A day in the life of an Oracle Applications Consultant


Thursday, August 14, 2008

BI Publisher Webinar

Simon Tomey of BeLife will be running a Webinar for BI Publisher at the following dates and times: -

  • Thursday 21st August 2008 @ 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM GMT - Register Here
  • Thursday 28th August 2008 @ 7:00 AM - 8:00 AM GMT - Register Here

A short description of the webinar:

Oracle XML/BI publisher is possibly the richest new piece of functionality in E-business suite and certainly the easiest to implement. It means you can forget the text based reports you have been struggling with and delight your users with clean attractively formatted documents and spreadsheets.

This series of webinars will include some ‘quick wins’ and the steps to building and customising great XML output. Simon will demonstrate how to:

  • implement the templates which already exist in your system
  • convert GL reports to produce clean MS Excel output
  • build templates to create documents and spreadsheets (such as dunning letters, customer open balance letters, remittance advices and listings). 
  • include tables, logos, pictures, headers and footers, first and last page only content, and conditional statements (e.g. if..then). 
  • Apply some tricks (e.g. getting different XML reports from the same output file)

The first in this series of presentations will cover the seven steps to producing a BI publisher report using a very simple example. I recommend you download the slides from Simon’s presentation.

Audio Services will be provided for the following countries and it is essential that for this particular webinar you can access the audio services.

  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Germany
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Spain
  • Switzerland
  • United States

Hence when you have registered and are given the conference call number, please check to ensure that you can actually dial that number. If, for example, you live in India and would like to make use of the audio features you would have to dial in to the conference using a U.S. number. Using VOIP services such as skype for the audio is not ideal as you may experience some network latency, in most instances you will be better off using a landline or mobile to access the conference audio.

Please also note that the webinar allows up to 25 panelists for the audio, a panelist being someone who can have a two way conversation with the presenter. Anyone who is not a panelist will only have the ability to listen to the presenter. When signing up please let me know if you would like to be a panelist. As there is a limit to the number of panelists the option to be a panelist will be awarded on a first come first served basis.

Note: If you’re unable to attend the webinar live or cannot utilise the audio facilities (as a result of your country not being included in the list of countries above) a recording of the session will be available for subsequent download and playback.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Oracle Events Google Mashup

I discovered the Oracle Events web site the other day which I thought was a very good way of keeping us up to date of all Oracle events going on around the globe.

It has a Google Mashup which combines event information with the worldwide location as illustrated below.

Oracle Events Google Mashup

You can search events by keyword or view in person and web event information by applying the following filters:

  • Date
  • Language
  • Target Audience
  • Database
  • Middleware
  • Applications
  • Industries
  • Service

I also like the fact there’s an RSS feed for the events. What would make this service even better is an iCAL file that you could use to import the events into an Outlook or web based calendar service

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Oracle Open World 2006: Presentations Now Available Online

The wait is over.  Presentations from last week’s Oracle Open World Conference are now available online.

I know many of you are eager to get your hands on some of the presentations for Oracle Open World 2006.  I was excited to see in Steven Chan’s post this morning that some of the conference materials are now available online.  It would be redundant to repeat the information here, so check out Steven’s blog for more information, and note the user ID and password required for downloads.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Oracle e-Business Suite Release 12: New Features for Sys Admins

Fear not System Administrators: There are exciting new system administration features in the pipeline for managing e-Business Suite environments.

Well, I’ve made it back home to Charlotte and I’m getting caught up with my notes from Open World.  One of the sessions I attended last week was by Oracle Senior Project Manager Biju Mohan.  His session covered some of the improvements and new features system administrators can look forward to in the upcoming release of the e-Business Suite plug in for Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM).

One seemingly never ending task that takes up a considerable amount of time for System Administrators is cloning.  It wasn’t long ago that cloning was done manually (maybe I’m dating myself), using home grown scripts and following documented (or not so documented) procedures.  I’m sure there are still a few of us out there who still follow manual processes, and although Oracle Applications Manager and the adclone utilities and scripts have helped sysadmins reduce the time and effort for cloning, there are still a few areas where things we being done manually behind the scenes.  I’m happy to report the product teams at Oracle have been hard at work, and will be releasing a number of new or improved features for e-Business Suite management in the future.  Here are a few of the improvements I learned about regarding cloning.

Cloning support through OAM will be decommissioned, and in the future cloning will be accomplished through the cloning dashboard in OEM - with the e-Business Suite add on (the “apps pack”) installed.  The process will be automated through a provisioning framework, where OEM will walk an administrator through an interview process to determine cloning parameters.  Sys admins will be able to create images, so the possible cloning combinations will be:

  • Source to Target (e.g. PROD to DEV);
  • Source to Image (e.g. PROD to an image to put on the shelf and use for future clones to DEV, UAT, etc.); and
  • Image to Target (e.g. refresh DEV from an earlier image of PROD or another imaged environment).

One feature I’m sure many have been waiting for is the ability to scramble or purge sensitive data.  I’ve been told this feature will work with 11i10 and Release 12.  This is great news for cloning production environments down to development and test instances where the apps password isn’t always policed as it is in production.  Although the instance might not be production, the data still originated in a production environment, and the ability to scramble or purge sensitive HR, payroll or other personal data (e.g. to meet HIPAA requirements) has been needed for a long time.  It was not made clear as to how extensive the process was, or what data elements for each of the modules would be covered, but it was my understanding that the scrambling will be implemented as an engine where additional input parameters can be input to the process.  Data obfuscation will occur during the cloning of either a Source -> Target or Source -> Image clone, and will not be reversible.

I’ll keep my ears posted on when we can expect the release of the apps pack for OEM.  Post a comment if you hear any news on the next release.  More details on additional Release 12 system management features to come in a future post.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

OOW06 Ten Things You Can Do To Prepare for Fusion Applications

Confused about Fusion?  You shouldn’t be.  Although Fusion Applications are years away, there are many components of Fusion Middleware that are available today to help get you one step closer to Fusion Applications.

I’ve sat through several sessions and keynotes regarding Release 12, Fusion Middleware, and Fusion Applications.  The message from John Wookey, Cliff Godwin, Nadia Bendjedou, and others has been consistent - You don’t need to wait for the release of Fusion Applications to start preparing for Fusion.  Moving to Fusion Applications will require new skills and experience to install, configure and support the new Applications Suite.  However, many of the tools and technologies for Fusion Applications are available today and can be leveraged with 11i10 and/or Release 12, allowing you to get a head start on preparing your environment and staff for Fusion Apps.

I must not have been the only one to complain, as they moved Dr. Nadia Bendjedou’s session “Oracle E-Business Suite Customers: 10 Things You Can Do Now to Prepare for Oracle Fusion Applications” to a larger room.  Despite the fact the room held almost 500 people, it was still standing room only for some.  There is obviously a lot of interest in Fusion, and the good news is you don’t have to wait years to start preparing today.  Nadia’s presentation focused on both best practices as well as product components, and listed 10 items e-Business Suite customers should start focusing on now:

Top 10 List

  1. Rethink your customization strategy
  2. Consider Master Data Management (MDM)
  3. Move to SOA-based integration
  4. Extend your business intelligence portfolio
  5. Adopt enterprise reporting and publishing
  6. Secure your global enterprise
  7. Consider grid computing
  8. Centralize your lifecycle management
  9. Upgrade to the e-Business Suite R12
  10. Prepare a Fusion project plan

Each of these items is a topic in and of itself.  My plan is to go into more detail on each one in future posts.  Items 1, 9 and 10 focus more on best practices, where the remaining items focus on the product technologies behind the EBS.  There have been numerous sessions on Release 12 and Fusion Applications, and the good news is I’ve been able to take some good notes in many of them.  Post a comment or start a thread in the forum to let me know which topics interest you most.

For those who have been following along, today is the last day of the conference.  Several good sessions remain, and then it’s off to the airport to catch an overnight flight back home to Charlotte.

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