Converting Oracle Mod_Plsql to the Embedded PL/SQL Gateway (DBMS_EPG

A HunBug Document

Database Version: Oracle Last Updated: Sep 07 Author: HunBug

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When we were upgrading a database from Oracle 9i Release 2 to Oracle 10g Release 2, we made a decision to use the new DBMS_EPG instead of mod_plsql, so that we could keep the gateway details inside the database and not have to install additional components to get mod_plsql to work. This article walks through the steps to create the gateway using DBMS_EPG on Standard Edition. Please be aware that one of the first things we found is that DBMS_EPG is not supported until, as it has bugs! So if you're on a earlier version you'll have to upgrade to get it to work. The DBMS_EPG package is new for 10g. Unlike mod_plsql where the DAD details are stored as part of the apache server, DBMS_EPG resides in the database and uses the tns listener for its connections. If you need to refer to your existing 9i DAD configuration settings, they can be found in the text file OH\Apache\modplsql\cfg\ The mod_plsql DAD we converted connected to an account that had restricted privileges, with only execute permissions to specific procedures owned by the main schema user. This allowed anybody to call the procedures with security being taken care of within the code, but that's a whole different story. This walkthrough uses the new anonymous user for database connection and does not cover specific secure connections. More about this later.

Check XDB is Installed and is Valid.
Before we get going we need to check that XDB is installed correctly. The XDB installation creates a user, also called XDB. To check all the objects for this user are valid

Setting up the Embedded PLSQL Gateway on the Database
First we need to add two parameters to the init.ora file, to configure the database to listen to the port for the DBMS_EPG requests.
dispatchers="(PROTOCOL=TCP)(SERVICE=<sid>XDB)" local_listener="(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=TCP)(HOST=<hostname>)(port=<port>))"

We then need to set the port number the requests will be recieved on. This is done from

within the database. The default port is 8080 but this can be changed and must be changed if the port is already in use by another service. So we need to run the following from sqlplus as sysdba.

If FTP is also being used, this can also be set up too. Its default port is 2100.

OK, now restart the database and listener, so the init.ora parameters take effect. Once they have both restarted you can check the listener is accepting requesting by looking at the status. By default the anonymous user account is locked, so we need to unlock it, otherwise we will get a logon prompt for the XDB account when we try to call a procedure, which we don't want. We now need to create a DAD and a test page to check it's all working.

Setting up a Database Access Descriptor
The following procedure sets up a DAD for our requirements.
DECLARE l_dad l_path l_dbUser l_docTable l_authMode l_attrNames l_attrValues BEGIN l_dbUser := UPPER(l_dbUser); BEGIN DBMS_EPG.DROP_DAD(l_dad); EXCEPTION WHEN OTHERS THEN NULL; END; DBMS_EPG.CREATE_DAD ( dad_name => l_dad, path => l_path ); DBMS_EPG.SET_DAD_ATTRIBUTE ( dad_name => l_dad, attr_name => 'database-username', attr_value => l_dbUser); DBMS_EPG.SET_DAD_ATTRIBUTE VARCHAR2(30) VARCHAR2(30) VARCHAR2(30) VARCHAR2(30) VARCHAR2(30) := := := := := '<DAD Name>'; '/<Path Name>/*'; '<Username (of restricted user)>'; '<owner>.<table name>'; 'Basic';


( dad_name => l_dad, attr_name => 'authentication-mode', attr_value => l_authMode); DBMS_EPG.SET_DAD_ATTRIBUTE ( dad_name => l_dad, attr_name => 'document-table-name', attr_value => l_docTable ); DBMS_EPG.AUTHORIZE_DAD ( dad_name => l_dad, user => l_dbUser ); DBMS_EPG.GET_ALL_DAD_ATTRIBUTES(l_dad,l_attrNames,l_attrValues); FOR i IN 1..l_attrNames.COUNT LOOP DBMS_OUTPUT.PUT_LINE(LPAD(l_attrNames(i),20)||' : '||l_attrValues(i)); END LOOP; END; /

A notable difference between mod_plsql and DBMS_EPG is that mod_plsql allowed a schema name parameter to be entered, when a new blank configuration is created. This allowed us to enter a default schema to prefix any procedures in the url. DBMS_EPG does not have a similar attribute, so you either have to create synonyms or add the username into the url instead. EG: http://myserver:8080/test/schemauser.procedurename.

Viewing the DAD settings
The following procedure will display the settings, mappings and authorizations for all of the DAD's.
DECLARE l_dadNames DBMS_EPG.VARCHAR2_TABLE; l_attrNames DBMS_EPG.VARCHAR2_TABLE; l_attrValues DBMS_EPG.VARCHAR2_TABLE; BEGIN DBMS_EPG.GET_DAD_LIST(l_dadNames); FOR d IN 1..l_dadNames.COUNT LOOP DBMS_OUTPUT.PUT_LINE(CHR(10)||l_dadNames(d)); DBMS_EPG.GET_ALL_DAD_ATTRIBUTES(l_dadNames(d),l_attrNames,l_attrValues); FOR a IN 1..l_attrValues.COUNT LOOP DBMS_OUTPUT.PUT_LINE('- ' ||RPAD(l_attrNames(a),25)||' : '||l_attrValues(a)); END LOOP; DBMS_EPG.GET_ALL_DAD_MAPPINGS(l_dadNames(d),l_attrValues); FOR a IN 1..l_attrValues.COUNT LOOP DBMS_OUTPUT.PUT_LINE('- '||RPAD('mapping',25)||' : '||l_attrValues(a)); END LOOP; FOR a IN ( SELECT username FROM dba_epg_dad_authorization WHERE dad_name = l_dadNames(d) ) LOOP DBMS_OUTPUT.PUT_LINE('- '||RPAD('authorized',25)||' : '||a.username); END LOOP; END LOOP; END; /

Use this procedure to check your settings.

You should now be able to call procedures using the Embedded PLSQL Gateway as you would have with mod_plsql.

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