2 Oracle Database Client Preinstallation Requirements

This chapter describes the following tasks that you must complete before you can install the Oracle Database Client products:

2.1 Oracle Database Client Hardware Requirements

Table 2-1 lists the required hardware components for Oracle Database Client.

Table 2-1 Hardware Requirements

Requirement Minimum Value

Physical memory (RAM)

256 MB minimum, 512 MB recommended

On Windows Vista, the minimum requirement is 512 MB

Virtual memory

Double the amount of RAM

Hard disk space

Total ranges from 216–738 MB. See Table 2-2 for details.

Video adapter

256 colors


550 MHz minimum

On Windows Vista, the minimum requirement is 800 MHz

2.1.1 Hard Disk Space Requirements

This section lists system requirements for Windows platforms that use the NT File System (NTFS) file systems. FAT32 space requirements are slightly larger. Oracle recommends installing Oracle components on NTFS.

The NTFS system requirements listed in this section are more accurate than the hard disk values reported by the Oracle Universal Installer Summary window. The Summary window does not include the space required to create a database or the size of compressed files that are expanded on the hard drive.

The hard disk requirements for Oracle Database Client components include space required to install Java Runtime Environment (JRE) and Oracle Universal Installer on the partition where the operating system is installed. If sufficient space is not detected, then installation fails and an error message appears.

Table 2-2 lists the space requirements for NTFS.

Table 2-2 Disk Space Requirements for NTFS

Installation Type TEMP Space SYSTEM_DRIVE:\Program Files\Oracle\Inventory Oracle Home Total

Instant Client

100 MB

0.08 MB

115 MB

216 MB


100 MB

0.75 MB

637 MB

738 MB


100 MB

0.33 MB

273 MB

374 MB

Custom (all components installed)

100 MB

0.75 MB *

532 MB *

633 MB *

* This size varies, depending on the on the installation components selected.


If you want to configure only the Instant Client Light component of Instant Client, you need 30–32 MB of disk space to store the related files. Refer to "Configuring Instant Client Light" for more information.

See Also:

"NTFS File System and Windows Registry Permissions" in Oracle Database Platform Guide for Microsoft Windows (32-Bit)

To ensure that the system meets these requirements, follow these steps:

  1. Determine the physical RAM size. For a computer using Windows 2003, for example, open System in the Windows Control Panel and select the General tab. If the size of the physical RAM installed in the system is less than the required size, then you must install more memory before continuing.

  2. Determine the size of the configured virtual memory (also known as paging file size). For a computer using Windows 2003, for example, open System in the Control Panel, select the Advanced tab, and click Settings in the Performance section. Then select the Advanced tab. The virtual memory is listed in the Virtual Memory section.

    If necessary, see your operating system documentation for information about how to configure additional virtual memory.

  3. Determine the amount of free disk space on the system. For a computer using Windows 2003, for example, open My Computer, right-click the drive where the Oracle software is to be installed, and choose Properties.

  4. Determine the amount of disk space available in the temp directory. This is equivalent to the total amount of free disk space, minus what will be needed for the Oracle software to be installed.

    If there is less than 100 MB of disk space available in the temp directory, then first delete all unnecessary files. If the temp disk space is still less than 100 MB, then set the TEMP or TMP environment variable to point to a different hard drive. For a computer using Windows 2003, for example, open System in the Control Panel, select the Advanced tab, and click Environment Variables.

2.2 Oracle Database Client Software Requirements

This section covers the following topics:

2.2.1 General Oracle Database Client Software Requirements

Table 2-3 lists the software requirements for Oracle Database Client.

Table 2-3 Software Requirements

Requirement Value

System Architecture

Processor: Intel (x86), AMD64, and Intel EM64T

Note: Oracle provides 32-bit (x86), 64-bit (Itanium), and 64-bit (x64) versions of Oracle Database for Windows. The 32-bit database version, which this installation guide describes, runs on the 32-bit version of Windows on either x86 or x64 hardware. Oracle provides certification for 32-bit Oracle Database Client on 64-bit Windows (x64). For additional information, visit Oracle MetaLink at:


Operating System

Oracle Database for Windows is supported on the following operating systems:

  • Windows 2000 with service pack 1 or later. All editions, including Terminal Services and Microsoft Windows 2000 MultiLanguage Edition (MLE), are supported.

  • Windows Server 2003 - all editions

  • Windows Server 2003 R2

  • Windows XP Professional

  • Windows Vista - Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate editions

Windows NT is not supported.

Windows Multilingual User Interface Pack is supported on Windows Server 2003, Windows XP Professional, and Windows Vista.


Pro*Cobol has been tested and certified with the following two compilers:

  • ACUCOBOL-GT version 6.2

  • Micro Focus Net Express 4.0 (Not available on Windows Vista at the time of release)

Object Oriented COBOL (OOCOBOL) specifications are not supported.

The following components are supported with the Microsoft Visual C++ .NET 2002 7.0 and Microsoft Visual C++ .NET 2003 7.1 compilers:

  • Oracle C++ Call Interface

  • Oracle Call Interface

  • GNU Compiler Collection (Not available on Windows Vista at the time of release)

  • External callouts

  • PL/SQL native compilation

  • XDK

Note: To use Oracle C++ Call Interface with Microsoft Visual C++ .NET 2005 8.0, download the compatible dlls from Oracle Technology Network:


If you plan to use GNU Compiler Collection as your primary compiler, see Oracle Database Installation Guide for Microsoft Windows (32-Bit) for instructions on configuring the primary compiler.

Network Protocol

The Oracle Net foundation layer uses Oracle protocol support to communicate with the following industry-standard network protocols:

  • TCP/IP

  • TCP/IP with SSL

  • Named Pipes

2.2.2 Instant Client Light Language and Character Set Requirements

In addition to the requirements described in the previous section, if you plan to use Instant Client Light, your applications must use the following languages and character sets:

  • Language: US English

  • Territory: Any territory that is supported by Oracle

  • Character sets:

    • Single byte

      • US7ASCII

      • WE8DEC

    • Unicode

      • UTF8

      • AL16UTF16

      • AL32UTF8

The language, territory, and character sets are determined by the NLS_LANG parameter, which is stored in the registry under the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\ORACLE\HOMEID\NLS_LANG subkey, where ID is the unique number identifying the Oracle home.


AL32UTF8 is the Oracle Database character set that is appropriate for XMLType data. It is equivalent to the IANA registered standard UTF-8 encoding, which supports all valid XML characters.

Do not confuse Oracle Database database character set UTF8 (no hyphen) with database character set AL32UTF8 or with character encoding UTF-8. Database character set UTF8 has been superseded by AL32UTF8. Do not use UTF8 for XML data. UTF8 supports only Unicode version 3.1 and earlier; it does not support all valid XML characters. AL32UTF8 has no such limitation.

Using database character set UTF8 for XML data could potentially cause a fatal error or affect security negatively. If a character that is not supported by the database character set appears in an input-document element name, a replacement character (usually "?") is substituted for it. This will terminate parsing and raise an exception.

2.3 Oracle Database Client Hardware and Software Certification

The platform-specific hardware and software requirements included in this installation guide were current at the time this guide was published. However, because new platforms and operating system software versions might be certified after this guide is published, review the certification matrix on the OracleMetaLink Web site for the most up-to-date list of certified hardware platforms and operating system versions. This Web site also provides compatible client an database versions, patches, and workaround information for bugs. The OracleMetaLink Web site is available at the following URL:


You must register online before using OracleMetaLink. After logging in, select Certify & Availability from the left-hand column. From the Product Lifecycle page, select the Certifications button. Other Product Lifecycle options include Product Availability, Desupport Notices, and Alerts.

The following sections list the following certification information:

2.3.1 Windows Telnet Services Support

Windows includes a Telnet Service that allows remote users to log on to the operating system and run console programs using the command line. Oracle supports database command line utilities such as sqlplus, sqlldr, import, and export using this feature, but does not support the database GUI tools such as Oracle Universal Installer and Oracle Net Configuration Assistant.

See Also:

For detailed information about the Windows operating systems, visit the Microsoft Web site at:



Make sure that the Telnet service is started on the Windows Services utility.

2.3.2 Windows Terminal Services and Remote Desktop Support

Oracle supports installing, configuring, and running Oracle Database Client through Terminal Services on all the supported Windows operating systems. If you encounter problems with the installation through Terminal Server, Oracle recommends connecting to the Terminal Services console session of the server (using mstsc\console).

For Windows 2000, Oracle supports installing, configuring, and running Oracle Database Client from a remote Terminal Services Client. For Windows XP and Windows Vista, the Remote Desktop is only available in Single User Mode.

See Also:

2.3.3 Components Supported on Windows XP and Windows Vista

All Oracle Database components are supported on Windows XP and Windows Vista with the following exceptions:

  • DCE Adapter Support

  • Entrust PKI Support

  • nCipher Accelerator Support

  • Oracle Services for Microsoft Transaction Server are not supported by Oracle Database on Windows Vista. As a result, all Oracle Windows data access drivers on Windows Vista that use Oracle Services for Microsoft Transaction Server to enlist in Microsoft Distributed Transaction Coordinator (MSDTC) coordinated transactions cannot participate in those coordinated transactions. These data access drivers include Oracle Data Provider for .NET, Oracle Provider for OLE DB, Oracle Objects for OLE, and ODBC.

  • Oracle Fail Safe Manager Console is supported on Windows XP but not on Windows Vista.

Additional Components Supporting Windows Vista

Oracle Data Provider for .NET or higher and Oracle Developer Tools for Visual Studio .NET or higher are certified for Microsoft Vista beginning with Oracle Data Access Components (ODAC) Oracle Data Access Components bundle these products together in a single installation and is available for download from Oracle Technology Network:


These products provide support for .NET Framework 2.0 and 3.0 and Microsoft Visual Studio 2005 users. Oracle Data Provider for .NET for .NET Framework 1.x is already included with the Oracle Database Client and Server installations.


To install this Oracle Data Access Components release on Windows Vista, do not start Oracle Universal Installer from this bundle. Instead, use the Oracle Universal Installer that has been already installed on your system using the Client media for Windows Vista.

2.3.4 Web Browser Support

The following Web browsers are supported for iSQL*Plus and Oracle Enterprise Manager Database Control:

  • Netscape Navigator 7.2 and later

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 (Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.0 on Windows Vista)

  • Mozilla version 1.7 and later

  • Safari 1.2

  • Firefox 1.0.4

2.4 Oracle Snap-Ins to the Microsoft Management Console Requirements

Oracle Database ships several Snap-Ins for the Microsoft Management Console (MMC). These Snap-ins require MMC version 1.2 or later.

Install Internet Explorer version 6.0 (IE 5.0) or later before installing Oracle Snap-ins. If you install any Oracle Snap-ins before installing IE 6.0, then reinstall the Oracle Snap-ins.

The following components depend on Oracle Snap-In components:

  • Oracle Administration Assistant for Windows

  • Oracle Counters for Windows Performance Monitor


Installing Oracle Administration Assistant for Windows automatically installs each Oracle Snap-In component.

You can download the Microsoft Management Console add-on from the following Web site: