Wednesday, October 12, 2011

SQL Developer 3.1 EA & Bug

The new/updated SQL Developer 3.1 Early Adopter has just been released.

For the Data Miner, there are no major changes and it appears that there has been some bug fixes and some minor enhancements to so parts.

The main ODM features, apart from bug fixes, in this release include:

  • Globalization support, including translated error messages and GUI for all languages supported by SQL Developer
  • Improved accessibility features including the addition of a Structure navigator that lists all the nodes and links displayed in a workflow

Bug / Feature

After unzipping the download I opened SQL Developer. With each new release you will have to upgrade the existing ODM repository. The easiest way of doing this is to open the ODM connections pane and double click on one of your ODM schemas. SQL Developer will then run the necessary scripts to upgrade the repository.

I discovered a bug/feature with SQL Developer 3.1 EA1  upgrade script. The repository upgrade does not complete and an error is report.

I logged this error on the ODM forum on OTN. Mark Kelly who is the Development Manager for ODM and monitors the ODM forum, and his team, were quickly onto investigating the error. Mark has posted an update on the ODM form and give a script that needs to be run before you upgrade your existing repository.

You can download the pre-upgrade script from here.

If you don’t have an existing repository then you don’t have to run the script.

Check out the message on the ODM forum.


How to Upgrade SQL Developer & ODM

You will have to download the new SQL Developer 3.1 EA install files.

  • Unzip this into your SQL Developer directory
  • Create a shortcut for  sqldeveloper.exe on your desktop and relabel it SQL Developer 3.1 EA
  • Double-click this short cut


  • You should be presented with the above window. Select the Yes button to migrate you previous install settings
  • SQL Developer should now open and contains all your previous connections

If you have an existing ODM repository, you need to run the pre-upgrade script (see above) at this point 

  • You will now have to upgrade the ODM repository in the database. The simplest way of doing this is to allow SQL Developer to run the necessary scripts.
  • From the View Menu, select Oracle Data Miner –> Connections
  • In the ODM Connections pane double click one of your ODM schemas. Enter the username and password and click OK


  • You will then be prompted to migrate/update the ODM repository to the new version. Click Yes.
  • Enter the SYS username and Password


  • Click Start button, to start the migrate/upgrade scripts
  • On my laptop this migrate/upgrade step took less than 1 minute
  • The upgrade is now finished and you can start using ODM.

ODM – SQL Developer 3.1 EA – Release Notes

The ODM release notes can be found at

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Oracle Events in Ireland (Q4 2011)

Over the coming months (Q4 2011) there are a number of Oracle related events being run in Ireland. The schedule for these is below with the relevant links to the agenda webpages or to where you can book your place.


The OUG BI SIG meetings you can book your place with the UKOUG.
Venue Address - Dublin:
Oracle Block H, East Point Business Park, Dublin 3
Venue Address - Belfast:
The Mount Conference Center, 2 Woodstock Link, Belfast BT6 8DD
For questions about logistics please contact the marketing team on
If you have any question about the content please contact:
If you know of any other events that are not listed, let me know and I’ll update the list

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Oracle Exalytics

At Oracle Open World it was announced the new Exalytics Business Intelligence machine.

The Oracle white paper on Exalytics can be found here.

From page 10 onwards we get some images of what we can get out of this machine.


Sunday, October 2, 2011

OOW Focus on Sessions

Oracle Open World has a huge number of sessions commencing on Sunday and run until Thursday.  To help attendees and non-attendees work out what sessions are available you can work your way through the schedule builder.

This can be a bit difficult to find the sessions that you might be interested in. So this year they have produced a set of Focus On documents that contain all the session related to particular areas.

The following are the available Focus On areas and documents:

Big Data

Data Warehousing

EPM and BI


Database Security

Application Development

Database Utilities


User Productivity Kit (UPK)

Exalogic Elastic Cloud

Public Sector


Spatial & MapViewer

Semantic Technology

Let me know if I have missed any Focus On documents and I will update the list.

Oh and don’t forget the Oracle Data Miner sessions

If you are not able to attend OOW, you can check out the OOW Live channel on YouTube to watch the keynote and main session

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Check out Oracle Data Miner at OOW 11

If you are at Oracle Open World (OOW11) and you have an interest in Oracle Data Miner, check out the following presentation sessions:
In addition to these sessions there are also the following Hands-On Labs, where you can get your hand dirty with the tool.
Do let me know if I have missed a session so that I can update the list.
I’m not attending OOW11 Sad smile so let me know what the sessions are like.

And tell Charlie that I sent you

Saturday, September 24, 2011

What to do with your OOW free stuff

For those lucky people who are heading off to Oracle Open World, there is something I would like you to consider doing for me.

At OOW you will be collecting lots of free stuff. I'm hearing rumours that OTN will have lots of t-shirts, etc and for the Oracle ACE's some new vests. Or perhaps you are an exhibitor who will be trying to give away some of your merchandised stuff.

Well instead of giving these items as presents, or carefully filled away somewhere in your office or at home, why not donate it to school children in Tanzania.

I’ve recently started a charity called Tech Gear for the Third World. This allows companies and individuals to donate their merchandised items to a good cause. It also helps companies to donate their surplus or old branded goods.

More details and a shipping address can be could here.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Oak Table Event in Dec 2011

This year the Annual UKOUG event will be in Birmingham (again) from the 5th to 7th December.

This year there is a slight difference to the usual schedule. On Sunday 4th December there is an Oak Table event, with two parallel tracks. It has all the well known experts presenting at this event.

If I had the time turner from Harry Potter, I would be able to go to all the sessions.

Presenters include Morgens Norgaard, Johnathan Lewis, Frits Hoogland, Martin Widlake, Christian Antognini, Connor McDonald, James Morle and Wolfgang Breitling.

This is an impressive line up and hopefully the UKOUG will run a similar event in 2012.

Check out of the full agenda at

This is one event that I would love to go to but unfortunately I wont be able to make it.  I’ll be attending the Annual UKOUG conference alright, and I have already booked my airline tickets. But there are no flights from Dublin that will get me to Birmingham on time. I would need to fly to Birmingham on the Saturday, involving another hotel night and another night away from the family.

The best I’m hoping for is to get to the ICC in time for the Panel Session on Performance and High Availability. 

Depending on weather and travel delays I might even miss this last session.  If I do, I can always meet up with everyone in the pub on the Sunday evening for a chat.

Maybe next year.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

OBIEE VirtualBox VM Available

I have a few Updates since I posted the blog on 14th Sept
1. The OBIEE VMS are now available on the Virtural Box Pre-Built VM webpage, as of 15th Sept. Thanks to @oraclenerd for requesting this
2. Thanks to @rnm1978 for pointing out that the OBIEE VM is very resource intensive. The min. spec. given is not really enough. You really need more than 4GB for this VM to run.
3. The SampleApp that the OBIEE VM contains also has some examples of how Oracle Data Miner can be used in an application

I’ve recently come across an VM of Oracle Business Intelligence Enterprise Edition, which has the sample application already build and ready for you to use.

The VM files are available at the following link for download.

There are 2 files that you need to download to create the VM in VirtualBox. These are the VB Image key File (.ovf) and the VB Image Disk Files (.vmdk). The second file is ~25G, so it a while to download!

There is also a VB Image-Deployment Guide.

If you already have OBIEE installed and you don’t want to setup the VM, the setup files and data files are also available.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Next Generation Analytics–Oracle BIWA TechCast

The Oracle BIWA SIG, which is part of the IOUG, will be having a tech cast on Wednesday 14th September 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM CDT  (between 6pm and 7pm in Ireland)

It is titled 'Building Next-Generation Predictive Analytics Applications using Oracle Data Mining'.

You can register for this by visiting

This presentation will cover how the Oracle Database has become a predictive analytics (PA) platform for next-generation applications and will include several examples including:

  • Oracle Fusion Human Capital Management (HCM) Predictive Workforce,
  • Oracle Adaptive Access Manager for fraud detection, 
    Oracle Communications Industry Model,
  • Oracle Complex Event Processing and others and will be interspersed with
  • Oracle Data Mining demos and PA examples where possible.

“Predictive analytics help you make better decisions by uncovering patterns and relationships hidden in the data. This new information generates competitive advantage. Oracle has invested heavily to "move the algorithms to the data" rather than current approaches. Oracle Data Mining provides 12 in-database algorithms that mine star schemas, structured, unstructured, transactional, and spatial data. Exadata, delivering 10x-100x faster performance, combined with OBIEE for dashboards and drill-down deliver an unbeatable in-database analytical platform that undergirds next-generation “predictive” analytics applications. This webcast will show you how to get started.”

Friday, September 9, 2011

My Oracle Magazine Collection

Over the past couple of days I have been doing a bit of a reorganisation of my book case in my home office. On one of the shelves I keep my Oracle Magazine.  My collection dates back to 1992. I began my working career as a graduate consultant with Oracle in Ireland. At that stage Oracle Magazine seemed to be published every 4 to 6 months, but around 1995 it moved to being published every 2 months.
I though that I had a full collection of Oracle Magazine from 1993 onwards, but the table below shows that I have a number of missing editions. Perhaps these gaps are due to my good nature of lending them to other people, or maybe I just lost them somewhere.
What I’m looking to do is to complete my collection. If you have one of the missing editions, can you let me know. Assuming that you don’t mind parting with it, we can arrange postal.

Looking back over the previous editions, it is interesting to see some of the topics that were discussed. Typically they were a couple years before they became commonly used.
An idea for Oracle Magazine is to have a new column that looks back at an article on a particular technique/technology/tool and reflects on how things have changed (or not) since the article was written.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Oracle Scene–Next Submission Date 26th Aug

The Winter edition of the UKOUG Oracle Scene magazine is now looking for articles to be submitted for consideration.

The due date for the article submission is Friday 26 August. So you have just over 2 weeks to put together your article.

Lots of people have asked me what kind of articles are you looking for. The simple answer is anything as long as it is Oracle related. The following list should give you some ideas:

  • Technical article
  • Application article
  • Business articles
  • Tool article
  • SIG meetings, new, updates and plans
  • New features
  • Something that you discovered
  • Your likes, dislikes or anything relating to Oracle
  • Oracle Book reviews
  • Oracle Conference reviews
  • etc

So you can see anything goes really.

How long should an article be ?   It can be any length really. Anything from 1/4 page to a full 5 page article, and anything in between.

Selection of Articles Process

All submitted articles are assessed by a review panel, comprised of volunteers from a variety of businesses and specialties. The review panel rates the articles and makes comments where appropriate.

An editorial meeting takes place after the submissions have been rated. The articles are assessed and the review panel’s scoring and comments are taken into account. The editorial team makes the final decision as to which articles will be selected for publication, or to be held over for a future edition. You will be notified of the result as soon as this process has been completed.

You will be contacted near the publication date by the publishing company for you to review to print version of your article.

Submitting your Article

Check out the Article Formatting Guidelines before submitting.

All pictures and images should be 300dpi.

Include a 100(max) word Bio and your photo

Email your article and images to


Brendan Tierney

Deputy Editor

Saturday, August 6, 2011

New Frontiers for Oracle Data Miner

Oracle Data Miner functionality is now well established and proven over the years. In particular with the release of the ODM 11gR2 version of the tool. But how will Oracle Data Miner develop into the future.

There are 4 main paths or Frontiers for future developments for Oracle Data Miner:

Oracle Data Miner Tool

The new ODM 11gR2 tool is a major development over the previous version of the tool. With the introduction of workflows and some added functionality for some of the features. the tool is now comparable with the likes of SAS Enterprise Miner and SPSS.

But the new tool is not complete and still needs a bit of fine tuning of most of the features. In particular with the usability and interactions. Some of the colour schemes needs to be looked at or to allow users to select their own colours.

Apart from the usability improvements for the tool another major development that is needed, is the ability to translate the workflow and the underlying database objects into usable code. This code can then be incorporated into our applications and other tools. The tool does allow you to produce shell code of the nodes, but there is still a lot of effort needed to make this usable.  Under the previous version of the tool there was features available in JDeveloper and SQL Developer to produced packaged code that was easy to include in our applications.

“A lot done – More to do”

Oracle Applications

Over the past couple of months there has been a few postings on how Oracle Data Miner (11gR2) has been, or will be, incorporated in various Oracle Applications. For example Oracle Fusion Human Capital Management and Oracle Real Time Decision (RTD). Watch out of other applications that will be including Oracle Data Miner.

“A bit done – Lots more to do”

Oracle Business Intelligence

One of the most common places where ODM can be used is with OBIEE. OBIEE is the core engine for the delivery of the BI needs for an organisation. OBIEE coordinates the gathering of data from various sources, the defining of the business measures and then the delivery of this information in various forms to the users. Oracle Data Miner can be included in this process and can add significant value to the BI needs and report.

“A lot done – Need to publicise more”

Customized Projects

Most data mining projects are independent of various Applications and BI requirements. They are projects that are hoping to achieve a competitive insight into their organisational data. Over time as the success of some pilot projects become know they need for more data mining projects will increase. This will lead to organisations have a core data mining team to support these project. With this, the team will need tools to support them in the delivery of their project and with the delivery. This is were OBIEE and Oracle Fusion Apps will come increasingly important.

“A lot done – more to do”