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Friday, November 19, 2010

An OBI 11g Client Tools Only Install Work-Around

OBI 11g has been out for several months now and it is getting great reviews - As it should! It is a clean and powerful upgrade from its 10g predecessor. With that being said, many things have changed, not only from a graphical end-user perspective but from a foundation and architecture one as well. This post is specifically discussing the later. Even more specifically, this post touches on what is probably the loudest complaint of System Integrators thus far which is that OBI 11g does not have a client tools install like OBI 10g did. What does this mean OBI 11g integrators and developers? It means that basically anytime one needs to leverage the Administration Tool, Catalog Manager, etc. on a client workstation (away from the OBI Server, i.e.: client/server interaction) the workstation must be loaded with all binaries and configurations as if it was to be the OBI 11g server itself. Oracle's documentation goes on to say that after a full install (Simple or Enterprise) on a client workstation (Windows only, of course) that one must shutdown and disable all server related Windows Services. Clearly this is cumbersome to say the least just to get client tools loaded.

To workaround this one can conduct the OBI 11g installation on a certified client OS using the Software Only Install option. This option requires that a Fusion Middleware Home already be established. So, WebLogic 10.3.3 must be installed on the client machine prior to conducting the OBI 11g Software Only installation. You may download from here or from the Oracle e-delivery site.

If you attempt to conduct the software only install without prior installation of the WebLogic Server you will be confronted with the following error messages (INST-07407, INST-07247):

Once the WebLogic Server has been installed on the client OS, install OBI 11g using the Software Only option. The installation should complete without incident as only the binaries are installed on the client machine. Once the install completes, navigate to the administration tool executable now under the path <fmw_home>\Oracle_BI1\bifoundation\server\bin\admintool.exe.

Please note that the administration tool and all OBIEE 11g client tools are certified to run on a 32-bit OS only. Be warned that the client tools will install onto a 64-bit machine but Oracle currently will not support that version OS if something goes wrong. Please see this link for the current OBI 11g certification matrix, here (OBI 11g Release 1) or here for the full Full Fusion Middleware Certification Matrices. Take note that this is an OBI 11g Client Tools Only Install Work-Around and it is not-officially supported by Oracle But, it is much more efficient than the extra steps per the Oracle documentation.