1 Oracle Fusion Middleware Patching and Upgrade Overview

This book describes the tools available for you to patch your existing Oracle Fusion Middleware or upgrade your existing Oracle Application Server environment.

The following topics are covered:

1.1 Installation, Patching, and Upgrade Terminology

This section describes various terms that you should be familiar with before you continue.

1.1.1 Patching

Patching involves copying a small collection of files over an existing installation. A patch is normally associated with a particular version of an Oracle product and involves updating from one minor version of the product to a newer minor version of the same product (for example, from version to version

A patch set is a single patch that contains a collection of patches designed to be applied together.

1.1.2 Migration

Migration typically involves moving from a third-party (non-Oracle) product to an Oracle product.

It can also be used to refer to moving an existing set of software parameters (for example, an existing configuration or existing domain) from one release to another. For example, instructions for migrating your configuration from Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g Release 1 ( to 11g Release 1 ( are provided in Appendix C, "Using Patch Assistant to Migrate from 11g Release 1 ( to Release 1 (".

1.1.3 Upgrade

Upgrade involves moving from a previous major version to a new major version. For example, an upgrade would be required to move from Oracle Application Server 10g to Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g.

1.1.4 Installation

Installation is when new software is copied onto your system for use. After the new software is installed, you can patch it or upgrade it as necessary.

1.2 Patching and Upgrade Tools

Table 1-1 provides a brief summary of the patching and upgrade tools, and provides pointers to more detailed information.

Table 1-1 Summary of Patching, Migration, and Upgrade Tools

Tool Description More Information


OPatch is typically used to patch the software on your system by copying a small collection of files over your existing installation.

In Oracle Fusion Middleware, OPatch is used to patch an existing Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g installation.

Chapter 2, "Patching Oracle Fusion Middleware with Oracle OPatch"

WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer

WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer is used to update your existing Oracle WebLogic Server installation to the latest available version.

Oracle Fusion Middleware products require the presence of Oracle WebLogic Server and its directory structure on your system. When you update your Oracle Fusion Middleware software, you must also update the version of Oracle WebLogic Server on your system using the WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer.

The WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer is only available from My Oracle Support.

Oracle Fusion Middleware Upgrade Guide for Oracle WebLogic Server

Product Installer and Patch Set Installer

The Patch Set Installer is used to update your existing Fusion Middleware product to the latest version. At the time of publication, the latest version is 11g Release 1 ( and in this release, only Oracle Portal, Forms, Reports and Discoverer require updating with the Patch Set Installer. All other Oracle Fusion Middleware products in this release can be updated with their usual product installer.

NOTE: If you are upgrading from 11g Release 1 ( you must first follow the steps in Appendix C, "Using Patch Assistant to Migrate from 11g Release 1 ( to Release 1 (".

See Chapter 3, "Applying the Latest Oracle Fusion Middleware Patch Set" for instructions on how to use the Patch Set Installer for Oracle Portal, Forms, Reports and Discoverer.

See Section 3.5.1, "About the Installers Used for Patching" for more information about the types of installers available for patching.

Patch Set Assistant

Patch Set Assistant is used to update your database schemas to prepare them for use with the latest version of Oracle Fusion Middleware software.

This tool is used with Patch Set updates only and cannot be used for upgrades.

If you need to add or drop schemas, you should use the Repository Creation Utility (RCU).

Chapter 4, "Updating Your Schemas with Patch Set Assistant"

Upgrade Assistant

The Upgrade Assistant is used to upgrade schemas and configuration information from Oracle Application Server 10g to Oracle Fusion Middleware 11g.

Oracle Fusion Middleware Upgrade Planning Guide

1.3 About Database Patches for Oracle Fusion Middleware

This guide provides instructions for applying Oracle Fusion Middleware patches to your existing Oracle Fusion Middleware installations.

However, there are specific cases where you might be instructed to apply an Oracle Database patch to an existing Oracle Fusion Middleware Oracle home. This is because some Oracle Fusion Middleware products include specialized components, such as application programming interfaces (APIs), software libraries, and other software code developed for Oracle Database products.

In these specific cases, you might be referred to Oracle Database patching and installation documentation for more information.

Note that in most cases Oracle Fusion Middleware patches include all necessary software updates. You should apply Database patches only when specifically instructed or if you are experiencing a specific issue that can be resolved by the database patch.