Empirius Tech Blog

Experiences with Oracle 12c and SAP

As of 31-MAR-2015, Oracle Database 12c Release 1 ( has been officially (partially) released and certified for SAP and nearly from "day one" on, our customers are asking if our BlueCopySuite already supports the new Oracle release. After tests and validation, the answer is: yes, we do.

My blog today is about my experiences with the upgrade process from a SAP Administrator's point of view.

In the following lines, you will find some hints about what you need to pay attention to for a successful upgrade, which is currently the only way to get Oracle 12c.


Currently, this is a runtime certification only, so the following limitations apply:

  • Exististing SAP NetWeaver based systems on an Oracle Database can be upgraded to Oracle version
  • SAP installations and R3load based system copies of SAP NetWeaver based products directly with Oracle 12c are not yet possible.
    Workaround: SAP installation/copy with Oracle version 11g and subsequent Oracle 12c database upgrade.
  • SAP upgrades of SAP NetWeaver based products are currently not possible with an underlying Oracle 12c database.
  • SAP enhancement package updates of SAP NetWeaver based products are currently not possible.

Those SAP installation and upgrade/update related limitations are planned to be removed during May 2015.


To be able to have a system running on Oracle Database 12c, I had to make an upgrade which is an official workaround as you can see above.


Supported Source Releases

An upgrade directly to 12c is only supported from source release Oracle Database 10g Release 2 ( or Oracle Database 11g Release 2 (, or so if you have a source release different than mentioned ones you have to upgrade to one of those supported releases first. This blog is about sharing experiences of an upgrade from Oracle Database 11g Release 2 (


Oracle Software Owner 'oracle'

As of release 12c Oracle Software Owner is changing to user 'oracle' which will be used for installing and upgrading Oracle software for all types of SAP installations. Until release 12c user 'oracle' was the Oracle Software Owner as of release 11.2 for Oracle Grid Infrastructure, i.e. for Oracle RAC installations (released with and Oracle ASM installations (released with With Oracle Database 11g, Oracle Engineered Systems have also been certified for SAP (Oracle Exadata, Oracle Database Appliance, Oracle SuperCluster). On all these systems, Oracle Grid Infrastructure (GI) and Oracle Database (RDBMS) software are installed by OS user 'oracle'.


Starting with Oracle Database 12c Release 1 (, the software owner 'oracle' is not restricted any more to Oracle installations with Grid Infrastructure.

SAP installations with an Oracle single instance database on file system now use 'oracle' as software owner for their Oracle database homes as well.

Existing SAP installations have to migrate from software owner 'ora<dbsid>' to 'oracle' BEFORE the database can be upgraded.


Install the Oracle database softwareversion, including the recommended patches.


Kernel Release

You will also need a SAP Kernel Release >= 7.21 EXT (for SAP products based on SAP NetWeaver).


Oracle Instant Client

must be


BR*Tools 7.40

Full support for Oracle 12c with regard to functions to date plus support for the new features of Oracle 12c. The prerequisite for this is Patch 14 or above.


Secure Storage in the File System (SSFS)

... must be also configured, as OPS$ is no longer possible in 12c (was deprecated in 11g).


Time Zone File Patch 23


Oracle Database 12c Release ( comes with a Time Zone File with patch level 18 unlike Oracle Database 11g Release ( which comes with patch level 23. This causes a warning during DBUA checks and makes DBUA prevent you from upgrading your database. So update it before DBUA gets angry with you and throws red exceptions on your face. ;)

(This was a major problem during the upgrade process because SAP didn't provide required patch level until 28-APR-2015.)


Pre-Upgrade Scripts

Take care of the mentioned errors of the DBUA like underscore parameters, invalid objects etc.


Parameter Local_Listener

I nearly tend to say: As always, don't forget to reset local_listener (as we recommend to all our customers) so it won't be able to prevent you starting your database after the upgrade process.


Taking Backups

There is always a chance of messing up things so take backups and make sure that you will be able to restore it in case of emergency and your SAP system will work from where you left it.



If you have any questions or problems regarding an upgrade from any release, feel free to send me an e-mail:


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