Monday May 01, 2006

In-Depth: Using OracleAS 10g with E-Business Suite Release 11

Editor Jan. 12, 2007 Update:  Oracle Identity Management 10g is now certified with the E-Business Suite. 

As promised earlier, this post represents the first of a series of in-depth discussions on using OracleAS 10g with the E-Business Suite Release 11.

It is now possible to integrate the E-Business Suite Release 11i with OracleAS 10g, for the use of Single Sign-On, Oracle Internet Directory, Portal, Discoverer, Web Cache and Oracle Integration.

Integrated, Not Upgraded

The key concept is that Release 11i may be integrated with OracleAS 10g.  The existing E-Business Suite application server, Oracle9i Application Server, is not upgraded to OracleAS 10g; the two instances are integrated together in a loosely-coupled architecture like this:

Simple OracleAS 10g + E-Business Suite Architecture:

Remember that if you want to upgrade your existing E-Business Suite 9iAS application server to OracleAS 10g, you'll be able to do that in Release 12.  For Release 11i, it's always going to be an integration-based architecture.

One Server or Two?

The diagram above shows the existing E-Business Suite 9iAS services and the new external OracleAS 10g services running on two different physical servers.  That's our recommended configuration, particularly if you're planning to upgrade from Discoverer 4i to 10g (due to the former's obsolescence in Oct 2006).

It's possible to install OracleAS 10g on the same physical server where 9iAS is installed... if you have sufficient resources available on that box.  You must install OracleAS 10g in a separate ORACLE_HOME.  OracleAS 10g cannot be installed into the existing E-Business Suite 9iAS ORACLE_HOME.

What Are The Main OracleAS 10g Components?

This is something new to E-Business Suite sysadmins, so you may have to review this a few times to let it sink in.

Architecturally, you should think of OracleAS 10g as being comprised of middle-tier (application tier) products and infrastructure services.  Middle-tier products include Portal, Discoverer, and Oracle Integration.

The OracleAS 10g Infrastructure includes Single Sign-On, Oracle Internet Directory, and the actual LDAP database where user credentials are stored.  In general, all of the OracleAS 10g middle-tier products share the same OracleAS 10g Infrastructure.

Middle-tier products like Portal have content such as portal page definitions, pictures, downloadable files, and so on.  This content has metadata, too, which determines how content is displayed and accessed.  All of this product-specific content and metadata is stored in a database called the OracleAS 10g Metadata Repository.

Installing OracleAS 10g (Over and Over)

As you'd expect, there are several variants of how these components can be installed.  These variants are documented in excruciating detail in the OracleAS 10g Installation Guide for your operating system platform.  Arm yourself with coffee before reading the Installation Guide - it can be heavy going for a first-time reader.

In general, the first component to be installed is the OracleAS 10g Infrastructure.  If you're starting out simply (which I'd recommend), you can install the OracleAS 10g Metadata Repository at the same time, like this:

Simple OracleAS 10g Infrastructure:

Advanced sysadmins have the option of installing the Infrastructure and Metadata Repository in different places and on different servers, like this:

Split OracleAS 10g Infra + MR:

If all you're interested in using is Single Sign-On and Oracle Internet Directory with the E-Business Suite, you're done on that front (for now). 

If you're interested in using Portal or other middle-tier components like Oracle Integration, you need to run the Oracle Unversal Installer and install those components separately.  As part of their installation, you'll need to point those components to the OracleAS 10g Infrastructure and OracleAS 10g Metadata Repository that you created earlier.

OracleAS 10g Runs Independently

Now that your OracleAS 10g environment is installed, you should test it to ensure that it runs without any issues.  You should be able to log in to this environment, create and modify users, start up Portal, create custom portal home pages, and so on. 

Connecting OracleAS 10g to the E-Business Suite

Once your OracleAS 10g instance is proven to be working, you will proceed with connecting it to your E-Business Suite environment.  Doing so will enable your E-Business Suite to use Single Sign-On, Portal, and Discoverer services running on the OracleAS 10g instance. 

I'll cover each of those options in subsequent "In-Depth" postings later this week.

Related Articles:

Monday Apr 17, 2006

Login Server and Portal 3.0.9 To Be Effectively Desupported... in Autumn 2006?

[Aug 3, 2007 Update:  That's it,

folks.  Portal 3.0.9 and Login Server 3.0.9 are now officially out of Premier Support.  For a final discussion about this, see this article.]

Continuing on our theme of recent E-Business Suite certifications and upcoming desupport notices, here's one with an unusual wrinkle:

Login Server 3.0.9 and Portal 3.0.9 have been desupported for years for general users, but like Discoverer 4i, E-Business Suite users have had a special exception to this.  This situation is changing:  both Login Server 3.0.9 and Portal 3.0.9 will be desupported for E-Business Suite users in July, 2007.

However, there's something on the horizon that may accelerate that desupport schedule.

Sun is tentatively planning a new release of their Java Standard Edition  (SE) 6; the beta is available now.  Sun's official support policy is that they support their latest three Java releases.  Once Java 6 is released, the latest three Java releases will be Java 6, Java 5, and Java 1.4.

This means that Sun will desupport Java 1.3 as soon as Java 6 is released.

Oracle Login Server 3.0.9 and Portal 3.0.9 require Java 1.3 as a prerequisite.  They have not been certified with later Java releases.  The implication is that Login Server 3.0.9 and Portal 3.0.9 will be effectively desupported as soon as Java 6 is released in Autumn, 2006.

In other words, Sun's desupport policy trumps Oracle's desupport policy.

My team is participating in efforts now to validate whether it is even technically feasible to certify Login Server 3.0.9 and Portal 3.0.9 with a later Java release.  This is a non-trivial task and may not be possible at all.

The safest thing for all E-Business Suite customers is to start planning your upgrades to Single Sign-On 10g and Portal 10g.  These products are bundled as part of Oracle Application Server 10g.  Judging from the experiences of our early adopters of this integration (more on that in future posts), some customers may find this to be a challenging upgrade.

I strongly recommend that you start your Oracle Application Server 10g impact assessment and upgrade planning now

Critical references for this are:



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