First Thoughts After Installing 11.1.2.4

Hyperion / Oracle EPM 11.1.2.4 was accidentally published to Oracle’s website this week. Let’s call it a “preview release” until we see an official announcement from Oracle, as well as installation media out on Oracle eDelivery.

That being said, we just had to download and install it in one of our test labs!

Here are some initial thoughts after installing and configuring Foundation, Calculation Manager, EPM Architect, Planning, the Essbase suite, HFM, FDM Enterprise Edition, Financial Close, Tax, HPCM, DRM, and Reporting Framework / Financial Reporting.

  • No more DCOM and IIS configuration required for HFM. Yay!
  • No more DME Listener service for HFM.
  • DRM and EPMA’s Dimension Server still require a Windows server with IIS and ASP.Net.
  • ODI for FDMEE is still version 11.1.1.7 and is incorrectly packaged, so that the “startscen” utility is missing. This can be fixed by downloading and installing the full ODI package from Oracle’s main website (not eDelivery).
  • Overall, the look and feel of Workspace is the same if you go through the traditional Workspace URL.
  • The “interop” URL for the Shared Services Console still has the 11.1.2.3 functionality of redirecting you to Workspace.
  • Tax is now a separate application and it is deployed through SOA. Yuck.
  • Speaking of SOA, the 11.1.2.4 “preview release” media does not include SOA. It would appear that the required version of SOA is still 11.1.1.7, same as in EPM 11.1.2.3.
  • A 3rd component has been added to FCM. FCM now has FCM, ARM, and “Data Collection”.
  • EIS is no longer available, as widely expected.
  • 32-bit FDM Classic is no longer available, as widely expected.
  • Most back-end services are named the same as in 11.1.2.3, so service start/stop scripts will only need subtle modifications for HFM and Tax.
  • Windows registry keys for Java memory heap and other settings are the same as in 11.1.2.3. The default minimum Java heap is 128MB and the default maximum is 4GB.
  • The Essbase.cfg file still contains the flaw introduced in 11.1.2.3 whereby the MySQL driver’s description is missing an end quote, which causes the rest of the file to be treated as a comment. I have manually fixed this.
  • The EPM System Registry database is essentially the same and so AdvancedEPM’s custom EPM System Dashboard works flawlessly against 11.1.2.4 without needing any modifications.
  • The Oracle Middleware layer is still 11.1.1.7 and WebLogic 10.3.6, the same as with 11.1.2.3.
  • The JDK Oracle is using on the back-end is still 1.6.35, the same as with 11.1.2.3. This is the first Release in a long while where Oracle has not moved to a higher version of Java on the back-end, which surprised us.
  • Clicking Tools->Install->Smartview in Workspace now sends you to an Oracle website that has a button that lets you download the latest version of SmartView. This will be a problem for clients who have the Internet blocked. There’s a setting where the SmartView website URL can be customized.
  • The HFMCopyApplication utility was deliberately removed for some reason; HFM migrations can only be done through LCM now. This will cause upgrade projects from pre-11.1.1.4 releases to 11.1.2.4 to be more time-consuming, as additional intermediate upgrades will now be absolutely required. (This was Oracle’s official stance prior to 11.1.2.4, but we were able to work around it for some clients by using HFMCopyApplication).
  • Some new utilities have been introduced for Planning.
  • MaxL is still not available from the command prompt by default and therefore requires manual customizations to environment variables, should clients wish to invoke ESSMSH in scripts without using Oracle’s “StartMaxl” wrapper script.
  • The back-end directory structure remains consistent with the other 11.1.2.x releases.
  • Apache / OHS is not installed by default when installing Foundation, just as with 11.1.2.3. You need to completely expand Foundation in installTool in order to see the unchecked box for Apache / OHS.