Oracle Database 11g : Installing Oracle - Research and Plan the Installation

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11/28/2012 12:58:31 AM
Oracle provides some critical information needed for installing the Oracle software, both with the software itself and in the Oracle support site MetaLink notes. These are important documents for successful installs that can help you with the planning and research (for example, the Quick Installation Guide, Database Readme, and Database Release Notes) and they contain hardware requirements, prerequisites, and the setup to be done before and after installation. Also, information on installation issues for Oracle software can be obtained from most recent release notes, which contain possible workarounds or updated steps for the installs.

Gathering information on what is required to install the software and running it effectively is a very important first step. Neglecting to do this by going straight to the install can mean a lot more work, due to the potential need for uninstalling and reinstalling parts of the software. Important information you’ll want to watch for: what is needed for the operating system to be configured for Oracle to run and the fact that the initial settings are minimum values to be adjusted for larger systems.

With Linux and Unix environments, there are kernel parameters and settings that need to be adjusted when the system starts up. The uses for these parameters range from being able to allocate shared memory for Oracle to the number of processes that are allowed to run on the server. Failure to set parameters and verify the needed system requirements may allow the software to be installed, but it could prevent the database from starting up because it is unable to get the system resources that are needed. Each operating system has a particular set of configurations that it needs. There are also patches that need to be in synch with the version of Oracle that is to be installed. So, knowing the requirements that are needed and gathering the needed patches and parameter values for application to the operating system are critical to the install.

Define System Requirements

Hardware minimum requirements are related to processors, memory, and the disk needed to install OS and Oracle software. For Oracle 11g, at least 1GB of RAM is required and the Oracle software requires 3.5 to 5GB of disk space. The processors themselves can be verified in pre-installation checks. Other hardware requirements, such as network adapters or additional disks, all depend on the environment that is being set up: for example, systems with Real Application Clusters or other additional features.

In taking a closer look at how to prepare the operating system for an Oracle install, let’s use Linux as an example from installation to configuration. You’ll start the Linux installation by obtaining the media and starting up the server with the Linux CDs inserted. Oracle Enterprise Linux has included all the needed packages with the standard install. After a bootup of the server, the install screens will come up and walk you through the simple process of setting up the operating system. The following figures and comments explain the Linux install screens, as well as a basic configuration to get started with Oracle on Linux.

Linux Installation

Most of the beginning screens simply step through and configure the language and very basic server settings. The first install screen that might require additional information is disk partition, which has two options: to leave as is or customize. These include partitions for swap, root, tmp, or other file system mount points. The file system mount points are the disk mounts for the directories where the software will be installed and the databases will eventually be created. Bare minimum partitions are swap and another device for the file mount points. Figure 1 shows the install screen with the standard disk partitions, which is definitely enough to get you started with the Oracle install on Linux.

Figure 1. Linux install disk partitions

In Figure 1, you can see one logical device for the swap space, which is the memory area on the disk allowing for programs to swap to virtual memory when they need more memory than the physical memory contains. There is another device for the boot area, the initial partition of the disk, and then the rest of the disk under the root directory can be used for creating the directories for tmp, var, home, oracle, and so on. Even if it isn’t defined on separate devices, the directories that Linux needs, such as the tmp and var directories, will be created during install. However, you will need to create a directory for the Oracle software before you install it.

As shown in Figure 1, the devices are configured based on the disk available to the server, and the values and sizes can be adjusted at this point. The swap space can be adjusted later, but it is just as easy to configure here. Also, new mount points or file systems can be created on the root directory, depending on your needs. After setting the values and mount points, click on Next for the next configuration screen.

After the disk partitions install screen, you need to make a choice about boot loaders. In Linux, a boot loader is the piece that loads the operating system into memory (there are usually a couple of them in use). The boot loaders in this case are LILO, Linux Loader, and Grand Unified Bootloader (GRUB). The GRUB boot loader is the default for RedHat and Oracle Linux and can be selected if needed.

The network configuration and devices are the next step. Plug in the IP address and edit the network device on the installation screen, shown in Figure 2-2. This can also be done after installation, using the network settings. This is where the host name is defined as shown with the domain name; the miscellaneous settings are dependent on the network settings and configurations. Figure 2 also shows where to manually enter the server name with the domain and the miscellaneous settings with the Gateway, Primary, and Secondary DNS.

Figure 2. Linux network

The next couple of installation screens go through the root password and time zone information; the proper time zone for your location just needs to be chosen when going through the installation. Choose and remember the root password carefully. At this point, there is no other way to login to the OS without the root password. The default install will include packages for generic use, but it should also be selected to support software development for this system. The option to customize can be done here or the needed packages can also be installed afterward. During the install, the packages can just be selected and then verified after the install to ensure that they are completed. The required packages for Oracle Enterprise Linux 5.0 (based on the current installation guide) are as follows:

  • binutils-

  • compat-libstdc++-33-3.2.3-61

  • elfutils-libelf-0.125-3.e15

  • elfutils-libelf-devel-0.125

  • glibc-2.5-12

  • glibc-common-2.5-12

  • glibc-devel-2.5-12

  • glibc-headers-2.5-12

  • gcc-4.1.1-52

  • gcc-c++-4.1.1-52

  • libaio-0.3.106

  • libaio-devel-0.3.106

  • libgcc-4.1.1-52

  • libstdc++-4.1.1

  • libstdc++-devel-4.1.1-52.e15

  • make-3.81-1.1

  • sysstat-7.0.0

  • unixODBC-2.2.11

  • unixODBC-devel-2.2.11

After the installation, the packages should be verified by running the command at the Linux prompt:

rpm –q unixODBC-devel-2.2.11

If the packages were not installed or if the installation failed, then the following commands can be run to install packages as needed from the Linux source files. Here is an example install command for this package:

rpm –ivh unixODBC-devel-2*rpm

These steps are seen in Figure 3; the rpm –q used to verify the packages shows that the unixODBC package was not installed, so executing the command to install the package completes this step. This step is repeated for each of the packages that are required.

Figure 3. Linux package install
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