Aug 2, 2013

APEXPosed Montréal 2013 - Early bird et Rabais

Ne manquez pas APEXPosed 2013 à Montréal les 10 et 11 septembre prochains.
http://www.odtug.com/apexposed

Il y aura plein de contenu intéressant et plusieurs présentateurs reconnus mondialement tel que  Steven Feuerstein , Scott Spendolini et Joel Kallman. Il y aura également un rassemblement d'Oracle ACE et ACE Director jamais vu à Montréal. C'est une occasion unique d'échanger et d'apprendre sur ce qui se fait de mieux avec APEX et sur ce qui s'en vient avec APEX 5.0

Il y aura également des présentations en français de compagnies locales tel que la Polytechnique de Montréal qui présentera un cas vécu d'une application d'importance développée avec APEX.

Les places sont limitées et le prix "Early Bird" se termine le 5 Aout 2013. Alors n'attendez plus !

Pour obtenir un rabais additionnel de 50$ utilisez le code "Insum"


Jul 3, 2013

KScope 13 ODTUG New Orleans

Once again, ODTUG KSCOPE13 in New Orleans was a success.

It's always a great pleasure to meet with all the APEX Experts from all over the world.

This year , Insum had a booth in the exhibition hall. It was a great place to get some people to learn about APEX. Yes, there are still some people that does not know APEX, or still think that it's only for small projects. Also, with our development center in Montreal, we have more and more customers from the US using our services. Kscope 13 was the perfect place for us to do additional networking and meet new people.

I also had the chance to participate in a face to face meeting with the APEX team and other APEX experts to discuss the proposed featured on the apex.oracle.com/vote web site. We discussed various topics and it was very interesting. One thing I can tell you is that if you would like to have a specific functionality or change in the next release, you should definitely go and add you request for a feature and vote for the ones you think are important. We really go through them all one by one and by order of number of votes. Your input is really valuable.

APEX 5.0 is not out yet, but some nice features are in the works. I saw Patrick Wolf's session and he showed some great new features in the development tool like static images with real URL's and Directories, and ZIP files upload and download. He also demonstrated syntax highlighting and auto complete in the PLSQL regions (SQL Workshop, Processes etc). A lot of great stuff is on it's way.

I also had the chance to see some nice new features for Mobile in Marc Sewtz's presentation with JQuery mobile 1.3 including panels "à la Facebook" and column selector.

And since 12c just came out, Jason Straub explained how APEX could be installed in the Container database (cdb) or in the Pluggable database (pdb). I will have to play with that to learn a bit more about it ...

Finally, New Orleans was great. The Mardi Gras party was also a lot of fun with  poker tables and fireworks over the Mississippi River. Can't wait for Ksope14 in Seattle.

If you could not attend Kscope in New Orleans for APEX, there will be an APEXPosed conference in Montreal again this year. It's a two day conference with lots of great contents on APEX. For more information go to : http://www.odtug.com/apexposed   (Use the code "INSUM" to get a 50$ rebate).






Aug 16, 2012

Rabais ! Conférence internationale APEX à Montréal



Pour la première fois à Montréal, plusieurs experts de la communauté Oracle APEX seront présent.

2 jours de formation pour 399$ ! C'est pas cher. Obtenez un rabais supplémentaire en lisant ce blogue jusqu'à la fin !  :)

Les 11 et 12 septembre prochain, ce sera l'occasion d'approfondir vos connaissances. Il y aura des sessions pour tous les niveaux et tous les gouts. Que ce soit pour débuter avec le produit et voir comment créer des applications ou que ce soit pour améliorer vos connaissances.

Il y aura des sessions sur divers sujets concernant APEX tel que : APEX 4.2, Le Cloud Oracle, Jquery, Plugins APEX, Dynamic Action, Mobilité, EBS et APEX, Génération de PDF etc etc. 

Cette conférence est organisée par le groupe d'usager ODTUG. Un groupe d'usager très actif auprès de la communauté APEX depuis plusieurs années. ODTUG tient à chaque année une conférence importante appelé KSCOPE ou plusieurs milliers de personnes s'y rassemblent. Les sessions qui seront données à Montréal sont un exemple de ce qui se fait lors de KSCOPE. Donc si vous avez manquez KSCOPE12 voici une excellente opportunité d'assister a ces sessions de haut niveau.

Les sessions sont données par des conférenciers qui participent activement à la communauté APEX. Soit par l'entreprise du forum APEX , en donnant des conférences en Europe et aux États-Unis, en partageant leurs connaissances via twitter ou des blogues ou encore en écrivant des livres.


Vous aurez donc la chance de discuter et réseauter avec les experts suivants :

  • John Scott , Oracle ACE Director, Auteur du livre PRO Oracle Application Express , Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express.
  • Scott Spendolini , Oracle ACE Director, Co-Auteur du livre Pro Oracle Application Express.
  • Martin D'Souza , Oracle ACE Director, Auteur des livres Oracle Application Express Plugins , Beginning Oracle Application Express 4 et Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express.
  • Raj Mattamal, Oracle ACE Director, Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express.
  • Dan McGhan , Oracle ACE,  Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express.
  • Patrick Cimolini, Auteur du livre Agile Oracle Application Express,  Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express et du livre Beginning Oracle Application Express 4.
  • Cameron Mahbubian

  • Francis Mignault, Oracle ACE, Co-Auteur du livre Expert Oracle Application Express.


Il y aura également 3 personnes importantes de l'équipe APEX de chez Oracle :
  • Joel Kallman, qui est l'un des créateur d'APEX et maintenant en charge de son développement, tiendras un Keynote concernant l'avenir d'APEX. Il vous sera possible de poser vos questions et proposer vos améliorations au produit. 
  • David Peake, qui s'occupe également de la promotion d'APEX, fera une présentation sur le Cloud Oracle ainsi que sur l'intégration d'APEX avec EBS. 
  • Kris Rice, qui développe le Listener d'APEX, sera en mesure de parler des prochaines versions du Listener. Il pourra également répondre à vos questions.

Pour plus de détails sur les présentateurs ainsi que l'adresse web de leur blogues ou twitter : voir sur le site www.odtugapextraining.com.

Sur le site web, vous trouverez aussi le détail sur l'agenda, le contenu des sessions et l'endroit ou à lieu la conférence et comment vous inscrire.

Il s'agit d'une occasion unique pour avoir accès à tous ces experts. C'est l'endroit idéal pour échanger, discuter, réseauter et trouver réponse à toutes vos questions. Jamais, lors d'une conférence APEX à Montréal, autant d'Oracle ACE ont été réunis. Ce sera également l'endroit pour échanger avec d'autres utilisateur APEX. Ne manquez pas votre chance !


Inscrivez-vous rapidement ! Profitez du "Early Bird" disponible jusqu'au lundi 20 Aout 2012. De plus , spécifiez le code "INSUM" et recevez un rabais additionnel de 50$.





Jan 24, 2012

Upgrading to APEX 4.1 on Oracle 10.2.0.3 - ORA-06502

I have been upgrading a lot (and I mean a lot) of APEX environments to 4.1 and never had any issues until ... well until I encontered the infamous error : "ORA-06502: PL/SQL: numeric or value error: associative array shape is not consistent with session parameters".

Upgrading APEX is very simple. You just have to run the apexins.sql script and voila.
So the question is , what to you do if this script fails.

Well, first of all, you have to take backups before any upgrades like any other database upgrades. Better safe than sorry. Full rman database backups are better, rebuilding from a full export is a bit more tricky.

There is also a java class that comes with APEX that allows you to schedule backups of your applications. APEXExport does an  export of your applications by workspace or for the full instance. You can run that java class in a script file. You will find it in the APEX zip  under utilities / oracle / apex .

Back to my original story :). I ran the apexins.sql script to upgrade from APEX 3.1 to APEX 4.1 and got the ORA-06502 error.

I searched on google to find out that this is a bug with 10.2.0.3 :
9930553 - FAILED INSTALLATION ON 10.2.0.3
Application Express 4.0 cannot be installed on Database version 10.2.0.3 on Linux and potentially other platforms as well. The installation will end with "ORA-06502: PL/SQL: numeric or value error: associative array shape is not consistent with session parameters".
Solution: Apply the patch for bug 5890966 (related bug) or apply the 10.2.0.3 Patch 6 on Windows Platforms (if on Windows Platforms) or apply the 10.2.0.4 database patch set or upgrade to 11gR1 or later.

I was upgrading a production environment and at this point my options were :
  1. restore database
  2. rollback to previous version of APEX
  3. apply the database patch and rerun the Upgrade
Option 1 was a last resort option. This would affect too many other systems, some not related to APEX. And it would take too much time.

Option 2, well, if you read the APEX documentation, it is usually easy to perform. (BTW I think that there is an error in the documentation , you probably have to run
exec flows_030100.wwv_flow_upgrade.switch_schemas
('APEX_040100','FLOWS_030100');
Instead of APEX_030200 ...) .

When you upgrade an APEX instance, it does not really upgrade. It creates a new schema called APEX_040100 (where 040100 is the version of APEX) and upgrades / copies the applications from the previous APEX schema. To rollback, you simply run a script that recreates APEX synonyms to point back to the previous version (wwv_flow_upgrade.switch_schemas). In that specific case, the procedure to switch back was a bit more complicated. Don't ask me why, it just is. And at the end, APEX would not be upgraded to 4.1 but back to 3.1.

Option 3, this really depended on the impact of the patch. Patching a production environment usually need some testing and planning. Fortunately, in our case, this patch was a minor patch. I contacted the DBA in charge and he agreed to apply it.

The question was:  If I re-run the apexins.sql script, will it know that the last valid install was APEX 3.1 and not the failed APEX 4.1 ? Can I just drop the APEX_040100 schema and re-run the apexins.sql script or do I have to rollback to the previous release before re-upgrading ?

The answer is : apexins.sql will check the latest version of APEX before upgrading. So you can drop the failed install schema (in this case APEX_040100) and re-run the upgrade without any worries.

I did just that and Bingo ! everything worked like a charm.

Lesson learned :
  • When you upgrade APEX, make sure that you have good backups. Even if the upgrade is a very simple process and almost never fails. Sometimes it can fail due to Database issues like bugs or tablespaces being full etc.
  • If the install/upgrade fails, you can drop the APEX schema and rerun the script.
  • Better run APEX on 10.2.0.4 and up  :)


Francis.




Oct 20, 2011

Time to Vote

It is now time to Vote for the ODTUG Board of Directors.


Two of my friends are running this year, Martin D'Souza and Monty Latiolais. They are both dedicated to their work and to the community. Please support them. Without their help, the Oracle APEX community would not be what it is.

So if you are an ODTUG member, do you duty and Vote now !

For Martin's profile and bio check his blog.

Oct 14, 2011

APEX à Montreal et Québec

Le 12 et 13 octobre 2011, j'ai participé à une journée APEX à Montréal et à Québec.

Ma présentation portait sur le multilinguisme dans APEX 4.1

Quelques nouvelles fonctionnalités ont été ajoutées  pour faciliter la traduction et la maintenance de cette dernière dans 4.1

Par exemple , il est maintenant facile de voir si nos applications de traductions nécessites une synchronisation suite à une modification de l'application principale.

Mais, je crois que l'ajout le plus important est la possibilité, maintenant, d'exporter et importer les traductions avec l'application principale.  Surtout que l'on peut importer dans un ID d'application différent (APP_ID) et qu'APEX gardera le "mapping" et même, utilisera de nouveaux "APP_ID" pour les applications traduites sans perdre le référentiel de traduction.

Par contre, lors de ma présentation à Québec, l'import dans une autre application ID ne fonctionnait pas.  J'ai alors contacté Oracle pour me rendre compte qu'il s'agissait en fait d'un bogue...

Pour s'assurer que l'import fonctionne correctement , il s'agit d'appliquer une patch disponible sur le support.oracle.com .  Cette patch est extrêmement simple à appliquer.  Il s'agit d'un seul script sql à exécuter.

Voici le détail du bug de traduction  :
12927540 - IMPORTED TRANSLATIONS HAVE AN INCORRECT MAPPING FROM ID
When importing an application export which includes translations, the ID values in the imported translation repository may not reflect the adjusted language mapping ID. Since the IDs are incorrect in the translation repository, the publish operation will not use the translated text from the translation repository.
Solution: There is a patchset exception for this available on metalink - search by bug number.

Il y également d'autres problèmes connus avec APEX 4.1, vous trouverez la liste ici

Donc lors de ma deuxième présentation à Montréal , j'ai pu démontrer l'import dans un ID différent et cette fois, tout fonctionne à merveille !


Voici  la présentation que j'ai donné lors de ces deux journées conférences.

Applications multilingues avec Oracle Application Express



Francis.














Apr 29, 2011

Expert Oracle Application Express Book

A new APEX book will soon be available. Another one. But this new book called "Expert Oracle Application Express" is also in memory of Scott Spadafore and Carl Backstrom.

Each chapters has been written by different people that knew Scott and Carl. Here is a list of the contributors :



I was honoured to be part of this project and I would like to thank John Scott for invinting me to participate. My chapter is about APEX Globalization. Let me tell you, writing this chapter made me realize that it takes a lot of work and efforts , and it was only one chapter, imagine a whole book ! This was a first for me. I now have a lot of respects for authors that writes technical books. Also, being French Canadian made it even harder, trying to write something that would be easy to read and well phrased. I don't know if I succeeded though (As you can see in my blog posts ;) ). Nevertheless ,  it was worth it and if at least it only contributes to help both families , than I will be very happy. Because all the royalties from the sales of the book will be split 50/50 between the two memorial funds.

For more details on the book , see John's blog post.



The book is already available on Amazon . Buy it, it's for a good cause.

Francis.

Jan 7, 2011

Press Release - Insum

MONTREAL POLYTECHNIQUE SCHOOL SELECTS INSUM SOLUTIONS TO DEVELOP THEIR INTERNSHIP AND JOB MANAGEMENT APPLICATION

Insum, Oracle Application Express specialists

MONTREAL, November 17th 2010 -Insum Solutions inc. is proud to announce that, following a public tender, École Polytechnique de Montreal has chosen them to develop their new application which will support the job and internship placement service.
“We are very pleased to share our expertise in internet transactional application development with the Polytechnique de Montreal IT team. Our Oracle database proficiency and more precisely our Oracle Application Express expertise will be a great contribution to this project” says Michel St-Amour, president of Insum Solutions.
The application will allow both employers and Polytechnique students to utilize a cutting edge technology tool that will facilitate training positions or permanent jobs allocations.

"Our decision to go with the APEX development tool as our primary technology is what led us to choose the most experienced company with this technology, Insum Solutions. The wide variety of projects developed by Insum and their expertise with Application express is what convinced us we made the correct choice "says Richard Labrie, IT Director at the Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal.


- - -



About École Polytechnique de Montréal
 Founded in 1873, Polytechnique Montréal is one of Canada’s leading engineering schools and the largest in Québec in terms of its student population and the scope of its research activities. With over 37,000 graduates, Polytechnique has formed nearly 30% of the current members of the Quebec Order of Engineer. The school provides programs for 14 engineering specialties, 230 professors and more than 6700 students. With a research budget of 70 million dollars, its annual operating budget totals more than $ 100 million.


About Insum Solutions
 Founded in 2002, Insum Solutions is a privately owned information technology firm based in Montreal. We provide consulting and custom application development services. Using reliable, safe, proven products, we allow both our partners and customers to get the most out of the many possibilities brought about by information technology. As specialists and leaders of the Application Express (APEX) tool, our Insum Solution team works exclusively on developing and implementing business solutions based on Oracle technologies.

 

Source :                                              
Michel St-Amour                                
President                                            
Insum Solutions inc.                            
Téléphone : 514 387-1670                 
Sans frais : 1.866.887.1670                

Informations :
Claude Lemaire
Business Development Representative
Insum Solutions inc.
Téléphone : 514 387-1670, poste 231
Sans frais : 1.866.887.1670

Communiqué de presse - Insum

L’ÉCOLE POLYTECHNIQUE DE MONTRÉAL SÉLECTIONNE
INSUM SOLUTIONS POUR LE DÉVELOPPEMENT DE LEUR
APPLICATION DE GESTION DES OFFRES DE STAGES ET D’EMPLOIS

Insum, spécialiste et chef de file de l'outil de développement Oracle Application Express

MONTRÉAL, le 17 novembre 2010 - Insum Solutions inc. est fière d’annoncer que, à la suite d’un appel d’offres public, l’École Polytechnique de Montréal a retenu ses services pour le développement d’une nouvelle application qui servira de support au service de placement dans le traitement des offres de stages et d’emplois.

«Nous sommes très heureux de pouvoir apporter notre expertise en développement d’applications transactionnelles accessibles sur l’internet à l’équipe TI de l’École Polytechnique. Notre très grande expertise avec la base de données Oracle et plus spécifiquement avec l’outil Oracle Application Express sera mise à grande contribution», mentionne Michel St-Amour, président chez Insum Solutions.
L’application développée permettra aux employeurs et aux étudiants de l’École Polytechnique de se doter d’un outil à la fine pointe de la technologie dont les automatismes pourront faciliter la dotation de postes de stagiaires ou d’emplois permanents.

«Notre décision de choisir l’outil de développement APEX comme technologie primaire de développement nous a amenés à choisir l’entreprise qui possède le plus d’expérience avec cette technologie. La très grande variété des projets développés par Insum ainsi que leur expertise avec l’outil APEX nous a convaincus de la justesse de notre choix», souligne Richard Labrie, directeur du service informatique de l’École Polytechnique de Montréal.

- - -
À propos de l’École Polytechnique de Montréal
Fondée en 1873, l'École Polytechnique de Montréal est l'un des plus importants établissements d'enseignement et de recherche en génie au Canada. Elle occupe le premier rang au Québec pour le nombre de ses étudiants et l'ampleur de ses activités de recherche. Avec plus de 37 000 diplômés, Polytechnique a formé près de 30 % des membres actuels de l'Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec. L'École donne son enseignement dans 14 spécialités du génie. Elle compte 230 professeurs et plus de 6 700 étudiants. À son budget annuel de fonctionnement qui s'élève à plus de 100 millions de dollars s'ajoute un budget de recherche de 70 millions de dollars.

À propos d’Insum Solutions
Fondée en 2002, Insum Solutions est une entreprise privée, basée à Montréal, offrant des services dans le domaine des technologies de l'information. Partenaire Oracle depuis le début de ses opérations, Insum Solutions offre des services professionnels reliés à son expertise en développement d'applications sur mesure, basées sur la base de données Oracle et plus spécifiquement sur l'outil de développement Oracle Application Express.

Source : 
Michel St-Amour
Président
Insum Solutions inc. 
Téléphone : 514 387-1670
Sans frais : 1.866.887.1670
mstamour@insum.ca
www.insum.ca

Informations :
Claude Lemaire
Représentante, développement des affaires
Insum Solutions inc.
Téléphone : 514 387-1670, poste 231
Sans frais : 1.866.887.1670
clemaire@insum.ca
www.insum.ca

Jul 8, 2010

My week at ODTUG Kaleidoscope 2010


During the week of June 27 2010, I went to ODTUG Kaleidoscope in Washington DC.

This conference is THE conference to be at if you want to meet with technical people and get involved in the Oracle community, and more especially with the APEX community.

It was a pleasure to meet everyone again.

On Sunday, I was part of the APEX track during the Symposium. The whole day was about building an APEX application from A to Z.

Here is what we did :

  • Data Model - John Scott
  • Application Development - Dimitri Gielis
  • Dynamic Actions/Plug-ins - Dan McGhan
  • Tuning - Doug Gault
  • User Interface - Scott Spendolini
  • Printing - Dietmar Aust
  • Security - Anton Nielsen
  • Globalization - Francis Mignault  (Me)

I think that the prensentations went pretty well. We had a nice crowd of about 250 people. I got only good comments. I hope that we we were able to demonstrate that you can easily create applications collectively and that APEX covers all the aspects of web development.

For the rest of the week I attended many session on Oracle Application Express.

As you probably already know, Oracle Application Expres 4.0 is now officially released. So the week was mostly about new features in APEX 4.0 

I even did my first APEX Plug-in (more on that in another blog post).

Here are some of the things that I learned :

  • You can integrate Jasper reports with APEX.More on Dietmar Blog.
  • To Design you applications and do the functional specifications with the user, you can use Balsamiq instead of building a real application. This way, the user will concentrate on his requirements and not on APEX functionalities.

  • Attending Jonathan Lewis presentation about How to write efficient SQL, I learned a new way of tuning a SQL. You basically draw the tables and analyse the data, the indexes, the volume and the relation between the tables. Very interesting. I kinda already do it that way but this was a well defined and documented approach.

  • I saw the APEX Websheets in a different angle during the keynote by Joel Kallman and Mike Hichwa . I now see it more as a collaborative tool (like a Wiki) than an Easy Apex application builder for super users.

  • Martin D'Souza showed a new way of doing VPN without having to install VPN by using views and using USER_CONTEXT.
  • Patrick Wolf talked about Plug-ins and Dynamic Actions. Those two new features of APEX 4 are really impressive. With Plug-ins you can now build new items and new regions and reuse them in all you applications and even share them with the community. Dynamic Actions, are built-in AJAX controls that you can easily use in your application and there is even advanced dynamic actions !

  • Dan McGhan did a presentation on javascript for PL/SQL Developers. This presentation was very good and explained very clearly how we can "Query" the content of an HTML page.

  • Jason Straub talked about Restful webservices in APEX 4.0 and did a demo using APEX accessing AMAZON S3. 
  • I also attended a presentation on FORMS to APEX conversion. At the end of the day, if you want to convert from Forms to APEX, there is no magic solution. APEX has a tool that help you with the migration process but there is a lot of manual work to convert a Client Server application to a web application. Luckily APEX 4.0 have a lot of new features that will make APEX applications closer to Forms Applications. For example new tabular forms with in-line validations , Plug-ins and Dynamic Actions.
And so many other presentations about security, tuning, plug-ins, Application Lifecycles, JQuery, Google Visualizations plug-ins etc...


Overall , it was a great week and a very well Organized conference. I did learned a lot and had the chance to meet with the APEX community. We even had our second ODTUG Kaleidoscope Texas Hold'em Tournament , Thanks to Ron and Rick. ;) Before leaving, I also had the chance to visit the Smithsonian Zoo that was at a walking distance from the Hotel and saw two great Pandas.


Francis.