Thursday Nov 14, 2013

Firefox ESR 24 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

Firefox ESR logoMozilla Firefox 24 Extended Support Release (ESR) is certified as a Windows-based client browser for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i, 12.0, 12.1, and 12.2.

What is Mozilla Firefox ESR?

Mozilla has begun offering an Extended Support Release based on an official release of Firefox for organizations that are unable to mass-deploy new consumer-oriented versions of Firefox every six weeks.  From the Mozilla ESR FAQ:

What does the Mozilla Firefox ESR life cycle look like?

Releases will be maintained for approximately one year, with point releases containing security updates coinciding with regular Firefox releases. The ESR will also have a two cycle (12 week) overlap between the time of a new release and the end-of-life of the previous release to permit testing and certification prior to deploying a new version.

Firefox ESR schedule

Maintenance of each ESR, through point releases, is limited to high-risk/high-impact security vulnerabilities and in rare cases may also include off-schedule releases that address live security vulnerabilities. Backports of any functional enhancements and/or stability fixes are not in scope.

At the end of the support period for an ESR version:

  • the release will reach its end-of-life
  • no further updates will be offered for that version
  • an update to the next version will be offered through the application update service

E-Business Suite to be certified with Firefox Extended Support Releases

New personal versions of Firefox are released roughly every six weeks.  It is impractical for us to certify these new personal versions of Firefox with the Oracle E-Business Suite because a given Firefox release is generally obsolete by the time we complete the certification.

From Firefox 10 and onwards, Oracle E-Business Suite is certified only with selected Firefox Extended Support Release versions. Oracle has no current plans to certify new Firefox personal releases with the E-Business Suite.

As of this announcement, Oracle E-Business Suite is certified with Firefox ESR 10, 17, and 24.

EBS patching policy for Firefox compatibility issues

Mozilla stresses their goal of ensuring that Firefox personal versions will continue to offer the same level of application compatibility as Firefox Extended Support Releases. 

Oracle E-Business Suite Development will issue new E-Business Suite patches or workarounds that can be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases.  If you report compatibility issues with Firefox personal releases that cannot be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases, your options are:

  1. Deploy a certified Firefox Extended Support Release version instead of the Firefox personal version
  2. Report the incompatibility between Firefox ESR and Firefox personal to Mozilla
  3. Use Internet Explorer (on Windows) or Safari (on Mac OS X) until Mozilla resolves the issue
EBS Compatibility with Firefox ESR security updates

Mozilla may release new updates to Firefox ESR versions to address high-risk/high-impact security issues.  These updates are considered to be certified with the E-Business Suite on the day that they're released.  You do not need to wait for a certification from Oracle before deploying these new Firefox ESR security updates.

E-Business Suite Prerequisites

EBS 11i
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10.2 
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
EBS R12.0.x
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
EBS 12.1.x:
  • Base release

EBS 12.2.x:

  • Base release

Certified desktop operating systems

  • Windows 8
  • Windows 7 SP1
  • Windows Vista SP2
  • Windows XP SP3

References

Your feedback is welcome

I'd be very interested in hearing about your plans for adopting Firefox Extended Support Releases in your environments.  Please drop me a private email or post your comments here with your thoughts on this.

Related Articles

Friday Sep 27, 2013

Microsoft Windows 8 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

Microsoft Windows 8 logoI'm very pleased to announce that Microsoft Windows 8 desktop clients are certified for the Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10.2, 12.0, 12.1, and 12.2. This certification applies to the following editions:

  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8 Enterprise
  • Windows 8 N edition
  • Windows 8 Pro N edition
  • Windows 8 Pro Pack N edition
Internet Explorer 10
Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10.2 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications 11.5.10.2
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or later.
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) (Note 125767.1).
  • MLR Patch 8888184
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.0.6
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or later.
  • Oracle Forms Version 10.1.2.3 or later.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.3
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates

Oracle E-Business Suite 12.2 Prerequisites

  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.2.2 or higher
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Firefox ESR 17
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10.2.
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6)(patch 5903765) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.0.6
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.3 or higher
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates
Oracle JInitiator Not Compatible

Oracle JInitiator was built on top of Java 1.3.  Java 1.3 is desupported and is not compatible with Windows 8, Windows Vista, or Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 8.

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 ended in December 2008, and Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.3 ended for EBS customers in July 2009.

Use the Native JRE plug-in

Windows 8 desktop clients are certified only with the native Java Runtime Environment (JRE) with Windows 8. 

Our standard policy is that all E-Business Suite customers can apply all JRE updates to end-user desktops from JRE 1.6.0_03 and later updates on the 1.6 codeline, and from JRE 7u10 and later updates on the JRE 7 codeline. 

The minimum JRE prerequisites for Windows 8 are higher than in previous releases.  These are:

  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_37 or later 1.6 updates
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.7.0_10 or later 1.7 updates

We test all new JRE 1.6 and JRE 7 releases in parallel with the JRE development process, so all new JRE 1.6 and 7 releases are considered certified with the E-Business Suite on the same day that they're released by our Java team. 

You do not need to wait for a certification announcement before applying new JRE 1.6 or JRE 7 releases to your EBS users' desktops. This applies to all certified Windows desktop operating systems, including XP, Vista, 7, and 8.

WebADI and Report Manager Users

Running WebADI and Report Manager through Excel on Windows 8 has additional patch requirements. For further information see Document 1077728.1.

What About Windows Hyper-V?

End-users are able to run Windows XP, Vista, and 7 as client guest operating systems via Windows Hyper-V on a Win8 desktop client.

We have no plans to conduct separate EBS certification efforts for Hyper-V guest client configurations running on Win8 clients.  Oracle Support will attempt to reproduce reported issues using non-virtualized WinXP, Vista, or 7 desktop clients.  Microsoft Support may to be engaged for any issues that can only be reproduced only in Hyper-V on Windows 8 desktops.

What about other Windows 8 editions?

We do not currently plan to certify the following editions with Oracle E-Business Suite:

  • Windows RT
  • Windows 8 tablet-oriented interface (formerly called Metro)
I would not expect the results of our certification to apply to Windows RT.

What About Earlier Versions of IE?

Microsoft only supports IE 10 on Windows 8 desktops.  Microsoft does not support earlier versions of IE on Win8, so Oracle is only able to support IE10 on Windows 8 clients for the E-Business Suite.

Pending Win8 Certifications

BiDi (Arabic and Hebrew Languages)

Due to issues with right side truncation, Windows 8 is not currently certified for BiDi (Arabic and Hebrew) languages. A patch fix for this issue is in progress.

MS Projects

Posting information between Oracle Projects and Microsoft Projects will currently error when running on Windows 8. A patch fix for this issue is in progress. For further information see Document 1077728.1 listed below.

Client Server Products

The majority of Client/Server products are either not currently certified or will not be certified on Windows 8. For further information see document 277535.1 listed below.

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

References

Related Articles

Wednesday Jan 16, 2013

Firefox ESR 17 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

Firefox ESR logoMozilla Firefox 17 Extended Support Release (ESR) is certified as a Windows-based client browser for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i and 12.

What is Mozilla Firefox ESR?

Mozilla has begun offering an Extended Support Release based on an official release of Firefox for organizations that are unable to mass-deploy new consumer-oriented versions of Firefox every six weeks.  From the Mozilla ESR FAQ:

What does the Mozilla Firefox ESR life cycle look like?

Releases will be maintained for approximately one year, with point releases containing security updates coinciding with regular Firefox releases. The ESR will also have a two cycle (12 week) overlap between the time of a new release and the end-of-life of the previous release to permit testing and certification prior to deploying a new version.

Firefox ESR schedule

Maintenance of each ESR, through point releases, is limited to high-risk/high-impact security vulnerabilities and in rare cases may also include off-schedule releases that address live security vulnerabilities. Backports of any functional enhancements and/or stability fixes are not in scope.

At the end of the support period for an ESR version:

  • the release will reach its end-of-life
  • no further updates will be offered for that version
  • an update to the next version will be offered through the application update service

E-Business Suite to be certified with Firefox Extended Support Releases

New personal versions of Firefox are released roughly every six weeks.  It is impractical for us to certify these new personal versions of Firefox with the Oracle E-Business Suite because a given Firefox release is generally obsolete by the time we complete the certification.

From Firefox 10 and onwards, Oracle E-Business Suite will be certified only with selected Firefox Extended Support Release versions. Oracle has no current plans to certify new Firefox personal releases with the E-Business Suite.

As of this announcement, Oracle E-Business Suite is certified with Firefox ESR 10 and 17.

EBS patching policy for Firefox compatibility issues

Mozilla stresses their goal of ensuring that Firefox personal versions will continue to offer the same level of application compatibility as Firefox Extended Support Releases. 

Oracle E-Business Suite Development will issue new E-Business Suite patches or workarounds that can be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases.  If you report compatibility issues with Firefox personal releases that cannot be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases, your options are:

  1. Deploy a certified Firefox Extended Support Release version instead of the Firefox personal version
  2. Report the incompatibility between Firefox ESR and Firefox personal to Mozilla
  3. Use Internet Explorer (on Windows) or Safari (on Mac OS X) until Mozilla resolves the issue
EBS Compatibility with Firefox ESR security updates

Mozilla may release new updates to Firefox ESR versions to address high-risk/high-impact security issues.  These updates are considered to be certified with the E-Business Suite on the day that they're released.  You do not need to wait for a certification from Oracle before deploying these new Firefox ESR security updates.

E-Business Suite Prerequisites

Oracle E-Business Suite 11i
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 11.5.10.2 
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 or higher;
  • Base release

Certified desktop operating systems

  • Windows 7 & Windows 7 SP1
  • Windows Vista SP1 & SP2
  • Windows XP SP3

References

Your feedback is welcome

I'd be very interested in hearing about your plans for adopting Firefox Extended Support Releases in your environments.  Please drop me a private email or post your comments here with your thoughts on this.

Related Articles

Wednesday Feb 29, 2012

Firefox Extended Support Release 10 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

Firefox Extended Support Release ESR logoMozilla Firefox 10 Extended Support Release (ESR) is certified as a Windows-based client browser for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i and 12.

What is Mozilla Firefox ESR?

Mozilla has begun offering an Extended Support Release based on an official release of Firefox for organizations that are unable to mass-deploy new consumer-oriented versions of Firefox every six weeks.  From the Mozilla ESR FAQ:

What does the Mozilla Firefox ESR life cycle look like?

Releases will be maintained for approximately one year, with point releases containing security updates coinciding with regular Firefox releases. The ESR will also have a two cycle (12 week) overlap between the time of a new release and the end-of-life of the previous release to permit testing and certification prior to deploying a new version.

Firefox Extended Support Release ESR cycle

Maintenance of each ESR, through point releases, is limited to high-risk/high-impact security vulnerabilities and in rare cases may also include off-schedule releases that address live security vulnerabilities. Backports of any functional enhancements and/or stability fixes are not in scope.

At the end of the support period for an ESR version:

  • the release will reach its end-of-life
  • no further updates will be offered for that version
  • an update to the next version will be offered through the application update service

E-Business Suite to be certified with Firefox Extended Support Releases

New personal versions of Firefox are released roughly every six weeks.  It is impractical for us to certify these new personal versions of Firefox with the Oracle E-Business Suite because a given Firefox release is generally obsolete by the time we complete the certification.

From Firefox 10 and onwards, Oracle E-Business Suite will be certified only with selected Firefox Extended Support Release versions. Oracle has no current plans to certify new Firefox personal releases with the E-Business Suite.

EBS patching policy for Firefox compatibility issues

Mozilla stresses their goal of ensuring that Firefox personal versions will continue to offer the same level of application compatibility as Firefox Extended Support Releases. 

Oracle E-Business Suite Development will issue new E-Business Suite patches or workarounds that can be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases.  If you report compatibility issues with Firefox personal releases that cannot be reproduced with Firefox Extended Support Releases, your options are:

  1. Deploy a certified Firefox Extended Support Release version instead of the Firefox personal version
  2. Report the incompatibility between Firefox ESR and Firefox personal to Mozilla
  3. Use Internet Explorer (on Windows) or Safari (on Mac OS X) until Mozilla resolves the issue
EBS Compatibility with Firefox ESR security updates

Mozilla may release new updates to Firefox ESR versions to address high-risk/high-impact security issues.  These updates are considered to be certified with the E-Business Suite on the day that they're released.  You do not need to wait for a certification from Oracle before deploying these new Firefox ESR security updates.

E-Business Suite Prerequisites

Oracle E-Business Suite 11i
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later with;
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (Metalink Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
Oracle E-Business Suite R12
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0 with;
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model.
Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1 or higher;
  • Base release

Certified desktop operating systems

  • Windows 7 & Windows 7 SP1
  • Windows Vista SP1 & SP2
  • Windows XP SP3

References

Your feedback is welcome

I'd be very interested in hearing about your plans for adopting Firefox Extended Support Releases in your environments.  Please drop me a private email or post your comments here with your thoughts on this.

Related Articles

Friday Jun 24, 2011

Survey: Your Plans for Adopting New Firefox Releases?

Firefox logoMozilla is committing to releasing new Firefox versions every six weeks.  Mozilla released Firefox 5 this week.  With this release, Mozilla states that Firefox 4 is End-of-Life and will not receive any additional security updates.  In a comment thread posted to Mike Kaply's blog article discussing these new Firefox policies, Asa Dotzler from Mozilla stated:

... Enterprise has never been (and I’ll argue, shouldn’t be) a focus of ours. Until we run out of people who don’t have sysadmins and enterprise deployment teams looking out for them, I can’t imagine why we’d focus at all on the kinds of environments you care so much about.

 In a later comment, he added:

... A minute spent making a corporate user happy can better be spent making many regular users happy. I’d much rather Mozilla spending its limited resources looking out for the billions of users that don’t have enterprise support systems already taking care of them.

Asa then confirmed that every new Firefox release will put the previous one into End-of-Life:

As for John’s concern, “By the time I validate Firefox 5, what guarantee would I have that Firefox 5 won’t go EOL when Firefox 6 is released?”

He has the opposite of guarantees that won’t happen. He has my promise that it will happen. Firefox 6 will be the EOL of Firefox 5. And Firefox 7 will be the EOL for Firefox 6.

 He added:

“You’re basically saying you don’t care about corporations.”

Yes, I’m basically saying that I don’t care about making Firefox enterprise friendly.

Kev Needham, Channel Manager at Mozilla later stated to PC Mag:

The Web and Web browsers continue to evolve rapidly. Mozilla's focus is on providing users with the best Web experience possible, and Firefox needs to evolve at the pace the Web's users and developers expect. By releasing small, focused updates more often, we are able to deliver improved security and stability even as we introduce new features, which is better for our users, and for the Web.

We recognize that this shift may not be compatible with a large organization's IT Policy and understand that it is challenging to organizations that have effort-intensive certification polices. However, our development process is geared toward delivering products that support the Web as it is today, while innovating and building future Web capabilities. Tying Firefox product development to an organizational process we do not control would make it difficult for us to continue to innovate for our users and the betterment of the Web.

 Your feedback needed for E-Business Suite certifications 

Mozilla's new support policy has significant implications for enterprise users of Firefox with Oracle E-Business Suite.  We are reviewing the implications for our certification and support policies for Firefox now.  It would be very helpful if you could let me know about your organisation's plans for Firefox in light of this new information. 

Please feel free to drop me a private email, or post a comment here if that's appropriate. 


Wednesday Feb 23, 2011

Windows 7 Service Pack 1 Certified with E-Business Suite

windos7_logo2.png
There are three possible configurations for Windows 7 desktop clients:
  1. 32-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  2. 64-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  3. 64-bit Windows 7, 64-bit browsers, 64-bit JRE
We certified the first configuration in December 2009:  E-Business Suite with 32-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 32-bit versions of Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE.

We certified the second configuration in September 2010: E-Business Suite with 64-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 32-bit versions of IE and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE.

I'm pleased to announce that Microsoft Windows 7 Service Pack 1 (SP1) is now certified with both of those configurations for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i and Oracle E-Business Suite R12 with the following minimum requirements:

Internet Explorer 8 (32-bit)
ie8_logo_125.png
Oracle E-Business Suite 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) (note 125767.1).
  • MLR Patch 8888184
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher.
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0.x Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or higher.
  • Oracle Forms Version 10.1.2.3 or higher.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher.
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.1.x Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or higher.
Firefox 3.6.x (32-bit)
firefox_logo4.jpg
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or higher
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or higher (note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6)(patch 5903765) or higher
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_10 (32-bit) or higher.
  • It is also strongly recommended that 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) users apply patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important for running client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or higher).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or higher.
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_10 (32-bit) or higher.
  • It is also strongly recommended to apply patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important for running client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or higher).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_10 (32-bit) or higher.
  • Exceptions
Oracle JInitiator Not Supported

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator has expired for E-Business Suite customers.

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 ended in December 2008, and Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.3 ended for EBS customers in July 2009.  For more information about JInitiator desupport and switching your EBS end-users from JInitiator to the Sun JRE, see:
Windows 7 desktop clients are certified only with the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) with Windows 7.  Oracle JInitiator was built on top of Java 1.3.  Java 1.3 is desupported by Sun Microsystems and and not compatible with either Windows Vista or Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 7.

On Hacking Up JInitiator -- Please Don't

Various creative individuals have discovered that it's possible to replace a certain DLL in Oracle JInitiator 1.3 with a JVM from, say, JDK 1.6. I can't personally testify that these hacks work. I can say that this kind of surgery makes me intensely uncomfortable.

While it's nice to see creative initiative, I have to remind you that Oracle would regard this as a customization. We don't recommend customizing Oracle JInitiator for production environments.

What About Earlier Versions of IE?

Microsoft only supports IE 8 on Windows 7 desktops.  Microsoft does not support earlier versions of IE on Win7, so Oracle is only able to support IE8 on Windows 7 clients for the E-Business Suite.

Exceptions to this certification

Oracle JDeveloper 10g is not certified on Windows 7 desktop clients.  Our Fusion Middleware group has not publicly announced any plans for this certification.  If you are interested in this combination, I strongly recommend your logging a formal Service Request via My Oracle Support against the JDeveloper product to request it.

For information on other client based products that are not certified on Windows 7 please see:
Why are you interested in the third configuration?

As I mentioned in my previous update on this topic, we've certified the first two configurations and we're working on the third.  You've asked for it, so we'll deliver.

That said, I am curious about your business need for the final certification (Win7 64-bit + 64-bit browsers and JREs).  Firefox 64-bit releases seem to lag in functionality and in the general release cycle.  Some reports suggest that 64-bit browsers do not necessarily provide improved performance across the board, and may have compatibility issues -- most notably with Flash, since Adobe is still working on their 64-bit Flash Player.

Even more telling, in fresh installs of Windows 7 64-bit, Microsoft configures the default browser to be IE 32-bit, not IE 64-bit.  In other words, end-users need to take an extra step to run the 64-bit version of IE. 

If you're planning to reconfigure your users' desktops to invoke a 64-bit browser by default, I'd be very interested in understanding your reasons.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email.

References
Related Articles

Friday Sep 10, 2010

Windows 7 64-bit Clients + 32-bit Browsers Certified with EBS 11i & 12

windos7_logo2.png

[July 21, 2011 Update:  Added new client-server component certifications]

[Update Sep 15, 2010:  Changed JRE 1.6.0_03 to JRE 1.6.0_10 for Firefox and EBS 12.1 sections]

There are three possible configurations for Windows 7 desktop clients:

  1. 32-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  2. 64-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  3. 64-bit Windows 7, 64-bit browsers, 64-bit JRE
We certified the first configuration in December 2009:  E-Business Suite with 32-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 32-bit versions of Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE.

I'm very pleased to announce that the second configuration is now certified.  You may now run 64-bit Windows 7 desktop clients with 32-bit IE and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE and Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12.

Internet Explorer 8 (32-bit)
ie8_logo_125.png
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or later.
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) (Note 125767.1).
  • MLR Patch 8888184
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or later
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or later.
  • Oracle Forms Version 10.1.2.3 or later.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or later
Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or later
Firefox 3.6 (32-bit)
firefox_logo4.jpg
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6)(patch 5903765) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_10 (32-bit) or later
  • It is also strongly recommended to apply patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important if using client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or later).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 (32-bit) or later
  • It is also strongly recommended to apply patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important if using client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or later).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.1 Prerequisites
    • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher
    • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_10 (32-bit) or later
Exceptions to this certification

Microsoft Windows 7 (64-bit) is currently not certified as a desktop client operating system for any Oracle client-based products, including:
  • BI Publisher Desktop (a.k.a. XML Publisher)
  • Discoverer Administrator Desktop
  • Sales for Handhelds (Outlook desktop synchronization client)
  • Workflow Builder Client
  • XML Gateway Message Designer
  • (July 21, 2011 Update: The three struck-through components above are now certified on Windows 7) 

Oracle JInitiator Not Supported

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator has expired for E-Business Suite customers.

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 ended in December 2008, and Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.3 ended for EBS customers in July 2009.  For more information about JInitiator desupport and switching your EBS end-users from JInitiator to the Sun JRE, see:
Windows 7 desktop clients are certified only with the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) with Windows 7.  Oracle JInitiator was built on top of Java 1.3.  Java 1.3 is desupported by Sun Microsystems and and not compatible with either Windows Vista or Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 7.

On Hacking Up JInitiator -- Please Don't

Various creative individuals have discovered that it's possible to replace a certain DLL in Oracle JInitiator 1.3 with a JVM from, say, JDK 1.6. I can't personally testify that these hacks work. I can say that this kind of surgery makes me intensely uncomfortable.

While it's nice to see creative initiative, I have to remind you that Oracle would regard this as a customization. We don't recommend customizing Oracle JInitiator for production environments.

What About Earlier Versions of IE?

Microsoft only supports IE 8 on Windows 7 desktops.  Microsoft does not support earlier versions of IE on Win7, so Oracle is only able to support IE8 on Windows 7 clients for the E-Business Suite.

Why are you interested in the third configuration?

As I mentioned in my previous update on this topic, now that we've certified the second configuration, we'll move on to the third.  You've asked for it, so we'll deliver.

That said, I am curious about your business need for the final certification (Win7 64-bit + 64-bit browsers and JREs).  Firefox 64-bit releases seem to lag in functionality and in the general release cycle.  Some reports suggest that 64-bit browsers do not necessarily provide improved performance across the board, and may have compatibility issues -- most notably with Flash, since Adobe is still working on their 64-bit Flash Player.

Even more telling, in fresh installs of Windows 7 64-bit, Microsoft configures the default browser to be IE 32-bit, not IE 64-bit.  In other words, end-users need to take an extra step to run the 64-bit version of IE. 

If you're planning to reconfigure your users' desktops to invoke a 64-bit browser by default, I'd be very interested in understanding your reasons.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email.

References
Related Articles
The following 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.

What Are the Minimum Desktop Requirements for EBS?


[Read More]

Wednesday Jul 28, 2010

Update #1: EBS Plans for 64-bit Windows 7 Clients

windos7_logo2.png
It just dawned on me that the reason I've been getting so many emails about 64-bit Windows 7 certifications is that I have somehow neglected to post a statement of direction about our plans.  So many emails, so little time.

There are three possible configurations:
  1. 32-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  2. 64-bit Windows 7, 32-bit browsers, 32-bit JRE
  3. 64-bit Windows 7, 64-bit browsers, 64-bit JRE
We have certified the first configuration already:  E-Business Suite with 32-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 32-bit versions of Internet Explorer (IE) and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE. 

We are in the process of certifying the second configuration:  Oracle E-Business Suite with 64-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 32-bit versions of IE and Firefox with the 32-bit JRE.  This certification is going smoothly, and I am optimistic that it will be completed soon. 

Speaking pragmatically, most new PCs at Oracle are arriving equipped with Windows 7 64-bit by default, and I know that they're running 32-bit browsers and JREs against Oracle's own Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12 instance with no issues.  Nonetheless, I am conservative when it comes to these things, so we'll release this certification only after all of our internal desktop certification tests are completed.

After the second certification is completed, we'll move on to certifying the third configuration:  E-Business Suite with 64-bit Windows 7 desktop clients running 64-bit versions of IE and Firefox with the 64-bit JRE.

Why are you interested in the third configuration?

That said, I am curious about your business need for the final certification (Win7 64-bit + 64-bit browsers and JREs).  Firefox 64-bit releases seem to lag in functionality and in the general release cycle.  Some reports suggest that 64-bit browsers do not necessarily provide improved performance across the board, and may have compatibility issues -- most notably with Flash, since Adobe is still working on their 64-bit Flash Player.

Even more telling, in fresh installs of Windows 7 64-bit, Microsoft configures the default browser to be IE 32-bit, not IE 64-bit.  In other words, end-users need to take an extra step to run the 64-bit version of IE. 

If you're planning to reconfigure your users' desktops to invoke a 64-bit browser by default, I'd be very interested in understanding your reasons.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email.

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.

Thursday Jan 21, 2010

Firefox 3.6 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

firefox_logo4.jpg
[March 25, 2010: Elaborated on Firefox 3.6's incompatibility with JInitiator 1.3]

We certified Firefox 3.5 with Oracle E-Business Suite in September, 2009.  The Mozilla team released Firefox 3.6 today, and I'm very pleased to announce that Firefox 3.6 is now certified with the E-Business Suite. 

If you've already applied all of the prerequisites required for Firefox 3.5, you'll be happy to learn that no additional E-Business Suite patches are needed for Firefox 3.6 compatibility.  The same baseline of patches for Firefox 3.5 allow for a painless upgrade to Firefox 3.6. 

Firefox 3.6 requires "next generation Java"

Firefox 3.6 is only supported with 'next generation Java' plug-in versions JRE 1.6.0_10 (6u10) or higher. The 'Enable the next-generation Java plug-in' option within the 'Java Control Panel' may still be switched off if required.

Trying to launch Forms-based products with earlier JRE versions (JRE 1.6.0_07 or earlier or JRE 1.5.x) will prompt the user to download and install the latest available plug-in version through the Firefox 'Plugin Finder Service'. Forms will not launch until a 'next generation Java' plug-in version is installed on the desktop client.

Special Note for JInitiator Users

As noted above, Firefox 3.6 has a hard dependency on JRE 1.6.  JInitiator 1.3 is based on JRE 1.3 and will not work in Firefox 3.6. 

JInitiator is no longer supported for E-Business Suite environments.  If you upgrade to Firefox 3.6, you must ensure that your E-Business Suite environment is also switched from using JInitiator to using the native Sun JRE plug-in.  See:
Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i
  • Oracle Applications 11.5.10 plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10.CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6, patch 5903765) or later
  • Oracle Applications Framework (OAF) Patch 7651759
  • Oracle Applications Technology Patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model
Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.x
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Oracle Applications Framework (OAF) Patch 7602616
  • Oracle Applications Technology Patch 7567840, which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model
Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1
  • No additional prerequisites are required
Certified Desktop Operating Systems for Firefox 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows 7
  • Microsoft Windows Vista Service Pack 1 and 2
  • Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 and 3
References
Related Articles

Wednesday Dec 16, 2009

Microsoft Windows 7 Certified with Oracle E-Business Suite

[Dec 18, 2009 Update: corrected formatting error in "EBS 12.0 Prerequisites" section; added more information about 64-bit clients]

Microsoft Windows 7 Win7 logo
I'm very pleased to announce that Microsoft Windows 7 desktop clients are certified for the Oracle E-Business Suite.  Both Microsoft Internet Explorer 8 and Mozilla Firefox 3.5 are certified and supported on Windows 7 desktop clients. 

The prerequisites and minimum patchset levels vary depending upon the version of the E-Business Suite that you're running.  The supported Apps releases and configurations include Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i, 12.0, and 12.1:
Internet Explorer 8
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or later.
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) (Note 125767.1).
  • MLR Patch 8888184
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.6 (patch 7237006) or later.
  • Oracle Forms Version 10.1.2.3 or later.
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
Firefox 3.5
Oracle E-Business Suite 11i Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 19 (6.0.8.28.x) or later (note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6)(patch 5903765) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
  • It is also strongly recommended to apply patch 7567782 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important if using client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or later).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.0 Prerequisites
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
  • It is also strongly recommended to apply patch 7567840 which removes the use of the jpi-version parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model. This is particularly important if using client side next-generation JRE plugin (JRE 1.6.0_10 or later).
Oracle E-Business Suite R12.1 Prerequisites
  • Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 or higher
  • Java client plug-in JRE 1.6.0_03 or later
Oracle JInitiator Not Supported

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator has expired for E-Business Suite customers.

Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 ended in December 2008, and Premier Support for Oracle JInitiator 1.3 ended for EBS customers in July 2009.  For more information about JInitiator desupport and switching your EBS end-users from JInitiator to the Sun JRE, see:
Windows 7 desktop clients are certified only with the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) with Windows 7.  Oracle JInitiator was built on top of Java 1.3.  Java 1.3 is desupported by Sun Microsystems and and not compatible with either Windows Vista or Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 7.

What About Windows XP Mode?

End-users are able to run Windows XP in a virtualized environment running via Windows Virtual PC on a Win7 desktop client.  Microsoft states that this is functionally-equivalent to running Windows XP natively.

We have no plans to conduct separate EBS certification efforts for WinXP+Virtual PC images running on Win7 clients.  Oracle Support will attempt to reproduce reported issues using native WinXP desktop clients.  Microsoft Support would need to be engaged for any issues that can only be reproduced only in WinXP+Virtual PC images on Windows 7 desktops.

What About Earlier Versions of IE?

Microsoft only supports IE 8 on Windows 7 desktops.  Microsoft does not support earlier versions of IE on Win7, so Oracle is only able to support IE8 on Windows 7 clients for the E-Business Suite.

Are You Interested in 64-bit Clients?

This certification is for 32-bit Windows clients.  We don't have any immediate plans for 64-bit client certifications yet, due to complications around 64-bit JRE plugins and browsers.

I would be interested in hearing about your plans for 64-bit client rollouts (number of desktops, timing, and target EBS releases).  Please drop me a line if you have plans for 64-bit Windows clients in your future.

References
Related Articles

Thursday Oct 22, 2009

Interim Update #2: Certifying Windows 7 with Oracle E-Business Suite

windos7_logo2.png
[Dec 16, 2009 Update:  Windows 7 is now certified with the E-Business Suite; see this article]

This is the second of a series of regular updates on our Windows 7 certification projects for the E-Business Suite. 

Microsoft Windows 7 was officially released today.  Here's a recap of our plans for certifying the Oracle E-Business Suite with Microsoft's latest operating system. As always, the answers to these questions may change as we move through the certification cycle. You're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for later updates. 

Our Progress on Windows 7

We're certifying Windows 7 with the E-Business Suite right now.  We've already tested several of the Win7 betas and release candidates, and those tests have gone very smoothly.  At this point, E-Business Suite product teams need to complete their certification tests with Windows 7 desktop clients.  Once those tests are completed, we'll release our certification.

For the usual reasons that regular readers could have predicted, I can't share any specific schedules or date estimates here. I can provide an interim update on the following Win7 questions:
  1. Which EBS releases will be certified with Windows 7?
  2. Which browsers will be certified?
  3. Will Oracle JInitiator be certified for EBS on Windows 7?
  4. Which Windows 7 editions will be certified?
  5. What about Windows 7E?
  6. What about Windows XP Mode?
1. Which EBS Releases Will Be Certified with Windows 7?

We plan on certifying the following Oracle E-Business Suite release with Windows 7:
  • EBS 11i version 11.5.10.2
  • EBS 12.0.4 and and higher
2. Which Browsers Will Be Certified?

We plan on certifying the following browsers with the E-Business Suite on Windows 7:
  • Internet Explorer 8
  • Firefox 3.5
3. Will Oracle JInitiator Be Certified for EBS on Windows 7?

No.  Oracle JInitiator is no longer supported for E-Business Suite customers.

Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 was desupported in December 2008, and Oracle JInitiator 1.3 was desupported for EBS customers in July 2009.  For more information about JInitiator desupport and switching your EBS end-users from JInitiator to the Sun JRE, see:
We plan to certify only the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) with Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 7. 

4. Which Windows 7 Editions Will Be Certified?


We plan to test E-Business Suite compatibility against Windows 7 Professional Edition with the E-Business Suite.  We fully expect that other Win7 editions will work, but we have no current plans to explicitly test the Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate, or Enterprise Editions with the E-Business Suite.

5. What About Windows 7E?

Microsoft has changed its plans for Windows 7E since I published our first interim update on this certification.  At present, it appears that Microsoft has no plans to release a special version of Windows 7 for Europe.  Debate around default browser selection screens for Europe continues, so we'll continue to monitor this.

If Microsoft's plans change, and a European variant is released, our current plans are to certify the generic edition of Windows 7 with the E-Business Suite and the browsers listed above. 

6. What About Windows XP Mode?

Microsoft indicates that end-users will be able to run Windows XP in a virtualized environment running via Windows Virtual PC on a Win7 desktop client.  This will presumably be functionally-equivalent to running Windows XP natively.

We have no plans to conduct separate EBS certification efforts for WinXP+Virtual PC images running on Win7 clients.

What Are Your Organization's Plans for Windows 7?

Anecdotal reports from some EBS customers seem to suggest that your plans for Windows 7 will parallel that of Windows Vista:  namely, that new PCs that arrive with Windows 7 will either stay that way or will be downgraded to WinXP for the short term.  I have heard of a few customers with plans to deploy widespread Win7 upgrades across the enterprise, but these customers seem to be in the minority so far.

I'd be very interested in hearing your plans for rolling out Windows 7 in your organization.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email with more details about your deployment plans.

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.

Monday Sep 28, 2009

Firefox 3.5 Certified with E-Business Suite

firefox_logo4.jpg
The final security update for Firefox 2 was released in December, 2008; Mozilla recommends that all Firefox 2 users upgrade to Firefox 3.x.  We certified Firefox 3.0 with Oracle E-Business Suite in February, 2009.  Since then, the Mozilla team has released several updates on the Firefox 3.5 line.  I'm very pleased to announce that Firefox 3.5 is now certified with the E-Business Suite. 

If you've already applied all of the prerequisites required for Firefox 3.0, you'll be happy to learn that no additional E-Business Suite patches are needed for Firefox 3.5 compatibility.  The same baseline of patches for Firefox 3.0 allow for a painless upgrade to Firefox 3.5. 

Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i
  • Oracle Applications 11.5.10 plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10.CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6, patch 5903765) or later
  • Oracle Applications Framework (OAF) Patch 7651759
Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.0.x
  • Oracle Applications Technology R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Oracle Applications Framework (OAF) Patch 7602616
  • If Release 12 end-users are using JRE 1.6.0_10 and later, you should apply patch 7567840, which removes the use of the jpi-parameter and switches Firefox to a non-static versioning model
Prerequisites for Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1.1
  • No additional prerequisites are required
Certified Desktop Operating Systems for Firefox 3.5
  • Microsoft Windows Vista Service Pack 1 and 2
  • Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 and 3
References
Related Articles

Wednesday Jul 01, 2009

Interim Update #1: Certifying Windows 7 with Oracle E-Business Suite

[Dec 16, 2009: Windows 7 is now certified with the E-Business Suite; see this article] [Oct 22, 2009: A more-recent update on our Windows 7 certification is published here.] Microsoft windows 7 logo

Microsoft Windows 7 has been getting a lot of headlines recently.  This seems to have triggered an small but noticeable increase in questions about our plans for certifying this operating system for E-Business Suite desktop clients. 

We're working with pre-release versions of Windows 7 right now.  For the usual reasons that regular readers could have predicted, I can't share any certification schedules or date estimates here. I can provide an interim update on the following Win7 questions:

  1. Which EBS releases will be certified with Windows 7?
  2. Which browsers will be certified?
  3. Will Oracle JInitiator Be certified for EBS on Windows 7?
  4. Which Windows 7 editions will be certified?
  5. What about Windows 7E?
  6. What about Windows XP Mode?

This is the first of what I expect will be multiple updates on our Windows 7 certification process.  You're welcome to monitor or subscribe to this blog for later updates.  As always, the answers to these questions may change as we move through the certification cycle. 

Which EBS Releases Will Be Certified with Windows 7?

We plan on certifying the following Oracle E-Business Suite release with Windows 7:

  • EBS 11i version 11.5.10.2
  • EBS 12.0.4 and and higher

Which Browsers Will Be Certified?

We plan on certifying the following browsers with the E-Business Suite on Windows 7:

  • Internet Explorer 8
  • Firefox 3.5

Will Oracle JInitiator Be Certified for EBS on Windows 7?

No.  We plan to certify only the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) with Windows 7.  We have no plans to certify Oracle JInitiator with Windows 7.  

Oracle JInitiator 1.1.8 was desupported in December 2008, and Oracle JInitiator 1.3 will be desupported for EBS customers at the end of July 2009.  For more information about JInitiator desupport and switching your EBS end-users from JInitiator to the Sun JRE, see:

Which Windows 7 Editions Will Be Certified?

We plan to test E-Business Suite compatibility against Windows 7 Professional Edition with the E-Business Suite.  We fully expect that other Win7 editions will work, but we have no current plans to explicitly test the Starter, Home Basic, Home Premium, Ultimate, or Enterprise Editions with the E-Business Suite.

What About Windows 7E?

I've been following the latest developments on the awkwardly-named "E editions of Windows 7" with some interest.  Microsoft's current documentation on these E editions of Windows 7 is notably scant, but confirms that certain versions of Windows 7 released in the European Economic Area, Croatia, and Switzerland will not include Internet Explorer.

Our current plans are to certify the "non E" edition of Windows 7 with the E-Business Suite with the browsers listed above.  We're currently assuming that that will be functionally-equivalent to doing a custom (clean) installation of the E editions of Windows 7 and then subsequently installing IE or Firefox. 

If this turns out not to be true, we'll revise our certification plans accordingly.  In this scenario, it would be reasonable to expect that the certification of E editions of Windows 7 will lag behind the certification of the standard Windows 7 release.

What About Windows XP Mode?

Microsoft indicates that end-users will be able to run Windows XP in a virtualized environment running via Windows Virtual PC on a Win7 desktop client.  This will presumably be functionally-equivalent to running Windows XP natively.

We have no plans to conduct separate EBS certification efforts for WinXP+Virtual PC images running on Win7 clients. 

What Are Your Organization's Plans for Windows 7?

Anecdotal reports from some EBS customers seem to suggest that your plans for Windows 7 will parallel that of Windows Vista:  namely, that new PCs that arrive with Windows 7 will either stay that way or will be downgraded to WinXP for the short term.  I haven't yet heard of any customers with plans to deploy widespread upgrades across the enterprise.

I'd be very interested in hearing your plans for rolling out Windows 7 in your organization.  Feel free to post a comment here or drop me an email with more details about your deployment plans.

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.

Monday Jun 29, 2009

Windows Vista Service Pack 2 Certified with Apps 11i and 12

windows-vista-logo.jpg

Microsoft Windows Vista Service Pack 2 (SP2) is now certified for end-user desktops connecting to the E-Business Suite Release 11i, 12.0, and 12.1.  Supported Windows browsers are Internet Explorer 7 (IE7) and Firefox 3.0, with the following minimum prerequisites:

EBS Release 11i

Microsoft Vista SP 2 with IE 7 is certified as a client o/s level for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i with the following minimum requirements:-

  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 4 (RUP 4) (patch 4676589) or later
  • Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) 1.5.0_12 or later, JRE 1.6.0_03 or later (Note 290807.1)

Microsoft Vista SP 2 with Firefox 3.0 is certified as a client o/s level for Oracle E-Business Suite 11i with the following minimum requirements:-

  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 6 (RUP 6) (patch 5903765) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7651759
  • Sun JRE 1.5.0_12 or later, JRE 1.6.0_03 or later (Note 290807.1)

EBS Release 12.0

Microsoft Vista SP 2 with IE 7 is certified as a client operating system level for Oracle E-Business Suite 12.0 with the following minimum requirements:-

  • Oracle Applications Release 12, with R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.3 (patch 6077669) or later.
  • JRE 1.5.0_12 or later, JRE 1.6.0_03 or later (Note 393931.1)

Microsoft Vista SP 2 with Firefox 3.0 is certified as a client o/s level for Oracle E-Business Suite 12.0 with the following minimum requirements:-

  • Oracle Applications Release 12 with R12.ATG_PF.A.delta.6 (patch 7237006) or later
  • Applications Framework Patch 7602616
  • JRE 1.5.0_12 or later, JRE 1.6.0_03 or later (Note 393931.1)

EBS Release 12.1.1

Microsoft Vista SP 2 with IE 7 & Firefox 3.0 is certified as a client operating system level for Oracle E-Business Suite 12.1.1 'Base Release' with JRE 1.5.0_12 or later, JRE 1.6.0_03 or later (Note 393931.1)

Related Articles

Monday Apr 07, 2008

Firefox 2 Certified on Vista for Oracle E-Business Suite

Firefox 2 has been certified with the E-Business Suite for some time now on Windows XP.  For those of you planning your Microsoft Vista rollouts, you'll be pleased to hear that Firefox 2 is now certified as a client browser on Vista for the E-Business Suite.

Firefox 2 logo:

Vista Requires the Native Sun Java Plug-In

Remember that all browsers certified with the E-Business Suite on Vista (both IE and Firefox) must run Forms-based content via the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) plug-in.  Oracle JInitiator is not certified for Windows Vista due to fundamental incompatibilities with Sun's underlying JDK 1.3 libraries on the Vista codeline. 

Firefox on Vista is certified as a desktop client for Oracle E-Business Suite with the following Sun Java plug-ins:
  • E-Business Suite Release 11i: 
    • JRE 1.5.0_12 and higher
    • JRE 1.6.0_03 and higher
  • E-Business Suite Release 12: 
    • JRE 1.5.0_12 and higher
    • JRE 1.6.0_03 and higher
Prerequisites

E-Business Suite Release 11i

  • Oracle Applications patch 10 (11.5.10) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later 
    • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Metalink Note 125767.1)
    • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 4 (RUP 4) (patch 4676589) or later
    • Oracle Applications patch 9 (11.5.9) plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.9 CU2 or later
    • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Metalink Note 125767.1)
    • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 4 (RUP 4) (patch 4676589) or later
E-Business Suite Release 12
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12, with R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.3 (patch 6077669) or later
Compatibility and Coexistence with Other Desktop Clients

A mix of the latest certified Windows and Mac OS X desktop combinations is supported.  The actual mix depends on the specific Applications release that you're running; check the Notes in the Reference section for your release.

For example, the currently supported desktops for Release 11i include:
  • Win2K / WinXP + IE6 / Firefox 2.x
  • WinXP + IE7 / Firefox 2.x
  • Mac OS X v10.3.9 + Safari 1.3 and higher
  • Mac OS X v10.4.7 + Safari 2.0 and higher
  • Vista desktop clients running the native JRE plug-in on IE 7
On the Horizon:  Firefox 3

Firefox 3 is just cresting the horizon now, with the Mozilla Foundation suggesting that Beta 5 will be the last one prior to Firefox 3's release this summer.  We've been working with Firefox 3 betas in our E-Business Suite certification labs for a while now. 

While I don't have any firm schedules for our Firefox 3 certification, 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 Dec 25, 2007

Running Multiple Java Plug-Ins on the Same Windows PC

Judging from your blog comments and emails, many of you are in the difficult situation of having to support end-users with multiple Java plug-ins on the same Windows PC.  This is a little more complicated than the days when Oracle JInitiator was the only thing we had to worry about.  Let's review what's possible today and discuss the implications for your rollouts.

Sun Java Website screenshot: Screencap of Sun's Java SE website

Supporting Multiple Java-Based Applications

A substantial number of Oracle E-Business Suite modules are based on Oracle Forms.  Different E-Business Suite releases are certified with different Java clients:
  • Release 11i:  Oracle JInitiator and native Sun Java plug-in
  • Release 12:  Native Sun Java plug-in only
Many large organizations run other Java-based applications in addition to Oracle Applications.  These third-party applications may require different Java desktop client versions, often older releases like Java 1.3 or Java 1.4. 

The problem arises when those software vendors don't upgrade their certifications to the latest Java release.  You may end up with a situation where your E-Business Suite environment may require 1.5.0_13 but other applications require 1.4.2_08.

What's Possible With JInitiator

Oracle JInitiator supports multiple installations of different JInitiator versions on the same Windows PC.  Each specific JInitiator version can be separately invoked by the calling Forms-based application.  This is called static versioning.

This allows one Oracle Forms-based application to use a particular Oracle JInitiator version, while another application can invoke a different JInitiator version.

Static Versioning Not Directly Supported With Native Sun Plug-In

Sun's native Java plug-in from version 1.5.0_06 and later does not support static versioning by default when using Microsoft Internet Explorer.  If you have multiple versions of the JRE plug-in installed on your desktop, the latest version installed will run.

For example:
  • If Oracle E-Business Suite is set up to run JRE 1.5.0_12 on the server and both JRE 1.5.0_12 and JRE 1.5.0_13 are installed on the desktop, the environment will incorrectly launch using JRE 1.5.0_13 rather than JRE 1.5.0_12.
  • If Oracle E-Business Suite is set to run on JRE 1.5.0_13 on the server and both JRE 1.5.0_13 and JRE 1.6.0 are installed on the desktop, the environment will incorrectly launch using JRE 1.6.0 rather than JRE 1.5.0_13.
Another Potential Problem:  Automatic Upgrades

The native Sun JRE plug-in's configuration will usually be set to download the latest Java release automatically.  If your users have installed version 1.5.0_12 with automatic updates enabled, then those desktops will upgrade themselves automatically to the latest release, say, 1.5.0_13 or even 1.5.0_14. 

It's probably a good idea to disable automatic updates if you're uncomfortable with this, for the following reasons:
  • These automatic updates may outstrip your software vendors' certifications, including Oracle.
  • Desktop administrators hate it when their users' desktops change unpredictably. 
The Bottom Line

If you're faced with the difficult situation where you're struggling with different Java versions required by different vendors, I'm afraid that you don't have many palatable options.  These include:

Option 1.  Run MS IE with a registry modification

If your end-users are running Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE), there's a possible workaround.  The catch?  You've got to make a manual change to the Windows Registry for each of your end-users' desktops.  If you have the stomach for that kind of thing, you can find the details in the respective Release 11i or 12 documentation listed in the References section below.

Option 2.  Give the later versions a try

Now that we've certified the E-Business Suite with Java 1.5.0_13 with both Release 11i and 12, it's reasonably assured that later versions will work equally well with Oracle Apps.  Our certification cycles for these native Java plug-ins are getting faster, and we're working on later 1.5.x versions as well as 1.6 now.

Our standing recommendation is to wait for Oracle's certification with Apps before rolling out later Java releases.  However, if you really don't have the luxury of waiting for our certifications to complete, you can always upgrade a test PC to the target JRE version of your choice and give it a try.  Thorough system testing is a good idea before rolling out an uncertified JRE version to your Apps users.

From a support perspective, remember that Oracle Support will do their best to answer your questions about the use of uncertified Java plug-in versions with the E-Business Suite.  Bear in mind that if you encounter problems that can't be reproduced with the certified Java plug-in versions, Oracle Support will likely recommend that you revert to a certified configuration.

Option 3.  Share your pain

The pain from this situation can arguably be lessened if all software vendors -- including Oracle, naturally -- keep their certifications current with the latest Java plug-ins available. 

It's the slower vendors still stuck on, say, Java 1.4.2_08 that are creating the real pain for you.  If I were in your shoes, I wouldn't be shy about making sure that those vendors feel your pain, too.  Log service tickets with them and escalate your concerns with your vendor account managers.

References
Related Articles

Monday Nov 26, 2007

Analyzing Memory vs Performance of Apps 11i and 12 Clients

I've recently published a new Oracle whitepaper that compares combinations of browsers with JInitiator and the native Sun Java plug-in (JRE) to determine which is best for low-specification clients.  It provides specific scenarios and examples showing where there is little difference between low and high specification clients in terms of end-user performance.

This white paper takes a completely different approach from the usual emphasis on tuning Windows clients. Instead, this paper focuses on analyzing the memory requirements for a range of Oracle E-Business Suite Forms and OA Framework (OAF) web-based HTML screens.  I touch on Windows tuning in an appendix.

There are two main concepts in the paper:

Establish your minimum desktop configurations

While the latest and fastest machines will help provide the best performance, the latest technology tends to command a price premium. Budgetary constraints and asset life dictate that the price/performance goal is to balance the return on investment while providing reasonable longevity. The information will help you establish the minimum requirements for a specific price-performance point, and identify a specific configuration that will achieve the throughput necessary to support your business

Extend the life of existing PCs

The second concept concentrated on how to extend the useful life of slow or low-memory PC clients and where upgrading to faster clients would make very little difference meaning that you may have to look elsewhere, such as the network, for a solution.

I Have Fast Clients - Why Do I Care?

If you have what would normally be considered a high-specification machine, you may still encounter memory problems when running several applications simultaneously, so the ideas and concepts will still help.

Do I Need CPU, Memory Or Both?

Microsoft states that adding memory makes a significant difference to Windows performance. This is also true for some Oracle E-Business Suite components. Note that this statement does not mention CPU speed, and therefore it appears that they consider this less significant. In order to answer this question the charts show the difference in performance across a range of clients. The answer is very clear.

Browser Add-ons and plugins

Add-ons and plugins can make a huge difference to the amount of memory needed just by the browser. The following chart from the paper compares the memory profiles of the certified browsers with and without browser add-ons (Adobe Acrobat, Google Toolbar, and Skype). As you can see, even this limited number of additional components can almost double the amount of memory required by the browser. In reality, you will probably have many many more add-ons and plugins that are not necessary for a business environment, and so the paper includes a comprehensive list of components and their relative affect on the browser profile, including for example, browser themes, toolbars, extensions, plug-ins, and helper applications.

Browser Memory Use Comparisons: Bar chart comparing browser add-on memory profiles, including Adobe Acrobat, Google Toolbar, Skype.  Browsers reviewed include Firefox 2, IE 7, IE 6.

After investigating a range of OAF/HTML screens and Oracle Forms, and accepting that there may be some exceptions, the products can be grouped by type as shown in the following chart. Clearly, the amount of data will affect the amount of memory and an example is displaying thousands of tasks on screen simultaneously as in some of the largest Gantt charts.

Memory Consumption All Tests: Comparing Memory Averages by Group for Menus, OAF / HTML, Forms, Gantt Charts for Firefox 2, IE 7, IE 6

Although the memory used by a combination of forms and OAF/HTML screens used in a business flow does not scale linearly, the generalizations shown in this chart can be useful if you can broadly categorize your Oracle E-Business Suite usage by product type for a particular part of your organization..

It is very unlikely that this paper could match the exact combination of forms and screens, client specification, and the specific combination of other software that you use. Instead, general guidelines have been provided that can be applied to your own environment as needed.

What Else Can You Do?

The paper includes some working practices that have been extensively deployed by certain customers that has extended the life of their existing clients. It makes very specific recommendations about the best technology combinations for low specification clients, and clients that run low on resources. It clearly identifies scenarios where a very low specification machine can be deployed usefully and shows others where it is unlikely that the throughput would be sufficient to support the business.

For full details, download the whitepaper here:
Related

Thursday Nov 08, 2007

Windows Vista + IE7 Certified with E-Business Suite

[Mar 16, 2008 Update: Our JRE Certification and support policy has been updated; for details, see: New Sun Java JRE Plug-In Certification Policy for Apps 11i & 12]

[Nov 20, 2007 Update:  The original version of this article stated that JRE "1.5.0_12 or later" is certified with Vista.  The words, "or later" have just been removed from this article.  While it's our intention to allow the unrestricted use of future JRE releases with Vista, this is still something that we're evaluating with our current pending certifications of JRE 1.5.0_13 and 1.5.0_14.  Once we've completed those certifications, we'll revisit our certification and support statements and post an update here.]

Good things happen for our Oracle OpenWorld conference.  This year is no exception.  Microsoft Windows Vista desktops running Internet Explorer 7 are now certified with Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11i and 12. 

Microsoft Vista Logo:

Certified Configurations

Release 11i -- 11.5.10.CU2
  • Applications 11.5.10 plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.10 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i Patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Metalink Note 125767.1)
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 4 (RUP 4) (patch 4676589) or later
  • Microsoft Vista desktop clients running Internet Explorer 7
  • Sun Java plug-in (JRE) 1.5.0_12
Release 11i -- 11.5.9.CU2
  • Applications 11.5.9 plus Maintenance Pack 11.5.9 CU2 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later (Metalink Note 125767.1
  • Oracle Applications Technology 11i.ATG_PF.H Rollup 4 (RUP 4) (patch 4676589) or later
  • Microsoft Vista desktop clients running Internet Explorer 7
  • Sun Java plug-in (JRE) 1.5.0_12
Release 12
  • Oracle Applications Release 12 with R12.ATG_PF.A.DELTA.3 (patch 6077669) or later
  • Microsoft Vista desktop clients running Internet Explorer 7
  • Sun Java plug-in (JRE) 1.5.0_12.

Oracle JInitiator Not Certified for Vista Desktops

Oracle JInitiator 1.3 will not be certified for Vista desktops.  Jinitiator 1.3 is based on JDK 1.3.  JDK 1.3 is not compatible with Vista.  No new updates to JInitiator are planned for Vista.

Compatibility and Coexistence with Other Desktop Clients

A mix of the latest certified Windows and Mac OS X desktop combinations is supported.  The actual mix depends on the specific Applications release that you're running; check the Notes in the Reference section for your release. 

For example, the currently supported desktops for Release 11i include:
  • Win2K / WinXP + IE6 / Firefox 2.x
  • WinXP + IE7 / Firefox 2.x
  • Mac OS X v10.3.9 + Safari 1.3 and higher
  • Mac OS X v10.4.7 + Safari 2.0 and higher
  • Vista desktop clients running the native JRE plug-in on IE 7
Support for Older E-Business Suite Configurations

Vista desktops are certified with the latest supported E-Business Suite releases.  "Supported" means the E-Business Suite releases eligible for Premier Support, as listed in this table:

Apps Unlimited Oct 2007: Application Unlimited desupport table for E-Business Suite releases as of October 2007

It's possible that you might be running an older E-Business Suite configuration that is no longer in Premier Support status.  For example, you might be running Release 11.5.7, for which Premier Support ended in May 2007. 

Our standing recommendation is that you upgrade those environments to the latest supported release. 

Oracle's general support policy is that we provide support for older or uncertified configurations on a best-efforts basis, subject to available staff, resources, and expertise. For these configurations, we provide -- on a best-efforts basis -- debugging and diagnostic guidance for isolating issues, and workarounds where it's technically feasible. There may be cases where workarounds are not technically feasible.  If so, the ultimate recommendation may be to upgrade to a certified and supported configuration.

What's Still to Come

Sharp-eyed readers who have been following this ongoing discussion will notice that there are a few combinations yet to be certified:
  • Vista clients + IE 7 + Release 11i or 12 + JRE 1.6
  • Vista clients + Firefox + Release 11i or 12
These certifications are now underway.  As usual, I have no information that I can post here about certification dates, for reasons I've discussed in the past.  Stay tuned -- I'll post updates on the remaining certifications as soon as possible.

References

The above 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 decisions.  The development, release, and timing of any features or functionality described for Oracle's products remains at the sole discretion of Oracle. 

Tuesday Jul 10, 2007

Firefox 2 Now Certified with E-Business Suite

 

[Editor Update May 21, 2008:  Keith has moved on to another team within Oracle and, sadly, is no longer an
active contributor to this blog.  Feel free to direct any questions about his posted articles directly to Steven Chan, instead.]


Firefox 2 logo:

Those of you out there using the Firefox browser may have been anxious to upgrade to the latest version ever since version 2.0 was released 8 months ago. Various announcements regarding termination of support for Firefox 1.5 may only have added to your concern. Unfortunately, our certification backlog has been pretty high, and you may have been afraid to upgrade from version 1.5 while awaiting the results of Oracle's testing.

Well, I'm happy to say the results are in, and we are now announcing support for Firefox 2.0 with E-Business Suite Release 11i and Release 12. The details can be found in these Metalink notes:

And, as it turns out, we're just in time, as most Firefox 1.5 users have been asked by now to upgrade via the Firefox Automatic Updates mechanism.

We Won't Leave You Hanging

This brings us to the recent automatic update notes you may have seen encouraging you to move to Firefox 2. If you've been keeping your 1.5 release up to date, this notice may have popped onto your screen overnight:

Firefox 2 Update:

By all means, if you can, click "Get the new version" as soon as possible.

Many users may have seen announcements about Mozilla's end-of-life for Firefox 1.5. Originally slated for April 24, it was delayed one month
to May 24, when the final set of fixes on Firefox 1.5 (1.5.0.12) was released. That's the last of them, however, and no new updates --
including security fixes -- will be issued on the Firefox 1.x line.

As Steven explained about "end of life" statements in his article on vendor desupport for J2SE 1.3, this type of notice shouldn't be cause for too much alarm. We will continue to provide best effort support for Firefox 1.5, just as we will for other older technologies. That said, if you can upgrade, you absolutely should, in order to ensure that your browser is always up to date with the latest security fixes.

For the record, the certification of Firefox was not exceptionally problematic, it just took us a while to start due to conflicting resources coming on the heels of releases to all the major application suites and technology suppliers. But this should be viewed as good news the next time a new Firefox release comes out and you're a little nervous about taking it too early. Should a similar confluence of events hold up our ability to certify Firefox 3.0 in a timely manner, keep in mind that Oracle will still support Firefox 2.0 as a client for our applications, at least until we've certified the latest version, and for some reasonable overlap period. During that time, we'll make our best efforts to address any browser-specific issues.

Afterword

By the way, we rarely hear about Firefox issues from our users, which has led many to speculate it's not a popular browser among our customers. (I've tried to explain how that logic is faulty, but not always with success.) If you're using Firefox in your company -- particularly if you deployed it as the standard browser for a large base of E-Business Suite users -- drop us a line through this blog and let us know. The more feedback we get, the higher priority future certifications will get.

Tuesday Jun 26, 2007

Replacing Jinitiator: Java Plug-In 1.5.0_12 Certified with Apps 11i & 12

[Dec 7, 2007 Update:  Sun JRE 1.5.0_13 is now certified with the E-Business Suite; see this article for details about the latest certification]

I'm very pleased to announce that the native Sun JRE plug-in version 1.5.0_12 is now certified and Generally Available for use with Release
11i and 12. 

Forms Apps architecture: Logical architecture showing desktop clients running Sun JRE or Oracle JInitiator, connecting via HTTP or HTTPS to Oracle Forms running on the Application Server tier

This is a major step forward.  Up until now, the E-Business Suite Release 11i has required the use of Oracle Jinitiator to access its Forms-based applications.  Release 12 already supported the use of a special version of the native Sun Java Runtime Engine (JRE) plug-in instead of Oracle Jinitiator.

With this certification:
  • E-Business Suite Release 11i users can use Sun's JRE 1.5.0_12 in place of Oracle Jinitator. 
  • E-Business Suite Release 12 users can use the same JRE 1.5.0_12, instead of being restricted to the special version originally shipped with Release 12.
Coexistence with JInitiator Clients

Oracle E-Business Suite system administrators can now configure their environments to support access to Forms-based applications with either Oracle JInitiator, the native Sun JRE plug-in, or a mix of the two desktop client technologies.

In other words, one set of end-users may continue to use JInitiator to access an E-Business Suite environment.  A different set of end-users may use the native Sun JRE plug-in to access the same E-Business Suite environment.  For example:

Tim has JRE 1.5.0_12 installed exclusively on his PC; Tim doesn't use JInitiator.  While Roya is logged in to Release 11i via Oracle JInitiator 1.3.1.25, Tim may log into the same Release 11i environment using JRE 1.5.0_12.

This support for coexistence of the two desktop clients allows you to roll out the native Sun JRE to your users in phases.  You don't need to convert all end-users from JInitiator to the native Sun JRE plug-in at the same time.

Note that your E-Business Suite environment must be set to use either Oracle JInitiator or the native JRE plug-in by default.  Apps sysadmins can
designate specific named end-users to use the "other" (i.e. the non-default) Java client.  There are some restrictions around this, notably for
Discoverer and Workflow users, so this type of mixed-client configuration is designed to smooth your deployment transition rather than as a long-term solution.  If you're interested in this approach, a careful review of the documented restrictions is worthwhile.

Running JInitiator and the Native Sun JRE Simultaneously


It's technically possible to run multiple JInitiator and native Sun JRE plug-in  sessions simultaneously on the same PC.  There are two requirements for this:
  • Internet Explorer is being used
  • Each JRE/Jinitiator instance is started in a separate Internet Explorer session
It isn't possible to run multiple JRE/JInitiator versions simultaneously from the same desktop if Netscape, Firefox, or Mozilla browsers are being used.  These browsers share a single cookie session per desktop, which restricts usage to a single Java version at a time.

What's Wrong with JInitiator?

Nothing!  JInitiator works fine and will continue to be certified with the E-Business Suite Release 11i (we have no plans to certify JInitiator with Release 12).  However, there are two major reasons for switching your end-users to the native Sun JRE plug-in:
  1. Elimination of conflicts between Oracle JInitiator and other Java virtual machines

    Oracle JInitiator is an authorized version of Sun Microsystems' Java2 Standard Edition, with extensions required to support Oracle Forms.  Some versions of Oracle JInitiator have known conflicts with other Java virtual machines, including Sun Microsystems' own plug-in. Using the native Sun Microsystems' JRE plug-in instead of Oracle JInitiator eliminates those conflicts.
  2. Reduction of desktop client complexity

    Managing multiple Java Virtual Machines on Windows-based desktop clients can be potentially complex. Some Windows-based desktop clients may have three or more Java Virtual Machines installed, including versions from Microsoft, Sun, and Oracle. For example, Microsoft's Internet Explorer was dependent upon Microsoft's own Java Virtual Machine at one point in its lifecycle.  Downloading, installing, and maintaining separate Java Virtual Machines can be technically complex and costly for enterprise desktop administrators.
Prerequisites for Release 11i
  • Customers using Oracle Applications 11.5.9 or later
  • Oracle Developer 6i Patchset 18 (6.0.8.27.x) or later
  • Microsoft Windows XP or Microsoft Windows 2000
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 and higher
  • Mozilla Firefox 1.0.4 and higher
Windows desktops running the native Sun JRE plug-in can coexist with other Windows desktops running the following Oracle JInitiator releases:
  • JInitiator 1.1.8.x (JDK 1.1 based)
  • JInitiator 1.3.1.x (JDK 1.3 based)
Prerequisites for Release 12
  • Customers using Oracle Applications 12.0 or later
  • Microsoft Windows XP or Microsoft Windows 2000
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 and higher
  • Mozilla Firefox 1.5 and higher
Oracle JInitiator isn't certified or supported for Release 12.

Special Note for Early Adopter Program Participants

We've been running an Early Adopter Program for this configuration with a select number of customers since 2004.  The release of this configuration into General Availability marks the end of this Early Adopter Program.

If you're a participant in our Early Adopter Program, you're running your Apps 11i environment on either our latest Build 5.1 or an earlier Build, and your end-users are running JRE 1.5.0_07 or earlier.  Now that our Early Adopter Program has concluded, you will need to:
  1. Upgrade your environment to the latest interoperability patch listed in the June 25, 2007 version of Metalink Note 290807.1
  2. Upgrade your end-users' desktops to JRE 1.5.0_12
Note that JRE 1.5.0_12 resolves the focus-related issue that has existed in all prior JRE releases.  This is a very important upgrade for users running earlier JRE versions.

You're free to stay on an earlier Build and earlier JRE releases, of course.  However, if you report any problems with an earlier configuration that can't be reproduced in the Generally Available configuration, you'll likely be advised to upgrade to the latest configuration.  Likewise, if you report any issues with older configurations that can be reproduced on the Generally Available configuration, you'll need to upgrade to the Generally Available configuration before you can apply any fixes for these new issues.

References

Thursday May 03, 2007

Will the Real JRE Please Stand Up?

Unlike Release 11i, E-Business Suite Release 12 no longer requires Oracle Jinitiator for its Forms-based content.  In theory, it will be possible to use any version of the native Sun J2SE Runtime Engine (JRE) plug-in to access Forms-based content in this Applications release.

Java Console Screenshot:

The present reality is that you need to use a specific version of the Sun JRE with Release 12.  I know some of you have been interested in going deep on this, so strap on your helmets; we're goin' in.

A Problem of Focus

When you have multiple windows for different programs open in WinXP (say, Outlook and Firefox), the one you're working in actively has the focus.  So, if you're working in Outlook and then click on the Firefox window, the focus changes to Firefox.

Here's the complicating factor:  current releases of the native Sun JRE plug-in may lose focus from Forms-based content in a few situations.  This behavior occurs in all Sun JRE versions released publicly to date, including 1.5.0_11.

We've been working closely with Sun on this issue.  Sun has committed to including the fix for this issue in an upcoming JRE release.  In the meantime, Sun has provided Oracle with a specially-patched version of 1.5.0_10 that includes the fix for this bug.  This version is informally called 1.5.0_10-erdist and is included as part of the Release 12 Rapid Install.

Checking Your JRE Version

To check which version you have installed:
  1. Enable the Java Console on your PC through the 'Java Control Panel' by clicking on the 'Java' icon within your desktop's 'Control Panel'.

  2. Select the 'Advanced' Tab and expand the 'Java Console' field, then ensure the 'Show Console' option is selected.
  3. Select the 'General' Tab and click the 'About' button.
If the version displayed is:
  • Version 1.5.0 (build 1.5.0_10-erdist-b20061221)

    You have the special version that includes the focus fix required for use with Release 12.
  • Version 1.5.0 (build 1.5.0_10-b03)

    You have the standard version of 1.5.0_10 that does not include the focus fix.  If you wish to use Forms-based content in Release 12, you need to uninstall this version and install the special 1.5.0_10-erdist version included with Release 12.
A Word About Upgrading Your JRE

It's important to remember that JRE 1.5.0_10-erdist is the only version available today that includes this focus fix.  If you or your end-users use (or upgrade to) 1.5.0_11, they may encounter issues with accessing Forms-based content in E-Business Suite Release 12.

Later JRE versions that include the focus fix will be certified with Release 12, of course. At present, I don't have any information that I can share about either their release dates or their certification schedules with the E-Business Suite.  I'll post updates here as soon as they're available.

Related

Friday Mar 02, 2007

JInitiator 1.3.1.28 Certified with Apps 11i

[Sept 10, 2007 Update:  Jinitiator 1.3.1.29 has just been certified.  See this article for information about the latest certified Jinitiator release for Apps 11i.]

The E-Business Suite Release 11i has two interfaces:  a web-based model for modules like iProcurement and iStore, and an Oracle Forms-based model for our professional services modules like Financials.  Oracle Forms are Java-based and require a Java Virtual Machine (JVM) to be installed on end-user desktop clients.  Oracle JInitiator is Oracle's licenced version of Sun's JVM, and E-Business Suite Forms-based modules are certified to run with specific versions of Oracle JInitiator.

Latest JInitiator Version Certified

Our hard-working certification team has just announced the certification of JInitiator 1.3.1.28 with E-Business Suite Release 11i.  For details, see:
Replacing Oracle JInitiator with Sun's Native Plug-In

In case you missed it, we're still running an Early Adopter Program where you can evaluate replacing Oracle JInitiator with the native J2SE Plug-in from Sun.  This configuration has the potential to reduce JInitiator conflicts with other Java applications that require different Java Virtual Machines. 

We're still accepting customer nominations for this Early Adopter Program.  For more program details, see:
Related

Thursday Oct 26, 2006

The Temptation of Firefox 2

[Editor Update May 21, 2008:  Keith has moved on to another team within Oracle and, sadly, is no longer an active contributor to this blog.  Feel free to direct any questions about his posted articles directly to Steven Chan, instead.]

Hot on the heels of Microsoft, Mozilla has released their latest update in the form of Firefox 2.

Firefox 2 logo:

Although it won't show up as any kind of high-priority automatic update, it's likely that many users will want to upgrade to take advantage of its new UI and security features. However, we all thought it would prudent to remind you that deploying Firefox 2 to any Oracle production environment is not recommended until after certification has been completed.

Rest assured, though, we do have plans to certify Firefox 2 with E-Business Suite 11i and 12, and you'll find out about here as soon as that's done.

Firefox 2 tabs:     <br>

In the meantime, if you'd like to use Firefox 2 for any other browsing you need to do, you can still use my earlier article as a guideline for installing versions 1.5 and 2.0 side-by-side.

Related Articles


Friday Jul 28, 2006

In Depth: Try Firefox 2 Beta without Breaking EBS

[Editor Update May 21, 2008:  Keith has moved on to another team within Oracle and, sadly, is no longer an active contributor to this blog.  Feel free to direct any questions about his posted articles directly to Steven Chan, instead.]


As I explained in my previous posting, trying to access a production instance of Oracle E-Business Suite, or any other Oracle product, with a pre-release version of a web browser should be considered a no-no. But if you rely on accessing Oracle Applications every day, that shouldn't prevent you from trying to gain some familiarity with the upcoming releases.

I'm happy to say that with some sleight-of-hand, you can still take your new browser version for a spin and keep your current installation active for all your day-to-day business use. Today we'll start with managing two Firefox installations side-by-side. It's a fairly delicate operation but easy and fast. In the end, you'll be able to safely experiment with the new browser without affecting the operations (and supported status) of your old version.

Preparation Is Key

By the way, all of the instructions in this article assume a Windows client, but if you're running on Linux or, dare I say, Mac OS X (where we don't currently support Firefox at all), the process is generally the same.

Before we begin, a word of caution is in order: in order to avoid any mishaps, I strongly recommend that you close all your Firefox windows and make a backup of your user profile before beginning this process. On Windows, you'll want to make a copy of this directory, where username refers to your Windows login:

C:\Documents and Settings\username\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles

On Linux, you'll find the crucial files in the more easily located $HOME/.mozilla/firefox, where $HOME refers to your home directory.

If at any time you run into problems or make a mistake following these instructions, simply recover this directory and you'll be back to square one with no harm done.

Now, let's get started...

Step One: Install, but Don't Run!

Start by downloading the new test version of Firefox and launching the installer. Since you want to retain your existing version of Firefox, be sure to install the new version to a different directory (like C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox 2). In order to do this, you must choose the "Custom" option when promped in the Installer, as seen below:

Firefox 2 Install (1):

Do not choose the Standard install type. If you do, your existing install and profile will be updated before you even have a chance to hit the Cancel button, which doesn't actually exist.

That's the first potential "gotcha" in the process. Here's the second one: when the install is finished, do not launch the program yet. There is another important step we need to do first.

Step Two: Create a New Profile

When you start up a new version of Firefox for the first time, it will update your user profile automatically. (This is the directory that contains all your personalizations, like bookmarks, cookies, stored passwords, and extensions.) A user profile is generally associated with a specific browser version, and Firefox does not support using the same user profile with multiple versions of the browser, due to potential incompatibilities. (Broken windows, crashes, and lost data can frequently happen if you try this...believe me.)

So it's important that you create a separate user profile to be used only with Firefox 2, while leaving your existing profile untouched for Firefox 1.x.

You can create and manage profiles using the Firefox Profile Manager. To bring up the profile manager, click on the Start menu and choose Run..., then enter the full path to the new Firefox executable, followed by the -P option, e.g.:

"C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox 2\firefox.exe" -P

(If you installed to a different location, make the necessary modification to the above example.)

This will bring up a Profile manager like this:

Firefox Profile Manager:

Now click on "Create Profile". You'll be asked to give the profile a name (something like "beta1" works fine), and a folder location, which you can keep as the default if you like.

Click on Finish, and it'll take you back to the main profile manager screen. Highlight the profile you just created, and then click the button that says Start Firefox, and you're on your way.

Step Three: Automatically Choose the Right Profile

As you may have noticed, there is an option to have the Profile Manager always start up whenever you launch any version of Firefox on your machine. You could uncheck the option that says "Don't ask at startup", and that will let you choose the right profile for the right Firefox version each time you start it up.

You could do that, but if you make a mistake and choose your Firefox 1.x profile when launching Firefox 2, the browser will upgrade your profile, and render it incompatible with 1.0/1.5! (If this happens to you, it's time to look at that backup you made before we started.) Furthermore, I'm lazy: I don't like to click more buttons than I have to.

Instead, you can modify the shortcuts used to launch Firefox (on your desktop, in your quick launch bar, and/or in your start menu) to select a specific profile automatically. All this takes is a small change to the command used to launch Firefox.

For each of these shortcuts -- including the shortcuts for your existing Firefox 1.x install -- follow these steps:

  1. Right click on the shortcut, and choose "Properties". By default, the Target line will be highlighted with the command line to launch Firefox, like this:
    Firefox Shortcut:

  2. Go to the end of that line, and add -P profilename, where profilename is the name of the profile associated with that version of Firefox. For instance, if you just created a profile called "beta1" for your Firefox 2 install, your new command line will look like this:

    "C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox 2\firefox.exe" -P beta1

    Note that the profile name is case-sensitive. Be sure to put a space before and after the -P, and be sure to do this for your Firefox 1.x install, also. (By default, your original profile name is called, fittingly, "default").

Now whenever you startup one version of Firefox or the other, it will use the right profile you've created for that particular version.

For the Nitpickers

Two more issues bear noting. The first won't apply to everyone, but if you chose the Windows XP option to display your default Internet browser on your Start Menu, and have an entry at the top of your Start Menu for Mozilla Firefox, like this:

Firefox on Start Menu:

Guess what? It's now pointing to Firefox 2, even though you would probably never know from looking at it. Changing this involves a few tweaks to your Windows registry, which is beyond the scope of this little "How To", but most of what you need can be found in this Microsoft Knowledge Base Article.

The last potential snag is that you can only have one version of Firefox running at any given time. This means if you have a Firefox 1.x window open, clicking on the shortcut for Firefox 2 will actually open another Firefox 1.x window.

If, for some reason, you're really put out by this minor inconvenience, there is a little-known workaround that involves setting the environment variable MOZ_NO_REMOTE. As before, the details are outside the scope of this blog entry (that's code for "this article is already too long, and the music is playing me off"), but you can find more information in this off-site article.

Take the Plunge

If you were thinking about experimenting with the new Firefox 2 Beta, I hope this helps you feel comfortable about going for a test drive, without interfering with your daily web surfing. You can learn more about the Firefox 2 Beta 1 Release by reviewing the release notes on their Web site.

Next up, the final part in this series which will talk about safely using the Internet Explorer 7 Beta. You can also look forward to an occasional article from me on some advanced Firefox hacks and tricks for EBS users. (I'm already thinking Microsummaries have some great potential!)

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Tuesday Apr 18, 2006

Replacing Oracle JInitiator with Sun's Native Plug-In

[July 25, 2007 Update:  The Linux Early Adopter Program is on hold.  Please see this article for more details]

[June 27, 2007 Update:  This certification is now Generally Available.  All E-Business Suite customers can now deploy this configuration in production.  With the release of this certification, the Early Adopter Program for this configuration is now concluded.]

[May 23, 2007 Update:  We expect Sun to release a fix very soon for a focus issue that's been holding up this configuration's release into General Availability.  When we've verified that this fix is included in Sun's latest JRE plug-in, it is likely that this Early Adopter Program will end shortly afterwards.   In other words, this Early Adopter Program is in the final phase right now, and is expected to end very soon.]

[Apr 3, 2007 Update:  This Early Adopter Program is still running, and I'm still accepting customer nominations for new participants.  If you'd like to nominate your organization for this program, please drop me an email.
]

[July 3, 2006 Update:  We now support Sun Java 1.5.0_07 for Windows desktops.  All references changed internally below.]


Given a recent comment from a new reader, this seems like a good opportunity to cover one of our currently-running Early Adopter Programs in detail.  Although I've been promoting this program aggressively within our Oracle field community, this program's existence may be one of our best-kept secrets.

What's Oracle JInitiator?
The E-Business Suite Release 11i has two interfaces:  a web-based model for modules like iProcurement and iStore, and an Oracle Forms-based model for our professional services modules like Financials.

Oracle Forms are Java-based and require a Java Virtual Machine (JVM) to run.  Oracle JInitiator is Oracle's licenced version of Sun's JVM, and the E-Business Suite Forms-based modules are certified to run with Oracle's JInitiator.

Conflicts with Other Java Virtual Machines
This situation would be fine if it weren't for the existence of other Java Virtual Machines.  Sun, Microsoft, IBM, and other vendors each offer their own JVMs, and many of our customers run other Java-based applications with dependencies on specific JVM releases.

Naturally, complications ensue when multiple virtual JVMs are installed on the same Windows desktop.  For example, some customers encounter problems when running Oracle JInitiator concurrently with Microsoft's JVM.  Other customers encounter problems when running Sun JVM-based applications after running Oracle JInitiator. 

Replacing JInitiator with Sun's Native Java Virtual Machine
It may not solve all of your desktop management issues around clashing JVMs, but we're trying to eliminate the E-Business Suite's dependency on Oracle JInitiator, which should remove at at least one JVM from the mix.

Today, we've certified the E-Business Suite Release 11i with the native Sun JVM:  J2SE 5.0 (also known as 1.5).  Specifically, we've certified all E-Business Suite Forms-based modules to run with J2SE 1.5.0_07.

We plan future certifications with later 1.5.x releases, such as 1.5.0_08.  We also plan future certifications with J2SE 6.

Minimum Requirements for Microsoft Windows Desktops:
The prerequisites for this configuration are:
  • E-Business Suite 11.5.9 and higher
  • End-user desktops running Microsoft Windows 2000 or XP
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 or Mozilla Firefox 1.0.4 and higher
  • Browsers running Sun J2SE 1.5.0_07
Minimum Requirements for Linux-based Desktops:
The prerequisites for this configuration are:
  • Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11.5.10 with ATG 11.5.10 CU2
  • Desktop client running Java2 Standard Edition (J2SE) 5.0 internal version 1.5.0._05 and higher
  • Desktop client requirements:
    • Intel x86 processors
    • Red Hat Linux Desktop 3.0 and higher
    • Mozilla Firefox 1.0.7 and higher
Coexistence with Oracle JInitiator:  Phased Roll-Out
This configuration requires a patch to the E-Business Suite's technology stack (our team produces and certifies this patch, by the way). 

The interesting thing about this configuration is that the patched E-Business Suite instance can be accessed simultaneously by both Oracle JInitiator users as well as Sun JVM users.  For example, Robert can be running Oracle Jinitiator at the same time that Janice is running Sun's JVM.

This allows companies to experiment with this configuration for a subset of their users, which minimizes the risk of upgrading the entire end-user desktop in a single Big Bang project.

Known Issues
There are a few known issues with this configuration.  These issues are bugs within Sun's JVM and we're working with Sun to resolve them.  Issues include:
  • Occasional focus problems, where focus on the Sun JVM is lost in certain circumstances.  There are workarounds for this.
  • Limited support for certain bidirectional character sets.  There are no workarounds for this, unfortunately.
Production Support and Upgrade Policies
There are approximately a dozen early adopters registered in this program today.  All Early Adopter Program participants agree to test this configuration thoroughly in internal testbeds.  If the testing goes well, we support the use of this configuration in their production environments.

The required interoperability patch to support this is released in specific Builds.  Because of the difficulty of supporting multiple versions of the interoperability patch, all early adopters agree to keep current with the latest Build released for this configuration.  This includes upgrading to the latest patch after we release this configuration into General Availability.

If early adopters encounter an issue with an older Build that can't be reproduced in the latest Build, we try to find a workaround or - ideally - encourage them to install the latter.

Registering For This Program
We're eager to get as many early adopters into this program as possible.  If you'd like to experiment with this configuration, even if it's for just a single lab desktop, please consider registering your company in this Early Adopter Program.

To register, contact your Oracle account manager and ask him/her to read this post.  Then, your Oracle account manager should contact me to get your company properly registered.

If you have trouble identifying your Oracle account manager, let me know.  I look forward to hearing from you.

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