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Best practices for upgrading to 9i

We have an application on Oracle 7.x with around 1500 forms. We are planning to migrate it to Oracle9i. What should be our approach for such a migration? Do you have any best practices for this? Also are there any tool(s) available for such migration? What may be the level of effort required?

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Oracle does have a nice tool called the Database Upgrade Assistante (DBUA). This GUI tool does a nice job of upgrading your database. And it's pretty easy to use.

Your Oracle Forms product is a different manner. Typically, one loads the FMB into the newest version of Oracle Forms and recompiles it to produce a new FMX file. Do this for every form and you are ready to go! Oracle Technet does have some nice information on this process at the following URL:

http://otn.oracle.com/products/forms/htdocs/upgrade/roadmap.html

There are some third party software that will do the conversion for you as well. I would suggest doing a Google search for 'upgrade oracle forms software.'

My best practices for upgrades are as follows:

1. Read the Oracle Migration Guide for your new database version. It will contain the steps needed to upgrade your database to the latest version.
2. Always perform a test. Create a test database and run your application against this test database. Then upgrade everything. You'll have chance to iron out any issues before you do this in production where it matters.
3. Perform a backup of your database immediately before you upgrade and immediately after. This way, if there are problems, you can revert to a pre-upgrade state easily. And if there is a crash after you've upgraded, you can use the after-upgrade backup so that you don't have to upgrade again.
4. Create test cases that exercise your application. Keep this document handy for future reference.

This was first published in May 2004

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