Saturday, October 27, 2007

I've finally gone 11g

Typical. I finally resort to rebuilding my laptop with linux and install 11g, and Oracle come out with the Windows version.

Okay, to be honest, the linux install wasn't just to load up 11g. My windows XP startup, after 18 months, was abysmal. So I wiped it, fully intending to re-install it from scratch. But. There's always a but. Acer don't give you Windows install disks, or at least not for me. Instead you get a hidden partition on the drive that is supposed to be able to recover it as of the factory state. And you can create a Restore disk.

The restore disk didn't. The recovery partition didn't either. This was possibly due to my earlier conversion of the standard FAT32 C and D partitions to NTFS.

So I tried to install XP off the disks I had for the desktop machine. But that doesn't work with the laptop licence key, so I faced a long talk with either Acer or Microsoft or both. Bugger that.

I've opted for Ubuntu. I've tried that before, but it was a good while ago. I'm more impressed this time. It picked up my wifi connection without much fuss, which Oracle's Enterprise Linux 4 failed to do. I tried bits and bobs with OEL but gave up. Given my router is stuck in the bottom of the wardrobe (don't ask), no wifi is a no go for me.

Ubuntu 7.04 (sorry, the gimmicky names are a bit too much for me) was on the DVD for one of this month's computer magazines, so was an easy choice. Howard's articles here and here provided the details. Thanks, Howard !
I've also added rlwrap as I can't cope with SQL*Plus without a history. And this page told me how get my APEX going. While APEX is installed with 11g by default, it still needs a couple of commands from the DBA before it is available from the browser. Since the apxconf script is executed AS SYSDBA, it's a shame they didn't put the grant for DBMS_SYS_SQL in there too. I feel it would have made the default database install that little bit safer, neutering the FLOWS_nnnnn account until Apex is specifically switched on. But maybe I'm a worry wart.

I understand that the 11g Apex is the same 3.0.1 that is available for the general download and use (give or take a bug fix), which I installed on my XE install on my desktop machine. My plan is to do a little playing around, developing a small application one evening per week.

I may still download the Windows 11g next week. I noticed the Linux version didn't give an option of 'Personal Edition', which is apparently Windows only. I've no idea why it is Windows only. In fact, I've got very little idea what the market for Personal Edition is, apart from being the cheapest fully supported Oracle database (and so, I think, the cheapest way to get Metalink access and tempting for an individual consultant).


Paweł Barut said...

Hi Gary,
I also have ACER with XP installed from hidden partition. I should probably take good backup for OS now, when everything is working fine. Otherwise I risk to be in the same situation as You.
Thanks for warning.

Robert Freeman said...

This is why I love the idea of virtual environments. I plopped VMWARE on my Dell XPS and run Linux there. I also run a RAC VMWare configuration on my Laptop!!

Virtual is coming!