Can’t start the docbase after installing new Oracle home

June 11, 2009 at 4:54 pm | Posted in Performance | Leave a comment
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This is a very windows specific solution however similar things could occur on *nix
This is a problem I ran into while investigating an oracle problem. I had a VMWare image that I used to run Oracle and Content Server. Content Server had always run fine on it whenever I switched the VM on. Then this morning it didn’t. Coincidentally I had just installed a new Oracle home (ie installation) to test out some issues to do with a particular Oracle patch version. Too much of a coincidence? Of course.

The problem actually arose when I subsequently tried to create a new docbase for an entirely different investigation. I started the docbase config program entered all the information until I got to the bit where it takes the database password and tests the database connection – FAILURE.

I did a couple of tests, first of all start up SQL Plus and try and connect to the database, in this case the database connect identifier is DB1:

SQL> connect system/@DB1
ORA-12154: TNS: could not resolve the connect identifier specified

OK so SQL Plus seems to have a similar problem to the Content Server config program. So What happens when you type connect …/…@DB1? Well assuming you are using the standard TNSNAMES name resolution it looks for the file tnsnames.ora in the %ORACLE_HOME%\network\admin folder and uses that to convert DB1 into a request to the TNSListener.

The problem was I hadn’t defined ORACLE_HOME – never needed to – so presumably it was using a default value that had now changed after the new oracle home installation.

So I set an explicit oracle home environment variable:

set ORACLE_HOME=d:\oracle\product\10.2.0\db_1

and that fixed SQL Plus. By opening up the control panel System app I set the environment variable for the dmadmin user so now the configuration program , and all the docbases could start.

Update: every Documentum on Oracle installation I have seen has used TNSNAMES, using something like Oracle Internet Directory (OID) is not a good idea according to support note esg97155.

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