Automatic Documentation Repository Using Oracle Configuration Manager

Since this presentation was first done…Oracle changed the name from Software Configuration Manager (SCM) to Oracle Configuration Manager (OCM)….

 

First Presented in SELECT Journal IOUG 2nd Quarter 2008 then at IOUG COLLABORATE 2008 Session #307

I personally see this as part of my overall disaster recovery plan for documenting all of my systems automatically. Why?  I can access this information via Metalink anywhere there is an Internet connection and can share this with other IT personnel that have the same CSI number hence the name of this post. 

Software Configuration Manager (SCM)

  1. Currently a tab in Metalink
  2. Future UI of Metalink 3 – Fall 2008
  3. Oracle merges several Portals that tie together Siebel, Peoplesoft, JDE, Oracle Customers
  4. Current OUI screens – License Agreement
  5. Automates Data Collection
  6. Command-line Large Deployments
  7. Tied to Service Requests
  8. Part of 11g Diagnosability Framework
  9. No additional cost included as part of Support Agreement

 Screenshot of SCM DASHBOARD in Metalink

 

Note:  This is an example of someone who installed and configured their systems to use Software Configuration Manager.  There are filters (not shown) which come into play for all the regions on the page.  This narrows the amount of information displayed to items that are more relevant to your “Configurations”.

 

 

 

 

How do I Install SCM ?

  • OUI Screen (optional part of the install) for latest Oracle products
  • Download Oracle Configuration Manager client from Metalink – “Getting Started Guide”  see COLLECTORS tab (only for older products, now installed in $ORACLE_HOME)
  • Command-line utility $ORACLE_HOME/ccr/bin/setupCCR and installCCRSQL.sh (the second command inserts automatic task, MGMT_STATS_CONFIG_JOB, to run within a database)
  • Can automate Download/Installs of SCM via Grid Control (same process as batching GC agent)
  • Requires CSI Number, User Name, Country Code to upload to Metalink

What does SCM integrate with?

 GRID CONTROL

  • GC look and feel to Metalink
  • OCM Collector deployments with GC
  • CANNOT pull all information from a single GC install….

 REMOTE DIAGNOSTIC AGENT

  • aka RDA
  • Collector can upload RDA for a Service Request
  • RDA uploads are accessible via Software Configuration Manager Tab

11G DIAGNOSABILITY FRAMEWORK 

  • direct link to Metalink via Oracle Support
  • Software and Support Tab of Enterprise Manager or Database Control

 

Different Agents, Different Tasks

Grid Control is for Provisioning, Monitoring, Regulating Policies and Comparing.

Oracle Configuration Manager or OCM COLLECTOR offers

  1. targeted DASHBOARD within Metalink
  2. Support and Service Request Integration
  3. Tracks by SID, HOST and Oracle Applications
  4. Configurations belong to a CSI Number
  5. Config Owner in Metalink registers, a different owner can reregister if need be
  6. Configurations aren’t ever purged

 

What Information is Uploaded?

  • XML Format located $ORACLE_HOME/ccr/state/review/
  • View pages locally
  • HTTPS transfer is done using the CSI, User Name, Country Code (makes this the owner in Metalink)
  • Information the same as an RDA upload or what an Oracle Support Personnel ask for to resolve Service Requests.
  • Automatically collected once daily (via cron or tasks)
  • Information not purged only updated on Metalink
  • No performance issues related to the collector

 

Future of Metalink….(more features now available)

Configurations will be the basis for….

  • Personalization of the DASHBOARD
  • Healthchecks applicable to your CONFIGURATIONS
  • Patch Advice applicable to your CONFIGURATIONS
  • Search Filter for Technical Knowledge, Bugs, Docs, OTN and Oracle.com

 News and Notes in Metalink for the following blurb:  “We are transforming and enhancing MetaLink’s native knowledge search capabilities. A completely integrated version of Oracle’s Secure Enterprise Search engine is now available under the Software Configuration Manager tab on MetaLink. You can try the new search capabilities yourself by clicking on the Software Configuration Manager tab on MetaLink and entering your search keywords. Later this year the SES engine will replace MetaLink’s current search engine for all site and knowledge searches.”

 

Enhancements yet to come…

  • CSI service groups – subsets of users within a single CSI
  • Entire Security Model will be changing

 

Issues that Endusers have voiced…..these were given to Oracle as part of the Beta User Testing for SCM

  •  Oracle is data mining the uploaded information for license violations. Everyone I have talked to at Oracle says this doesn’t happen.  One customer installed the collector and a few weeks later their oracle account manager contacted them about a license issue.
  • Oerwhelming wanted to access this information locally (personalization, UI features, clickability). You could publish the xml files and use standard xml tools to get the information.
  • Security issues with uploaded information as per SLA’s and confidentiality agreements with their own customers. Some customers strip RDA’s of certain information before uploading or only attach certain information within an SR.
  • Want the ability to purge, remove (particularly old, test or secure environments) or pull back the uploaded information as needed.
  • Positive response to using a local agent on a secure server which contained all of the information which they could publish only certain components of the information to Metalink, and pull back information as before.

  

 

 

 

 

 

2 Responses to Automatic Documentation Repository Using Oracle Configuration Manager

  1. Great post, April! I am excited about the Security Model – any tidbits you can drop? =)

  2. aprilcsims says:

    Gave Oracle the feedback above (see Issues section). Last I heard they were investigating using the OCM collector with a local trusted host at the endusers site.

    Security Model I spoke of pertains to Metalink access with or without OCM configurations. Sorry I don’t have any tidbits at this point, will update it as soon as I can. Some concern is that whoever installs the OCM collector first OWNS the info and that the info is available across large organizations.

    thanks for your kind words.

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