Migration to Oracle Forms 10g- Day one


Posted by Hafed Benteftifa | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 12-07-2008

We are finally starting the migration of our main application (around 1200 modules) this July 14. Our main tool is MouliForms which I presented in an earlier post.
I spent the last couple of days ironing out the interface as well as fixing the developers machines (setting up the JRE, classpath, forms_path).
Preliminary tests on some modules are very encouraging but we need to go for a full run in order to see how MouliForms performs on our applications.

Generating FormsDoc and FMB module compare functionality


Posted by Hafed Benteftifa | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 14-06-2008

For the last two weeks, I have been working on ironing out the two functionalities in MouliForms that I think are very useful for an Oracle forms developer:

  • Generating documentation on the Forms modules that make up an application. This is similar to Javadoc for those that are familiar with JAVA. In this case, I choose to generate an HTML page for each module. This will give the liste of Program Units (procedures, function and packages) linked thru an index page.
  • FMB module compare: In most cases, we have a before and after version for the same module and we want to have an exact picture of what has changed as far as the objects are concerned.
    While the basic functionality is there (changes are reflected in Red), I am still having some troubles with object properties. It seems to me that the developers at Oracle did not lay out a proper mechanisms for object-property categorization.
    I managed to rewrite the whole property palette (with the BEFORE and AFTER columns) but there are still some unwanted properties that do appear at the wrong place-object.
  • Oracle forms migration from 6i to 10g- Introducing MouliForms


    Posted by Hafed Benteftifa | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 24-05-2008

    I am curently involved in a major migration project with around 1000 forms and 500 reports. Built using Designer 6i and maintained thru the years using forms builder 6i, it has been decided to migrate the whole application to oracle 10g.

    During the last month or so, I wrote a JAVA application that does the migration based on the JDAPI package. In the coming days, I will present some of the stuff that I went thru and how I managed to build MOULIFORMS.

    Here are the current features:
    -Migration of forms from 6i to 10g. Close to 90% automated migration.
    -All the new features implemented with WEBUTIL are either flagged or switched at the code level.
    -Search and replace capability: I used the JAVA Regex package.
    -Batch mode: compile, replace, migration.
    -Report calls modified at the code level (RUN_PRODUCT to RUN_REPORT_OBJECT).
    -Forms compare: before and after in a tree like fashion. Useful to see what has changed.
    -Full Reports for outputs: HTML, CSV, PDF, Excel summary reports.
    -Use of Log4j for various developer level reports (debugging-info etc.)
    -Full JAVA Swing interface with switchable French-English interface.

    There are still some bugs mainly related to the interface but Mouliforms does the job and I am really impressed by the JDAPI package.

    I don’t know whether I should release Mouliforms as open-source. I already spent close to 150 hours designing it.

    Next step: I will post some screenshots of mouliforms in action.

    Oracle Forms Technical notes


    Posted by Hafed Benteftifa | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 15-09-2007

    I have put together some technical notes related to Oracle Forms 10g, 9i.

    While they are in French, they can still be useful and understood since they contain screenshots.

    These notes deal with alerts, object libraries, program unit, List items and some other basic stuff that students keep asking.

    I will update as soon as I get the other remaining notes together.
    How to eliminate the NULL value when displaying a Poplist

    How to resolve the button that selected when the user closes a dialog
    How to remove the blank lines when designing Lists in Form
    How many alerts should we define in a Forms project ?
    How to detect the page that was selected when switching pages in a tabbed canevas ?
    How to set the PATH variable in order to avoid using the full path in your Modules ?
    How to create and use a program unit in a Forms module ?
    How to create and use an object library in a Forms application ?

    Oracle Forms – Present & Future


    Posted by Hafed Benteftifa | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 14-08-2007

    Of the developer tools that Oracle has delivered over the years, Forms is perhaps the most mature tool of all and has been used by thousands of developers all over the world.

    However, the current situation faced by many Forms developers is quite problematic. One of the main reasons is that Oracle has adopted JDeveloper as its main tool for the Fusion strategy and one of the consequences is that the development of the Oracle Business suite has been switched from Forms to JDeveloper.

    Read the rest of this entry »

    Basic features for the IDE- Oracle notes designer


    Posted by Hafed | Posted in Forms, oracle, Wiki | Posted on 28-12-2005

    I am working on the features to be included on the IDE. Checking sourceforge.net, I found several interesting open source packages. The closest to what I envision for the code generator is middlegen(http://boss.bekk.no/boss/middlegen/).

    Now, for the notes feature itself, I came across http://www.to-java.com/ which I found on the oracle otn section (migrating Lotus notes apps to J2EE, http://www.oracle.com/technology/oramag/webcolumns/2003/techarticles/lin_tojava.html). That’s exactly what I think is the closest to a Forms, views paradigm for an Oracle-notes application.

    As far as the IDE is concerned, it is going to be a Java Swing based interface. For the time-being, I am checking Sun Netbeans (http://www.netbeans.org/) and Oracle Jdeveloper.

    At any rate, I don’t want to get too deep in extra features at this point. The basic point is to get an MVC application with the capability to display Views and Forms.

    What about a Development tool à la Lotus Designer


    Posted by Hafed | Posted in Forms, oracle | Posted on 09-12-2005

    Is there any Oracle extension or a development tool for Oracle that works the same way as Lotus Designer.
    Basically, a tool that allows the quick setup of an interface with views on the left pane and a list of documents (records) on the right side. Actions in this case will be related to triggers.
    This can be done with Oracle Forms but it is quite tedious. Did anyone come across such a tool ?
    I am aware of most of the Oracle development tools (Oracle Designer-Forms- HTML DB etc …) but I still did not come across such a tool.
    Most likely, JDeveloper will allow such a setup but this will require a significant programming load.
    Lotus notes is amazing as far as the presentation of data is concerned. Anyone with a basic understanding of document management can quicly setup a visual interface that can present the data within the documents in a very easy to understand format. What is most important is that the end user can quickly start working on the documents within the Notes database.
    Oracle still does not have this capability as far as I know and if anyone can point to a similar tool, it would help a lot.