary system are documented in:

      Unidirectional  reporting only

      Unidirectional replication only for EBS

      GoldenGate is an extremely powerful solution, and one of its most-interesting features is the ability to provide data replication in both directions.  In some scenarios, you can choose to make alterations to replicated data on the external instance and have those changes updated back in the source database.

      That's an exceedingly-slick GoldenGate feature, but that's not supported in E-Business Suite environments.  You can use GoldenGate to replicate EBS data to an external database, but you cannot move that altered data back into the EBS database.  GoldenGate's ability to read data in EBS databases is certified, but it must not be used to write to EBS databases.

      "How" But Not "What"

      GoldenGate is akin to a scalpel.  You're free to use it, but you must learn how to perform open heart surgery yourself.

      The document above describes how to use GoldenGate to replicate data from the E-Business Suite to another system.  It doesn't provide any guidance about which database objects to replicate.

      The E-Business Suite data model is vast, as you'd expect of something that has supports the integrated functioning of over 200 functional product modules.  GoldenGate is a development tool, and like all development tools, requires an expert-level understanding of the E-Business Suite data model for successful use.  Here's a good EBS data model resource:

      What's Not Certified Today

      The use of GoldenGate is not certified for:

      • Upgrading E-Business Suite databases from one version to another
      • Migrating E-Business Suite databases from one operating system platform to another

      Why not?  Oracle GoldenGate doesn't (yet) support the replication of all of the datatypes that are used by the E-Business Suite.  That means that attempting to use GoldenGate to migrate or upgrade an entire E-Business Suite database will require a combination of GoldenGate and other manual steps to preserve referential integrity.  Naturally, the work required to research, create, test, and document those steps will require a formal certification effort. 

      This certification effort is under consideration but is not formally scheduled yet.

      Your feedback is welcome

      Our GoldenGate is eager to hear about your experiences with this newly-certified E-Business Suite configuration.  If you post any comments here or send me an email directly, I'll make sure that I pass it on to the GoldenGate team.

      Related Articles


      Wednesday Jun 08, 2011

      Sun JRE 1.6.0_26 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

      Java compatible logoYou might get a sense of deja vu when reading this article, but I'll keep repeating myself until it seems safe to stop.  To recap: the mismanaged session cookie issue (now fixed) may have made you a little nervous about automatically applying new JRE updates.  To reassure you on that front:

      • Sun Java Runtime Environment 1.6.0_26 (a.k.a. JRE 6u26-b03) is certified with E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.
      • JRE 1.6.0_26 contains the fixes for the mismanaged session cookie issue that were originally released as part of JRE 1.6.0_23, JRE 1.6.0_24, and JRE 1.6.0_25.
      All JRE releases are certified with EBS upon release

      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 higher.  We test all new JRE releases in parallel with the JRE development process, so all JRE releases are considered certified with the E-Business Suite on the same day that they're released by our Java team. 

      In other words, you do not need to wait for a certification announcement before applying new JRE releases to your EBS users' desktops.  If you wish, your desktop administrators can enable the Java "Automatic updates" option on your end-users' desktops.

      What's new in Java 1.6.0_26?

      See the 1.6.0_26 Update Release Notes for details about what has changed in this release.  This release is available for download from the usual Sun channels and through the 'Java Automatic Update' mechanism.

      This JRE release has been certified with both Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.  We recommend this release for all E-Business Suite users.

      References
      Related Articles

      Friday Jun 03, 2011

      E-Business Suite Technology Stack Roadmap (June 2011) Now Available

      We certify over 150 new combinations and versions of Oracle products with the E-Business Suite a year -- and that's before you factor in our forty or so platform-based combinations.  We also update our certification plans and roadmap as new third-party products like Microsoft Office 2010 and Firefox are announced or released.  Complicating matters further, various Oracle products leave Premier Support or are superceded by more-recent versions.

      This constant state of change means that any static representation of our roadmap is really a snapshot in time, and a snapshot that might begin to yellow and fade fairly quickly.  With that caveat in mind, here's this month's snapshot (which has some updates following my OAUG/Collaborate presentation in April 2011):

      EBS release roadmap


      What's in the latest roadmap?
      • Comparisons of support categories (Premier, Extended, Sustaining)
      • Summaries of the latest database, Fusion Middleware, and E-Business Suite Lifetime Support Policies
      • Desktop Client certifications (browsers, JREs, operating systems)
      • Database Tier certifications
      • Application Server Tier certifications
      • External Integrations certifications
      • Security-Related certifications
      • "Other Cool Stuff" -- virtualization, clouds
      How should I use this roadmap?
      1. Check the support status of your currently deployed techstack component versions
      2. Plan your upgrades to the next certified level
      3. Build a business case for switching from older technology to the latest technology (e.g. switching from Discoverer to Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition+)
      4. Seek clarification on open questions
      Related Articles

      Friday May 27, 2011

      Sun JRE 1.6.0_25 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

      Java compatible logoThe mismanaged session cookie issue (now fixed) may have made you a little nervous about automatically applying new JRE updates.  To reassure you on that front:

      • Sun Java Runtime Environment 1.6.0_25 (a.k.a. JRE 6u25, 1.6.0_25-b06) is certified with E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.
      • JRE 1.6.0_25 contains the fixes for the mismanaged session cookie issue that were originally released as part of JRE 1.6.0_23 and JRE 1.6.0_24.
      All JRE releases are certified with EBS upon release

      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 higher.  We test all new JRE releases in parallel with the JRE development process, so all JRE releases are considered certified with the E-Business Suite on the same day that they're released by our Java team. 

      In other words, you do not need to wait for a certification announcement before applying new JRE releases to your EBS users' desktops.  If you wish, your desktop administrators can enable the Java "Automatic updates" option on your end-users' desktops.

      What's new in Java 1.6.0_25?

      See the 1.6.0_25 Update Release Notes for details about what has changed in this release.  This release is available for download from the usual Sun channels and through the 'Java Automatic Update' mechanism.

      This JRE release has been certified with both Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.  We recommend this release for all E-Business Suite users.

      References
      Related Articles

      Thursday May 26, 2011

      New Performance-Enhanced EBS 11i Patch Wizard Now Available

      Premier Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i ended in November 2010.  Extended Support begins when Premier Support ends, providing coverage until November 2013.

      A new set of minimum technical requirements for Apps 11i went into effect when Extended Support began in November 2010.  These new minimum baseline patch requirements are listed in:

      Last year we released an updated E-Business Suite Release 11i Patch Wizard that could generate a detailed report of the patches required to bring your E-Business Suite 11i environment up to the minimum baseline patching level. That version of the Patch Wizard had some issues that could result in very long analysis times.  In some unusual cases, checking the full dependency chains of all required patches with that Patch Wizard release could be forty hours or longer.

      Our Patch Wizard team has recently released an updated version of the Patch Wizard that reduces the report generation time dramatically.  In some cases, reports can be generated in under a minute.  

      This performance-enhanced version of the Patch Wizard is available for download here:

      Screenshot of Patch Wizard dialog

      Your feedback is welcome

      We're extremely interested in hearing about your use cases and your experiences with this updated Patch Wizard. Please post a comment here or drop us a line with your thoughts.

      References

      Wednesday May 25, 2011

      Database 11.2.0.2 Certified with EBS on HP-UX

      As a follow-on to our original announcement, Oracle Database 11g Release 2 (11.2.0.2) is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 (12.0.4 and higher, 12.1.1 and higher) and 11i (11.5.10.2 + ATG PF.H RUP 6 and higher)on the following additional platforms:

      Release 12:

      • HP-UX PA-RISC (64-bit) (11.31)

      Release 11i:

      • HP-UX Itanium (11.31)1
      • HP-UX PA-RISC (64-bit) (11.31)

      1: This OS is a 'database tier only' or 'split tier configuration' platform where the application tier must be on a fully certified E-Business Suite platform.

      Database Feature and Option Certifications
      The following 11gR2 11.2.0.2 database options and features are supported for use:

      Certification of the following database options and features is still underway:
      • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption 11gR2 version 11.2.0.2
      EBS 11i References
      EBS 12 References

      Related Articles

      Thursday May 19, 2011

      Critical Patch Update for April 2011 Now Available

      The Critical Patch Update (CPU) for April 2011 was released on April 19, 2011. Oracle strongly recommends applying the patches as soon as possible.

      The Critical Patch Update Advisory is the starting point for relevant information. It includes a list of products affected, pointers to obtain the patches, a summary of the security vulnerabilities, and links to other important documents.

      Supported Products that are not listed in the "Supported Products and Components Affected" Section of the advisory do not require new patches to be applied.

      Also, it is essential to review the Critical Patch Update supporting documentation referenced in the Advisory before applying patches, as this is where you can find important pertinent information.

      The Critical Patch Update Advisory is available at the following location:

      The next four Critical Patch Update release dates are:

      • July 19, 2011
      • October 18, 2011
      • January 17, 2012
      • April 17, 2012

      Monday May 16, 2011

      TDE Tablespace Encryption 11.2.0.2 Certified with E-Business Suite

      Oracle Advanced Security is an optional licenced Oracle 11g Database add-on. Oracle Advanced Security Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) offers two different features: column encryption and tablespace encryption. TDE Tablespace Encryption 11.2.0.2 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i (11.5.10.2 + ATG PF.H RUP 6 and higher) and Release 12 (Releases 12.0.6 and higher and 12.1.1 and higher).

      What is Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) ?

      Oracle Advanced Security Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) allows you to protect data at rest. TDE helps address privacy and PCI requirements by encrypting personally identifiable information (PII) such as Social Security numbers and credit card numbers.

      TDE is completely transparent to existing applications with no triggers, views or other application changes required. Data is transparently encrypted when written to disk and transparently decrypted after an application user has successfully authenticated and passed all authorization checks. Authorization checks include verifying the user has the necessary select and update privileges on the application table and checking Database Vault, Label Security and Virtual Private Database enforcement policies.

      Existing database backup routines will continue to work, with the data at rest remaining encrypted in the backup. For encryption of entire database backups, TDE can be used in combination with Oracle RMAN.

      What is Tablespace Encryption ?

      TDE Key Management architectureNew in Oracle Database 11g, the Oracle Advanced Security now includes support for tablespace encryption.

      When a tablespace is created through Enterprise Manager or on the command line, an option now exists to specify that the file be encrypted on the file system. When new data is added to the new tablespace using the insert command or datapump, entire tables will be transparently encrypted. When the database reads data blocks from the encrypted tablespace it will transparently decrypt the data blocks.

      With this certification, Oracle E-Business Suite environments can be migrated to the latest 11gR2 version of encrypted tablespaces. For more information, see:

      This database option is certified for all EBS platforms on which Oracle Database 11.2.0.2 is certified.  You can refer to the Certifications system on My Oracle Support for details about certified EBS platforms for this database release.

      Related Articles



      Friday May 13, 2011

      New Whitepaper: Extending E-Business Suite 12.1.3 using Oracle Application Express

      I'm pleased to announce the availability of a new whitepaper:

      • Extending Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 using Oracle Application Express (APEX) (Note 1306563.1)
      Oracle Application Express APEX screenshot

      It's possible to personalize the E-Business Suite, but there may be situations where personalizations aren't sufficient to meet your requirements. In these scenarios, Oracle Application Express, also known as Oracle APEX, is an option for creating supplemental applications that can be integrated with your Oracle E-Business Suite instance.

      This new whitepaper outlines how to extend Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.3 (and higher) functionality using Oracle Application Express. Recommended architecture and security considerations are discussed in detail.

      You can also find the whitepaper on the APEX OTN Site > Learn More > Technical Information and White Papers > Extending Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 using Oracle Application Express (PDF).

      Related Articles


      Wednesday May 11, 2011

      Portal 11.1.1.4 Certified with E-Business Suite on AIX and Windows

      As a follow-on to our original announcement, Portal 11g 11.1.1.4 (Patchset 3) is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite for five additional platforms.  Certified E-Business Suite releases are:

      • E-Business Suite 11i 11.5.10.2 + ATG RUP 7 and higher 
      • E-Business Suite 12.0.6 and higher
      • E-Business Suite 12.1.1 and higher

      If you're running a previous version of Portal, there are a number of certified and supported upgrade paths to Portal 11g (11.1.1.4):

      Roadmap diagram showing Portal upgrade paths

      New platforms certified for R12

      • IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit) (5.3, 6.1)
      • Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit) (2003, 2008 for EBS 12.1.1 only) 
      • Microsoft Windows x64 (2008 R2 for EBS 12.1.1 only)

      New platforms certified for 11i:

      • IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit) (5.3, 6.1)
      • Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit) (2003) 

      Oracle Single Sign-On (SSO) 10g 10.1.4.3 is not certified on Microsoft Windows Server 2008 R2. Oracle Single Sign-On is required by Portal.  Portal customers can install Single Sign-On on a separate supported platform such as Windows Server (32-bit) 2003 for use with a Portal 11g instance on Windows Server 2008 R2.

      References

      Related Articles

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