Thursday, January 17, 2008

RUP 4, IT Opinion

Apps Technology 12.0.4 Update Now Available

As Steven Chan informs us here RUP 4 (12.0.4) is now out for R12 EBS.

IT Opinion

It is disturbing how many Oracle instances never get the quarterly CPU applied to them. This blog entry at Doug's Oracle Blog links to several relevant articles. More automation might help, since unseen patches or patches that just ask to apply themselves (like the ones pushed to many corporate PCs) make life easier, at least when they work as promised.

The trouble is that for a production system, with all the money and stress riding thereon, a lot of customers have a real-world test cycle for the patch longer than one quarter. What I mean by 'real-world test cycle' is the one that actually happens.

The DBA gets tasked with all the database stuff. Ok, makes sense.

Then with all the backup and network issues and the appserver....riiight.

Then with handling all the chaos produced by a development effort that isn't actually production...wha, wait a...then with a whole set of tasking totally unrelated to all the above...then it's time for moving the Oracle CPU to production.

Guess what loses out? There are probably six managers breathing down the DBA's neck on the other tasking. The CPU is something, on the other hand, that is 'good to do'. It is due diligence, but the only way a problem is revealed is when there is a security breach and it is already too late. So the DBA depends on dumb luck and mumbles about his/her schedule and grinds on.

In the battle of time, human nature and obligations involved in operating an Oracle RDBMS, a lot of companies don't apply the CPUs. That's bad, and I'm hoping that Oracle's continuing move toward automating whatever lends itself to automation is going to make it continually easier for DBAs to patch their systems every quarter. In the meantime, we can just repeat our plaintive cry to please stay up to date on the CPUs!

Chris Gait, Infogram Editor

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