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Oracle® Universal Installer Concepts Guide
10g Release 1 (10.1)

Part Number B12140-01
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2 Using Oracle Universal Installer

This chapter includes the following sections:

Checking Pre-Requisites Before Installation

Before installation, OUI checks the environment to see whether it meets the requirements for successful installation. Early detection of problems with the system setup reduces the chances of users encountering problems during installation; for instance, problems with insufficient disk space, missing patches, inappropriate hardware, etc.

OUI is required to perform all pre-requisite checks defined for the installation before installing any software, whether they are OUI-specific tests, or tests defined for a specific product. Specific pre-requisite checks are defined for each operating system on which OUI runs. All pre-requisite check parameters must be defined in the oraparam.ini file (or another .ini file that you define); all results are logged in the installActions<timestamp>.log file.

Pre-requisite checking can be performed in the following three ways:

Table 2-1 Command Line Parameters for Pre-Requisite Checks

Command Description
-paramFile <file name> Allows you to specify the location for the oraparam.ini file to be used. For example, you may create your own parameters file and use that to operate OUI. Note that OUI will use the file you specify for all operations, including the pre-requisite checks.
-executeSysPrereqs Use this flag on the command line to perform only the pre-requisite check, without continuing the installation. This can be used to verify that the basic pre-requisites have been met before deciding to perform an installation.
-ignoreSysPrereqs Use this flag on the command line to ignore all pre-requisite checks. This may be useful when you know that the checks themselves are faulty or the environment has already been verified.

Inputs to the checker are listed in the prerequisite.xml file. Once the checker is run, results, along with the pre-defined inputs, can be found in the prerequisite_results.xml file. These files are located in the oraInventory/logs directory. The prerequisite_results.xml file can be reused as an input file for subsequent executions of the checker.

Installing Oracle Products

The following sections describe how to start OUI and install an Oracle product. Specifically, this section describes:

Getting Help While Installing Oracle Products

At any time while installing your product, click Help for information about the screens specific to your installation.

OUI provides two kinds of online help

  • Generic online help provided with every copy of OUI.

    These topics describe the screens and dialog boxes that every OUI user sees, regardless of the product they are installing.

  • Online help specific to a particular installation.

    These topics are created by the product developer and describe the screens and dialog boxes specific to the product you are installing. For example, the help topic for the Installation Types page is often a custom help topic created by the installation developer that describes the specific installation types for the product you are installing.

After you display an online help topic, choose Navigator from the Tools menu to display the navigator pane. From the navigator pane, you can browse the table of contents, select other topics, or search for a particular word or phrase in the online help.


Only generic help topics are available in the navigator, or table of contents. Custom help topics can only be accessed by clicking the Help button on the dialogs or windows they describe.

About the ORAPARAM.INI File

The oraparam.ini file is the initialization file for OUI. This file includes information that defines the behavior of certain OUI features. Each product installation possesses a unique oraparam.ini file.

In general, you should not have to edit the contents of this file, but in certain situations, understanding the contents of this file can help you troubleshoot problems and understand certain aspects of the OUI product.

For example, for most installations, OUI provides a default value on the File Locations page that points to the location of the product's installation kit or stage. This default value is stored in the oraparam.ini file. The oraparam.ini file also identifies the location of the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) required for the installation.

In the staging area, it is located in the same directory as the executable file. For example:

For UNIX systems:


For Windows systems:


In the staging area, the default OUI_LOCATION is relative to the location of the oraparam.ini file, as follows:


Once installed, the oraparam.ini file is located in the /oui directory.

Modes of Installation

You can use Oracle Universal Installer to install Oracle products in any of the three following modes:

  • Interactive: Use OUI's interactive mode to use the graphical user interface to walk through the installation, providing information in the installation dialogs when prompted. This method is most useful when installing a small number of products in different setups on a small number of machines.

  • Suppressed: Use OUI's suppressed mode to supply the necessary information by using a combination of a response file or command line entries with certain interactive dialogs. You can choose which dialogs to suppress by supplying the information at the command line when you invoke OUI. This method is most useful when an installation has a common set of parameters that can be captured in a response file, in addition to custom information that must be input by hand.

  • Silent: Use OUI's silent installation mode to bypass the graphical user interface and supply the necessary information in a response file. This method is most useful when installing the same product multiple times on multiple machines. By using a response file, you can automate the installation of a product for which you know the installation parameters.

    See Also:

    Refer to Chapter 4, " Customizing and Creating Response Files" for detailed information on using response files and installing in silent mode.

Installation Media

For each of these three installation modes, you can install from three different media:

Refer to the following sections to learn more about these different installation approaches.

Installing from a Single CD-ROM

While installing Oracle products contained on a single CD-ROM, start OUI by running the executable file, setup.exe or, located in:


Where <platform> represents Win32, Win64, Solaris, Linux, etc.

For UNIX systems, run the script by typing ./runInstaller at the command line.


OUI for win64 works the same as OUI for win32. However, the startup directory on the CD is "win64" instead of "win32." Launching OUI from the win32 directory launches OUI in 32-bit mode, used for installing 32-bit software. Use win64 for installing 64-bit software.

When you install both 32-bit and 64-bit OUI on a 64-bit machine, two different inventories will be created and maintained. However, you cannot install 64-bit software in a 32-bit home, and vice versa.

Installing from Multiple CD-ROMs

If you are creating a multiple-CD install on UNIX, you may need to launch runInstaller in the background using the following command:

./runInstaller &

By launching runInstaller in the background, you can change your current directory after you launch OUI, allowing you to eject the CD. (It may also help to launch runInstaller as a foreground process from a different directory.)

You may want to create a shell script that launches OUI in the background and then exits. If you choose to create a shell script, remember to also pass all parameters that passed to the shell script to runInstaller in the event that you wish to install silently using a response file.

TEMP/TMP Directory

In both UNIX and Windows installations, temporary copies of OUI and JRE are placed in the TEMP or TMP directory in a subdirectory named /OraInstall<timestamp> so that these applications can be launched when you change CD-ROMs. Note that temporary files are created for single-CD installations as well.


In both UNIX and Windows, OUI looks for %TEMP% then %TMP%. If neither is set, OUI will default to /tmp on UNIX and c:\temp on Windows.

Unmounting a CD

On UNIX, If you are having trouble installing a product from multiple CD-ROMs, try using the following procedure to unmount the first CD-ROM and mount the second CD-ROM. If you still have problems, refer to the documentation links at the end of this topic.

In most cases, the following procedure will help with any problems you experience while switching to a second CD-ROM while installing Oracle software. If you inadvertently run the installer while the current working directory is in the CD-ROM, follow these steps to mount the next CD-ROM:

  1. Change to the root directory of your system and log in as the root user by using the following commands:

    $ cd /
    $ su root
  2. Unmount and remove the CD-ROM from the drive with the following command:

    # umount cdrom_mount_point_directory
  3. Insert and mount the next CD-ROM into the drive by using the following command:

    # mount options device_name cdrom_mount_point_directory
  4. Enter the correct mount point in the Installation dialog box.

  5. Click OK to continue.

If after attempting this procedure you are still having problems, refer to the section on installing from multiple CD-ROMs in the Oracle Database Installation Guide, which is available from the Oracle Technology Network:

Installing from the Web

With Oracle Universal Installer, you can install products from Web. You can publish your staging area from a Web server and then in the Universal Installer's Source location, specify the HTTP location for the products.xml file.

For example, you can enter:

The Oracle Universal Installer recognizes a Web staging area just like a local, network, or CD-ROM stage.

System administrators of large customers who may want to deploy Oracle software to more than one target can use a combination of the Web installation and response file features:

  1. Copy the staging area to a shared file system and make it accessible on the Intranet or a Web server.

  2. Include predetermined response files on the same location. (Different groups of users might rely on different response files.)

  3. Clients run Oracle Universal Installer locally and use the local response file that is emailed or downloaded so they can perform a silent install.

The Web installation capability relies on some guidelines that must be followed at installation development time. Check your installation guide for your product to see if the installation of your product is certified for Web installation.

To test if your stage is Web-enabled, you may try the following:

  1. Copy the stage to your Web server.

  2. Start the Oracle Universal Installer locally and point to the location of the products.xml file. For example:

Special Instructions for UNIX Users

The following sections describe special instructions that apply when you are installing certain products on a UNIX system.

Failed to Connect to Server Error

If you get an Xlib error or a "Failed to connect to Server" error when you are running OUI on the Solaris operating system, you need to define the following environment variables on the host computer where you are running OUI:

%setenv DISPLAY <machine name>:0.0

Replace <machine name> with the name of the computer that will display OUI.

On the computer that will display OUI, enter the following command. This command allows other computers to display information on the computer's monitor:

%xhost +

Re-run the runInstaller script after you have set the DISPLAY environment variable.


You can run OUI without specifying the DISPLAY by running in silent mode using a response file.

Providing a UNIX Installer Location with Root Privileges

Various installation operations on the UNIX platform must be performed with root privileges. For example, you must have root privileges to be able to create the OUI inventory.

If you are installing OUI for the first time, you will be prompted to run a shell script from another terminal window before proceeding with the installation. OUI will prompt the user to run once installation completes only if the script is required to be run as root before configuration assistants are run. Otherwise, users are prompted to run as root afterwards.


When running OUI in silent mode, if is required prior to configuration assistants, OUI will skip configuration assistants during the install. The user must run as root and then run the skipped configuration assistants after the silent installation is complete.

To successfully run the required shell script:

  1. Leave the OUI window open and open another terminal window.

  2. In the new terminal window, use the substitute user command to log in with root privileges:

    su -root
  3. Change directory to the Oracle home into which you are currently installing your Oracle software product.

  4. Run the shell script ./

  5. When the script is finished and you are returned to the command prompt, exit from the new terminal window and return to OUI to continue the installation.


    Do not exit the installation in order to run the shell script. Exiting the install removes this script.

    You are prompted to run the script only the first time you install.

Providing a UNIX Group Name

If you are installing a product on a UNIX system, the Installer will also prompt you to provide the name of the group that owns the base directory.

You must choose a UNIX group name which will have permissions to update, install, and deinstall Oracle software. Members of this group must have write permissions to the base directory chosen.

Only users who belong to this group are able to install or deinstall software on this machine.

Deinstalling Oracle Products

The following sections describe how to deinstall products installed using OUI. Specifically, this section describes:

Removing Oracle Products and Oracle Homes With OUI

A deinstallation can be performed before selecting products to install or after a successful installation.

To remove an Oracle product or Oracle home using interactive mode, perform the following steps:

  1. Start OUI from a CD-ROM or:

    • For Windows platforms, launch OUI from the Start menu by selecting Start, Installation Products, Oracle Universal Installer.

    • For UNIX platforms, at the command line, run the script called runInstaller from the directory where it is stored, which is by default at the same level as the first Oracle home created on that machine.

  2. Click Deinstall Products on the "Welcome" screen.

    The Inventory panel appears.

  3. Select the product(s) you want to remove from the Contents tab of the Inventory panel and click Remove. Oracle homes may also be removed in the same manner. Once an Oracle home has been removed, you can reuse its name and location to install other products.

  4. The Remove Confirmation Dialog appears, asking if you want to remove the products and their dependee components. Click Yes.

OUI warns you of any product dependencies that might cause problems if particular products are removed, and prompts you to confirm the de-installation.

Pay special attention to the full list of products being deinstalled before proceeding. OUI computes this list based on the dependencies of each component.


You can also remove products by using the Installed Products button on OUI as long as this action is performed before making your selection of products to install.

Deinstalling Top Level Products that Have Dependees

A top level component is the most important component of an installation. It is the installable product you see at the first install screen. You can only install one top level component per install session.

When you select a specific component for deinstallation, OUI analyzes the dependency information to determine if there are other components that should be deinstalled along with it. In general, if a component is selected for deinstall, the following components will be deinstalled with it:

  • All components that have a required dependency on the selected component.

  • Dependees of the selected component that have no other dependents. A dependee is a component on which the top level component (dependent) has a dependency.

Silent Deinstallation

Not only can you perform command line installations, as described in "Installing Using a Response File", you can also perform command line deinstallations. A command line deinstallation allows you to remove Oracle products or Oracle homes from your system without using the OUI graphical user interface.

You can choose to display no dialog boxes or prompts to the user, or you can selectively avoid displaying certain dialog boxes that are normally used during a deinstallation.

Immediately Displaying the Inventory Dialog Box

Use the following commands to immediately display the Inventory dialog box, which allows the user to select items for deinstallation without navigating the OUI startup screen:

setup.exe -deinstall (on Windows)
./runInstaller -deinstall (on UNIX)

Hiding the Inventory Dialog Box

If you would like to hide the inventory dialog box from the user during a deinstallation, you can specify the products to be deinstalled in the DEINSTALL_LIST parameter of the response file; specify Oracle homes to be removed with the REMOVE_HOMES variable. For more information about response files, see "Installing Using a Response File".

Refer to Chapter 4, " Customizing and Creating Response Files" for information about the DEINSTALL_LIST parameter.

As with other response file parameters, you can also specify the DEINSTALL_LIST parameter on the OUI command line. For example, on a UNIX machine, enter:

./runInstaller -deinstall DEINSTALL_LIST={"component1",""}

To remove Oracle homes from the inventory, use the REMOVE_HOMES variable.

For more information about specifying response file parameters, see "Setting Response File Variables From the Command Line".

Hiding the Deinstallation Confirmation and Progress Dialog Boxes

Use the following commands to hide the deinstallation confirmation and progress dialog boxes during a command line deinstallation:

On a Windows system:

setup.exe -deinstall session:SHOW_DEINSTALL_PROGRESS=false

On a UNIX system:

./runInstaller -deinstall session:SHOW_DEINSTALL_PROGRESS=false

Running OUI After Installation

The following sections describe the different ways that OUI can be used after installation. Specifically, this section describes:

Starting OUI

OUI is installed on your system during the installation of your Oracle products:

\Program Files\Oracle\oui (on Windows)
At the same level as <oraInventory> (on UNIX)

For all platforms, the executable file (setup.exe or is located in the following directory:


A new version of OUI replaces its older version.

OUI is placed under "Independent Products" in the Inventory panel as a "non-Oracle home" product.

To start OUI:

  • On Windows platforms, select Start, Programs, Oracle Installation Products, Oracle Universal Installer.

  • On UNIX, execute ./runInstaller from the directory where it is installed.

    For example: if the <oraInventory> is /u01/oracle/oraInventory, then, OUI will be at /u01/oracle/oui.

A script is also available, so that users can launch OUI directly from a different directory.

When OUI is first installed and run, it checks for the JRE path (the location from which it runs), using the location specified in the oraparam.ini file's JRE_LOCATION parameter. If OUI cannot find the JRE specified, an error is returned.

Command Line Arguments

Following is the output from the runInstaller -help command, which gives you the full list of command line options and their descriptions, as well as command line variables usage.

runInstaller [-options] [(<CommandLineVariable=Value>)*]

Where options include:
-help  Displays above usage.
-silent  For silent mode operations, the inputs can be a response file or a list of command line variable value pairs.
-responseFile <Path>  Specifies the response file and path to use.
-formCluster  To install the Oracle clusterware in order to form the cluster.
-remoteShell <Path>  Used only for cluster installs, specifies the path to the remote shell program on the local cluster node.
-remoteCopy <Path>  Used only for cluster installs, specifies the path to the remote copy program on the local cluster cluster.
-record -destinationFile <Path>  For record mode operation, information is recorded in the destination file path.
-deinstall  For deinstall operations.
-debug  For getting the debug information from OUI.
-ignoreSysPrereqs  For ignoring the results of the system pre-requisite checks.
-executeSysPrereqs  Execute system pre-requisite checks and exit.
-paramFile  Specify location of oraparam.ini file to be used by OUI.
-clone  For making an Oracle Home copy match its current environment.
-force  Allowing silent mode installation into a non-empty directory.
-noconsole  For suppressing display of messages to console. Console is not allocated.
-addNode  For adding node(s) to the installation.
-removeHome  For removing homes from the OUI inventory.

Command Line Variables Usage
Command line variables are specified using <name=value>; for example:
[ session: | compName: | compName:version: ]variableName="valueOfVariable"]

Session/Installer variables are specified using:
Ex 1: session:ORACLE_HOME_NAME="OraHome"
The lookup order is session:varName then just varName).
The session prefix is used to avoid ambiguity.

Component variables are specified using:
Ex 1: oracle.comp1:1.0.1:varName="VarValue"
Ex 2: oracle.comp1:varName="VarValue"
Ex 2: oracle.comp1:varName="VarValue"
The lookup order is compInternalName:Version:varName, then compInternalName:varName, then just varName.

Using OUI Exit Codes

If you are starting and stopping OUI programmatically (for example, by invoking OUI using a response file), you may need to consider the exit codes generated by OUI and perform a particular action depending on the code OUI returns.

OUI returns one of the following exit codes:

Code Description
0 All installations were successful.
1 All installations were successful but some optional configuration tools failed.
-1 At least one installation failed.

Note that:

  • This feature will not work if OUI is running in "bootstrap" mode. In this case setup.exe/runInstaller will just launch the JRE process and return immediately without waiting for the exit code. OUI will be running in "bootstrap" mode if the following line exists in the file oraparam.ini file:

  • If you exit without installing any products (for example if you exit from the "Welcome" screen), the exit code will be -1.

Cloning Considerations

You can copy an existing Oracle home, then configure it for its new environment. This process is called "cloning."


Patching and deinstallation on a cloned Oracle home act the same as a regularly installed Oracle home. You may directly patch a cloned installation.

Invoke OUI in clone mode using the following command:

./runInstaller -clone ORACLE_HOME="<target location>" ORACLE_HOME_NAME="<unique name on node>" [-responseFile <full path>]

Use setup.exe instead of runInstaller for Windows machines. The -responseFile parameter is optional. Clone-time parameters may be supplied on the command line or via the response file named on the command line.

Clone-time activity is logged in the cloneActions<timestamp>.log file at install time


Because most cloning is done in silent mode, when cloning an Oracle home onto a "clean" machine (one that has no oraInst.loc file), OUI creates a central inventory in the location specified by the INVENTORY_LOCATION variable. If this variable is not specified, OUI creates the central inventory in the <cloned_home>/ oraInventory directory.

After cloning is finished, you must run as root to move oraInventory to the final, desired location.

About OUI Log Files

When you install or deinstall products using OUI, important information about each install is saved not only in the inventory, but also in a series of log files, located in the following directory:


These log files can be used to troubleshoot installation problems. These files are also crucial for deinstalling and configuring the various software components you install on your Windows or UNIX computer. OUI displays the name and location of the current session's log file on the Install page.

Note that the logs used to deinstall products are different from the installActions<timestamp>.log generated during the install process. The installActions<timestamp>.log is easier to read and can be used to view the operations performed at install time.

For more information about the log files generated by OUI, refer to the online help. For more information about using the online help, see "Getting Help While Installing Oracle Products".