Oracle Database 11g : Installing Oracle - Install the Oracle Software

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12/24/2012 3:20:50 AM

1. Choose Components to Install

Various components of the Oracle software are automatically installed; some are available on the companion CDs or as additional downloads. With Oracle 11g, the following products are now installed by default with the database:

  • Oracle Database Vault

  • Oracle SQL Developer

  • Oracle Configuration Manager

  • Oracle Application Express

  • Oracle Warehouse Builder

This section is not going to turn into a discussion of licensing for standard or enterprise editions and of the different products that are available; however, there are products that provide benefits for different needs. Reviewing the products and versions to match them with business needs before installing is helpful for performing the install of these products at the same time as the initial install. It is possible to add products by running through the install again and choosing the options that have not yet been installed.

The Oracle Universal Installer allows for the Basic install, which is just going to install the default options for Oracle. There is an Advanced option available for deselecting or selecting other available options.

2. Install the Oracle Software

To begin, run the Oracle Universal Installer as oracle, either from the DVDs or from the downloaded software that has been unzipped on the file system:

[oracle@mmrac1 database]$ ./runInstaller

If the ORACLE_HOME environment variable is set before running the Installer, information will already be populated with these details. Starting with Figure 1, let’s walk through some of the screens of the Oracle Universal Installer. Each of the illustrations following provides some detail about what options to select and information to provide while installing the Oracle software.

Figure 1. Basic vs. advanced install

The Basic install will start up the database configuration assistant in order to create a database instance after installing the software. Certain configurations are not available, such as Automatic Storage Management (ASM), but the Basic install will install the default components without walking through the options. The Advanced install will allow you to pick and choose from the available options. Advanced install was chosen in Figure 2-7, and the following illustrations for this install will show the options available with the advanced option.

It’s a good idea to start to document the options that are chosen for the checklist for the install, so that future installs of the Oracle software will have the same components installed as needed. A checklist will be useful for creating consistent environments and ensuring that the same components are being installed across test to production systems.

The group that was defined on the operating system for the Oracle install is needed for the permissions to the OraInventory directory. This is normally a group such as oinstall, as seen in the following illustration. The OraInventory will contain the information about what was installed and the versions used. OraInventory is used for when the binaries need to be patched and when needing to add or remove components.

As seen in the next illustration, there are three types of installs: Enterprise, Standard, or Custom. Choosing Enterprise or Standard will install the default products for those versions. Obviously, the Enterprise and Standard versions have different licensing issues, and limitations are set on the Standard edition for CPUs and the options that can be added. There are several product options that come with installing a default type of Standard or Enterprise. Some may argue that you should install only what is needed, while others may suggest that for a development environment, you should install everything to allow developers to test and try out different options. For most systems, we recommend that you use the Custom option to select only options that are needed. Standardize the install so that it can repeated when you are ready for a production environment.

On a server, there can be several home directories with different versions, options, and patch sets installed. The following illustration shows an example of what the base directory and home directory should be set to. If doing a new install and for additional components or patching existing ones, Oracle home directory should be used.

The following illustration shows the install screen running through checks for kernel parameters, memory, and patch sets for the operating system, as well as other requirements that are needed to install and run the Oracle software. If the verification of the operating system was done as part of the planning, these checks should all pass. If there are failures here, they need to be corrected before continuing with the install.

As discussed when using the custom install, there are options for what to install, as shown in the following illustration. Look through the available options and check the components that are desired or uncheck those components not needed.

After the software is installed, the installer will open up the database configuration assistant to create a database or to configure ASM. See the following illustration, which shows these choices; in this case, only software has been selected. If you are just installing the software, the database creation assistant can be used at another time for creating databases and ASM instances. The steps for the database configuration assistant are listed in the next section, “Database Configuration Assistant.”

During the last step before the actual install, you still have the opportunity to go back and modify any directories or options for the install. The following illustration shows the screen with this summary information, which has the directories where it is to be installed, installation type, and its space requirements. At this step, take time to review to make sure the information is correct.

The following illustration shows the files are being copied and installed. Note the location of the log file. If any issues or errors come up, this would be the first place to look for more information.

Your last steps are demonstrated in the following illustration. To complete the installation, you will need to make changes regarding permissions and directories that are owned by root. There are two scripts that need to be executed by the root owner to make these changes. Have the operating system administrator log in and run and (as shown in the illustration).

This final illustration is always a good screen to see because it means that the installation of the Oracle software has completed successfully. The installation went through the listener configuration and the instance configuration, so the database is now up and available for use. This configuration is completed with a default listener name and port as well as starting of the service which will allow the connections to the database.

Database Configuration Assistant

As part of the installation, the database configuration assistant (dbca) can be configured to start up after the initial software install. Otherwise, the assistant can be started any time to create a new database instance. The dbca has standard templates to be used for different types of databases; the templates have some parameter settings for memory and others based on the type of instance. The passwords and directories for the tablespaces can use the default values or be customized. As part of the planning process, these configurations should be decided on depending on the directory structures and templates to be used. A checklist needs to be kept to determine which templates, parameter settings, and other choices are to be made within the assistant. The advantage is that even after the database instance is created, parameters and file locations can be adjusted. However, some adjustments are easier than others, and with Oracle 11g, there are even more dynamic parameters that can be changed while the database is up and available, instead of having to restart the database instance to make the change in value for the parameter.

As shown in Figure 2, the database can be created or an existing database can be dropped. There is also the option to create an Automatic Storage Management (ASM) instance. Choosing this option for ASM will only install an ASM instance, while running through dbca will be required in order to install a database instance.

Figure 2. Option for install of database

The next dbac screen has three default options to choose for the databases: General Purpose, Custom Database, and Data Warehouse.

In stepping through the screens, the next step would be to name the database instance. Passwords should be set for SYS and SYSTEM. All of the system passwords can be the same or they can all be different. The main thing is that these passwords should not be set with a default value as they have in the past. Anyone who knows about installing Oracle and default passwords would be able to log into the database if the default was not changed. For now, the choices to be made with the database install can be kept to defaults or basic choices. As you learn more about what the system is to be used for, you can make more adjustments with parameters and configurations.

For a test database instance with schemas and to work through the examples, check Sample Schemas, as shown here.

The initialization parameters can be configured as you create the database. The following illustration shows step 10 of the database configuration assistant, where these parameters can be configured. The memory can be customized or default values can be taken, based on a percentage of overall available memory. The character set should also be set up; it is more difficult to change, unlike the memory settings, so verifying the character set for the database is important. The character sets are important for databases with international characters and globalization of the characters. When dealing with international characters, it is suggested to use a character set that allows for these values. Unicode character sets support characters with different sizes and in multiple languages.

Creating the database, creating the scripts, and developing a template are the final steps before the database is actually created. The following illustration shows the option to save the database as a template and to generate database creation scripts. Having scripts is a valuable tool for creating another similar database, or when needing to create the database again without the assistant. The templates will be added to the creation process of other databases in this Oracle home, again, making it easier to create another database that is similar in nature.

Verify the Installation

The operating system is now configured, the Oracle software is installed, and an initial database has been created. Now the system should be reviewed to confirm that everything is in the right place and that everything is working as expected. Looking through the directories and log directories of the database to verify the install is very useful. Check the install log file, which was the log file that was listed during the install of the software. See Figure 3 for example output of the log file.

Figure 3. Log file details

Review the alert logs of the database and check the logs for any issues with the startup or parameters of the database. The default location for the log files are $ORACLE_BASE\admin\SID. This information can also be retrieved by queries to the database and selecting the value from v$parameter where the name = ‘background_dump_dest’. Look at the file systems to make sure that the datafiles are going to the directory that is expected. Again, a quick query against the database, such as select file_name from dba_data_files, will show all of the current data files.

Log into Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM) and make sure the database can be accessed. Check the memory usage on the operating system level to ensure that the right amount of memory was configured for Oracle and that there is space available for user processes too. Use commands like top to see what the top processes are and to view memory usage for the processes. The file systems should also have enough space; you should verify this after installing Oracle and creating the database.

After these initial checks the system should be ready to use, allowing you to install the front-end application, add users, and set up monitoring and backups. Setting up backups and monitoring help also verify that the system is ready to go and might be a good step to complete before allowing other users to access the database.

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