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Technical Data Sheet

February 1999

Just as the Internet is changing the way companies use and access information, Oracle8i
changes the way information is managed. Oracle8i is designed specifically to support
the demanding requirements of Internet applications. From development to deployment,
Oracle8i offers unparalleled, revolutionary functionality to web-enable your business.

PRODUCT SUMMARY From single-server environments for small

businesses to highly distributed, branch
Oracle8i, the database for Internet
environments, Oracle8i includes all the
computing, changes the way information is
facilities necessary to build business-critical
managed and accessed to meet the demands
of the Internet age, while providing
significant new features for traditional In today’s fast-paced business climate,
applications. Using solutions developed and application developers must produce
deployed with Oracle8i, any organization advanced applications quickly to meet ever-
can exploit the unlimited opportunities the changing needs. Oracle8i introduces
Internet provides. Oracle8i provides additional support for Java™ — today’s most
advanced tools to manage all data found in popular and productive programming
today’s most popular web sites — and the language — with a robust, integrated, and
performance and scalability needed to scalable Java Virtual Machine (VM) within
support these sites and other applications. the server. This expands Oracle’s support
for Java into all tiers of applications,
Oracle8i delivers unprecedented ease-of-use,
allowing Java programs to be deployed
power, and price/performance for
where they perform best —in the client,
workgroup or department-level applications.
server, or middle tier — without
recompiling or modifying the Java code.
Oracle8i also includes Oracle® WebDB, a servers that are closer to users and have only
browser-based application development, the data those users need, providing better
deployment, and management toolset that performance.
makes it easy and inexpensive to web-enable
Finally, Oracle8i includes Oracle®
a business.
Enterprise Manager, the comprehensive
Oracle8i is much more than just a simple management framework for managing the
relational data store. Having invented the Oracle database and application
relational database, Oracle continues to lead environment. Oracle Enterprise Manager
and revolutionize the database industry by includes an easy-to-use centralized console,
introducing Oracle® iFS and Oracle® a rich set of management tools, and the
interMedia with Oracle8i. iFS, the Internet extensibility to detect and solve problems.
file system, combines the easy-to-use Oracle Enterprise Manager also includes
functionality of a file system with the several administrative applications for
advantages of all data in a single server — performing day-to-day tasks for databases
data integration with the cost savings of a and applications, such as scheduling backup
single server. Oracle8i also introduces routines.
interMedia, which allows businesses to
Based on the world’s leading database
manage and access multi-media data,
technology, Oracle8i is designed for
including image, text, audio/video, and
efficient application development, superior
spatial data.
content management, and successful
Deployment of applications is just as critical application deployment on the Internet.
as their functionality, with performance and
manageability the key to successful
implementation. Oracle8i provides many
alternatives to the client/server
implementation architecture. Oracle reduces
the complexity of application management
by providing an architecture that allows for
thin-clients that are easy to support and
maintain, and by consolidating data and
logic in a single or replicated server
environment. Data can be replicated to

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February 1999
APPLICATION DEVELOPMENT SQL can easily be embedded in client or
server Java code for communication with a
relational database. Client-side Java code
Java has quickly become today’s most with SQLJ statements are run through a Java
popular programming language because it pre-compiler to create executable Java
appeals to everyone, from developers who programs based on JDBC. Server-side Java
find the language robust and object-oriented, code directly accesses the database, via
to CIOs and managers who see Java as native interfaces.
reducing costs and simplifying application
Oracle8i also provides support for
development and support. Oracle8i extends
Enterprise JavaBeans™ and communication
Oracle’s Java strategy by integrating a
via the CORBA communication standard,
scalable Java VM with the database server.
IIOP. Distributed Java objects can connect
Oracle8i also supports SQLJ, a syntax for
directly to Java objects in an Oracle Data
embedding SQL in Java code. Java in the
Server via native CORBA protocols.
database allows developers to create high
performing, scalable applications based on JDeveloper™ is Oracle’s next generation
open, industry standards. component-based Java development
environment. JDeveloper allows developers
Oracle® JServer, Oracle’s Java VM, enables
to build complete Oracle and 100 percent
developers to write, store, and execute Java
Java business solutions. JDeveloper
code within the database. This means
supports any kind of development from a
developers can create stored procedures,
simple JavaBeans component to an
functions, or triggers in Java. A Java VM
enterprise-wide application development
within the database server also dramatically
reduces the skill set required for database
programming. As opposed to C, Oracle® Oracle8i also integrates closely with Oracle®
Call Interface, PL/SQL™, and other Application Server, which provides an open,
languages, developers can now create standards-based architecture for developing
applications using only Java. and deploying real-world business and
commerce applications. Oracle8i’s scalable,
SQLJ provides a powerful and easy to use
distributed architecture and superior
interface between relational databases and
database integration are the foundation for
Java. It is an open standard being developed
supporting business-critical, transaction-
by Oracle, IBM, and Sun. Using SQLJ,
based applications.

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Oracle8i includes the powerful, flexible,
Oracle WebDB is the solution for building, scalable application development features
deploying, and proactively monitoring web necessary to construct a new generation of
database applications and content-driven sophisticated applications at low cost.
Web sites. By combining an intuitive, Declarative functionality, such as
HTML interface with a complete set of constraints, ensure scalable, reliable
robust, browser-based HTML tools, Oracle enforcement of data integrity, while
WebDB enables users to easily and quickly minimizing development, maintenance, and
develop Web database applications. Oracle administration costs. PL/SQL, an advanced
WebDB is the fastest and easiest way to procedural 4GL language that is tightly
web-enable Oracle databases. integrated with the Oracle8i server, provides
Oracle WebDB comes with all the tools the power to easily express complex
necessary to build dynamic Web business rules as stored, procedural code in
applications and content-driven Web sites. the form of stored procedures or triggers.
Applications and Web sites developed using Java is also available as an open alternative
Oracle WebDB are completely contained to PL/SQL. Wherever PL/SQL can be
within the Oracle database. The only client programmed, so can Java. The Oracle8i
software needed to develop and deploy programmatic interfaces enable 3GL
Oracle WebDB applications is a Web programs to access and manipulate Oracle8i
browser. There is no need to install data and schemas.
software on every machine being used, no Oracle8i National Language Support (NLS)
need to use FTP to remotely manage files, ensures that error messages, sort order, date
and no need to have a complex deployment format, and other conventions automatically
plan every time a developer fixes a bug and adapt to the native language. Parameter
needs to upgrade the system. Oracle settings at the Oracle8i and operating system
WebDB truly meets the demanding levels determine the behavior of individual
challenges the Internet poses to the conventions
traditional IT shop — fast application
Oracle8i’s productive development features
development and simplified deployment.
improve application performance,
scalability, and security, to support hundreds
of applications and thousands of users.

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February 1999
CONTENT MANAGEMENT FOR intelligent text searches and queries of files
THE INTERNET and data stored in iFS.
The Web and the Internet bring many new From a developer’s standpoint, iFS is the
challenges to organizations. Today’s web single data store containing data for many
sites are usually a series of web pages that different applications. For the system
take too much time and too many human administrator, iFS also provides a single
resources to develop, deploy, and manage. system for file storage and messaging, rather
In addition, their infrastructure is usually not than several separate systems to maintain
stable or robust enough to support mission- and administer. In short, iFS is a simpler
critical applications. Everything companies way of storing different types of files in the
need to transform data into a powerful database.
application and content-driven web site
As part of Oracle8i, iFS provides universal
development environment is included with
access to any data in the database. While
Oracle8i. It essentially eliminates the
iFS runs within Oracle8i, it appears as if it
differences between the way in which
were simply another file system volume on
database stores data and the way web sites
the network. Any data or files in iFS can be
store files.
accessed using any of these
ORACLE iFS (INTERNET FILE SYSTEM) different protocols:
Oracle iFS combines the power of Oracle8i • SMB for Windows 95, 98 or NT clients.
with the ease of use of a file system. Users can drag files into and out of iFS, or
edit them directly within iFS.
Completely integrated with Oracle8i, the
Internet File System is a Java application • HTTP or FTP for Web browsers and
network computers. The contents of iFS
that runs on the Oracle8i Java VM. are displayed as normal web pages or
standard FTP directories.
From the end user’s standpoint, iFS appears
as if it were just another volume on the • SMTP, IMAP4, POP3 for using iFS like
an e-mail system through clients like
network. Whether the user accesses the Netscape Communicator, Eudora,
contents of iFS through Windows Explorer, Microsoft Outlook, and others.
a Web browser, an FTP client, or an e-mail
client, the files appear the same. Relational
data can appear as files; as well as hybrid
documents that combine relational and non-
relational data. This system also supports

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interMEDIA Microsoft® FrontPage.

Web applications require advanced data • Geometric locator services to support the
development of Internet applications that
management services that support the rich help users locate information, such as
data types used in Web repository, e- stores, distribution points, and events,
based on their location or distance from a
commerce, and other Internet applications. given address. interMedia locator
Oracle interMedia adds support that enables enables Oracle8i to perform location
queries, and supports the Internet’s
Oracle8i to manage multimedia content, leading online geocoding services,
both for Internet and traditional applications including Centrus from QMSoft® and
MapXtreme™ from MapInfo®.
that need access to image, audio, video, text,
and location information. interMedia ENABLING APPLICATIONS FOR
includes the following:

Oracle8i is the perfect choice for web based

• Oracle’s award-winning ConText® text
services to deliver the powerful text and traditional applications. To react
retrieval capabilities fundamental to Web
quickly to changing business needs and
applications. This lets users query and
analyze documents stored in archives, application requirements, Oracle8i delivers
online news feeds, customer call reports,
unprecedented ease-of-use, power, and
and other online text information sources.
Users can query for data in the most performance.
common formats, including HTML,
Acrobat/PDF formats.
Oracle8i is based on the same robust, proven
• Audio, video, and image services support
integrated management of audio, video, architecture of Oracle8i Enterprise Edition,
and image information within an Oracle8i which ensures excellent scalability to meet
database. These services enable access to
audio, video, and image data in dozens of the increased application workload
Internet formats from a variety of successful web sites generate.
sources, both within Oracle8i and from
external locations such as Web URL sites Oracle8i is also 100 percent compatible with
or specialized servers. interMedia
Oracle8i Enterprise Edition. Oracle8i
supports delivery of video through any
streaming server such as the Oracle® Enterprise Edition provides efficient,
Video Server, or RealNetworks
reliable, secure data management for high-
RealAudio™ and RealVideo™ Servers.
interMedia also supports drag and drop of end applications such as high volume on-
audio, video, and image data through the
line transaction processing (OLTP) and
interMedia clipboard into web
applications and web authoring tools such query-intensive data warehouse applications.
as Oracle WebDB, Symantec® Visual
When an Oracle8i application requires the
Page, and

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advanced features offered by Oracle8i EASY INSTALLATION
Enterprise Edition, it is a seamless upgrade.
Oracle8i includes many features that make
A customer’s investment in Oracle8i is safe
installation, configuration, and
even if application workloads change or
manageability of Oracle-based applications
requirements become more demanding.
very easy. Oracle Universal Installer and
To maintain excellent query performance, Oracle® Database Configuration Assistant
Oracle8i includes a sophisticated cost-based are Java-based applications used to install,
optimizer that dynamically selects the fastest pre-tune, and configure an Oracle8i database
available access path, and satisfies query environment. These applications detect
requests directly from indexes, whenever hardware characteristics and prompt for
possible. information, such as the number of

Oracle8i effectively supports mixed concurrent users of the database, so it can be

workload environments characterized by pre-tuned to perform optimally.

simultaneous query and update activity. EASY DATABASE MANAGEMENT

Many databases force users to choose
Oracle Enterprise Manager enables easy,
between good performance and guaranteed
graphical, point-and-click management of
data consistency, one coming at the expense
Oracle8i databases. Local management
of the other. Oracle8i’s non-blocking,
tools perform critical management tasks
multi-version read consistency always
quickly and easily, either standalone or in
provides users with consistent query results
conjunction with the central-management
while never imposing a performance penalty
console. Local management tasks include:
on concurrent update activity.
• Database startup and shutdown
• User creation and role/privilege
For applications to be successfully deployed, assignment
they must be easy to install, easily tuned for
• End-user, session monitoring
optimal performance, and simple to support
• Database backup and recovery
and manage.
• Tablespace creation and size management

• Data import and export

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February 1999
administrators to monitor and diagnose
Oracle Enterprise Manager provides a
problems, tune high impact indexes, and
single, integrated, management console for
track and compare changes in the Oracle
central administration of multiple, remote
workgroups, enabling the “lights out” type
management that is vital in large, distributed Oracle8i server-managed backup and
environments. Administrators see a recovery provides a high level of backup
customized, graphical representation of key and recovery functionality from within the
objects, including nodes, databases, Oracle8i server. Oracle8i maintains detailed
listeners, users, roles, and profiles that can information on when backups are
be grouped together based on any criteria. performed, exactly which parts of the
They can schedule and automate jobs and database are backed up, and where the files
events on specific objects or groups of are stored. Should a recovery become
objects, simplifying the performance of necessary, Oracle8i analyzes the state of the
management operations. database, and determines the operations
necessary to repair the database. Then,
Oracle Intelligent Agent, implemented in
Oracle8i automatically performs those
every Oracle8i server database, efficiently
operations, greatly simplifying the recovery
executes jobs and events sent by the Oracle
for the administrator, and reducing the
Enterprise Manager console. By
possibility of human error. A simple
instrumenting the database, Oracle
graphical user interface (GUI) within the
Intelligent Agent automates data collection
Oracle Enterprise Manager controls backup
and problem detection, and functions
and recovery.
regardless of the status of the console or
network connections, ensuring high database DATA DISTRIBUTION
Oracle8i delivers a new level of distributed
Oracle also offers the Oracle® Standard computing to users by providing replication
Management Pack which includes a and distributed query and transaction
comprehensive set of tools to perform functionality.
complex management tasks with point-and-
Distributed queries and updates allow data
click ease to reduce the time and cost of
sharing across multiple servers, and a
managing the Oracle environment. Oracle
transparent, two-phase commit ensures data
Standard Management Pack contains a set of
consistency. Data replication allows users
advanced applications allowing

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February 1999
to create multiple snapshots of full or partial connectivity with open deployment,
tables with guaranteed, transactional Oracle8i can operate in any environment
consistency and data integrity. Event-based regardless of existing corporate standards.
and demand-based refresh intervals provide Oracle Objects for OLE provides a custom
maximum flexibility. Database links allow control (OCX or ActiveX) combined with an
remote data to be defined and used as if it OLE in-process server that lets customers
were local, ensuring that applications never plug native Oracle8i functionality into
need re-coding if data moves from one node Windows applications.
to another.

Net8™ is the foundation for Oracle’s family Oracle8i offers the most advanced and

of networking features, providing the scalable thin-client and client/server

industry’s most comprehensive data access database platform available. To ensure the

solution for heterogeneous, distributed highest level of performance on all

computing environments. Net8 enables both supported operating systems, Oracle8i is

client/server and server/server optimized to take advantage of operating

communications across any network, system-specific features, such as the

allowing applications and databases to Windows NT thread model and post-wait

reside on different computers and drivers and asynchronous I/O on

communicate as peer applications. Net8 UNIX systems.

eases the complexity of network PLATFORM AVAILABILITY

configuration and management, maximizes
Oracle8i is available on select platforms.
performance, and improves diagnostic
For current platform availability, please
capabilities while introducing distributed
access for Java-based applications.
Oracle also offers Oracle8i Enterprise
Oracle8i leverages customer investment in
Edition for high-end data warehouse and
existing tools and applications by providing
mission-critical OLTP applications.
open data access through a variety of
standard data access methods. These
include ODBC, Oracle Objects™ for Object
Linking and Embedding (OLE), JDBC, and
native Oracle drivers. By offering open

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KEY FEATURES • Packages supplied to access/execute job
queues, alerts, HTML, and file I/O
• Database triggers available on insert,
• WebDB to build, deploy, and monitor update, and delete statement fired before
web applications or after operation

• Oracle JServer • Database triggers available on events

such as database startup/shutdown, user
• Java stored procedures, functions, and logon/logoff
• Multithreaded client application support
• Seamless interaction between Java, SQL,

• SQLJ — embedded SQL in Java code • Full 8-bit and 16-bit NLS support for
European and Asian languages
• Enhanced JDBC driver
• Unicode UTF-2 variable width encoding
• 100% ANSI/ISO SQL 92 Entry Level
compliant - NIST tested • Per-session control of language
preference with system defaults
• ANSI/ISO standard precompiler
applications interface • National calendar support

• SQL3 inline views (query in the FROM • Dual database character sets
clause of another query)
• Euro symbol support
• Updatable join views
• 100 percent ANSI/ISO standard
declarative entity and referential integrity • interMedia
• iFS
• Check, default, and not null constraints
• Primary, foreign, and not null constraints
• Multi-threaded server architecture
• Optional delete cascade
• Scalable SMP performance
• Constraint checking at end of statement
or end of transaction • Shared database buffer, SQL, and
dictionary caches
• Procedures, functions, and packages
supported • XA Interface support

• User-defined PL/SQL functions in SQL

• External procedure callouts

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LARGE DATABASE SUPPORT • Oracle® Data Migration Assistant

• Unlimited database size • Net8 Assistant

• Cost-based, syntax-independent • Net8 Easy Configuration

• Net8 Configuration Assistant
• ANALYZE, table-statistics generation
• “Star” query, algorithm support via b-tree RELIABLE RESULTS
• Unrestricted, row-level locking
• No-lock escalation
• Online backup by file, tablespace, or
database • Contention-free queries

• Online recovery • Non-blocking, multi-version, read-

consistent, query results
• Mirrored, multi-segment, log files
• Dynamic and automatic re-sizing of
database files • B-tree, single column and concatenated
column indexes
• Oracle® Fail Safe for Windows NT
• Clustered tables, hash-clusters,
SYSTEMS MANAGEMENT AND EASE OF application-specific, hash functions
• ROWIDs to uniquely identify rows
• Oracle Enterprise Manager
• Query results satisfied directly from
• Scalable administration toolset index lookup


• Remote, branch office management via
intelligent agents • Transparently distributed query and
• Unattended, “lights-out,” scheduled
operations • Transparent, two-phase commit

• Integrated, scheduled database • Distributed, optimized joins

• Location and network transparency
• Oracle Recovery Manager

• Oracle Database Configuration Assistant

• Oracle® Database Assistant

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February 1999
DATA REPLICATION • Encrypted passwords

• Bi-directional replication with automated • Password-policy enforcement

conflict detection and resolution.
Supported configurations include a single • Global users and roles
updatable master site with multiple
updatable or read-only snapshot sites. • Full datastream encryption through DES
and RSA RC4 encryption algorithms
• Full transactional consistency and data
integrity • Fine-grained database privileges

• Full and subset table replication • Hierarchical, role-based security for

group-level, access control
• Incremental refresh of snapshot copies
• Read-only tablespaces
• Event-based and demand-based refresh
• Full 8-, 16-, and 32-bit NLS support for
• 100% ANSI/ISO standard declarative European and Asian languages; Unicode
entity and referential integrity constraints UTF-2 variable width encoding

• Check, default, and not null constraints • Character-set conversion for

heterogeneous client/server environments
• Primary, foreign, and not null constraints
• National calendar support
• Optional delete cascade
• Dual-database, character sets
• Constraint checking at end of statement
• Oracle Precompilers: Pro*C/C++™,
• Binary, character LOBs with random, Pro*COBOL®
piece-wise access
• Oracle Call Interface
• LOB storage inside or outside the
database • SQL*Module®

DATA SECURITY • JDBC and SQLJ for Java applications

• Choice of internal or external user ORACLE8i OPTIONS

• Some functionality and features described
• External choices include operating in this document may require licensing a
system, OS security package, network separate option at an additional cost.
operating system [requires Oracle
Advanced Security], security service, and
authentication device

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February 1999
Oracle Corporation
World Headquarters
500 Oracle Parkway
Redwood Shores, CA 94065

Worldwide Inquiries:
Fax +1.650.506.7200

Copyright © Oracle Corporation 1999

All Rights Reserved

This document is provided for informational purposes only, and

the information herein is subject to change without notice.
Please report any errors herein to Oracle Corporation. Oracle
Corporation does not provide any warranties covering and
specifically disclaims any liability in connection with this

Oracle, ConText, Pro*COBOL, and SQL*Module are registered

trademarks and Oracle8i, PL/SQL, JDeveloper, Net8, Oracle
Objects, and Pro*C/C++ are trademarks of Oracle Corporation.

All other company and product names mentioned are used for
identification purposes only and may be trademarks of their
respective owners.