As Published In
Oracle Magazine
March/April 2009

AT ORACLE: Oracle News Briefs

New Oracle Configuration Management Pack Unveiled

The latest release of Oracle Configuration Management Pack, included in Oracle Enterprise Manager, offers a new configuration change console that delivers comprehensive, continuous, real-time detection, validation, and reporting of authorized and unauthorized configuration changes across Oracle and non-Oracle environments. This new feature enables customers to monitor changes in their IT environments more efficiently while reducing costs, improving service levels, and meeting compliance objectives.

Key capabilities of the new Oracle Configuration Management Pack include out-of-the-box configuration compliance policies and frameworks and discovery and asset tracking. In addition, the management pack provides analytics and reporting for a consolidated view of all changes, and it integrates with popular change management systems such as BMC Remedy IT Service Management, so that customers can leverage their existing investments.

“Oracle continues to deliver on its commitment to top-down application management with the latest release of the Oracle Configuration Management Pack. Customers can now leverage the additional rich features, such as those provided with the new configuration change console, to help them simplify day-to-day IT management activities, ensure systems are compliant, and reduce their overall costs,” says Richard Sarwal, senior vice president of product development, Oracle.

Oracle Application Express 3.2 Available for Download

The latest version of Oracle’s rapid Web application development tool for Oracle Database, Oracle Application Express 3.2, features Oracle Forms conversion and new declarative application security features. Oracle Forms conversion enables users to load their Oracle Forms source into an Oracle Application Express project and generate an initial design for a versatile, Web-based application. Loading Oracle Forms definitions into the Oracle Application Express project also assists in the analyzing and tracking of the entire conversion.

“Conversion is never simple, but with Oracle Application Express 3.2, the conversion to native HTML is simplified and structured,” says Mike Hichwa, software development vice president, Oracle. “We see converting from Oracle Forms as a project where only some of the existing functionality can be automatically generated. Therefore, we added tracking capabilities to assist with project management. Our other major goal was to make it easier for developers to improve the security of their applications, and our new features help developers follow Oracle’s security best practices.”

Oracle Site Hub Introduced

Oracle has released Oracle Site Hub, a new Oracle master data management solution focused on site and location mastering. Oracle Site Hub helps organizations enhance operational efficiency and improve decision-making by providing a hub for mastering, consolidating, cleansing, governing, and sharing site-specific information throughout the entire lifecycle of an organizational location.

Highlights of the new solution include an unlimited number of predefined and user-defined attributes, a mapping feature that enables organizations to map and view their sites in Google Maps, and out-of-the-box Web services that enable Oracle Site Hub to seamlessly manage integration and share geographic site data across organizations. To allow organizations to create a single view of their site-specific inventory, assets, and property lease information, Oracle Site Hub comes preintegrated with Oracle Property Manager, Oracle Enterprise Asset Management, and Oracle Inventory.

Oracle Site Hub can benefit organizations across several vertical markets, including retail, public sector, and financial services. For example, retailers can use Oracle Site Hub to effectively manage real-estate portfolios with a consolidated view of their stores, franchises, competitors, and prospective stores. In the public sector, postal departments worldwide can use Oracle Site Hub to build data hubs of delivery addresses, optimize routes, and centralize information repositories. And in financial services, retail banks can use Oracle Site Hub to manage branches by creating a single source of data for site-specific attributes of their bank branches, ATMs, and competitors’ branches.

“The release of Oracle Site Hub demonstrates our dedication to delivering innovative new solutions in master data management,” says Pascal Laik, vice president, master data management strategy at Oracle. “As the leading master data management software provider, we plan to continue to provide comprehensive and integrated solutions that enable our customers to better manage and leverage their data assets across their organizations.”

Did You Know?

Energy Costs Drive Green IT

Energy costs are the most pressing factor driving green IT adoption, with 71 percent of more than 1,500 IT decision-makers in 10 industrial countries labeling energy cost saving as their highest green priority. Of respondents in the U.S., 77 percent cited energy savings as their highest green priority. Nearly 66 percent of global respondents said their companies are moving from printed to online documents.
Source: Green IT: Global Research Shows Consistent Concerns and Key Local Differences , a study from IDC

Most Companies Plan Data Center Transformation

84 percent of technology organizations worldwide plan to implement a data center transformation project in 2009. Top planned projects include consolidation (95 percent), business continuity (93 percent), and virtualization (91 percent). Reducing operational costs was the top driver (31 percent of respondents), followed closely by enhancing security (29 percent). The survey included responses from 600 technology decision-makers.
Source: HP Data Center Transformation: Key Implementation Drivers , a study from HP

Data, Data, Everywhere—but Not Always Encrypted

96 percent of databases export sensitive data to other systems, including backups, file servers, and application log files, according to a survey of 260 IT professionals. Customer information is the type of data most often encrypted in databases (58.5 percent of respondents), but only 17 percent of companies encrypt trade secrets. Nearly 80 percent of survey respondents prefer to get database encryption solutions from their database vendor.
Source: Database Security and Encryption , a report from Unisphere Research

Oracle’s Siebel Customer Relationship Management 8.1.1 Unveiled

The latest version of Oracle’s Siebel Customer Relationship Management (CRM) provides across-the-board updates, including industry-specific solutions for self-service and enhanced customer loyalty management features. Designed to help organizations retain and grow customer relationships, Siebel CRM 8.1.1 enables a personalized and consistent service experience.

Siebel CRM 8.1.1 now provides industry-specific customer self-service for communications and the public sector, as well as enhanced use of multichannel applications with Siebel Chat and a deeper search capability.

Siebel CRM 8.1.1 highlights include updates to Siebel Loyalty, Siebel Marketing Server, and Siebel Sales components. Siebel Loyalty now supports the entire customer loyalty program lifecycle by providing membership enrollment and management, including loyalty points accrual and redemption, member services, partner management, and promotion management.

Siebel Marketing Server now includes a closed-loop solution that provides all members of the marketing organization with actionable insight by automating processes across the marketing function, from strategy and planning to multichannel response and lead management execution.

Siebel Sales offers an enhanced user interface for a more-intuitive, easier user experience. Sales forecasting capabilities have been extended to give sales teams the flexibility to manage and share forecasting in cross-functional teams and to perform ad hoc adjustments that help improve sales quota attainment.

“Siebel CRM 8.1.1 helps organizations tackle hard problems while reducing the cost to serve and cultivate loyal customers,” says Anthony Lye, senior vice president of CRM, Oracle. “Once again, we’ve redefined what CRM means by extending how we support multichannel sales and service, while providing a complete and powerful customer loyalty solution. By basing our latest Web channel applications on Oracle Fusion Middleware, we’re enabling customers to deploy Siebel CRM applications alongside other applications more easily and with improved total cost of ownership.”

Oracle User Productivity Kit 3.5 and Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional 6.1 Available

Oracle has released Oracle User Productivity Kit 3.5 and Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional 6.1. These end-user training and implementation solutions are designed to accelerate user adoption, ensure the success of enterprise applications, and increase organizational productivity.

Oracle User Productivity Kit 3.5 features a new “print it” mode that enables users to automatically print job aids or systems process documents for just-in-time support. Other new features include customizable document output, which allows organizations to customize their printed documentation, and automatic context capture in Microsoft Internet Explorer-based applications, which provides context sensitivity for generic content and the ability to launch context-sensitive help to reduce content creation time as well as ongoing performance support costs. 

Web Locator

 Oracle Configuration Management Pack
Oracle Application Express
Oracle Site Hub
Oracle’s Siebel CRM
Oracle User Productivity Kit
Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional
Oracle’s Technical Contributions to Linux
My Oracle Support

Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional 6.1 includes Oracle User Productivity Kit and knowledge pathways designer, manager, and player modules. This comprehensive content authoring platform and knowledge portal can be used to create and store assets as well as provide learning paths for users throughout the project lifecycle.

“Oracle User Productivity Kit and Oracle User Productivity Kit Professional are critical components for end-user adoption,” says Sonny Singh, senior vice president, industries business unit, Oracle. “These tools provide customers with the ability to rapidly create the documentation, simulations, and performance support they need for a successful application rollout.”

Oracle Contributes Data Integrity Code to the Linux Community

Oracle’s latest contribution to the Linux kernel is data integrity protection code that helps to ensure that comprehensive data integrity is maintained as data moves from application to database, and from Linux operating system to disk storage. The new code enables the Linux operating system to provide additional checkpoints and helps eliminate silent data corruption by reducing the potential for incorrect data to be written to the disk, decreasing application and database errors and system downtime. The code includes support for data integrity at the block and file systems layers, as well as support for the T10 Protection Information Model.

Developed in part with Emulex, the new data integrity protection code is based on existing storage standards and allows key data protection information to be utilized by the Linux kernel for the first time.

“For more than a decade, Oracle has been an integral member of the Linux community,” says Linux 2.6 kernel maintainer Andrew Morton. “This latest work with Emulex to bring enterprise-class data integrity capabilities to Linux is another example of Oracle’s ongoing contributions to better Linux for all users.”

Oracle Support Community Goes Live

Oracle has launched the My Oracle Support community, a real-time collaboration and knowledge exchange platform that leverages Web 2.0 technology. The community, available to Oracle support customers, is a platform where Oracle customers, partners, and employees can share Oracle product information, executive updates, news, events, and information of interest.

The community features a rewards and recognition program that acknowledges community members for their value-added participation, collaboration, and knowledge sharing.

“My Oracle Support transforms the customer experience by tapping into the power of Web 2.0,” says Juergen Rottler, executive vice president, global customer services, Oracle. “Offering real-time access to the latest product and support information, ideas, and best practices, My Oracle Support draws upon the collective knowledge of the Oracle community to help customers maximize the value of their Oracle solutions and achieve success.”

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