Oracle Applications Technology
The technology stack for Release 12 takes advantage of the latest Oracle technologies for the database and application server tiers. Oracle E-Business Suite now leverages the latest database version, Oracle 10g. On the middle tier, Release 12 uses Oracle Application Server 10g and Oracle JDeveloper 10.1.3 for Web-based Framework applications. On the client, Oracle E-Business Suite uses Version 5.0 of the Sun Java Plug-in.
Oracle E-Business Suite uses the following major technology components in the Release 12 Rapid Install. Some of these components are installed in the ORACLE_HOME directories; other components are rehosted in the APPL_TOP.
Please refer to the R12 Technology Stack Summary spreadsheet for latest availability.
Look and Feel – “Swan” User Interface
The new “Swan” user interface (UI) greatly improves the look and feel of the Oracle E-Business
Suite, significantly enhancing usability and productivity. The “Swan” UI brings together some of the best UI concepts from Oracle E-Business Suite, PeopleSoft, and JD Edwards applications.
The “Swan” user interface is a subclass of Browser Look and Feel (BLAF), and replaces
the former look and feel. Oracle E-Business Suite will use only the “Swan” look and feel
for Release 12.
This new look and feel applies to the whole Oracle E-Business Suite as follows.
The changes made at the technology layer for OAF and JTT products can be summarized
ü The overall color usage has been changed to a more contemporary and compelling
color scheme, which reduces eyestrain and provides a more pleasant look and feel.
ü A new login screen complements the updates to the overall look and feel.
ü The base font has been changed to Tahoma 9pt to make better use of available screen
ü All buttons and tabs now have a gradient background, to increase their visibility on
the screen as clickable elements.
ü The button text and overall shape have been modified to reduce amount of space
required for their display.
ü Buttons are now standard HTML buttons instead of images, which required a display
server to be set up.
ü Background colors of page elements have been modified for better visual separation
of screen elements.
ü The entire icon suite has been upgraded to a more sophisticated style that integrates
visually with the overall interface design.
ü Tables and other containers have been modified to read well as distinct components.
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ü The page footer background has been changed to make it more readily
distinguishable from other page elements.
ü The Navigator has been restyled to be consistent with the other UI changes.
ü Page tabs have been moved to the left side of the screen for better scanning and a
clearer relationship with associated subtabs.
Application Object Library
The Oracle Application Object Library (AOL) provides Oracle E-Business Suite with a robust
infrastructure for security, application administration, and configuration. Identity Management Integration
Oracle Identity Management integration has been enhanced to improve usability and administration.
Revised Login and Change Password Pages
The UI for the Applications Login and Change Password pages has been revised, and now allows customizations.
Synchronous LDAP User Provisioning
All user provisioning operations from Oracle E-Business Suite to Oracle Internet Directory are now done synchronously.
User Name Enhancements
User name changes in Oracle E-Business Suite are automatically synchronized to Oracle
Internet Directory. Improved validation prevents the use of forbidden special characters.
New Deployment Scenarios
Oracle E-Business Suite now supports deployments with lopsided user populations, that
is, scenarios where all user identities are stored in the corporate LDAP server, and only a
subset of those are provisioned into Oracle E-Business Suite. Provisioning into Oracle EBusiness
Suite can be done via the new on demand user creation feature, the new
automatic user account linking feature, unidirectional provisioning from Oracle EBusiness
Suite to Oracle Internet Directory, or some other custom-defined process.
On Demand User Creation
A user may be present in Oracle Internet Directory without a corresponding linked user
account in Oracle E-Business Suite. Oracle Application Object Library now supports a
mode in which an Oracle E-Business Suite user account is automatically created for SSO
authenticated users when they first visit a page in Oracle E-Business Suite.
SSO Hint Cookie
The SSO Hint cookie provides a hint that a user may be authenticated via some other
partner application. Based on this hint, Oracle E-Business Suite attempts to initiate an
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authenticated Applications session instead of an anonymous guest session. Among other
uses, this feature is used to trigger on demand user creation, and to ensure that public
Oracle E-Business Suite pages correctly display personalized content.
Automatic Linking of User Accounts
Oracle E-Business Suite now supports a mode in which new user accounts created in
Oracle E-Business Suite are automatically linked to existing accounts with the same user
name in Oracle Internet Directory.
Password Validation against Oracle Internet Directory
The Oracle E-Business Suite login page can now authenticate a user, even if the
password is stored externally in Oracle Internet Directory. This feature allows users to
connect with a variety of clients which previously required passwords to be stored locally
in Oracle E-Business Suite.
Mixed Case Passwords
Oracle E-Business Suite now supports case-sensitive passwords. For backward
compatibility, a mix of case-sensitive and case-insensitive user passwords is supported.
Server-to-server authentication allows Oracle E-Business Suite products to integrate with
Oracle Collaboration Suite components such as Oracle Files.
The following security features are either new with Release 12 or introduced since the release of 11.5.10.
Change Schema Passwords with Ease
A single command line invocation of FNDCPASS changes the password for all Oracle EBusiness
Suite base product schemas, which number approximately 200.
Best Practices for Internet Exposure Certified
Oracle E-Business Suite now has documented and certified best practices for exposing
parts of the Suite to external parties via the Internet.
The certified configuration includes the following security-enhancing features:
ü External Web tier: Separate from the internal application tier, the external Web tier
only allows responsibilities configured as EXTERNAL to be assumed from the
external Web tier.
ü URL firewall: The URL firewall is a whitelist of URLs required for the certified
external product or products. Any URL not on the whitelist cannot be invoked.
ü mod_security: An apache module blocking obviously malicious requests.
ü Reverse proxy: Reverse proxy can optionally be used for additional separation and
deployment in the dirty DMZ.
Security and Manageability Enhanced via New File System Layout
In Release 12, the Oracle E-Business Suite files are separated into directories according
to best practice. Code trees are now free from configuration and log (output) files and can
be mounted read-only at runtime (that is, outside of patching periods).
The read-only nature of the file system makes it easier to share a code tree between
environments for development or load balancing purposes. It also facilitates compliance
checking, by showing auditors that the code can only change during maintenance
For a detailed description of this new feature, see “Read Only Shared File System
Updated Techstack Improves Security
The new technology stack introduced in Release12 enables faster production of patches
to address any security issues that may arise, and also reduces the time required to
address backport requests.
Additionally, the retirement of older and redundant technologies such as mod_plsql
reduces vulnerability of the system to attackers.
Oracle User Management
Oracle User Management, introduced in Release 11.5.10, is a secure and scalable system that enables organizations to define administrative functions and manage users on the basis of specifications such as job role or geographic location.
Enhancements to User Management in Release 12 reduce the overall cost of ownership and improve the end user administrative experience.
Oracle User Management depends on the following products:
• Oracle Internet Directory
• Oracle Application Object Library
• Oracle Internal Controls Manager
• Oracle Workflow
Oracle E-Business Suite now allows a user to specify a proxy who can act on their behalf.
For example, an executive can designate an assistant as a proxy, allowing that assistant to
create, edit or approve transactions on behalf of that executive.
Integration with Oracle Internal Controls Manager
Integration with Oracle Internal Controls Manager facilitates enforcement of constraints
used for preventative separation of duties, reducing the possibility of error or fraud by
ensuring that a single individual does not perform all the duties associated with a key
business process or financial transaction.
Registration Process Enhancements
The Oracle User Management registration process functionality is enhanced to support
the following features:
• Registration processes for administrative actions (role assignment) can be defined
separately from policies relating to self-service requests.
• Specific business events or business logic can be invoked for each registration
process, as required.
User Name Policies
User name format policies can be specified as required, based for example on:
• Email addresses
• User-defined user names
• Custom policies
To assist administrators in granting permissions to roles, support is now provided for
invoking specialized function and data security wizards from the role administration
screens in Oracle User Management.
Centralized Account Provisioning
Support is now provided for routing Oracle E-Business Suite self-service account
requests through a single registration flow.
Release 12 provides a rich new set of features for functional administrators through an HTML user interface.
Server-Responsibility Profile Hierarchy Type Profile option values can now be set for a combination of a server and a responsibility.
Categories can be used to organize profile options, and to enforce data security by
restricting the profile categories that users can view or update.
Java Cache Support
Changes in setup data are immediately visible in all Java Virtual Machines (JVMs)
without those JVMs having to be restarted.
Automatic Menu Compilation
Menu compilation now takes place automatically. Consequently, the “Compile Function
Security” concurrent program and corresponding adadmin option are no longer required,
and have been removed.
Flexfield Segment Additional Where Clause
An additional WHERE clause can be attached to a flexfield segment to enforce extra
validation on that segment beyond the value set.
PL/SQL and Key Flexfield Validated Value Sets
Two new flexfield value set types are introduced: PL/SQL validated value sets are
validated via a PL/SQL procedure, and Key flexfield validated value sets can
declaratively reference a key flexfield combination.
Following are new features for Concurrent Processing in Release 12.
Multi-Org Access Control
In Release 12, Multi-Org Access Control (MOAC) allows a user to access data for
different operating units (OUs) in a Multi-Org enabled instance without switching
responsibilities. In transaction entry or inquiry user interfaces, a user can either choose an
operating unit explicitly, or use another org-sensitive field to derive the operating unit
Concurrent Program Definition
The Define Concurrent Programs window is now MOAC-enabled. A new field,
“Operating Unit Mode”, allows users to specify the category for a concurrent program. A
new list of values allows users to select one of these modes: “Single OU Concurrent
Program”, “Multiple OU Concurrent Program”, or none (a null or blank value). The
default is null.
Standard Request Submission
The Standard Request Submission window now allows users to execute single-org and
multi-org concurrent programs. For single-org concurrent programs of MOAC-enabled
products, the OU field is displayed to the user. This field is populated with the value of
the “MO: Default Operating Unit” profile option, provided the value is valid.
At submission time, the operating unit for single-org concurrent programs of MOACenabled
products is captured and stored as part of the request context. At execution time,
multi-org initialization sets the CLIENT_INFO org context according to the request’s
Restarting a Request Set
If a process in the middle of a request set fails, users can now fix the cause of the failure
and restart the request set from that point. They do not need to run the remaining
processes manually, or restart the entire request set.
Additionally, users can now put a running request set on hold, and later remove the hold.
Failover Sensitive Workshift
A system administrator can now specify how many processes of the service instance
should run when a service instance fails over to another node in a Parallel Concurrent
Processing (PCP) environment. This feature allows system administrators to control
resource allocation, for example by specifying that fewer processes should run on the
failover node than on the original node.
Oracle Applications Framework-Based Request Set Submission UI
An Oracle Applications Framework-based UI for request set submission is available in
Request Security Implemented with Roles (RBAC)
Permissions to submit requests and monitor requests are now based on grants to roles or
users. An administrator can grant groups of programs or request sets (grouped by request
group) to a grantee (a role or user). This functionality allows administrators to provide
more granular access control on programs and requests. Existing assignments of request
security groups to a responsibility still work as well.
Transaction Manager Implementation with AQ
The Transaction Manager communication mechanism is implemented using Oracle
Advanced Queuing (AQ). The AQ communication mechanism removes the requirement
to set up transaction manager instances for each Real Application Clusters (RAC)
instance. This feature allows system administrators to use Concurrent Processing node
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failover functionality for Transaction Managers. A new profile option, Concurrent TM:
Transport Type, has been introduced to specify that the communication mechanism
should use DBMS_PIPES in a non-RAC environment.
Oracle Applications Tablespace Model (OATM)
The following new features are available with Release 12.
Automatic Restart of the Generation of Migration Commands and Execution
This new feature eliminates manual steps by automating the migration process for those
commands that previously required manual steps. This enhancement reduces the overall
migration time and improves manageability.
Configurable Default Extent Size
This new feature allows you to specify the default extent size as part of the migration
process. The initial default extent size is 128K; to minimize space management
operations for large tablespaces, this can if desired be increased to either 1MB or 10MB.
New “Tools” Tablespace
This new feature improves manageability and performance by consolidating tools-related
database schema objects into a single tablespace called “Tools”. The new tablespace
includes the database schema objects for products and components such as Oracle Portal
(Repository), Oracle Discoverer (EUL), Oracle Internet Directory (Repository), Oracle
Application Server Single Sign-On.
Oracle Applications Manager and Grid Control Plug-in for Oracle EBusiness Suite
Oracle Applications Manager and the Grid Control Plug-in for Oracle E-Business Suite
offer an integrated set of features for Oracle E-Business Suite system management. The
Grid Control Plug-in for Oracle E-Business Suite extends Oracle Enterprise Manager to
provide central monitoring and cloning automation for Oracle E-Business Suite. The
plug-in also links Grid Control with Oracle Applications Manager. Built directly into
Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle Applications Manager provides a broad array of features
to facilitate system management and maintenance.
The Grid Control Plug-in for Oracle E-Business Suite requires Oracle Enterprise
Manager Grid Control 10g Release 2 (10.2).
Application system alerts are exposed as business events. Summary and context
information for each alert is available as the business event payload in XML form. This
information can be retrieved via standard business event integration mechanisms.
Oracle Applications Manager Dashboard Enhancements
The enhanced Performance dashboard provides administrators with key performance
metrics related to online, batch, and workflow activity. For customers using Oracle Real
Application Clusters, the dashboard shows these metrics for each RAC instance.
Additionally, system administrators can now subscribe to receive automated alerts when
concurrent requests run longer or wait longer than specified thresholds.
An updated suite of diagnostic reports is now available within the Security dashboard.
These reports check the Oracle E-Business Suite system configuration against Oracle’s
best practices and detect possible security violations. These reports provide diagnostic
information related to possible security issues such as:
• Dictionary attacks
• Duplicate logins
• Direct access to unauthorized functions
• WTI failures
Oracle Applications Manager now allows administrators to schedule and run Diagnostics
tests as batch programs. The Diagnostics dashboard provides new graphical views of
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diagnostic test executions and failures. Keyword searches can be performed on the test
repository to locate relevant tests, which can then be grouped and executed directly from
the same interface.
Oracle Applications Manager System Alert Infrastructure Enhancements
The system alerting infrastructure has been enhanced with a new “flood control”
mechanism to prevent multiple instances of a given alert from overwhelming the alert
system. This mechanism provides administrators with configuration options to customize
the limits on the number of system alerts and occurrences that are generated by any given
issues. Additionally, alerts are enhanced to allow summary and context information to be
retrieved in XML format via standard business event integration mechanisms.
Patch Impact Analysis Enhancements
Key patch impact analysis enhancements include the following:
• Analysis of patch changes to customized files that are registered with the system.
• The ability for users to create a list of patches for analysis as a single set.
• The ability to identify and to merge multiple language patches that are applicable
to that system.
• Impact analysis now highlights patches that include branched files to help
System Administrators identify files from a particular branch that are being
overwritten by the same file in another branch or in the mainline.
Grid Control Plug-in for Oracle E-Business Suite
Seamless Integration with OAM
The Grid Control plug-in now provides a tighter integration with Oracle Applications
Manager. Several Grid Control features link directly to OAM features such as concurrent
manager administration, workflow administration, Forms monitoring, configuration
management and patch management.
Automated Discovery of Oracle E-Business Suite System
Registration of Oracle E-Business Suite systems with Grid Control is greatly simplified
in this release. For Oracle E-Business Suite systems that use AutoConfig, Grid Control
now has the ability to automatically discover much of the information required to register
The Grid Control plug-in now provides service and system topology views for Oracle EBusiness
Suite. These views enable administrators to perform root cause analysis of
The Grid Control plug-in now allows Oracle E-Business Suite systems to be cloned via
the Grid Control provisioning framework. A step-by-step interview guides administrators
though the cloning process. Grid Control automates the creation of clone systems and
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executes any required application-specific actions. Additionally, administrators can
modify the standard cloning process to include custom actions.
The plug-in provides administrators with the ability to collect, compare and search Oracle
E-Business Suite configuration data. The following configuration data are collected from
the application system and automatically uploaded to the Oracle Enterprise Manager
ü Application system summary
ü Patches applied
ü Application context files and key configuration files
ü Technology stack inventory
ü Concurrent processing configuration
ü Workflow configuration
ü User activity
ü Custom configuration
Administrators can compare snapshots of configuration information across multiple
Oracle E-Business Suite systems.
Application Service Level Management
The Grid Control plug-in automatically provides service level reporting for key Oracle EBusiness
Suite infrastructure services such as concurrent processing and Oracle Workflow.
Service level alerts can be configured for key throughput and availability metrics.
Applications Installation and Configuration Management
Following are the features that are new with Release 12.
Store Base Configuration in Oracle E-Business Suite Database
During the installation process, Rapid Install stores its configuration information in the
Oracle E-Business Suite database instead of the configuration file (config.txt) that was
used in previous releases. This feature eliminates the need to manually copy the
configuration information from the first node to all subsequent nodes during a multi-node
Multiple Domain Support for Database and Middle Tier in Rapid Install
Rapid Install supports deploying the database node and the middle tier node into different
domains. This enhancement provides the ability to have more than one domain for an
Oracle E-Business Suite installation.
Read-Only Shared File System Support
This feature allows the full Oracle E-Business Suite file system to be shared.
APPL_TOP, COMMON_TOP, and technology stack ORACLE_HOMEs can be
deployed on a read-only shared file system.
RAC Support in Rapid Clone
Support for Oracle Real Application Clusters and grid computing is added to Rapid
Clone. RAC support is extended to support ASM as well as features to expand an
existing RAC system by adding a node to an existing RAC cluster.