In-Place Upgrading of OBIEE to

May 13, 2011 Oracle BI Suite EE

If you read my roundup of the new features in OBIEE the other day, you may have noticed my comment about upgrades being “out of place”; this is where you install the new version of a product in a new Middleware Home, and migrate all the metadata from the old installation to the new one. This has the virtue of simplicity, but if your current installation is heavily customized and you’ve got lots of analyses, LDAP users and so on, you might prefer to upgrade your current installation “in-place”.

Because of the move to integrate OBIEE closer into Oracle Fusion Middleware, the in-place upgrade process is actually a bit complex, and in Fusion Middleware terms is referred to as “Applying the Latest Oracle Fusion Middleware Patchset”. To do such an in-place upgrade, you need to perform the following tasks.

Warning : Make sure you back-up your existing system before attempting an upgrade such as this. Read through the“Applying the Latest Oracle Fusion Middleware Patchset” documentation from Oracle and make sure that your system does not require any additional steps, or different steps. If you spot any issues or missed steps from this guide, add them to the comments and I’ll factor them in. It also makes the following assumptions:

  • You are running 32-bit Windows version of OBIEE and WebLogic Server 10.3.3.
  • You have installed OBIEE 11g at c:\oracle\middleware
  • You have a single node install, with no vertical or horizontal scale-out

With that in mind, at a high-level, the steps to perform the in-place upgrade are:

  1. Upgrade Oracle WebLogic Server from 10.3.3 to 10.3.5
  2. Run the installer against the current Middleware Home, and use the Software-Only Install option
  3. Run the Patchset Assistant to upgrade the BIPLATFORM and MDS schemas
  4. Run some WebLogic and Fusion Middleware post-patching tasks
  5. Run some OBIEE-specific post-upgrade tasks

Before you start, you’ll need two pieces of software; firstly, the WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer (wls1035_upgrade_win32.exe, for Windows 32-bit), which you have to obtain from Metalink using patch no. 12395560, again for Windows 32-bit. Secondly, you’ll need the full OBIEE installer, which you can download directly from OTN. Then, follow these steps:

1. Pre-Patching Steps

Shut down any existing WebLogic, OPMN and OBIEE processes, including any Windows processes that you might see running in Task Manager (taskmgr.exe). This inclused beasvc.exe which normally stays running even after you’ve shut down the WebLogic administration and managed services.

Now take a backup of the Middleware Home directory and all it’s subdirectories, and the BIPLATFORM and MDS schemas.

2. Upgrade WebLogic Server to 10.3.5

Now, with the WebLogic Server Upgrade Installer that you downloaded from metalink, run the installer and point it to the existing WebLogic Server installation, like this:

Press Next at all the prompts, accept all the default and let the installer upgrade WebLogic Server for you.

3. Whilst the Upgrade Installer upgrades WebLogic for you and also copies an updated version of JRockit JVM to your installation, the WebLogic domain isn’t configured to use it yet. To enable this, using a text editor, locate the file C:\oracle\Middleware\user_projects\domains\bifoundation_domain\bin\setDomainEnv.cmd and change the references to the old JRockit directory to the new one; for example:

Where C:\oracle\Middleware\jrockit_160_24_D1.1.2-4 is the location of the updated JRockit JVM.

3. Perform a Software-Only Install of OBIEE

Next, start up the OBIEE Universal Installer, and when prompted, select Software-Only Install as the install option, like this:

At the next prompt, select the existing Middleware Home for your OBIEE installation, and then accept the defaults for the remainder of the prompts. The Universal Installer will then upgrade your OBIEE 11g software for you, to version

4. Upgrading the BIPLATFORM and MDS Schemas

Now you need to upgrade the two schemas that OBIEE 11g uses. To do this, you use the Patchset Assistant, using the following commands (replace the middleware home location, and localhost:1521:orcl, with appropriate details for your environment)

5. Upgrade Your System Components

The system components (Oracle BI Server, Oracle BI Presentation Server etc) within your instance now need to be de-registered, and then re-registered, with your WebLogic domain. To do this, use these commands (again, adjust for your environment, including the “weblogic” username at the end of the last command).

6. Upgrade Fusion Middleware Shared Libraries, and Security Elements

Next you have to perform some maintenance work using WLST, the WebLogic Scripting Tool. Start by shutting down the WebLogic Server administration server, and then follow the rest of these steps. [Note : an earlier version of this posting had the wrong paths for the CD command before the WLST call and some missing commands – apologies for this, the correct paths and commands are highlighted in bold below]

7. Upgrade the Oracle BI Presentation Server Catalog

The final step is to upgrade the Web Catalog. To do this, ensure that the Presentation Server is shut down, edit the instanceconfig.xml file to enable the catalog upgrade, and then restart the Presentation Server.

Now use a text editor to open the fileC:\oracle\Middleware\instances\instance1\config\coreapplication_obips1\instanceconfig.xml, and change the reference:


Now start the Presentation Server component, and once done, change the entry back to the original “false” value and stop the Presentation Server again.

8. Reboot, and Check your System

Once you’ve completed all these steps, reboot your server and then restart all the OBIEE components. You should then be able to start Enterprise Manager from your Web browser, and check that you’re now running version of OBIEE.

So, it’s definitely possible to upgrade OBIEE 11g in-place, but there’s quite a few fiddly steps. You might still want to consider a full, new installation of OBIEE and then manually migrate your metadata and settings over, but if you want to upgrade to over your existing installation, this should help you get started.