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Managing Chartfields and Trees Across PeopleSoft and Hyperion

Brent Martin - Tue, 2011-07-26 04:07

If you’re implementing Hyperion applications to complement your PeopleSoft Financials application, one decision you’ll have to make relatively early is which tool to use to manage your core dimensions and their associated hierarchies.  Here are the options:



Native Functionality
Hyperion EPMA
Hyperion Data Relationship Management

So which one is the right choice?  Based on my research and discussions with Christopher Dwight, a member of Oracle’s Master Data Management practice, here’s what I have learned:


The native functionality basically means you’ll maintain your dimensions in each application separately.  So if you want to add a department, you’ll have to add it to PeopleSoft, then Hyperion Financial Management, then Planning separately.


Hyperion EPMA provides a robust, single point of administration for EPM applications.  It allows you to create a dimension library which allows several EPM dimensions to be centrally stored and re-used across multiple EPM applications.  Basic dimension editing capabilities are provided.  Individual dimension elements ("nodes" or "members") can be flagged for use within a specific application, supporting slightly different application requirements while promoting dimension re-use.  Although this feature has potential, each member must be individually flagged, limiting the usability for large dimensions.  EPMA is intended to support only Hyperion EPM applications, and to be utilized by system administrators, not the typical end user.


DRM is different in that it was conceived from the start as an agnostic enterprise dimension management platform, and not beholden to Hyperion EPM applications alone.  As such, DRM can be deployed to support financial metadata and dimensions in a myriad of systems, ranging from PeopleSoft to GEAC to SAP to Cognos to Teradata to Hyperion and many more.  It was also design to support not only system administrator users, but also to allow business users to become direct contributors into the dimension management process.
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Moving OVD 11g Test to Production Configurations

Mark Wilcox - Mon, 2011-07-25 03:43
Just back from vacation - during which we launched our new Oracle Unified Directory (OUD). And I'll be spending a lot of time writing about that since it's new product. But here's a useful 11g OVD piece of information. If you need to migrate test to production configurations on 11g OVD and you apply the latest patchset (11.1.1.5 aka Patchset 4) we have new migration scripts that are particularly useful for off-line migrations: For off-line Test-To-Production migration of OVD, customers can use Movement Scripts to:
  1. Create a configuration archive of OVD instance using 'copyConfig' script.
  2. Extract the move plan using 'extractMovePlan' script & edit the move plan appropriately.
  3. Copy the configuration archive & move plan to Production server(s) & execute 'pasteConfig' script.

Configuring FTP on Exadata

Alejandro Vargas - Sun, 2011-07-24 23:30
Exadata is installed with the minimum set of rpm's required to make it work as a database server.In many cases you will need to install by yourself the rpms required to make available some specific functions, like FTP.Exadata is installed either with Oracle Enterprise Linux or Solaris Express. This instructions match the Linux distribution, and can be used on any RH compatible Linux, not only OEL on Exadata.You can find the rpm's on the Oracle Enterprise Linux Distribution Disk, downloadable from edelivery.oracle.comInstall the Following rpms:[root@exand02 rpms]# lsftp-0.17-35.el5.x86_64.rpm pam-rpms vsftpd-2.0.5-16.el5_4.1.x86_64.rpmlftp-3.7.11-4.el5.x86_64.rpm tftp-server-0.49-2.0.1.x86_64.rpmThe Command to Install[root@exand02 rpms]# rpm -Uivh vsftpd-2.0.5-16.el5_4.1.x86_64.rpm ftp-0.17-35.el5.x86_64.rpm lftp-3.7.11-4.el5.x86_64.rpmStart Service vsftpd[root@exand02 rpms]# service vsftpd startStarting vsftpd for vsftpd: [ OK ][root@exand02 rpms]# service vsftpd statusvsftpd (pid 9274) is running...Configure Automatic vsftp Start[root@exand02 rpms]# chkconfig vsftpd on[root@exand02 rpms]# chkconfig --list | grep vsftpdvsftpd 0:off 1:off 2:on 3:on 4:on 5:on 6:offecho "service vsftpd status" >> /etc/rc.local[root@exand02 rpms]# tail -2 /etc/rc.local########### END DO NOT REMOVE Added by Oracle Exadata ###########service vsftpd startEdit /etc/vsftpd.confSet the following parameters on vsftpd.conf#anonymous_enable=YES (changed to NO to allow Exadata users to ftp)anonymous_enable=NO#userlist_enable=YES (changed to NO to allow Exadata users to ftp)userlist_enable=NOTest[root@exand02 vsftpd]# ftp exand02Connected to exand02 (10.25.104.130).220 (vsFTPd 2.0.5)Name (exand02:root): oracle331 Please specify the password.Password:230 Login successful.Remote system type is UNIX.Using binary mode to transfer files.ftp> pwd257 "/home/oracle"ftp> ls227 Entering Passive Mode (10,25,104,130,85,192)150 Here comes the directory listing.drwxr-xr-x 3 1001 500 4096 May 20 19:47 localdrwxr----- 3 1001 500 4096 May 03 12:20 oradiag_oracle-rw-r--r-- 1 1001 500 1020 Jun 01 14:41 ~oraclec226 Directory send OK.ftp> bye221 Goodbye.
Categories: DBA Blogs

Configuring FTP on Exadata

Alejandro Vargas - Sun, 2011-07-24 23:30

Exadata is installed with the minimum set of rpm's required to make it work as a database server.
In many cases you will need to install by yourself the rpms required to make available some specific functions, like FTP.

Exadata is installed either with Oracle Enterprise Linux or Solaris Express. This instructions match the Linux distribution, and can be used on any RH compatible Linux, not only OEL on Exadata.

You can find the rpm's on the Oracle Enterprise Linux Distribution Disk, downloadable from edelivery.oracle.com

Install the Following rpms:

[root@exand02 rpms]# ls
ftp-0.17-35.el5.x86_64.rpm pam-rpms
vsftpd-2.0.5-16.el5_4.1.x86_64.rpm
lftp-3.7.11-4.el5.x86_64.rpm tftp-server-0.49-2.0.1.x86_64.rpm

The Command to Install

[root@exand02 rpms]# rpm -Uivh vsftpd-2.0.5-16.el5_4.1.x86_64.rpm ftp-0.17-35.el5.x86_64.rpm lftp-3.7.11-4.el5.x86_64.rpm

Start Service vsftpd

[root@exand02 rpms]# service vsftpd start
Starting vsftpd for vsftpd: [ OK ]
[root@exand02 rpms]# service vsftpd status
vsftpd (pid 9274) is running...

Configure Automatic vsftp Start

[root@exand02 rpms]# chkconfig vsftpd on

[root@exand02 rpms]# chkconfig --list | grep vsftpd
vsftpd 0:off 1:off 2:on 3:on 4:on 5:on 6:off

echo "service vsftpd status" >> /etc/rc.local

[root@exand02 rpms]# tail -2 /etc/rc.local
########### END DO NOT REMOVE Added by Oracle Exadata ###########
service vsftpd start

Edit /etc/vsftpd.conf

Set the following parameters on vsftpd.conf

#anonymous_enable=YES (changed to NO to allow Exadata users to ftp)
anonymous_enable=NO

#userlist_enable=YES (changed to NO to allow Exadata users to ftp)
userlist_enable=NO

Test

[root@exand02 vsftpd]# ftp exand02

Connected to exand02 (10.25.104.130).
220 (vsFTPd 2.0.5)
Name (exand02:root): oracle
331 Please specify the password.
Password:
230 Login successful.
Remote system type is UNIX.
Using binary mode to transfer files.

ftp> pwd
257 "/home/oracle"

ftp> ls
227 Entering Passive Mode (10,25,104,130,85,192)
150 Here comes the directory listing.
drwxr-xr-x 3 1001 500 4096 May 20 19:47 local
drwxr----- 3 1001 500 4096 May 03 12:20 oradiag_oracle
-rw-r--r-- 1 1001 500 1020 Jun 01 14:41 ~oraclec
226 Directory send OK.

ftp> bye
221 Goodbye.

Categories: DBA Blogs

Plagiarism: The Sincerest Form of Flattery

OCP Advisor - Sun, 2011-07-24 12:28
As the saying goes, "Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery". Copying published articles with acknowledging the author is called plagiarism. There are several sites on the world wide web that have copied blog posts from this blog and posted it in its entirety without any mention of the author or even a link to the original post. Some of the sites are selling illegal 'brain dump' question banks and that devalues the intent of this blog author to provide a forum for hard working certification candidates to prepare for exams and pass them with proper preparation and effort. There is no shortcut to success. Without publishing the URL of the offending sites, here are some snippets of plagiarism that pervades the Internet with links to the actual blog post below them. Plagiarism seems to be the sincerest form of flattery!




Here is the link to the original post: New OCP Beta Exam For Technical Track

 
At least there are some sites that provide links to the original blog post like the one from OraComp. Here is the link to the original post: Oracle Tutor Patches Revisited

It is heartening that there are sites like ITSNewcast that acknowledges the blog author for their posting. Here is the link to the original post: Get Certified on Oracle Unified Method (OUM)

11.2.0.2 Creating a Standby or a Clone Database using Rman Duplicate From Active Database

Alejandro Vargas - Sun, 2011-07-24 03:20
There are a few things on 11.2.0.2 that you need to take into account to create a standby database or a clone database from an Active Database using Duplicate database command. Points 2, 9 and 10 of this document contains the details I’ve found I needed to change in order to get the clone or duplicate for standby running smoothly on this release:The steps required to complete the task are: 1)

Create a parameter file for the clone or standby

2)

add the following 3 parameters to the standby or clone database parameter file, even if the paths are identical on both the source and standby or clone servers: *._compression_compatibility='11.2.0' *.db_file_name_convert=('trg_path','aux_path'…) *.log_file_name_convert=('trg_path','aux_path'…) 3)

Copy the passwordfile from the source database to the clone or standby Oracle_Home/database folder or $Oracle_Home/dbs on Linux/Uniux.

4)

Configure the network on the clone or standby server so that you can connect to the database

5)

Startup nomount the clone or standby database

6)

Add a tnsnames.ora entry to the clone or standby on your source database server

7)

Check that you can connect to the clone or standby database as sysdba

8)

On the Primary server connect to the source database and clone or standby database (auxiliary) using RMAN >rman target / auxiliary sys/@prodcl Recovery Manager: Release 11.2.0.2.0 - Production on Sun Jul 24 15:49:25 2011 Copyright (c) 1982, 2009, Oracle and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved. connected to target database: PROD (DBID=8114723455) connected to auxiliary database: PRODCL (not mounted)

9)

Use the following syntax to duplicate to a clone (use as many channels as CPU’s you may dedicate): run { allocate channel c1 type disk; allocate auxiliary channel cr1 type disk; duplicate target database to 'prodcl' from active database nofilenamecheck; } 10)

Use the following syntax to duplicate for standby (use as many channels as CPU’s you may dedicate): run { allocate channel c1 type disk; allocate auxiliary channel cr1 type disk; duplicate target database for standby from active database nofilenamecheck; }
Categories: DBA Blogs

11.2.0.2 Creating a Standby or a Clone Database using Rman Duplicate From Active Database

Alejandro Vargas - Sun, 2011-07-24 03:20

There are a few things on 11.2.0.2 that you need to take into account to create a standby database or a clone database from an Active Database using Duplicate database command.

Points 2, 9 and 10 of this document contains the details I’ve found I needed to change in order to get the clone or duplicate for standby running smoothly on this release:

The steps required to complete the task are:

1) Create a parameter file for the clone or standby

2) add the following 3 parameters to the standby or clone database parameter file, even if the paths are identical on both the source and standby or clone servers:

*._compression_compatibility='11.2.0'
*.db_file_name_convert=('trg_path','aux_path'…)
*.log_file_name_convert=('trg_path','aux_path'…)

3) Copy the passwordfile from the source database to the clone or standby Oracle_Home/database folder or $Oracle_Home/dbs on Linux/Uniux.

4) Configure the network on the clone or standby server so that you can connect to the database

5) Startup nomount the clone or standby database

6) Add a tnsnames.ora entry to the clone or standby on your source database server

7) Check that you can connect to the clone or standby database as sysdba

8) On the Primary server connect to the source database and clone or standby database (auxiliary) using RMAN

>rman target / auxiliary sys/@prodcl

Recovery Manager: Release 11.2.0.2.0 - Production on Sun Jul 24 15:49:25 2011

Copyright (c) 1982, 2009, Oracle and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.

connected to target database: PROD (DBID=8114723455)
connected to auxiliary database: PRODCL (not mounted)

9) Use the following syntax to duplicate to a clone (use as many channels as CPU’s you may dedicate):

run {
allocate channel c1 type disk;
allocate auxiliary channel cr1 type disk;
duplicate target database to 'prodcl' from active database nofilenamecheck;
}

10) Use the following syntax to duplicate for standby (use as many channels as CPU’s you may dedicate):

run {
allocate channel c1 type disk;
allocate auxiliary channel cr1 type disk;
duplicate target database for standby from active database nofilenamecheck;
}

Categories: DBA Blogs

163 ACEs In This Deck

OCP Advisor - Sat, 2011-07-23 02:28
If Oracle OpenWorld 2011 content catalog was a deck of cards, there would be 163 Aces in the deck. The Oralce Technology Network (OTN) Blog lists the Oracle ACE holders presenting at Oracle OpenWorld in a blog post appropriately titled: Are You Kidding Me? 163 Oracle ACE Sessions at Oracle OpenWorld

The Who's Who of the Oracle Universe is presenting and it is a very humble feeling to be included in the list. I hope to feature some of the illustrious names in the 'Meet The Experts' section of this blog. If you are attending Oracle OpenWorld 2011, add the ACE sessions to your schedule. Here is my wish list of ACE sessions to attend (apart from the one I am presenting!):
  • Andy Katz - Upgrading to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1 Without Losing Your Hair or Your Wallet
  • Benjamin Prusinski - Lockdown: Secure Your Database in a Day
  • Brian Huff - Creating a Global E-Commerce Site with Oracle E-Business Suite and Oracle Fusion Middleware
  • Chris Muir - Angels in the Architecture: An Oracle Application Development Framework Architectural Blueprint
  • Debra Lilley - Do I Upgrade or Go Straight to Oracle Fusion Applications?
  • Elke Phelps - Advanced Oracle E-Business Suite Architectures: Maximum Availability, Security, and More
  • Floyd Teter - The ABCs of Implementing Oracle Fusion Project Portfolio Management
  • Jerry Ireland - Interfacing with Oracle E-Business Suite by Using Oracle SOA Suite
  • John Stouffer - 12 Steps to Oracle E-Business Suite 12 Upgrade: Hazelden Foundation Release 12 Lessons Learned
  • Kaberi Nayak - Upgrading to Oracle E-Business Suite Release 12.1: Technical/Functional Panel
  • Karen Brownfield - Maximize Efficiency of Oracle E-Business Suite 11i and 12 Through Diagnostics
  • Michael Brown - Oracle E-Business Suite Release 11.5.10.2 to Release 12.1.3: A Technical Perspective
  • Pat Dues - Best Practices for Maintaining Oracle E-Business Suite 12
  • Raimonds Simanovskis - Extending Oracle E-Business Suite with Ruby on Rails
  • Wilfred van der Deijl - Four Ways to Transition from Oracle Forms to Oracle ADF

Oracle Certified Specialist - Time To Get Specialized

OCP Advisor - Fri, 2011-07-22 10:20
About 2 years ago, Oracle Partner Network (OPN) launched the OPN Specialized program. Specialization achievement has a key component of competency development. Partners who earn specialization in at least one area (and up to four areas) are eligible for entry to the Gold level. Those partners who obtain five or more specializations qualify for the elite Platinum partner program level, which is the highest partner program level offered by Oracle.

Oracle Certification Program team has launched Oracle Certified Specialist credentials to certify Oracle Partners for their specialization level. OPN Certified Specialist credential identifies those Oracle Partners who have completed specified requirements for select Oracle Certified Associate (OCA), Oracle Certified Professional (OCP), Oracle Certified Expert (OCE), and Oracle Certified Specialist (OCS) certifications.
Oracle Partner employees who complete the certification requirements (for these select certifications) using their official OPN company ID will now also be awarded the OPN Certified Specialist designation for the technology as well as the original underlying OCA, OCP, OCE, or OCS credential, and their achievement is credited toward their company's OPN Specialized recognition.
 
Oracle Certified Specialist certification typically consists of just one exam. For example, passing 1Z0-518 Oracle EBS R12.1 Receivables Essentials qualifies one for Oracle E-Business Suite 12 Financial Management Certified Implementation Specialist: Oracle Receivables certification. For the corresponding Oracle Certified Expert certification one has to write two exams - Oracle E-Business Suite R12: E-Business Essentials and the Oracle E-Business Suite R12: General Ledger and Receivables Fundamentals mega exam. Even those who are not employees of Oracle Partners can register for the exams and qualify for Oracle Certified Specialist credentials. With a lesser number of exams to take to qualify for certification, this can be a great certification to aim if you have not enough time to prepare for more extensive exam content. It is time to get specialized!

Application Express 4.1 - #BUTTON_ID# Changed Behaviour

Anthony Rayner - Thu, 2011-07-21 07:28
I just wanted to blog about some changed behaviour that will be landing in APEX 4.1. The change has to do with the #BUTTON_ID# substitution string, available for use within a button template and we hope will have minimal impact.

What's Changing?

Prior to 4.1, the value substituted for the #BUTTON_ID# substitution string in a button template depended on the type of button:
  • Region buttons substituted the internal numeric ID of the button, for example '123456789101112'.
  • Item buttons actually failed to substitute this value at all, so you would just get the '#BUTTON_ID#' text.
We had to address and improve this for the new Dynamic Action / Button integration in 4.1, which means that the value substituted for #BUTTON_ID# will now be one of the following:
  1. If the template is used by an item button, the item name is used, for example 'P1_GO'.
  2. If the template is used by a region button and a 'Static ID' (new in 4.1) is defined for the button, this is used, for example 'my_custom_id'.
  3. If the template is used by a region button and no 'Static ID' is defined, an ID in the format 'B||[Internal Button ID] will be used, for example 'B123456789101112'.
The change in behaviour that could be of potential significance in your applications is #3 above. This was changed so as to be a valid HTML 4.01 identifier (begins with a letter) and to be consistent with how we handle other component IDs in Application Express. 


Will this impact your applications?

If you used a button template, that used an ID value substituted by #BUTTON_ID# (you would have had to add it to the button template, as this was never included by default in our themes), and importantly you hard-coded that ID from other places in your code (for example in custom JavaScript to attach behaviour to the button), then this change in behaviour will cause that code to no longer work.


What can you do about this?

To help you identify region buttons that use a template containing the #BUTTON_ID# substitution string, you can run the following query in your workspace in Application Express 4.0:

    select aapb.application_id,
           aapb.page_id,
           aapb.button_name,
           aapb.label,
           aapb.button_id,
           aapb.button_template,
           aatb.template
      from apex_application_page_buttons aapb,
           apex_applications aa,
           apex_application_temp_button aatb
     where aapb.application_id     = aa.application_id
       and aa.application_id       = aatb.application_id
       and aa.theme_number         = aatb.theme_number
       and aatb.template_name      = aapb.button_template
       and aapb.application_id     = [Your App ID]
       and aapb.button_template    is not null
       and aapb.button_position    = 'Region Position'
       and upper(aatb.template)    like '%#BUTTON_ID#%'
     order by 1,2,3

Or when APEX 4.1 comes out, you'll be able to do this (by virtue of the addition of the BUTTON_TEMPLATE_ID column to the APEX_APPLICATION_PAGE_BUTTONS dictionary view):

    select aapb.application_id,
           aapb.page_id,
           aapb.button_name,
           aapb.label,
           aapb.button_id,
           aapb.button_template,
           aatb.template
      from apex_application_page_buttons aapb,
           apex_application_temp_button aatb
     where aapb.button_template_id = aatb.button_template_id
       and aapb.application_id     = [Your App ID]
       and aapb.button_template    is not null
       and aapb.button_position    = 'Region Position'
       and upper(aatb.template)    like '%#BUTTON_ID#%'
     order by 1,2,3

This will not detect where you may have referenced the ID in other code (such as JavaScript code), it just identifies the buttons that could be problematic. So you can then review the pages returned by this query, to isolate any pages that could have issues. 

The easiest way to fix the issue will be to use the 'Button ID' value returned from the query as the new 'Static ID' for the button. This would mean the button would be rendered with the same ID as prior to release 4.1 and any dependent code would still work.

This will of course be documented in our Release Notes as Changed Behaviour, but I hope this post helps to give a little pre-warning as to whether this may affect you.

Updated: Thank you to Louis-Guillaume Carrier-Bédard for pointing out that the query I (rather stupidly!) initially added does not work in APEX 4.0. My apologies if this caused any inconvenience.
Categories: Development

6 Degrees of Separation

OCP Advisor - Thu, 2011-07-21 03:57
Oracle Certification Program (OCP) Team has become social-media savvy over the years. Today, there are less than six degrees of separation between you and the tirelessly working Oracle Certification Team who have launched more than 100 new certification exams in the last 3 years. Gone are the days where you e-mailed the OCP Team and waited weeks for an answer. Now there are 6 social media channels to reach them.

They are as follows:

  1. Facebook - Like their Facebook page and get status updates on latest announcements
  2. Twitter - Follow @oraclecert
  3. YouTube - Subscribe to the Oracle Certification channel
  4. Blog - Subscribe to the blog feed and book mark the blog page
  5. E-Magazine - Subscribe to the monthly e-magazine delivered to your e-mail inbox
  6. Linkedin - Join more than ten thousand members on this active online community discussing almost everything about Oracle Certification and with lot of job postings from resourcing managers

Using OSGi to explain the difference between Factory and Broker pattern

Peter O'Brien - Wed, 2011-07-20 11:53
 Creating Modular Applications in JavaAfter some heated discussions about OSGi on The Server Side decided to put together a series of articles on the topic. Quite rightly I think, Peter Kriens has the honour of getting the series started. His article on developing modular applications provides one of the clearest explanations of the differences between the Factory and Broker pattern. Put simply, the Factory must know implementation details of what it is creating, while the Broker does not, since it does not really create anything.

Peter's explanation makes it very clear why Factory is good, but just not good enough, for enterprise applications. I hope he contributes more on the series.

MOS 5.3: Search and Knowledge

Charles Schultz - Wed, 2011-07-20 09:19
After my initial MOS 5.3 post, I received some most excellent feedback and an opportunity to speak with Jan Syssauw. He was exceedingly gracious and honored me with a 1-hour phone conference in which we covered many different aspects of Search. In response, I thought it would only be appropriate to follow up here.

I have a lot of respect for Jan (pronounced Yan). He is a very good listener and has a very professional demeanor, accepting my comments (and sometimes criticism) without belying how personally he cares for his team and his product. And yet he does - Jan very much wants Search and the KB to be an awesome experience, so I appreciate that he is reaching out to see what at least one user thinks.

In retrospect, I think I may have disproportionately emphasized certain features or areas by leveling the playing field (from my point of view) and perhaps giving the impression that I thought all areas were equal and required an equal degree of attention. Let me say that I wish to correct this. :) And I'll focus first on what I think the big issues are, and leave the small things for another time.

Search SuggestionsFirst and foremost, "Search Suggestions" are a huge improvement. I initially called these "type-ahead" or "autofill", but the proper term (so I have learned) is "search suggestions". I really like the direction they are going with this. We talked about some of the nuances; for example, the issue with versions I raised in my initial post (typing "Oracle server ent" gives me several suggestions, but none of them are 11g and only one is 10g). The reason Jan gave for this was that there are lots of suggestions that kind of fall off the end of the list - if I set my preferences to see only 5 "search suggestions", then even more of those suggestions would fall off the list. Jan hopes that the more popular and more relevant suggestions will start to percolate to the top of the suggestion list. I still find it odd that Oracle 7.3 would supercede 11g.... *grin*

Need for SpeedOk, so FLASH is REALLY slow for me, and I REALLY do not like the way FLASH was implemented for MOS. However, setting FLASH aside and focusing on Search, I was struck again by a need for speed. I think these are both very related, but I am going to break it into two different paragraphs to help spell it out.

First, there are times when typing in a somewhat generic term (ie, "install"), I have to wait several seconds (I counted 9 seconds to retrieve 1.1 million records). What about first_rows_k?? *grin* Seriously, Oracle's flagship product is supposed to be the database, and they call themselves the "Information Company". While 9 seconds out of my life is peanuts, other companies (do I need to spell it out?) don't have you sitting around for a few seconds wondering how your fingernails got a little dirty. I have even filed a bug on a case where you can do a search on nothing and the backend server times out - as if I wanted to see every single document. *laugh*

Second, Jan mentioned a couple times when we were talking about setting limits for maximum number of Search Suggestions and Number of Records to Display that setting the limit higher would negatively impact performance. How much? If I want, let's get extreme, 100 search suggestions and 1000 results per page, will my search slow down to 10 seconds, or 10 minutes?

Search needs to be fast! Freakishly fast. They need Jimmy Johns to come and tell them about fast! *grin*


Preferences, options, filters....This one is quite tricky, and I partially found the right words when I spoke to Jan and I hope I communicated it clear enough. I and other customers have asked for more options, more flexibility, more controls. And by golly, Oracle delivered! We know have Preferences, various ways to set filters via PowerView, Product, Task/Intent, etc. In my opinion, the way these options are presented to the user are a bit confusing. Take for example PowerViews. PowerViews came out a little while ago (MOS 5.1, 5.2?) and thus are a separate form of customization than, say, refining a search via the Knowledge Browser options (by Product, Task, etc). If I set a PowerView to view only Solaris platforms, that affects all my searches. So even though the PowerView summary is at the top of the page, I often forget I have a PowerView set and I rather puzzled when various search results are filtered out. Imagine trying to look for patches specific to Red Hat if you have a PowerView set for Solaris. :)

I do think it is awesome that Oracle is giving us, the customer, this much flexibility and control, and I applaud that. I only hope that we can work together to make the presentation of that power and flexibility more aesthetic and easier to grasp. In some ways, it is almost like going from a FPS game with simple controls to a Flight Simulator with tons of controls. I think this issue will be a matter of acclimation and user training for advanced users that want to take advantage of such knobs and levers; all other users wanting a quick, "just get me the results like Google" approach should not have to worry about these extra bells and whistles. Perhaps one possible way to approach this is to have an "Advanced Search" preference, and consolidate all such advanced features in one area. Maybe. At the very least, have the one preference to toggle the kitchen sink on and off. :)


And some lower-priority itemsSome other low-hanging fruit we can take advantage of might be to reduce confusing by consolidating the use of "Task" and "Intent". My guess is that a bunch of folks got together and brainstormed on what to call this, but could not come to a final decision without offending others, so they compromised. :) So I will say, as one customer, just call them Tasks. Forget about "Intent". In my mind, "intent" sounds like you want to practice your ESP or something. But you knew that before I typed it, right....

Redo the way an article is displayed. For a while now, the articles slide in from right to left, squeezing the left-hand side. Either get rid of that effect, or make it happen in .4 seconds max.

I like the "intent" (tongue in cheek) behind the "auto-detection" features. When on the conference with Jan, he demonstrated what this auto-detection is currently doing; for example, if you type "install" in the search box, you wait a few seconds than get a screenful of suggested articles. At the top of the list is a box asking you to clarify your intent (hmm... there is that word again), which can be used to help filter results. A similar thing happens if you search for database (refine by product, for example). This is somewhat similar to what we developed at "The Bridge".

Certification Preparation Showcase: uCertify PrepKit

OCP Advisor - Wed, 2011-07-20 02:11
Oracle Certified Professionals Blog is introducing a new feature called Certification Preparation Showcase to introduce blog readers to certification preparation education providers and their products. These independent review will highlight the features available in the offerings so that blog readers are aware of the vendors. This blog does not endorse or recommend any specific vendor. Certification candidates should use their best judgement before buying any products or services reviewed on this blog. OCP Advisor hopes that Certification Preparation Showcase will assist blog readers in the evaluation of certification related products or services.


The first product which is being reviewed in the Cert Prep Showcase is uCertify PrepKit from uCertify LLC. The company has been offering certification preparation study kits for more than a decade. The current portfolio covers certification study material for leading companies such Microsoft, Oracle, Cisco, IBM and others. The Oracle certification exams that are covered by uCertify include OCA and OCP 11g, Oracle EBS 11i DBA OCP and OCP Java EE among others.

The certification preparation material is available as a download with a list of 15 questions diagnostic test available for free. If you have bought the kit, a license key will reach your e-mail inbox to activate the complete features of the kit. The exam PrepKit consists of a Test Engine with multiple simulated tests. For review purposes, I had downloaded 1Z0-047: Oracle SQL Expert certification kit. There are 5 full-length practice tests and 1 'Final Test' to prepare oneself for the actual exams. One can also create a custom test and a fixed time test using the question bank in the test engine.

The test kit also provides nearly 300 flash cards, study notes and tips for taking the exam. The test kit covers all the sections mentioned in the exam content on the Oracle certification website. The test engine has been built to closely resemble the testing platform one would encounter for an actual exam. So preparing for a certification exam using the PrepKit will be a familiar experience on exam day. The best benefit of a Test PrepKit like this would be to use as a test simulation tool rather than a guide to learn concepts. There are several Oracle Press and other publications available for reference guides. A hands-on practice on any database is highly recommended. If one has no access to a test database, download Oracle XE and practice commands for Oracle SQL Expert Exam. Practice makes perfect and by taking the simulated tests multiple times, the chances of success is almost assured.

OCP Advisor interviewed Ron Dayal, Customer Happiness Manager at uCertify LLC about their certification preparing offerings.

OCP Advisor: Please tell us about your company. From when did you start offering Oracle Certification prep kits?

Ron: uCertify is a leading training provider for the IT Certifications exams. For the past 15 years, uCertify has specialized in exam preparation solutions for all major certification exams, from vendors, such as Microsoft, Oracle, Adobe, CompTIA, Cisco, EC Council and more. We are available 24 x 7 x 365. All uCertify PrepKits come with a 100% money back guarantee, which is the best in the business. Students pass in their first attempt using our prepkits, else we refund the cost of the prepkit. uCertify is committed to serving its customers with innovative, reliable, and high-quality products through constant research and development, keeping in mind the latest pattern of the various exams.We began offering our prepkits for Oracle certifications back in 2003. Since then, we have continuously added to the Oracle test prep suite keeping up with Oracle’s certification offerings, including all Sun based prepkits.

OCP Advisor: When would you recommend a candidate to start using your prep kit?

Ron: We recommend that students begin using our prepkits as soon as possible. Our prepkits provides information about exam objectives, lots of study material and dozens of practice questions which not help reinforce concepts, but hones practice skills until they have achieved mastery of the subject.

OCP Advisor: Tell us how you develop the practice tests?

Ron: Our prepkits are crafted by industry experts from within uCertify, as well as from the field, They are typically certified professionals themselves, and are subject matter experts in the area of certification they are writing for. These professionals understand the problems that students face while preparing for their certification exams, and ensure that the prepkit material they author, helps student pass their certification exam in their first attempts.

OCP Advisor: You advertise a very high success rate in certification exams (98% plus) for your customers. What makes that possible?

Ron: uCertify places a very high emphasis on content quality. Our content authors, be it in-house uCertify employees, or contracted IT professionals with relevant experience, are held to extremely high standards. In addition to stringent checklists and peer reviews, several prepkits are also reviewed by ProCertLabs, a company regarded by many certification vendors, as being very qualified to review a test prep provider’s work. Every piece of material in our prepkits is authored and reviewed via a strict checklist to ensure high quality standards.

OCP Advisor: What advise would you give to Oracle certification candidates preparing for certification exams?

Ron: Practice, Practice, Practice! Invest in a high quality prepkit provider such as uCertify, and go through all study material, and take/retake the tests until they score 95% or higher in all the practice tests they take. Readers of OCP blog can use discount code: UCPREP when checking out and avail of a 10% discount.
 
Certification Test Preparation Vendors who are interested in having their products reviewed in the Certification Preparation Showcase, please e-mail OCP Advisor at ocp.advisor@gmail.com

Inviting Oracle Certified Professionals to Be Featured in OOW 2011 presentation

OCP Advisor - Tue, 2011-07-19 15:08
OCP Advisor is presenting at Oracle OpenWorld on Monday, October 3, 2011 at Moscone West Room 3000 from 5.00-6.00pm. The presentation topic is 'OCP Advisor Tips on How to Become an Oracle Certified Professional'.

If you are Oracle certified, you are invited to get in touch with me at ocp.advisor@gmail.com to be featured as one of the case studies in the presentation. As a token of appreciation, I will send Amazon gift certificates for $25 if you are selected for the case study. A special shout out to Oracle ACE and Oracle ACE Directors to participate in this collaborative presentation. The session abstract can be found here.

Oracle University Full Day Sessions at Oracle Open World 2011

OCP Advisor - Mon, 2011-07-18 02:23
Oracle University is offering a one-day training event on October 2, 2011. There are eight deep-dive training sessions to choose on the first day of Oracle OpenWorld 2011. The sessions will be held at Hotel Nikko San Francisco. The registration fee for the Oracle University event is $800 for a full day of training.

The 8 training sessions are as follows:
  1. Oracle and Exadata. The Perfect Fit!
  2. OpenWorld Certification Exam Cram: Oracle Database 11g: New Features for Administrators
  3. Oracle Exalogic Elastic Cloud Overview
  4. Making the Most of Oracle User Productivity Kit (UPK)
  5. Oracle WebLogic Server 11g: Administration Essentials
  6. Oracle Business Intelligence 11g: Overview to Analyses and Dashboards
  7. Oracle SOA Suite 11g: Administration
  8. What's New in Oracle Solaris 11

Those preparing for Oracle Certification exams and attending Oracle OpenWorld 2011 may like to add this Sunday schedule to their conference calendar.

Oracle Certification Discussion Forum

OCP Advisor - Sun, 2011-07-17 07:55
Oracle Technology Network hosts dozens of discussion forums online.

One of the Technology Network Community forum that every Oracle certification candidate should visit is the Certification forum.
One can post questions and answers on this forum for certification related topics. All discussions are threaded so it is easy to find a discussion topic.

Participation on the forum is encouraged with points awarded for postings, helpful answers and correct answers. As one adds points, there are recognition levels of Pro, Expert and Guru that are awarded.
You are not alone when you are preparing for certification. There are hundreds all over the world who are preparing for the same exam and maybe thousands who have taken the exam before. Many certified professionals are regular forum members and answer your questions in a matter of hours! It is the best expert advice and it is all free!

OCP Support Form - Help Is Just A Click Away

OCP Advisor - Sat, 2011-07-16 02:13
Certification candidates have questions for the certification program team. These used to be answered via e-mail. The volume of e-mails was difficult to manage and tracking requests were quite a daunting task for the OCP Program Team. The OCP Support Form has made correspondence through e-mail redundant.



For any issues or questions about an OCP exam, please complete and submit the form below. An OCP customer service representative will contact you via email within 5 business days. It is always worthwhile to visit the OCP FAQ page before submitting the form. The answer may be already posted there.

Blogging at Pythian

Jared Still - Fri, 2011-07-15 16:11
As I started working for Pythian at the beginning of the year, I have started to blog there as well.

First post is today:  Applying External Timing Data to Untimed Events

I may still post here from time to time. Work at Pythian is quite enjoyable, but it is always so busy there is less time for blogging.  At least for me anyway, as I have non-Oracle interests to attend to as well.
Categories: DBA Blogs

Introducing Oracle Unified Directory 11g

Mark Wilcox - Fri, 2011-07-15 13:48
=> July 21, 2011 at 10:00am PT / 1:00pm ET / 19:00 CET Enterprises face many choices for managing identity data: to virtualize or not to virtualize, to synchronize data or store data. The choice of directory server means choosing between multiple vendors and compromising between features and performance. Oracle Unified Directory 11g defines a new category in the directory server market. Join us for this launch webcast to learn how Oracle Unified Directory 11g provides scalability and a complete directory server solution. Register by clicking here.

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