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Oracle® Records Database Application Administrator's Guide
10g Release 1 (10.2)

Part Number B31266-02
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Oracle® Records Database

Application Administrator's Guide

10g Release 1 (10.2)


August 2006

This document provides conceptual information for Oracle Records Database 10g Release 1 (10.2) (Oracle Records DB) administration. This document contains the following topics:

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About Records Management

Many enterprises are reevaluating their unstructured data strategy and turning toward a centralized records management policy due to the rapidly increasing importance and volume of their business-critical records.

Records management is the systematic and comprehensive control of the creation, identification, maintenance, filing, use, and disposition of records. Records management ensures the following:

To address the regulatory, legal, and best practices requirements for managing electronic records, records management systems must be able to do the following:

Oracle Records DB

Oracle Records DB is a records management application that is included with Oracle Content DB (Oracle Content DB). In order to use Oracle Records DB, you must be running Oracle Content DB.

One of the challenges of implementing a records management policy is the difficulty users have in identifying and selecting data that should become a record (known as declaring records). Oracle Records DB makes record declaration and policy management easier. Through Oracle Records DB, Records Administrators can set records management properties for any folder (also referred to as a destination) in which a user might store data. The folder properties automatically implement record declaration and policy management. These property settings can be transparent to the user.

Oracle Records DB identifies and selects data, and creates records from that data in two ways:

Because Oracle Records DB enables universal access to a single records management policy and repository through Web Services, it can be readily used in many collaborative environments, portals, and business applications.

Using Oracle Records DB, enterprises can do all of the following:

When Oracle Content DB is configured, Oracle Records DB is configured automatically, but the application is disabled by default. Oracle Records DB can be enabled through Oracle Enterprise Manager 10g Application Server Control. In addition, metrics for records management can be configured through Application .

Setting Up Record Policy

Developing an effective records management program requires a combination of suitable policies, procedures, training, and practices. To develop a successful program for enterprisewide electronic records management, consider the following steps:

By carefully developing and testing the records management program prior to implementing it, enterprises can ensure the success of their program.

Managing File Plans

In order to place data under records management control, the data must be declared as records and classified according to the lifecycle management rules contained in the file plan. The record classification in a file plan should be carefully created to reflect the appropriate records management rules for the enterprise.

There are many different ways to set up a record classification in a file plan. For example, an enterprise may decide to create a file plan organized by business function or by business activity.

The classification hierarchy in a file plan is unique to each enterprise and its activities.

Using Oracle Records DB, Records Administrators can create one or more file plans to organize the records in a system.

The Records Administrator can perform the following for each file plan:

Records Administrators can specify a set of policies that control the life cycle of the records that the file plan contains.

Setting Up Records Management Security

Records Administrators can restrict users from filing records that are associated with a specific record category or record folder, using the records management security feature. The records management security defined on a file plan applies to all record categories under that file plan, unless the record category explicitly overrides it. Once guard security has been defined, it can be overridden only at the file plan and record category levels. Oracle Records DB security does not prevent users from viewing file plans that they cannot use.

Managing a Record Series

A file plan can contain multiple record series. A record series contains further groupings of record categories. The Records Administrator must provide a name and description for each record series in the file plan.

Managing Record Categories

The Records Administrator can create record categories under a file plan or under a record series. For each record category, the Records Administrator can specify the following:

  • A name and description

  • Cutoff instructions

  • An ordered list of disposition instructions that are executed upon cutoff. A disposition instruction is executed after cutoff occurs.

    For example, the disposition instructions for a record category could be to retain all records managed by the record category for one month after cutoff, then move those records to a special folder and retain them for a year.

    The set of available disposition actions is move, delete, launch workflow, and retain. For disposition actions that require a destination (move instructions, for example), a folder destination must be specified. You can select storage options for your destination folders when you specify a disposition instruction. See *, "Managing Storage Options" for more information about the storage options that you can select.

  • Whether the records disposition or retention cycle should occur at repeated intervals

The Records Administrator can also specify additional attributes for records filed within the record category. The attributes must have one of the following types:

  • Boolean

  • Date

  • Double

  • Enumerated Integer

  • Enumerated Long

  • Enumerated String

  • Integer

  • Long

  • String

  • User

For each of the additional record attributes, the Records Administrator can specify defaults, allowed values, and whether or not users must specify values (required, hidden, or configurable) for these attributes.

Managing Record Folders

Records Administrators can optionally create a record folder to further organize records within a record category. The Records Administrator must provide a name and description for each record folder. A record folder inherits the attributes specified by its parent record category.

Record folders are used to organize the records within a record category. For example, a record category specific to the 2005 fiscal year has records in specific record folders that are organized by month. Each record folder may specify or override a different cutoff period, but once a record folder reaches cutoff, that record folder is closed.

Managing Auditing

Oracle Content DB provides auditing support for Oracle Records DB. See Oracle Content Database Administrator's Guide for more information.

Managing Legal Retention Requirements

Retention periods determine the length of time that a record must be kept. Sometimes there is a specific legal or regulatory time period requiring that certain records must be retained. These records are protected from possible destruction for the cited period of time.

Oracle Records DB supports these legal retention requirements. A Records Administrator can suspend the activities on all records in a record category or folder indefinitely by using the freeze command.

Managing Record Declarations

There are three ways to declare records within the Oracle Records DB application:

Enterprises can implement different ways of declaring records based on specific record attributes, by using the customized workflow capability in Oracle Content DB.

Providing default values and record attributes facilitates the creation of record categories without requiring user input. However, providing required record attributes without defaults will result in FTP and WebDAV upload failure.

Managing Record Access

Oracle Content DB manages user access to records. Users can search only on records to which they have access. Records Administrators can view all records in the system and can change a record back to regular data, even if those records may have been inadvertently or erroneously created by a user.

The Records Administrator must also have Content Administrator privileges to view and change data that have been declared a record to regular data.

Managing Workflow Processes

Oracle Records DB provides users the option of using custom workflow processes, which are defined in Oracle BPEL Process Manager.

Users can specify a custom workflow as one of the disposition instructions when they create or modify a record category. The custom workflow can be used in combination with other disposition actions to define the lifecycle of records stored under the record category. The custom workflow will be executed as part of the disposition processing for all records and record folders filed under the record category.

The Launch workflow disposition phase lets customers do the following:

In a multi Site configuration, disposition phase workflows are available only in the primary Site.

The Launch workflow disposition action is only available if custom workflows have been defined for Oracle Content DB.

When record disposition error occurs, the Records Administrator is notified through a workflow notification.

Managing Storage Options

Oracle Records DB provides three options for storing records: Database storage, BFILE storage, and through integration with retention hardware.

Use the Oracle Records DB application to select storage options when creating a record category. See the online Help for Oracle Records DB for more information.

Database Storage

If you decide to retain data in database storage, the data is marked as a record and then kept in the database tablespaces used by Oracle Content DB. See Oracle Content Database Administrator's Guide for more information about storage options for Oracle Content DB.

BFILE Storage

Oracle Records DB lets you use BFILE storage to store certain types of records. BFILE storage for records is not enabled by default; in order to enable this option, you must set the BFILE domain property IFS.DOMAIN.BFILE.Enabled to True, and then specify storage management options in Oracle Content Database Control. See Oracle Content Database Administrator's Guide for more information about setting the domain property.

Retention Hardware

Oracle Content DB provides retention hardware capabilities through partnerships with Network Appliance and EMC. You can use Oracle Collaboration Suite Control to integrate Oracle Content DB with Network Appliance SnapLock or EMC Centera.

To integrate Oracle Content DB with a records management retention device, you must first install the hardware (either EMC Centera or Network Appliance SnapLock). Then, you must specify credential information for the hardware and set retention-related domain properties using Oracle Collaboration Suite Control.

Once you have created a record category and defined retention policies in Oracle Records DB, Oracle Content DB designates appropriate content as records to be stored in a records management retention device. See Oracle Content Database Administrator's Guide for more information about integrating Oracle Content DB with your retention hardware.



When a record is marked to begin its disposition or retention cycle. Cutoffs are needed before disposition instructions can be applied because retention periods begin with the cutoff, not with the creation or declaration of the records.


Directions for carrying out their disposition instructions (retain, move, or delete) of a record.

EMC Centera

A partner solution that provides retention hardware support. You can integrate Oracle Content DB with EMC Centera to provide retention storage for Oracle Records DB.

file plan

A collection of record categories and record series containing the disposition instructions for records.


The ability to suspend (freeze) the final disposition instructions (typically, the instruction to delete a record) in the lifecycle of a record. Record categories, record folders, and records can only be frozen by the administrator.


The life span of a record from its creation or receipt to its final disposition.

Network Appliance SnapLock

A partner solution that provides retention hardware support. You can integrate Oracle Content DB with Network Appliance SnapLock to provide retention storage for Oracle Records DB.


An immutable document, regardless of medium, that is controlled by a particular record category.

record category

A description of the lifecycle for a particular set of records within a file plan. Each record category has retention and disposition data associated with it which apply to all record folders and records within the record category.

record folder

A special type of record category used to manage and organize records and that allows for the retention and disposition of the record information.

record series

A container that holds a set of record categories.

retention period

The length of time that a record must be kept before it can be destroyed.


The ability to reverse the suspension (freeze) instruction on a record category, record folder, or record. This allows the final disposition instructions to be completed.

Oracle Records Database Application Administrator's Guide, 10g Release 1 (10.2)


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