Thursday Nov 11, 2010

Using Physical Standby for EBS 12 Environments on 11g Databases

Database disaster recovery, sometimes also lumped into the broader category of business continuity planning, is a topic that many EBS sysadmins seem to struggle with.  Oracle Data Guard is a set of services that create, manage, and monitor one or more standby databases to enable a primary database to survive disasters and data corruption. If the primary database becomes unavailable because of a planned or an unplanned outage, Oracle Data Guard can switch a standby database to the primary role, minimizing the downtime. 

Physical architecture diagram showing target architecture for an E-Business Suite Release 12 disaster recovery deployment

We've previously published EBS-specific documentation covering this for 10gR2 databases:
Our EBS database architects have recently updated that documentation to cover physical standby for both the 11gR1 and 11gR2 databases for E-Business Suite 12 environments.  This updated documentation has been streamlined and updated with our latest recommendations for disaster recovery environments using physical standby.  It's published here:
References
Related Articles

Friday Oct 08, 2010

Database 10gR2 10.2.0.5 Certified with E-Business Suite on Windows

windows-logo.jpg
The 10.2.0.5 database patchset is the terminal release for the 10gR2 codeline.  As a follow-on to the original certification announcement (on July 2, 2010), Oracle Database 10gR2 Patch Set 10.2.0.5.0 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and R12 on the following Microsoft Windows Server platforms:
  • Windows Server 2003 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Server 2008 (32-bit and 64-bit) for EBS 12 only
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 (64-bit only) for EBS 12 only
The certification with Windows Server 64-bit operating systems are 'database-tier only' (previously known as 'split tier') platform certifications - the application tier must be on a different certified EBS platform such as Windows Server (32-bit).

This announcement includes:
For EBS 11i version 11.5.10 CU2+ATG_PF.H.delta.6 (RUP 6) and higher:
  • Oracle Database 10gR2 Patch Set 10.2.0.5.0
  • Real Application Clusters
  • Oracle Database Vault 
  • TDE Column Encryption 
  • Advanced Security Option/Advanced Networking Option (ANO/ASO)
For EBS R12 Releases 12.0 (12.0.4 and higher) and 12.1 (12.1.1 and higher):
  • Oracle Database 10gR2 Patch Set 10.2.0.5.0
  • Real Application Clusters
  • Oracle Database Vault 
  • TDE Column Encryption
  • Advanced Security Option / Advanced Networking Option (ANO/ASO)
Premier Support for 10gR2 ended July 31, 2010

We've covered this several times already, but it never hurts to keep reminding you that Premier Support for the 10gR2 (10.2) database ended on July 31, 2010.

Regular readers may recall that fees for the first year of Extended Support for the 10gR2 database are waived. There is nothing that customers need to do to remain fully supported other than keep your support contracts current. Higher fees for Extended Support will start August 1, 2011 for most platforms.

This is formally documented in two different places, for those of you who appreciate convergent validation:
If you haven't already done so, I strongly recommend that you review the following article to understand the support implications for E-Business Suite environments:
If you are considering upgrade paths for your EBS environment from 10gR2, you have the choice of either 11gR1 (11.1) or 11gR2 (11.2).  For the longest Premier Support coverage, choose 11gR2.  Here's a snapshot of our EBS database roadmap as of today:

Snapshot of E-Business Suite database certification roadmap as of July 2010 showing end of premier support dates for each database releaseEBS 12 References
EBS 11i References
Related Articles

Thursday Sep 02, 2010

Have You Used 10gR2 Transportable Tablespaces with EBS 11i?

We are soliciting your feedback on our recently announced E-Business Suite Release 11i + 10gR2 Cross Platform Transportable Tablespaces (XTTS) database migration process.

XTTS_Supported_Platforms2.png

We know that quite a few of you have requested this and are curious as to how you might be faring with it. For those customers who have downloaded the controlled patch (6158038) required for this migration of the EBS database, we would love to hear your answers to the following questions:

  1. What is the size of the E-Business Suite Database you've migrated or plan to migrate?
  2. What were the source and target platforms for this database migration (e.g. Linux Itanium to Oracle Solaris on SPARC)?
  3. Where are you currently at in your migration?
    • Not started on migration
    • Migration in progress following MOS Doc 454574.1
    • User testing of migrated system in progress
    • Completed testing and awaiting production migration
    • Live on migrated system in production
  4. Have you filed any SRs as part of your testing of your migration? And if so, what were the SR numbers?
  5. Have you analyzed the time savings when using XTTS vs export/import? If so, what were the savings?
Feel free to post a comment here, or if this information is sensitive, please drop me a line directly.

Other Certifications Still Underway

Transportable Tablespaces for other Database and EBS versions (such as 10gR2+R12, 11g+R12 and 11g+11i) are still under evaluation. Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.

Related Articles

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.


Tuesday Aug 24, 2010

Reminder: Minimum Patching Baselines for E-Business Suite 11i Extended Support

[Editor: This article was originally published in January 2010.  Reposting this article in its entirety.]

Premier Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i ends in November 2010.  Extended Support begins when Premier Support ends.  Extended Support comes at an additional cost, but these are waived for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i through November 2011. I'm in EBS Development and not sales, so you should contact your Oracle account manager with questions about Extended Support costs. 

Here is a comparison of the different support levels:

A new set of minimum technical requirements for Apps 11i goes into effect when Extended Support begins in November 2010.  These new minimum baseline patch requirements are listed in:
What are the impacts of this new baseline?

As always, Oracle Support will assist with diagnosis, triage, and debugging of any issues that you report for your E-Business Suite environment.  You will continue to have access to any existing online support tools, knowledge base documentation, and pre-existing fixes.

If you report a new issue that requires a new bug fix, you should be aware that new patches will be released only for the new baseline patches listed in the Minimum Baseline Patch Requirements Note.  You should plan to apply the baseline patches (at minimum) listed in Note 883202.1 by November 2010 in order to receive any new bug fixes.

Minimum Baseline Patch Requirements
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11.5.10 Consolidated Update 2 plus additional patches listed in Note 883202.1
  • ATG Rollup Patchset 6 (11i.ATG_PF.H.delta.6, Patch 5903765)
  • 10.2.0.4 Database or 11.1.0.7 Database
  • Forms6i Patchset 19 (version 6.0.8.28, Patch 6194129)
  • Oracle HTTP Server MLR Patchset 4393827
  • Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) 1.6.0_03 or higher
The baseline versions listed here (and in the Note) are current as of the document's release date but may change in the future.  Any changes will be communicated via Note 883202.1.  If you've found this article as the result of a web search, I would strongly encourage you to check the latest version of the Note for the current information.

What EBS 11i products are affected by this new baseline?

In addition to the major technology stack components shown above, Note 883202.1 contains additional minimum baseline requirements for:
  • Applications Technology
    • Common Applications Calendar
  • Contracts
    • Core Contracts
    • Procurement Contracts
    • Project Contracts
    • Sales Contracts
    • Service Contracts
  • Customer Data Management
    • Customers Online
    • Trading Community
  • Financials
    • Assets
    • iAssets
    • Advanced Collections
    • Bill Presentment Architecture
    • Cash Management
    • E-Business Tax
    • Financials for the Americas
    • Financials for Asia/Pacific
    • Financials Common Country
    • Financials for EMEA
    • Financials for India
    • Internet Expenses
    • Lease Management
    • Loans
    • Payables
    • Payments
    • Property Manager
    • Public Sector Budgeting
    • Public Sector Financials
    • Public Sector Financials (International)
    • Receivables
    • iReceivables
    • Treasury
    • U.S. Federal Financials
  • Human Resources
    • Advanced Benefits
    • Approvals Management
    • HR Intelligence
    • Human Resources
    • Labor Distribution
    • Learning Management
    • Payroll (All Localizations)
    • Payroll (International/Custom)
    • iRecruitment
    • Self-Service Human Resources
    • Time and Labor
    • US Federal Human Resources
  • Intelligence
    • Balanced Scorecard
    • E-Business Intelligence
  • Interaction Center
    • Customer Interaction History
  • Logistics
    • Inventory Management
    • Warehouse Management
  • Manufacturing
    • Cost Management
    • Quality
    • Supply Chain Globalization
    • Work in Process
  • Marketing and Sales
    • Incentive Compensation
    • Marketing
    • Partner Management
    • Quoting
    • Sales
    • Sales for Handheld
    • Sales Offline
    • Territory Management
    • Trade Management
  • Order Management
    • Advanced Pricing
    • Configurator
    • Order Capture
    • Order Management
  • Procurement
    • iProcurement
    • Purchasing
    • Sourcing
    • iSupplier Portal
    • Supplier Scheduling
  • Product Lifecycle Management
    • Advanced Product Catalog
    • Bills of Material
    • Document Management and Collaboration
    • Engineering
    • Item Master
  • Projects
    • Grants Accounting
    • Project Billing
    • Project Collaboration
    • Project Costing
    • Project Portfolio Analysis
    • Project Foundation
    • Project Resource Management
    • Projects
  • Service
    • Advanced Scheduler
    • Complex Maintenance, Repair & Overhaul
    • Customer Care
    • Depot Repair
    • Field Service
    • iSupport
    • Teleservice
  • Supply Chain Planning
    • Demand Planning
    • Production Scheduling
    • Strategic Network Optimization
Related Articles

Wednesday Aug 04, 2010

E-Business Suite 12 Now Available on Linux on IBM System z

logo_ibm.jpg
Every new E-Business Suite release, patch, roll-up patchset, Family Pack, Consolidated Update, or technology stack certification needs to be tested on every platform that we support for the E-Business Suite.  This is a lot of work.  My teams test on the base Oracle Enterprise Linux platform, and Terri Noyes' Applications Platforms Group tests everything on all of the other operating systems that we support.

As you can imagine, it is very big news when we expand our E-Business Suite operating system portfolio to include a new platform.  This always constitutes a major new commitment to that platform. 

This is why we are pleased to announce that the Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 is now available on a new fully certified EBS platform - Linux on IBM System z. This IBM platform (i.e. Linux running on an IBM mainframe) is also known as 'Linux on System z' and appears in our Oracle systems (My Oracle Support, aru, bug, etc.) as 'IBM: Linux on System z'.

The Linux on System z platform was previously a 'database tier only' platform (for EBS 11i and 12.0) and will continue to be supported as such on those releases. With this announcement for 12.1, we are supporting the platform as a fully certified EBS platform (i.e. for both application and database tiers).

The release is based on the 12.1.2 EBS codeline and includes a Rapid Install wizard to support new installations as well as 11i upgrades (from a certified EBS 11i platform) to Release 12 on Linux on System z. This first release includes the Oracle Database 10gR2 on the database tier, and Application Server versions 10gR2 and 10gR3.

Various technology certifications are planned as well for the currently available versions of technology products on the platform (such as 10.1.2.3 OID/SSO, 10.1.2.3 Discoverer, AS 10gR3 Patchset 5, etc.) or those expected at some point in the future (such as Oracle Database 11gR2). Separate announcements for these certifications will be sent out as they become available.

The operating systems certified with EBS on this platform are:
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) version 5 (64-bit)
  • Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) version 9 (64-bit)
  • Novell SUSE Linux Enterprise Server (SLES) version 10 (64-bit)
Please review the documents below for all requirements and additional details on the use of EBS Release 12 on IBM: Linux on System z. All general documentation pertaining to EBS Release 12.1.1 (such as the Rapid Install Guide and the Upgrade Guide) are relevant as well to this release of 12.1.2 as the general functionality of EBS is the same on this platform.

The release is available now on our public edelivery web site for download.

References
Related Articles

Tuesday Jul 20, 2010

Database 11gR2 11.2.0.1 Certified on HP-UX 11.31 for E-Business Suite

hp-logo.png
[Aug 10, 2010 Update: Clarified database-tier only certification for HP-UX Itanium for EBS 11i]

Our Applications Platform Engineering team has certified Oracle Database 11g Release 2 version 11.2.0.1 with:
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 (12.0.x and 12.1.x) on the HP-UX PA-RISC platform
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i (11.5.10.2) on the HP-UX PA-RISC
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i (11.5.10.2) HP-UX Itanium for database tiers only. The application tier must be on a fully certified E-Business Suite 11i platform.
This announcement includes:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Oracle Database Vault 11.2.0.1
The operating system version covered by these certifications is HP-UX 11.31.

Where can I find more information?
Related Articles

Tuesday Jul 06, 2010

Latest DSTv14 Timezone Patches Available for E-Business Suite

Wooden_hourglass_small2.jpg
If your E-Business Suite Release 11i or 12 environment is configured to support Daylight Saving Time (DST) or international time zones, it's important to keep your timezone definition files up-to-date. They were last changed in January 2010 and released as DSTv13. DSTv14 is now available and certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.

Is Your Apps Environment Affected?

When a country or region changes DST rules or their time zone definitions, your Oracle E-Business Suite environment will require patching if:
  • Your Oracle E-Business Suite environment is located in the affected country or region OR
  • Your Oracle E-Business Suite environment is located outside the affected country or region but you conduct business or have customers or suppliers in the affected country or region
We last discussed the DSTv13 patches on this blog. The latest "DSTv14" timezone definition file is cumulative and includes all DST changes released in earlier time zone definition files. DSTv14 includes changes to the following timezones since the DSTv13 release:
  • Africa/Casablanca,
  • Africa/Tunis,
  • America/Argentina/San_Luis,
  • America/Argentina/San_Luis,
  • America/Tijuana, America/Santiago,
  • America/Asuncion,
  • Antarctica/Casey,
  • Antarctica/Davis,
  • Asia/Dacca,
  • Asia/Taipei,
  • Asia/Karachi,
  • Asia/Gaza,
  • Asia/Damascus,
  • Asia/Kamchatka,
  • Asia/Anadyr,
  • Europe/Samara,
  • Pacific/Easter,
  • Pacific/Fiji,
  • Pacific/Apia,
  • America/Ensenada,
  • Chile/Continental,
  • Asia/Dhaka,
  • ROC,
  • Chile/EasterIsland,
  • Mexico/BajaNorte
What Patches Are Required?

In case you haven't been following our previous time zone or Daylight Saving Time (DST)-related articles, international timezone definitions for E-Business Suite environments are captured in a series of patches for the database and application tier servers in your environment. The actual scope and number of patches that need to be applied depend on whether you've applied previous DST or timezone-related patches. Some sysadmins have remarked to me that it generally takes more time to read the various timezone documents than it takes to apply these patches, but your mileage may vary.

We've published the following Notes which identify the various components in your E-Business Suite environment that may need DST patches:
Related Articles

Friday Jul 02, 2010

Database 10gR2 10.2.0.5 Certified with E-Business Suite

With the July 4 weekend coming up, it's nice to wrap up the week with a bang.  This final announcement for the week is cause for celebration.

Oracle Database 10gR2 10.2.0.5 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i (11.5.10.2) and Release 12 (12.0.4 or higher; 12.1.1 or higher).  The 10.2.0.5 database patchset is the terminal release for the 10gR2 codeline. 

Premier Support for 10gR2 ends July 31, 2010

We've covered this several times already, but it never hurts to keep reminding you that Premier Support for the 10gR2 (10.2) database ends on July 31, 2010.

Regular readers may recall that fees for the first year of Extended Support for the 10gR2 database are waived. There is nothing that customers need to do to remain fully supported other than keep your support contracts current. Higher fees for Extended Support will start August 1, 2011 for most platforms.

This is formally documented in two different places, for those of you who appreciate convergent validation:
If you haven't already done so, I strongly recommend that you review the following article to understand the support implications for E-Business Suite environments:
If you are considering upgrade paths for your EBS environment from 10gR2, you have the choice of either 11gR1 (11.1) or 11gR2 (11.2).  For the longest Premier Support coverage, choose 11gR2.  Here's a snapshot of our EBS database roadmap as of today:

Snapshot of E-Business Suite database certification roadmap as of July 2010 showing end of premier support dates for each database release
Certified Database Options

This database patchset certification also includes the following 10gR2 10.2.0.5 database options:
  • Real Application Clusters
  • Database Vault 
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption
  • Advanced Security Option / Advanced Networking Option
Certified Platforms
E-Business Suite Release 12 (12.0.4 and higher; 12.1.1 and higher)
  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86 (SLES 9, 10) 
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 9, 10) 
E-Business Suite Release 11.5.10.2
  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5) 
  • Linux x86 (SLES 9, 10) 
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)*
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5)*
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 9, 10)*
* These are split configurations, where the application tier must be on a fully-certified Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i platform.
Other platforms still underway

Certifications of other operating system platforms, including HP-UX, AIX, Solaris, and others, is still underway.  Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post 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.

EBS 12 References
EBS 11i References
Related Articles

Friday May 28, 2010

New Whitepaper: Advanced Compression 11gR1 Benchmarks with EBS 12

[June 23, 2010 Update:  Our Server Technologies team has just released Note 1061366.1 that lists recommended Advanced Compression patches applicable to all customers, including E-Business Suite environments]

In my opinion, if there's any reason to upgrade an E-Business Suite environment to the 11gR1 or 11gR2 database, it's the Advanced Compression database option.  Oracle Advanced Compression was introduced in Oracle Database 11g, and allows you to compress structured data (numbers, characters) as well as unstructured data (documents, spreadsheets, XML and other files).  It provides enhanced compression for database backups and also includes network compression for faster synchronization with standby databases.

advanced-compression-tables.png
In other words, the promise of Advanced Compression is that it can make your E-Business Suite database smaller and faster.  But how well does it actually deliver on that promise?

Apps 12 + Advanced Compression Benchmarks now available


Three of my colleagues, Uday Moogala, Lester Gutierrez, and Andy Tremayne, have been benchmarking Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 with Advanced Compression 11gR1.  They've just released a detailed whitepaper with their benchmarking results and recommendations.

This whitepaper is available in two locations:
Vision Database:  Up to 68% compression and up to 36% improved performance

The results, even with our EBS Vision demonstration database, were impressive:
  • Reduced 21.9 GB of tables down to 6.9 GB (68% reduction, average 3:1 compression ratio)
  • Self-service performance improved up to 36%
  • Purchasing performance improved up to 10%
  • Order-to-Cash batch flow performance improved up to 33%
  • Payroll performance improved up to 25%
They also found some other interesting effects:
  • Some SQL execution plans changed, reducing performance
  • Performance was improved at the cost of up to 6% increased CPU usage, with the variance depending upon how much DML is performed
  • In the case of the Order-to-Cash batch flow, the average CPU consumption actually decreased by 7%
Line chart showing order to cash batch flow cpu usage for Oracle 
E-Business Suite Release 12 and advanced compression

Oracle using this in production with EBS 12 today

We can now share the news that we've been using Advanced Compression in our Oracle Global Single Instance (GSI) production environment since 2009.  This same team has been working to analyse the results of using Advanced Compression with our Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 global single instance that we use to run Oracle's own business. 

The results there are very impressive:
  • Reduced EBS 12 database size from 17 Terabytes to 13 Terabytes
  • Compressed ~260 tables and over 700 associated indices and LOBs after migrating to SecureFiles
  • Total space saved: 68 TB across our primary, standby, and associated testbeds
Other E-Business Suite-specific observations about Advanced Compression

This whitepaper makes detailed E-Business Suite-specific observations in the following areas:
  1. Index compression
  2. Recommended patches
  3. SQL Plan regression analysis
  4. DML intensive operations
  5. Row chaining on UPDATE transactions
  6. ITL contention
  7. High transaction tables
  8. SecureFiles LOB compression
The whitepaper concludes with specific recommendations on planning your Advanced Compression conversion in your E-Business Suite environment, and then lists all of the tables compressed in the Vision testbed as well as Oracle's own EBS 12 production instance.

Have you used Advanced Compression with EBS?

Naturally, compression ratios and performance impacts or benefits will vary for every Apps environment.  If you've used this technology, we're very interested in hearing about your experiences with Advanced Compression in your environment.  You're invited to share your experiences here or drop me an email directly.

Related Articles

Wednesday May 26, 2010

EBS 11i and R12 certified with DB 11gR2 11.2.0.1 on Windows

windows-logo.jpg
Oracle Database 11g Release 2 (11gR2) version 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite 11i and 12 on the following Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit) and Windows x64 (64-bit) operating systems:
  • Windows Server 2003 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Server 2003 R2 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Server 2008 (32-bit and 64-bit)
  • Windows Server 2008 R2 (64-bit only)
Certified EBS Releases
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11.5.10.2
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.4 or higher
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release  12.1.1 or higher
This announcement includes:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption
  • Advanced Security Option (ASO)/Advanced Networking Option (ANO)
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite 11i and R12 Database Instances
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption
  • Database Vault
Note that the certification with MS Windows x64 (64-bit) operating systems are 'database-tier only' (previously known as a split tier) platform certifications.  The application tier must be on a different certified EBS platform such as MS Windows Server (32-bit), for example.

Certifications still underway


The following features are pending certifications and will be announced separately:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1 Real Application Clusters (RAC)
  • Use of Rapid Clone with EBS R12
Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   

Related Articles

Monday May 24, 2010

Reminder: Premier Support for 10gR2 10.2.0.4 Database ends July 2010

[May 24, 2010 update: added additional information to the Extended Support section, and corrected the implications for patch requests for 10.2.0.4]

Regular readers know that Premier Support for the Oracle 10gR2 Database ends in July 2010, a scant few months from now.  What does that mean for E-Business Suite environments running on this database?

The Oracle E-Business Suite is comprised of products like Financials, Supply Chain, Procurement, and so on.  Support windows for the E-Business Suite and these associated applications products are listed here:
The Oracle E-Business Suite can run on a variety of database releases, including 10gR2, 11gR1, and 11gR2.  Support windows for database releases are listed here:
Looking at those two documents together, you'll see that:
  • Premier Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i ends on November 30, 2010
  • Premier Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 ends on January 31, 2012
  • Premier Support for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1 ends on May 31, 2014
  • Premier Support for Oracle Database 10.2 (a.k.a. 10gR2) ends on July 31, 2010
[Note: These are the Premier Support dates as of today.  If you've arrived at this article in the future via a search engine, you must check the latest dates in the Lifetime Support Policy documents above; these dates are subject to change.]

It's a bit hard to read, thanks to the layout restrictions of this blog, but the following diagram shows the Premier and Extended Support windows for the last four major database releases certified with Apps 11i:

database-support-windows.png
Do the EBS Premier Support dates trump the 10gR2 DB date?

No.  Each of the support policies apply individually to your combined EBS + DB configuration.  The support dates for a given EBS release don't override the Database support policy.

It might be useful for me to break an example down in more detail: your E-Business Suite Release 11i environment will be eligible for Premier Support up to November 30, 2010, but your 10gR2 database will be eligible for Premier Support only up to July 31, 2010. 

Therefore, let's assume that you're still running Apps 11i on 10.2.0.4 DB on August 1st, 2010.  On that date, your Apps 11i code will be covered by Premier Support.  Your 10.2.0.4 DB will be covered by Extended Support.

The differences between Premier and Extended Support coverage are summarized here (see the Lifetime Support Policy document for the product of your choice for a more detailed discussion of these coverages):



First year of Extended Support fees for 10gR2 waived

Regular readers may recall that fees for the first year of Extended Support for the 10gR2 database are waived.  There is nothing that customers need to do to remain fully supported other than keep your support contracts current.  Higher fees for Extended Support will start August 1, 2011 for most platforms.  This is formally documented in two different places, for those of you who appreciate convergent validation:
There is an effort underway to lobby the Server Technologies group to update their Lifetime Support Policy document with that information, too.

What should EBS customers running 10gR2 do?

Given that the clock for Premier Support is running out on both EBS 11i and the 10gR2 database this year, I'd recommend that EBS 11i customers start planning upgrades to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 immediately.  If you're in that boat, as part of that upgrade, you should also consider whether you wish to upgrade your database to either 11gR1 or 11gR2. 

If your Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 environment is running on the 10gR2 database, you should start planning to upgrade your database either to 11gR1 or 11gR2 immediately.

11gR2 will give you the longest support window, but has relatively fewer EBS customers on it than 11gR1.  If you opt for 11gR1, plan to use 11.1.0.7, since 11.1.0.6 is no longer eligible for Premier Support under the Server Technologies Group's support policies for previous patchsets.

Here's a summary of our EBS database certification roadmap from my EBS Certifications snapshot from April 2010 (which you should review, if you haven't already done so):

E-Business Suite database 
certification roadmap as of April 2010
Where can I find EBS database upgrade information?
DB 10.2.0.5 certification for EBS underway

As you can see in the roadmap diagram above, the terminal release for the 10gR2 database line is expected to be the 10.2.0.5 patchset.  It's expected that you will need to be on this patchset level to request 10gR2 fixes during the Extended Support support window.

Customers running 10.2.0.4 will be able to request patches for that patchset for one year from the April 30, 2010 release of the 10.2.0.5 patchset.  Customers running 10.2.0.4 can continue to do so without any disruption until May 1, 2011.

Our certification of 10.2.0.5 with the E-Business Suite is underway now.  Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   

DB 11.2.0.2 certification for EBS underway

To head off the inevitable follow-up questions:  the latest 11gR2 database release certified with the E-Business Suite is 11.2.0.1 today.  We're working on our certification with 11.2.0.2 right now. 

As for dates, the same disclaimer above applies here; I can't share any projected certification dates for 11.2.0.2, either.  Stay tuned to this blog for updates.

Related Articles
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.

Wednesday May 19, 2010

TDE Tablespace Encryption 11.2.0.1 Certified with EBS 12

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.  11.2.0.1 TDE Column encryption was certified with E-Business Suite 12 as part of our overall 11.2.0.1 database certification.  As of today, 11.2.0.1 TDE Tablespace encryption is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.

What is Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) ?

Advanced_Security_Overview.gif

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_Architecture.png

New 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 Release 12 environments can be migrated to the latest 11gR2 11.2.0.1 version of encrypted tablespaces. For more information, please refer to:

Prerequisites

  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.4 and higher
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 and higher
Platforms certified for Apps 12
  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (SLES 10)
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 10)
  • Oracle Solaris on SPARC (64-bit) (Solaris 10) 
  • Oracle Solaris on x86-64 (64-bit)
  • IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit) (5.3 and 6.1) 
  • HP-UX Itanium (11.31)
Pending Platform Certifications

Certifications for the following platforms are still underway:
  • HP-UX PA-RISC (64-bit) (11.31)
  • Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit) (2003, 2008) 
  • Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit) (2003, 2008, 2008 R2)
Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   

References

Related Articles


Tuesday May 11, 2010

EBS + 11g Database Upgrade Best Practices Whitepaper Available

O_Database11g_clr.gif
I returned from OAUG/Collaborate with a cold and multiple overlapping development crises.  Fun.  Now that those are (mostly) out of the way, it's time to get back to clearing out my article backlog. 

Premier Support for the 10gR2 database ends in July 2010.  If you haven't already started planning your 11g database upgrade, we recommend that you start soon.  We have certified both the 11gR1 (11.1.0.7) and 11gR2 (11.2.0.1) databases with Oracle E-Business Suite; see this blog's Certification summary to links to articles with the details.

Our Applications Performance Group has reminded me that they have a whitepaper loaded with practical tips intended to make your 11g database upgrade easier.  No vacuous marketing rhetoric here -- this is strictly written for DBAs.  A must-read if you haven't already upgraded to either 11gR1 or 11gR2, and highly recommended even if you have. 

You can download this whitepaper here:
This whitepaper covers:
  • Pre-upgrade tips
    • Gather dictionary statistics
    • Manage CBO statistics
    • Gather performance metrics
    • Save execution plans
    • Test (including capturing and replaying workloads)
  • Post-upgrade tips
    • init.ora parameters
    • Gather statistics
    • Disable automatic optimizer statistics collection
    • Plan stability using SQL Plan Management (SPM)
    • Detect and tune performance changes using SQL Performance Analyzer (SPA)
    • Real-time SQL monitoring
    • Incident packaging service
  • New 11g Performance-related features
    • Optimizer enhancements
    • Partitioning enhancements
    • Advanced Compression
  • Fixes and workarounds for known issues
    • Mandatory patches
    • Options fixes and workarounds
E-Business Suite Benchmarks Also Available

The Applications Performance Group is also responsible for our Oracle Applications Standard Benchmark (OASB), a standard workload that tests the performance and scalability of Oracle Applications and provides metrics for the comparison of Oracle Applications performance on different system configurations.  Copies of independently-audited E-Business Suite benchmarks for both Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12 are available here:
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Friday Apr 30, 2010

Database Vault 11gR2 11.2.0.1 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

Oracle Database Vault allows security administrators to protect a database from privileged account access to application data.  Database objects can be placed in protected realms, which can be accessed only if a specific set of conditions are met. 

Oracle Database Vault 11gR2 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.

DBVault11107-new.png
You can now enable Database Vault 11gR2 on your existing E-Business Suite 11.2.0.1 Database instance.  If you already have DB Vault 10gR2 or 11gR1 enabled in your E-Business Suite environment, you can now upgrade to the 11gR2 Database.  We also support EBS patching with Database Vault 11.2.0.1 enabled. Our DB Vault realm creation and grants-related scripts have been updated to reduce patching downtimes.

Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i 11.5.10.2 or higher
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.4 or higher
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 or higher
Certified Platforms for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12
  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (SLES 10)
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 10)
  • Oracle Solaris on SPARC (64-bit) (Solaris 10)
  • Oracle Solaris on x86-64 (64-bit) (Solaris 10) (Database-tier only)
  • IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit) (5.3, 6.1)
  • HP-UX Itanium (11.31)
Certified Platforms for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i
  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (SLES 10)
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5) (Database-tier only)
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5) (Database-tier only)
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 10) (Database-tier only)
  • Oracle Solaris on SPARC (64-bit) (Solaris 10)
  • Oracle Solaris on x86-64 (64-bit) (Solaris 10) (Database-tier only)
  • IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit) (5.3, 6.1)
Certifications still underway

Certifications for the following platforms are still pending.  Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   
Pending Platforms for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12
  • HP-UX PA-RISC (64-bit)
  • Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit)
  • Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit) (Database-tier only)
Pending Platforms for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i
  • HP-UX PA-RISC (64-bit)
  • HP-UX Itanium (Database-tier only)
  • Microsoft Windows Server (32-bit)
  • Microsoft Windows x64 (64-bit) (Database-tier only)
References
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Tuesday Apr 27, 2010

11gR2 DB 11.2.0.1 Certified with E-Business Suite on Solaris 10 (x86-64)

solaris_oracle_logo.png
Oracle Database 11g Release 2 version 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite 11i (11.5.10.2) and Release 12 (12.0.4 or higher, 12.1.1 or higher) on Oracle Solaris on x86-64 (64-bit) running Solaris 10. This announcement includes:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1 Real Application Clusters (RAC)
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption with EBS 11i and R12
  • Advanced Security Option (ASO)/Advanced Networking Option (ANO)
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite 11i and R12 Database Instances 
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption
This certification is a 'database-tier only' (previously known as a split tier) platform certification - the application tier must be on a different certified EBS platform such as Oracle Solaris on SPARC (64-bit), for example.

Certifications Still Underway

The following associated database certifications are still pending:
  • Database Vault 11.2.0.1 Certification with EBS 11i and R12
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption using Database 11g Release 2 Version 11.2.0.1 with EBS R12
Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   

References
Related Articles

Saturday Apr 17, 2010

10gR2 10.2.0.4 Certified with EBS 12 on Windows Itanium x64

windows-logo.jpg

Oracle Database 10g Release 2 version 10.2.0.4 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 (12.0.4 or higher, 12.1.1 or higher) on the Windows Itanium x64 (64-bit) platform. The operating system supported on this platform is Windows Server 2003.

This is a 'database-tier only' certification (previously known as a 'split configuration database tier' certification) where the application tier must be on a different fully certified E-Business Suite R12 platform.

This 'database-tier only' platform was previously certified with 12.0 and 10.2.0.3 - customers can now apply the 12.1.1 Maintenance Pack to upgrade their application tier to 12.1.1 while running the 10gR2 database on this platform.


Where can I find more information?

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10gR2 Transportable Tablespaces Certified for EBS 11i

Database migration across platforms of different "endian" (byte ordering) formats using the Cross Platform Transportable Tablespaces (XTTS) process is now certified for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i (11.5.10.2) with Oracle Database 10g Release 2.  This process is sometimes also referred to as transportable tablespaces (TTS).

What is the Cross-Platform Transportable Tablespace Feature?

XTTS_Supported_Platforms2 comparison of endian-ness of operating system platforms
The Cross-Platform Transportable Tablespace feature allows users to move a user tablespace across Oracle databases. It's an efficient way to move bulk data between databases. If the source platform and the target platform are of different endianness, then an additional conversion step must be done on either the source or target platform to convert the tablespace being transported to the target format. If they are of the same endianness, then no conversion is necessary and tablespaces can be transported as if they were on the same platform.

Moving data using transportable tablespaces can be much faster than performing either an export/import or unload/load of the same data. This is because transporting a tablespace only requires the copying of datafiles from source to the destination and then integrating the tablespace structural information. You can also use transportable tablespaces to move both table and index data, thereby avoiding the index rebuilds you would have to perform when importing or loading table data.

Obtaining the Required EBS Patch

This EBS database migration process was previously only available to participants of a TTS Early Adopter Program. This migration process currently requires a patch delivered by our EBS Platform Engineering team that is 'Controlled', i.e. it requires a password that you can obtain by logging a formal Service Request with Oracle Support. We are distributing the required patch in this manner to monitor potential customer issues due to the nature of this technology, gather feedback, and assess the technology's adoption rate.

Does it meet your requirements?

Users migrating large databases across platforms of the same "endian" format are advised to use the Transportable Database (TDB) migration process instead of Transportable Tablespaces. The "endian-ness" target platforms can be verified by querying the view V$DB_TRANSPORTABLE_PLATFORM using sqlplus (connected as sysdba) on the source platform:
SQL> select platform_name from v$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 and Transportable Tablespaces (for large databases) or export/import should be used for database migration.

Other Certifications Still Underway

Transportable Tablespaces for other Database and EBS versions (such as 10gR2+R12, 11g+R12 and 11g+11i) are still under evaluation.  Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.

Documents in My Oracle Support referred to in the Certifications section of My Oracle Support pertaining to general information on EBS 11i (such as Document 986762.1) are in the process of being updated to reflect this certification.

References
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Friday Apr 16, 2010

The Scoop: Oracle E-Business Suite Support on 64-bit Linux

Linux tux-large.jpg
This article addresses frequently asked questions about Oracle E-Business Suite (EBS) 64-bit Linux support.

Q:  Which 64-bit Linux OSs are supported for EBS?

A: Beginning with Release 12, we support the following 64-bit operating systems for both application and database tiers on x86-64 servers:

  • Oracle Enterprise Linux
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux
  • SUSE Linux Enterprise Server
For EBS Release 11i (and again in Release 12), when the application tier is installed on a certified platform, additional platforms (including the above) may be used for a 64-bit database tier on x86-64 servers. This is an example of a mixed platform architecture (Release 12), or a Split Configuration (Release 11i).

Q:  I understand that the EBS application tier code is 32-bit, even for the 64-bit Linux OS -- is this the case?
A: It is true that the majority of executables provided as part of our release media on the application tier are 32-bit (as are the Fusion Middleware libraries and objects they depend on).  However, the 'Planning' products have large memory requirements and therefore are 64-bit compiled to take advantage of the larger memory space afforded by the 64-bit OS'es.

Q:  How do I install EBS on 64-bit Linux?
A:  For new installations of EBS Release 12 on supported 64-bit Linux operating systems, you can use Rapid Install as directed in "Oracle Applications Installation Guide: Using Rapid Install" to install the database and application tiers.

For Database Tier Only platforms in a mixed platform architecture, you can use Rapid Install as directed in "Oracle Applications Installation Guide: Using Rapid Install" to install the database and application tiers on supported platforms, and then migrate the database tier to a certified 64-bit operating system.

Q:  How do I migrate EBS Release 12 from 32-bit Linux to 64-bit Linux?

A:  Please refer to Migrating Oracle E-Business Suite R12 from Linux 32-bit to Linux 64-bit (Note 471566.1) for instructions on how to migrate EBS from 32-bit to 64-bit Linux.

Q:  How do I migrate an existing EBS database to 64-bit Linux?

A:  To migrate an EBS database to a certified 64-bit Linux operating system on x86-64, refer to one of the following documents:

For EBS Release 11i:

For EBS Release 12:
Q:  How do I migrate EBS Release 12 on a non-Linux platform to 64-bit Linux?
A:  There is no documentation that covers the direct migration from a Windows or UNIX application tier directly to 64-bit Linux.  However, the document Application Tier Platform Migration with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 (Note 438086.1) contains instructions for migrating to 32-bit Linux, and Migrating Oracle E-Business Suite R12 from Linux 32-bit to Linux 64-bit (Note 471566.1) contains the additional steps to configure your environment for 64-bit Linux.  Pondering this question just now gave me the idea to write a new white paper, which will presumably eliminate several steps from either document and insure a smooth migration process.  Stay tuned to this space for more information on this upcoming paper.

Q:  How do I patch EBS on Linux 64-bit?

A: The EBS 32-bit Linux application tier patches are applicable for 64-bit Linux OSes as well.  From the Oracle support portal, you can do a search by patch number to bring up the 32-bit patch.  Note that if you click on the informational icon to the left of the Platform pulldown menu for this patch, it brings up a page stating:

For Oracle Applications Release 12 on Linux x86-64, queries will return a Linux x86 patch. This patch may be applied to both 32-bit and 64-bit operating systems.

Q:  What are the benefits of running EBS Release 12 on 64-bit Linux?

A: Theoretically, 64 bit architectures allow for "2 to the 64th power" bytes or 16 exabytes of RAM, and while individual operating systems and hardware architectures impose constraints (for instance, the maximum RAM is 1 terabyte on x86-64), you are unlikely to hit this memory limit with today's applications. 

For 32-bit compiled code, even though the process address space is limited to approximately 3 GB (even on the 64-bit OS), with overall addressable space up to 1 terabyte you'll be able to run many more processes.  This is an excellent model all around for larger customers wanting to consolidate their hardware or scale up.

Q:  Can we (or why can't we) run EBS Release 11i on 64-bit Linux?

A:   We support the use of 64-bit Linux OS'es in the EBS database tier in a 'split configuration' or 'database tier only' configuration for 11i, wherein the application tier can be on any certified EBS platform and the database tier can run additional database certified platforms (like 64-bit Linux).  Customers wanting headroom for the RAM-intensive DB processes can run their database tier on Linux 64-bit (in a split tier configuration), and if needed spread the application tiers (CM, Forms, Web) across multiple middle tier machines to distribute the load amongst the 32-bit OS'es.

As to why we do not support EBS Release 11i on 64-bit Linux, there are several reasons:  a)  it doesn't "just run";  b) there is no third party support; c) given the costs, we chose to chose to focus our resources on EBS Release 12 and beyond.  Let me explain.

Contrary to what you might think, you cannot necessarily run 32-bit code on 64-bit Linux without a bit of tweaking.  On the technical front, you would need to install the 32-bit OS libraries and deal with potential conflicts between 32-bit and 64-bit OS packages, including file overwrites.  Note that when we introduced 64-bit OS support in EBS Release 12 we made changes to all of the product makefiles, carefully analyzed and laid out both the 32-bit and 64-bit package dependencies, modified installation, configuration and cloning software for OS recognition and proper file locations, and conducted extensive testing.  Each new release requires this process to be repeated, and each new release package requires an independent packaging effort.

In addition, for 64-bit Linux support we've established a 64-bit infrastructure across Oracle teams (in support, engineering, release, QA and certification teams).  This infrastructure investment was made for EBS Release 12 and higher.

Also note that EBS Release 11i has an aging technology infrastructure, and neither Oracle nor third party tool versions used in EBS Release 11i are explicitly supported on the 64-bit operating system in 32-bit mode.

Call us old-fashioned if you will, but given these limitations, because of our support commitment to you and what's behind that commitment we will only support EBS Release 12 forward on 64-bit Linux.

References
Related Articles

Tuesday Apr 13, 2010

TDE Tablespace Encryption 11.2.0.1 Certified with EBS 11i

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 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i.

What is Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) ?

Advanced_Security_Overview.gif

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_Architecture.png

New 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 Release 11i environments can be migrated to the latest 11gR2 version of encrypted tablespaces. For more information, please refer to:

Prerequisites

  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i version 11.5.10.2 or higher

Platforms certified for 11i

  • Linux x86 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86 (SLES 10)
  • Linux x86-64 (Oracle Enterprise Linux 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (RHEL 4, 5)
  • Linux x86-64 (SLES 10)
  • Oracle Solaris on SPARC (64-bit) (Solaris 10)
  • IBM AIX (5.3 and 6.1)

References

Related Articles

Friday Apr 09, 2010

Transportable Database 11gR2 Certified with E-Business Suite

Screenshot of cover page for MAA whitepaper on platform migration maapaper.png
Platform migration is the process of moving a database from one operating system platform to a different operating system platform. You might wish to migrate your E-Business Suite database to create testing instances, experiment with new architectures, perform benchmarks, or prepare for actual platform changes in your production environment.

Database migration across platforms of the same "endian" format (byte ordering) using the Transportable Database (TDB) process is now certified with Oracle Database 11gR2 (11.2.0.1) for:
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Releases 11i (11.5.10.2)
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.4 or higher
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 or higher
This EBS database migration process was previously certified only for 10gR2 and 11gR1.

Comparing Export/Import to Transportable Database

The supported way to accomplish this in prior releases of the Oracle database has been to export the data from the database on the old platform, create a new database on the new platform, and import the data into the new database. This process could take a number of days for a large database.

Transportable Database can be used to reduce the amount of time required to migrate a database between platforms that share the same "endian" format. Note that if the endian format is different between the source and target platforms, then Transportable Database cannot be used. For generic databases, a different method, such as Streams, Data Pump, or Cross-Platform Transportable Tablespaces must be used instead.  For E-Business Suite databases, only the Export/Import option is a viable fallback if the Transportable Database feature can't be used for your source and target platforms.

The reductions in migration times can be significant. For example, a test database within the Maximum Availability Architecture (MAA) High Availability Lab was migrated to a new platform using Data Pump export and import in 74 minutes. The same database was migrated using Transportable Database in 37 minutes, a 50% reduction in migration time.

What platforms are support for Transportable Databases?

Suitable target platforms can be verified by querying the view V$DB_TRANSPORTABLE_PLATFORM using sqlplus (connected as sysdba) on the source platform:
SQL> select platform_name from v$db_transportable_platform;
If the intended target platform appears in the output, Transportable Database can then be used to migrate the database to this target. Otherwise, an alternative such as export/import should be used instead.

Cross-Platform Transportable Tablespaces (XTTS) not certified yet

Please note that an alternative database technology known as Cross-Platform Transportable Tablespaces (XTTS) to migrate data between platforms of different endian formats is not yet certified with Oracle E-Business Suite.

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

References
Related Articles

Monday Mar 29, 2010

Business Continuity for EBS Using Oracle 11g Physical Standby DB

Our Applications Technology Group database architects have released two new documents covering the use of Oracle Data Guard to create physical standby databases for Oracle E-Business Suite environments:

Architecture diagram showing how Oracle Data Guard physical standby works

What is a Standby Database?

A standby database is a transactionally-consistent copy of the primary database. Using a backup copy of the primary database, you can create up to thirty standby databases and incorporate them in Data Guard configuration.

There are three types of standby databases:
Physical Standby
Provides a physically identical copy of the primary database, with on-disk database structures that are identical to the primary database on a block-for-block basis. The database schema, including indexes, are the same. A physical standby database is kept synchronized with the primary database by recovering the redo data received from the primary database.

Logical Standby
Contains the same logical information as the primary database, although the physical organization and structure of the data can be different. It is kept synchronized with the primary database by transforming the data in the redo logs received from the primary database into SQL statements and then executing the SQL statements on the standby database.

Snapshot Standby
A fully updatable standby database. Like a physical or logical standby database, a snapshot standby database receives and archives redo data from a primary database. Unlike a physical or logical standby database, a snapshot standby database does not apply the redo data that it receives.
These new notes detail the steps for setting up the first of these types, a Physical Standby database using Oracle Data Guard.

New EBS Roadmap documentations, too

Our Applications Technology Group database architects have also released two new roadmap documents covering the latest options for High Availability, Real Application Clusters, and Maximum Availability Architectures:
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Thursday Mar 11, 2010

A Primer on Migrating Oracle Applications to a New Platform

maapaper.png
In Support we field a lot of questions about the migration of Oracle Applications to different platforms.  This article describes the techniques available for migrating an Oracle Applications environment to a new platform and discusses some of the common questions that arise during migration.  This subject has been frequently discussed in previous blog articles but there still seems to be a gap regarding the type of questions we are frequently asked in Service Requests.

Some of the questions we see are quite abstract. Customers simply want to get a grip on understanding how they approach a migration. Others want to know if a particular architecture is viable. Other customers ask about mixing different platforms within a single Oracle Applications environment.   

Just to clarify, throughout this article, the term 'platform' refers specifically to operating systems and not to the underlying hardware. For a clear definition of 'platform' in the context of Oracle Applications Support then Terri's very timely article:
The migration process is very similar for both 11i and R12 so this article only mentions specific differences where relevant.

1. Why Have a Migration Process at All?

Some customers have asked why there is a migration process at all. Surely they say it would be easier just to perform a fresh install of the E-Business Suite on the target environment and then perform an export/import of the database.

The above process is reliant on the fresh install you perform exactly matching the patching levels and technology stack levels of the environment you are migrating from. The database contains tables with information regarding files in your APPL_TOP. If you mix a fresh application tier install with an already established database, there will be a mismatch between these tables and the objects they describe. This will cause problems during later patching. The same issue applies regarding Java objects in the database and the files contained in the JAVA_TOP. For these reasons, you should never consider mixing an application tier with an unmatched database tier.

Although the migration process may appear quite time consuming and linear, much of it can be done in advance. With careful planning, your production environment downtime can be limited to little more than the time it takes to export and import the database and the time taken to apply several key patches. The majority of the application tier migration can be done in advance whilst your production environment is still up and available for updating by users.

2. Migrating the Database Tier to a New Platform

If you plan to migrate both the application and database tier to a new platform, the flow of the documentation will follow more logically if you migrate the database tier before the application tier however there's no particular reason why you should not migrate the application tier first.
Tip:  If migrating the database tier first, make sure the source application tier is updated to connect to the migrated database tier before migrating the application tier. This is because the application tier migration process is only updating the application tier configuration, and assumes the database connection values are the same as source. 
There are several different ways to migrate the database tier. Using the basic export/import tool was the only way up until the release of 10g. With 10gR1 came the introduction of the datapump utility which looks similar to export/import but with useful enhancements and improved performance.

With 10gR2 came the introduction of cross-platform transportable tablespaces and transportable databases. At time of writing, transportable database functionality is certified for use with Oracle Applications for Release 11i and for Release 12Cross-platform transportable tablespace (XTTS) is still currently part of an Early Adopter Program (EAP). Version 11g of the database supports both datapump and transportable database migrations.

Using transportable database as a means to migrate your database is dependent on both platforms having the same "endian" format. The following SQL query run on your source database will tell you if your target platform is compatible.
SQL> select platform_name from v$db_transportable_platform;
Transportable database uses the Recovery Manager (RMAN) Convert Database functionality to migrate the database to the new platform. It's not supported to use RMAN outside documentation written specifically for Oracle Applications to perform your database migration.

One rule that applies to all the above migration methods is that only complete database migrations are supported. It is not supported to perform partial database migrations or complete migrations by using a "schema by schema" approach.

If using export/import, there are some parameters that are not used in the default parameter file supplied such as named pipes and direct=y. This generally means they are untested in the Oracle Applications environment and, although they may work, you should generally be wary of using parameters that are not specifically documented as being Oracle Applications friendly.

If migrating from a 32-bit platform/database to-64 bit, then assuming you install a 64 bit Oracle home on your target environment, the conversion to a 64 bit database is done automatically. No additional conversion is required to enable 64 bit functionality. Similarly, if you are migrating a 64 bit database to a 32 bit platform the downward conversion is performed implicitly.

You should also remember that it is generally only possible to migrate Oracle Applications databases of the same versions. There are only very limited circumstances where you can upgrade the database as part of the migration. Version compatibilities are discussed at the start of each database migration Note. 

It's inevitable with Applications databases that export files are going to be large. Datapump supports the ESTIMATE_ONLY parameter that can be used at the command line to estimate the size of the datapump export files that will be generated.

3. Migrating the Application Tier to a New Platform

The main notes to follow are:
These notes explain how to migrate the Apps application tier to a new platform. The 11i note can be used to migrate to all supported Unix and Linux platforms, not just Linux. However, these Notes cannot be used to migrate the application tier to a Windows platform.

The first section of the Notes covers the prerequisite requirements of the migration. This migration method requires AutoConfig and Rapid Clone.

The final step in Section 1 requires you to run Maintain Snapshot in adadmin. This must be run, and it must run successfully. Snapshot information is stored in the following tables:
  • AD_SNAPSHOTS
  • AD_SNAPSHOT_FILES
  • AD_SNAPSHOT_BUGFIXES
The migration requires you to create a manifest of your application tier file system based on the Snapshot taken in the preceding step. This manifest is then uploaded to My Oracle Support and is used to generate a custom migration patch. The custom migration patch created is specific to your upgrade only and contains all the files contained in the APPL_TOP that are binary specific to your new target platform. This patch is therefore applied in your new environment.

When performing the application tier migration, you are required to install a new application tier technology stack. These are the Developer and Application Server Oracle homes. This is a good opportunity to install the latest version. For example, if you are migrating an 11.5.9 environment, you can still install an 11.5.10.2 application tier technology stack.

The same rule applies with the R12.0 and the R12.1 technology stack. There is no requirement to upgrade to 12.1 if you wish to use a 12.0 technology stack. Remember, even if you are maintaining your existing technology stack versions you will still need to download and build a new installation staging area for your new target platform.

Remember to check all the patches you have applied to the source technology stack previously as it is conceivable you have applied patches on your old technology stack that have not been applied to the newly built technology stack. 

4. Partial Migration to a New Platform

There's no particular reason not to migrate the database or application tier in isolation to a new platform. It may be, for example, that you are currently running the E Business Suite on a single node and you're encountering resource or performance problems. You therefore decide to migrate Forms and web application tier processing to a new node which is running on a different platform to your current environment. This is generally described as a split configuration. You should be able to just follow the same Notes to perform this migration.
Tip:  Remember, if you only migrate Forms and Web services to the new platform, in your new environment you will now have to download and apply each E-Business Suite patch twice (once for each platform) as you will  still have concurrent processing being handled on the database tier.
For the above reason, if you're planning to run a split configuration, I would always tend to advise running all application tier services (including admin and concurrent processing) on one platform and using the other platform exclusively as a database tier. This means E-Business Suite patches only need to be applied once at the new application tier level.
In the early days of 11i there was a perceived performance advantage to having the database and concurrent processing on the same node. This is no longer an architectural requirement, given the vast improvements in network bandwidth.  You are free to locate your batch processing services on a different physical server than your database tier.

There is an additional maintenance overhead of running multiple application tiers on different platforms, so you should take that incremental cost into consideration when planning your architecture. In all cases, you should always locate all nodes in the same data centre and ensure the fastest available network connection between nodes. This configuration should also be more scalable allowing easier introduction of additional nodes at both application and database tier levels.

The above conditions regarding concurrent processing and the database tier apply equally to Apps 11i and 12.

5. Sharing the Application Tier

If you're contemplating a migration and are using multiple application tiers then this is often a good opportunity to implement a shared application tier architecture. A shared application tier means storing a single application tier filesystem on a shared disk accessible to all application  tier nodes. Each application tier node continues to run all or a subset of application tier services however all application tiers access the same single disk subsystem. This reduces maintenance as application tier patches only need to be applied once and therefore may reduce future upgrade or patching downtime.

If you are running multiple application tiers in your source environment (on the same platform) and plan to use a shared application tier on your target environment then you should merge your application tiers on the source environment before migrating. This means only having to migrate a single application tier. The merge process is described in Note 233428.1 for 11i.

In R12 all applications tiers have a full application tier file system installed, even if the application tier is only configured to run a subset of application tier services. This means there is no need to merge application tiers in the same way as was required with 11i.   

A shared application tier can be configured in conjunction with third party software and hardware load balancers.

Top Five Migration Tips

So to conclude, here's a top five list of things to consider when migration Oracle Applications to a new platform:
  • Perform as much of the migration as possible outside of the production system downtime
  • Consider a shared application tier configuration if you plan to use multiple application tiers
  • Place all nodes in your E-Business Suite environment in the same data centre regardless of the location of your users
  • If using a split configuration, do not feel compelled to retain concurrent processing on the database tier
  • Use transportable database functionality to migrate the database tier if your source and target platforms have the same endian format
References

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Wednesday Mar 10, 2010

OCFS2 for Linux Certified for E-Business Suite Release 12 Application Tiers

Oracle E-Business Suite environments can be scaled up to handle large numbers of concurrent users by load-balancing across multiple application mid-tier servers.  At Oracle, we run Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 internally with a pool of approximately forty application tier servers.

The novelty of applying the same patch to every one of those servers individually wears off pretty quickly.  There's a easier way: you can share a single file system between all of your E-Business Suite application tier servers.  This allows you to apply patches once to the central filesystem, rather than maintaining each application tier server node individually.  This approach reduces maintenance overheads and shortens your patching downtimes. 
r12sharedfilesystem2.jpg
Starting with Release 12, you can even share the same file system between multiple E-Business Suite instances (although for obvious reasons, you should do this only for non-production instances).

Customers embarking upon this path inevitably ask, "Which shared filesystem do you recommend?"  The short answer is that we don't recommend any specific filesystem, but there's more to it than just that.  I've discussed the nuances of choosing a shared file system in this article.

That article explicitly stated that we do not certify specific file systems with the E-Business Suite.  That was true at the time that article was published, and is still generally true for most file systems.  However, your requests made it clear that we needed to take a closer look at Oracle Cluster File System (OCFS2) for Linux, so we did.

What's new?

Oracle Cluster File System (OCFS2) for Linux OCFS2 1.4 and higher is now certified and supported for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 application tier file systems. System administrators may deploy both the APPL_TOP and INST_TOP on Linux-based OCFS2 shared-disk cluster file systems.

Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 certification tests with OCFS2-based application tier shared file systems used the following configuration:
  • Oracle Enterprise Linux Version 5 Update 4 (OEL5U4 64-bit) running OCFS2 1.4.4
  • Separate volumes for APPL_TOP and INST_TOP storage (INST_TOP was also tested and is certified with local storage)
  • Oracle E-Business Suite application tier mount options used: rw, _netdev, nointr
  • Mount option datavolume was not used in the application tier mounts
For detailed instructions on configuring OCFS2, see OCFS2: A Cluster File System for Linux: User's Guide for Release 1.4 on the Project: OCFS2 website.

What about EBS database tiers?

The E-Business Suite's database tier is built on the Oracle Database.  The Oracle Database is certified with OCFS2.   Therefore, OCFS2 is supported for the E-Business Suite database tier, too.  This applies to both Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.

What's not certified or supported?

Oracle Cluster File System (OCFS2) for Linux is not certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i application tier file systems.

Oracle Cluster File System for Windows is not certified with application tier file systems for either Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i or Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.

How well does this work for you?

As with all new certifications, we're very interested in hearing about your experiences with this.  If you've experimented with OCFS2 for Linux for your Apps mid-tiers, please post a comment here or drop me a private email with your feedback.  I'll make sure that your comments get back to the OCFS2 team directly.

References
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Wednesday Mar 03, 2010

EBS 12 Certified with 11gR2 DB 11.2.0.1 on HP-UX Itanium

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Oracle Database 11g Release 2 version 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 (12.0, 12.1) on the HP-UX Itanium platform. This announcement includes:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1 Real Application Clusters (RAC)
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption
  • Advanced Security Option (ASO)/Advanced Networking Option (ANO)
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite R12 Database Instances
The operating system version on this platform covered by this certification is HP-UX 11.31.

Please also review all prerequisites for interoperability of  EBS with 11gR2 listed in the documents below.  Note that 12.0 certification with 11gR2 on this platform currently requires 12.0.6, and we are working on releasing a required patch that enables 12.0.4 to be certified as well.

The following associated database certifications are still pending:
  • Database Vault
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption
References

Tuesday Mar 02, 2010

E-Business Suite Certified on 11gR2 11.2.0.1 on IBM AIX on Power Systems (64-bit)

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Oracle Database 11g Release 2 version 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite 11i (11.5.10.2) and Release 12 (12.0, 12.1) on the IBM AIX 5.3 and 6.1 on Power Systems (64-bit) platform. This announcement includes support for the following database options and features:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1 Real Application Clusters (RAC)
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption with EBS 11i and R12
  • Advanced Security Option (ASO)/Advanced Networking Option (ANO) with Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite 11i and R12 Database Instances
The following associated database certifications are pending:
  • Database Vault 11.2.0.1 Certification with EBS 11i and R12
  • Tablespace Encryption using Database 11g Release 2 Version 11.2.0.1 with EBS 11i and R12
Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for updates, which I'll post as soon as soon as they're available.   

References

Monday Mar 01, 2010

EBS 11i Applications Desktop Integrator (ADI) Certified on 11gR2 Database

The Client Applications Desktop Integrator (ADI) is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i running on the 11gR2 Database.  Customers may continue using the client-installed ADI  after upgrading their E-Business Suite Release 11i environment to the 11gR2 Database.

This certification applies to all ADI functionality, including:
  • General Ledger Journal Wizard
  • Budget Wizard
  • Report Wizard
  • Analysis Wizard
  • Account Hierarchy Editor
  • Request Center
  • Assets Integrators
Note that this certification applies only to Client ADI with Applications 11i.  Client ADI cannot be used with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12; webADI is available for Release 12 users.

No new ADI functionality or patches were released as part of this new certification, and the ADI team has not released any updates to their documentation.  The latest updates to their 10gR2 documentation also apply to EBS environments running on the 11gR2 database.  For more information (and a useful Frequently Asked Questions summary for ADI), see:
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Thursday Feb 04, 2010

11gR2 DB 11.2.0.1 Certified on Solaris 10 and E-Business Suite

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Oracle Database 11g Release 2 version 11.2.0.1 is now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite 11i (11.5.10.2) and Release 12 (12.0, 12.1) on Solaris 10 on SPARC (64-bit). This announcement includes:
  • Oracle Database 11gR2 version 11.2.0.1
  • Real Application Clusters (RAC)
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Column Encryption
  • Advanced Security Option (ASO) / Advanced Networking Option (ANO)
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite 11i Database Instances
The following associated database certifications are still pending:
  • Export/Import Process for E-Business Suite R12 Database Instances
  • Database Vault 11.2.0.1 Certification
  • Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) Tablespace Encryption
As usual, Oracle's Revenue Recognition rules prohibit us from discussing certification and release dates, but you're welcome to monitor or subscribe this blog for updates on these pending certifications. 

The operating system version covered by this certification is Solaris 10; there are no plans to certify Solaris 8 and 9.

References
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Friday Jan 22, 2010

Latest DSTv13 Timezone Patches Available for E-Business Suite

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If your E-Business Suite Release 11i or 12 environment is configured to support Daylight Saving Time (DST) or international time zones, it's important to keep your timezone definition files up-to-date.  They were last changed in July 2009 and released as DSTv11.  DSTv13 is now available and certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12. 

Note that if you've prided yourself on keeping your environment up-to-date, you didn't miss DSTv12.  That version was not released externally.  DSTv13 is the next release after DSTv11.

Is Your Apps Environment Affected?

When a country or region changes DST rules or their time zone definitions, your Oracle E-Business Suite environment will require patching if:
  • Your Oracle E-Business Suite environment is located in the affected country or region OR
  • Your Oracle E-Business Suite environment is located outside the affected country or region but you conduct business or have customers or suppliers in the affected country or region
We last discussed the DSTv11 patches on this blog.  The latest "DSTv13" timezone definition file is cumulative and includes all DST changes in Olson tzdata 2009s and earlier time zone definitions.  DSTv13 includes changes to the following timezones since the DSTv11 release:
  • Africa/Cairo
  • America/Argentina/San_Luis
  • America/Buenos_Aires
  • America/Cordoba, America/Catamarca
  • America/Argentina/Tucuman
  • Antarctica/Casey
  • Antarctica/Davis
  • Antarctica/Mawson
  • Asia/Hong_Kong
  • Asia/Karachi
  • Asia/Gaza
  • Asia/Damascus
  • Europe/Samara
  • Indian/Mauritius
  • Pacific/Fiji
  • Pacific/Apia
  • Egypt
  • America/Argentina/Buenos_Aires
  • America/Argentina/Cordoba
  • America/Argentina/Catamarca
  • Asia/Dhaka, Hongkong
  • NZ-CHAT
  • America/Rosario
  • America/Argentina/ComodRivadavia   
What Patches Are Required?

In case you haven't been following our previous time zone or Daylight Saving Time (DST)-related articles, international timezone definitions for E-Business Suite environments are captured in a series of patches for the database and application tier servers in your environment. The actual scope and number of patches that need to be applied depend on whether you've applied previous DST or timezone-related patches. Some sysadmins have remarked to me that it generally takes more time to read the various timezone documents than it takes to apply these patches, but your mileage may vary.

We've published the following Notes which identify the various components in your E-Business Suite environment that may need DST patches:
What Have Your Experiences Been?

DST patching was a hot topic a few years ago, so much so that we convened some emergency web-based seminars for customers to clarify out the requirements for E-Business Suite environments. Since then, it seems like time zone patching has become more predictable and better-documented, and I haven't heard about any recent customer escalations in this area. I'd be interested in hearing about your experiences lately in keeping your Apps environment up-to-date with time zone patches; feel free to drop me an email or post a comment here with your thoughts.

Tuesday Jan 12, 2010

EBS 11i Certified on Windows Itanium (2003) and 10gR2 10.2.0.4 Database

Our Applications Platforms Group has certified Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i 11.5.10.2 with the 10gR2 10.2.0.4 Database on Microsoft Windows Itanium (2003).

This is a split configuration (or database tier-only) certification.  The application tier must be on a fully-certified Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i platform.

References
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