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Installing Oracle Application Server 10

Oracle Application Server Tips by Burleson Consulting

Before you can start using Oracle Application Server 10g, you need to get the software installed.  With prior versions this has always been a frustrating process of failed attempts, followed by research, followed by another attempt.  However for the 10g version of the application server, Oracle has made significant improvements in the installer?s ability to ensure that the OS is properly configured and to react more gracefully to problems encounter during the installation.  That said, the application server is still a complicated set of interacting software components and the installation still requires some planning.

This chapter will teach you how to install the Oracle Application Server 10g on a UNIX/Linux platform. At the time of this writing, the Windows version of the Oracle Application Server 10g was not yet available. 

Planning for the Application Server Installation

As with installing any version of Oracle?s application server, some understanding of the components and their interaction is required.  As discussed in Chapter 1, the application server is much more than the Apache web server.  The application server is the marriage of the web server to the Oracle Containers for Java  (OC4J).  If your only requirement is to serve static web pages with servlets accessing a database, the Oracle database installs with a fully functional web server that implements Apache?s Jserv.  On the other hand, if you need to configure and load balance 10 web servers connected to a back-end database and your applications require a range of J2EE services, you will need the clustering capabilities and consolidated management that the Oracle Application Server 10g provides.

Installation Types

The Oracle Application Server 10g has four installation types.  The smallest mid-tier installation is the J2EE and Web Cache installation type, while the largest is the Business Intelligence and Forms installation.  The fourth type of installation  is the Oracle Application Server Infrastructure.  Installations that include more than J2EE also require the installation of an Infrastructure instance, explained in Chapter 2.  

J2EE and Web Cache

The J2EE and Web Cache installation includes the Oracle HTTP Server (OHS), the Oracle Containers for Java (OC4J) and the Web Cache.  These are the base components and are included in all other installations.  The J2EE and Web Cache installation can function in stand-alone mode or be included in an Infrastructure instance?s Farm.  When used in the stand-alone mode, the J2EE and Web Cache instance requires manual configuration and management.  When installed as a member of a Farm, the instance is configured within the Oracle Enterprise Manager Application Server Control.

Portal and Wireless

This installation includes the J2EE and Web Cache installation plus the Oracle Portal and Wireless components.  Both components require access to Oracle?s Identity Management and the metadata repository in the Infrastructure instance. 

Business Intelligence and Forms

To install all available components you need to install the Business Intelligence and Forms.  This installation type installs the Portal and Wireless components plus Oracle Discoverer, Personalization, Reports Service and Oracle Forms.  This middle tier also requires access to an Infrastructure instance.

Even though the installation types build on each other, you are not required to configure and start all of the components.  For instance, if your organization uses Oracle Forms, you can install the Business Intelligence and Forms installation type but choose not to configure Portal, Wireless, Discoverer, Personalization and Reports Services.  This will allow you to utilize your server resources properly by not starting components that are not needed.  This will be discussed later when we walk through the installation.


As seen in Chapter 2, many of the application server?s capabilities require the use of an Infrastructure instance.  The Infrastructure instance provides the middle tiers access to Oracle?s Internet Directory, Identity Management, and the Metadata Repository.  When a middle tier instance is installed it is tied to an Infrastructure instance so the Infrastructure instance must be already installed and running. 

Server Configuration

Once you decide which installation type meets your needs you must decide how you are going to configure your servers to support the installation. If all components of the application server are going to reside on one physical server, then you need to ensure that the server contains enough memory and disk space.  Since the Oracle Application Server 10g runs very well on low cost, commodity servers, most production deployments spread components/instances across multiple servers to increase scalability and availability.  If you can afford the resources, deploy instances on separate servers and place Web Cache on a separate server as shown in Figure 3-1. 

Figure 1: Installing Instances on Separate Servers

By deploying Web Cache on a separate server, you can easily add additional mid-tier instances and load balance them according to their capabilities.  A new feature in 10g is the ability of the Infrastructure instance to maintain the metadata repository in the infrastructure database or in a backend database.  This capability enhances manageability but could cause some performance degradation in a highly loaded back-end database.  It is discussed in more detail in the Chapter 9.

A common configuration (Figure 3-2) combines the Infrastructure instance and a mid-tier instance on a single server and uses Web Cache to reduce the load on the mid-tier.  

Figure 2:Using Web Cache to Load Balance Multiple Application Server Instances

Finally, for smaller implementations, the entire Application Server 10g can be installed on a single server, from Web Cache to back-end database, provided the server has the capacity to handle the load.  This configuration is recommended only for small implementations or development environments.

Server Requirements

At the time of this writing, Oracle Application Server 10g has only been released on Solaris, HP-UX and Linux operating Systems.  The table below lays out the minimum hardware requirements for each OS. Note that this includes installation of the infrastructure database also on the same server as the mid-tier components. If you install the individual components on separate servers, the disk space requirements will be drastically lower.

Solaris 8,9  HP-UX  Linux WindowsProcessor 64-bit PA-RISC
240 MHz  32-bit Pentium
450 MHz Memory/Disk Infrastructure 1GB/2.6 GB 1GB/3.6 GB 1 GB/2.5 GB
J2EE  Web Cache 512 MB/600 MB 512 MB/600 MB 512 MB/600 MB Portal/Wireless 1 GB/975 MB 1 GB/1.6 GB 1 GB/1.1 GB BI/Forms 1 GB/1.6 GB
1 GB/2.3 GB 1 GB/1.65 GB TMP Space 3.5 GB 3.5 GB 3.5 GB Swap Space
1.5 GB 1.5 GB 1.5 GB

The memory and disk space requirements are to install and run the application.  As you continue through the book you will find that you can increase performance by increasing the JVM HEAP size and having multiple JVMs for each of the OC4J instances.  Unless you have multiple instances of one server, increasing server RAM beyond 4 GB will probably not increase performance.  The Application Server Control displays memory usage and sizing memory requirements is discussed in detail in Chapter 10. 

Other Planning Considerations

When you install the Oracle Application Server 10g there are a number of requirements that you need to consider before starting the installations process.  This section will explain these requirements.

This is an excerpt from "Oracle 10g Application Server Administration Handbook" by Don Burleson and John Garmany.

If you like Oracle tuning, you may enjoy the new book "Oracle Tuning: The Definitive Reference", over 900 pages of BC's favorite tuning tips & scripts. 

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