Wednesday Nov 07, 2012

Implications of Java 6 End of Public Updates for EBS Users

[Update Feb. 28, 2013: Added pointer to Note 1439822.1]

[Update Dec. 11, 2012: JRE 7 is now certified with the E-Business Suite; see this announcement for complete details.]

Java logo

The Support Roadmap for Oracle Java is published here:

The latest updates to that page (as of Sept. 19, 2012) state (emphasis added):

Java SE 6 End of Public Updates Notice

After February 2013, Oracle will no longer post updates of Java SE 6 to its public download sites. Existing Java SE 6 downloads already posted as of February 2013 will remain accessible in the Java Archive on Oracle Technology Network. Developers and end-users are encouraged to update to more recent Java SE versions that remain available for public download. For enterprise customers, who need continued access to critical bug fixes and security fixes as well as general maintenance for Java SE 6 or older versions, long term support is available through Oracle Java SE Support .

What does this mean for Oracle E-Business Suite users?

EBS users fall under the category of "enterprise users" above.  Java is an integral part of the Oracle E-Business Suite technology stack, so EBS users will continue to receive Java SE 6 updates from February 2013 to the end of Java SE 6 Extended Support in June 2017.

In other words, nothing will change for EBS users after February 2013. 

EBS users will continue to receive critical bug fixes and security fixes as well as general maintenance for Java SE 6. These Java SE 6 updates will be made available to EBS users for the Extended Support periods documented in the Oracle Lifetime Support policy document for Oracle Applications (PDF):

  1. EBS 11i Extended Support ends November 2013
  2. EBS 12.0 Extended Support ends January 2015
  3. EBS 12.1 Extended Support ends December 2018

How can EBS customers obtain Java 6 updates after the public end-of-life?

EBS customers can download Java 6 patches from My Oracle Support.  For a complete list of all Java SE patch numbers, see:

Will EBS users be forced to upgrade to JRE 7 for Windows desktop clients?

No. This upgrade will be highly recommended but currently remains optional. JRE 6 will be available to Windows users to run with EBS for the duration of your respective EBS Extended Support period.  Updates will be delivered via My Oracle Support, where you can continue to receive critical bug fixes and security fixes as well as general maintenance for JRE 6 desktop clients. 

The certification of Oracle E-Business Suite with JRE 7 (for desktop clients accessing EBS Forms-based content) is in its final stages.  If you plan to upgrade your EBS desktop clients to JRE 7 when that certification is released, you can get a head-start on that today.

Coexistence of JRE 6 and JRE 7 on Windows desktops

The upgrade to JRE 7 will be highly recommended for EBS users, but some users may need to run both JRE 6 and 7 on their Windows desktops for reasons unrelated to the E-Business Suite.

Most EBS configurations with IE and Firefox use non-static versioning by default. JRE 7 will be invoked instead of JRE 6 if both are installed on a Windows desktop. For more details, see "Appendix B: Static vs. Non-static Versioning and Set Up Options" in Notes 290801.1 and 393931.1.

Applying Updates to JRE 6 and JRE 7 to Windows desktops

Auto-update will keep JRE 7 up-to-date for Windows users with JRE 7 installed.

Auto-update will only keep JRE 7 up-to-date for Windows users with both JRE 6 and 7 installed. 

JRE 6 users are strongly encouraged to apply the latest Critical Patch Updates as soon as possible after each release. The Jave SE CPUs will be available via My Oracle Support.  EBS users can find more information about JRE 6 and 7 updates here:

The dates for future Java SE CPUs can be found on the Critical Patch Updates, Security Alerts and Third Party Bulletin.  An RSS feed is available on that site for those who would like to be kept up-to-date.

What will Mac users need?

Oracle will provide updates to JRE 7 for Mac OS X users. EBS users running Macs will need to upgrade to JRE 7 to receive JRE updates.

The certification of Oracle E-Business Suite with JRE 7 for Mac-based desktop clients accessing EBS Forms-based content is underway. Mac users waiting for that certification may find this article useful:

Will EBS users be forced to upgrade to JDK 7 for EBS application tier servers?

No. This upgrade will be highly recommended but will be optional for EBS application tier servers running on Windows, Linux, and Solaris.  You can choose to remain on JDK 6 for the duration of your respective EBS Extended Support period.  If you remain on JDK 6, you will continue to receive critical bug fixes and security fixes as well as general maintenance for JDK 6.

The certification of Oracle E-Business Suite with JDK 7 for EBS application tier servers on Windows, Linux, and Solaris as well as other platforms such as IBM AIX and HP-UX is planned.  Customers running platforms other than Windows, Linux, and Solaris should refer to their Java vendors's sites for more information about their support policies.

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Wednesday Dec 26, 2007

Editorial: Macs Slipping Into the Enterprise

Ah, Christmas.  I love this time of year.  This is when I get to wrap up some longstanding questions in my overflowing blog mailbag.  Here's an answer to a fun cluster of emails about my new laptop.

MacBook Pro: Screenshot of laptop images from Apple's MacBook Pro website

I was carrying a new MacBook Pro laptop around at the OAUG Collaborate and OpenWorld conferences this year.  This prompted a number number of questions to which I've been procrastinating on replying.

Never Took The Easy Road

But first, some context.  I'm a power user and developer.  I've been a Windows developer since its initial release, and as a a former IBMer, an OS/2 developer as well.  Before that I was an MS-DOS programmer, and long before that I was hand-coding 6502 assembler in hex on a KIM-1. Apple computers were intriguing, but aside from a short period when I wrote an inventory system on an Apple II, lay on a road less traveled by me. I've owned literally dozens of Windows PCs and laptops.

Somewhere along the way, unnoticed by me, Apple's operating system grew up.  Then Apple really got my attention when they switched to Intel chips.

A Windows User in an Apple World

Despite the ballyhoo that the press likes to make about Oracle's competition with Microsoft, Oracle is a staunchly-Windows environment.  It was with some trepidation that I purchased my first MacBook Pro (with my own funds) last year.

You know what?  All the hype is true.  As a long-time (hardcore) Windows developer and power user, I can only say that Mac OS X is a dazzling eye-opener.  It's easier to use, slicker, has lower systems administration overhead, and is demonstrably stabler and more secure.  New Leopard features like Time Machine are, indeed, as revolutionary and as good as the hype.  I now understand the sentiment that turns some Mac users into Apple zealots.

An Apple User in a Windows World

I run native Mac applications where possible. Where it's necessary for my work, I run all of my Windows-based applications on my Mac, too.  My MacBook Pro is the best Windows PC I've ever had.

I run WinXP using VMWare's Fusion (no relationship to Oracle's own Fusion Applications), which provides me with a stabler and more-robust Windows environment than my Oracle-issued Dell.  If I want to experiment with some sketchy Windows betas, I copy my base WinXP image to a sandbox and play there.  I simply delete the sandbox when I'm done.

I can run multiple virtual sessions of WinXP and Linux side-by-side on my Mac OS desktop.  This makes for an astonishingly elegant and powerful computing experience.

My anecdotal impression is that I'm not alone.  I see more of my colleagues carrying Macs instead of their Oracle-sanctioned Dells, and even Intel's CEO admits that he uses a Mac.  Macs seem to be slipping into the enterprise faster than before.

I've now been an Apple user for over a year.  The number of newly-acquired Macs in my household has shot up alarmingly.  At this point, I see no reason to recommend a conventional PC when you can purchase a Mac that runs both Windows and Mac software side-by-side. And here's a final confession that shouldn't make any difference to an IT professional like me (but does): it's simply more fun to run Mac OS X than Windows.

Disclaimer:  Although I am clearly enthusiastic about Apple products, this does not represent Oracle's endorsement of my opinions. This is an editorial, and as such, reflects only my opinion, not Oracle's.  In the interest of full disclosure, you should know that I have been sufficiently impressed by my experience with Apple's products to purchase some AAPL stock along the way, too.



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