About Oracle Application Express Architecture

Oracle Application Express installs with your Oracle database and is comprised of data in tables and PL/SQL code.

Whether you are running the Oracle Application Express development environment or an application you built using Oracle Application Express, the process is the same. Your browser sends a URL request that is translated into the appropriate Oracle Application Express PL/SQL call. After the database processes the PL/SQL, the results are relayed back to your browser as HTML. This cycle happens each time you either request or submit a page.

The application session state is managed in the database tables within Application Express. It does not use a dedicated database connection. Instead, each request is made through a new database session, consuming minimal CPU resources.

About Oracle HTTP Server (Apache) and the Embedded PL/SQL Gateway

The version of Oracle Database you use determines how the URL is translated:

  • With Oracle Database 11.1 or later or Oracle Database 10g Express Edition, you can remove Oracle HTTP Server and mod_plsql from the architecture and replace it with the embedded PL/SQL gateway. The following graphic illustrates the two-tier architecture using the embedded PL/SQL gateway.

    Description of arch_epg.gif follows
    Description of the illustration arch_epg.gif

The embedded PL/SQL gateway provides the Oracle database with a Web server and also the necessary infrastructure to create dynamic applications. The embedded PL/SQL gateway runs in the XML DB HTTP server in the Oracle database and includes the core features of mod_plsql, but does not require the Oracle HTTP Server powered by Apache. Inclusion of the embedded PL/SQL gateway simplifies the architecture and eliminates the middle tier entirely.

About the Application Express Engine

The Application Express engine renders and processes pages. It also performs these tasks:

  • session state management

  • authentication services

  • authorization services

  • page flow control

  • validations processing

Different Oracle Application Express Environments

When you install Oracle Application Express, you can install two different environments:

  • A runtime environment is the appropriate choice for production implementations in which users can run applications that cannot be modified.

  • A full development environment provides complete access to the Application Builder environment to develop applications as described in this document.