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Atlas – Installing Oracle on Korora 25+

31.0 Introduction

Korora is a Fedora Remix -that is, take the base Fedora system, re-jig its visuals a bit, add some new packages and remove others you think unnecessary and, hopefully, you end up with something that has all the strengths of the underlying distro but none of the weaknesses. The name is a Maori word meaning ‘little penguin’, making it an ethno-linguistic nod to the whole Linux/Tux thing.

As a custom respin, it is to be expected that its user-base will likely be measured in the tens or hundreds rather than the thousands. At the time of writing, for example, it’s listed 48th on the DistroWatch popularity charts, with just 257 enquiries a week. That seems a little harsh, though: I personally find it a perfectly decent distro (just like Fedora itself) with the added benefit of having the RPM Fusion repository pre-enabled (making installing third party packages extremely straightforward). Its Gnome visuals, too, are quite strikingly different from the base Fedora’s versions (the icon theme being the particularly obvious differentiator here). I rather like it, anyway.

Given it is fundamentally Fedora-plus-tweaks, it should be no surprise that Atlas and Oracle work on Korora 25 and up just fine -assuming that you can actually get it installed in the first place. For reasons I don’t pretend to understand, I found it practically impossible to boot in either VirtualBox or KVM and only finally got it working properly on VMware.

As is the case with all Atlas/Oracle installs, your server needs to be built with at least 5GB RAM and at least a 40GB hard disk; you must additionally ensure you have installed wmctrl or xdotool before attempting to launch Atlas.

Please watch the generic Atlas videos here, here and here to get an idea of how Atlas works in general. The generic documentation (including those videos) are available from this page. Below are Korora-specific notes.

2.0 What’s been tested?

  • Korora 25

3.0 Operating System media

The Korora project’s download page is my source for the installable DVD ISO. There are five available flavours, depending on your choice of desktop environment: so Gnome, KDE, Xfce, Cinnamon and MATE are all possible. (The screenshots used for this page all happened to come from the Gnome one, but the choice of desktop environment makes no difference to the Atlas or Oracle outcomes).

4.0 Operating System installation issues

As I mentioned in the introduction, for some reason or other, I had major problems getting Korora to boot in VirtualBox or KVM (Boxes). Why this should be so (particularly since no equivalent issues booting the original Fedora 25 has ever arisen on my physical hardware), I have no idea… but I was reduced to installing it in VMware instead (Player or Workstation Pro is up to you).

Once I could get a working virtual system, I had no issues with installing the distro at all. As with many distros, Korora is a ‘live’ one, meaning that it boots into a workable environment direct off the DVD. You take the ‘install Korora’ option from the dialog box that is shown to you within that working environment:

Clicking that install option then launches something that looks almost identical to the standard Fedora installer. As with that standard installer, most options are set for you automatically and you can just accept them. You are required to confirm where you want the O/S installed to:

So that requires clicking on the ‘Installation Destination’ item -but you can immediately click the ‘Done’ button after that without having to do anything other than accept the default partitioning options. Atlas will find them fine.

If you like, you can click on the Network and Host Name option, too (though the installer doesn’t require you to do so). If you do, you get to specify a sensible hostname for your new server. If you choose not to, your server acquires the singularly unimaginative “localhost.localdomain” name, which is something Atlas will then sort out for you later on.

Other than that, I was, for the most part, able to accept all the defaults offered during the installation. However, I did make one small change to the default offering here:

Specifically, when creating the non-root user for the system, make sure to check the Make this user administrator option. It means you will be able to sudo -i to become root (requiring only that you know your own password) instead of having to su – root (which requires that you know root’s password). It’s a minor thing, but I prefer it that way.

Otherwise, the O/S installation is straightforward. Once the server comes back from its first post-install reboot, you can immediately install wmctrl or xdotool without fuss:

Note that there is quite a sizeable set of updating repositories when you do so for the first time (because Korora enables quite a number of third-party repositories which are not standard with the original Fedora). So installing wmctrl takes quite a few minutes, but is otherwise uneventful.

5.0 Running Atlas

Atlas requires that the underlying O/S is running at a pretty decent screen resolution (better than 1200 x 750). Fortunately, my VM running under VMware offered a good choice of screen resolutions straight after the install, without the need to install any ‘tools’ or guest additions. You just need to find the Settings icon (click the Show Applications icon and Settings should be immediately visible), click the Displays icon and take it from there:

I also take the opportunity to open a terminal session, select Edit > Profile Preferences, select the Custom Font option and change the font size down to something like an 8 or 9. The default font size is a bit large for my tastes!

Assuming you pick a good enough screen resolution, that you’re happy with the terminal font size and that you’ve installed wmctrl/xdotool, you are ready to download and run Atlas in the normal way:

wget http://bit.do/dizatlas -O atlas.sh
chmod +x atlas.sh
./atlas.sh

At that point, Atlas is supposed to be able to resize your terminal window to make it big and legible. However, uniquely amongst all the distros I’ve tested with Atlas, it fails to do so. You end up looking at something like this:

I can’t explain why Atlas misbehaves on this distro like this, and it may not happen to you and your mix of physical hardware and/or virtualization platform. In any event, the fix is to just press Ctrl+C to kill off this attempt to run Atlas, right-click the terminal’s title bar and select the Maximize option and then try running Atlas again. Second time round, things will look fine:

Notice how even now Atlas displays some error text in the top left-hand corner of the Window: I suspect this is because I haven’t installed the VMware guest tools. In any event, they can be ignored.

The particular screen shown here might not be seen by you if you specified a ‘proper’ hostname during the O/S install itself. If you left the installer to use the default ‘localhost.localdomain’ though, you will: Atlas requires that you now provide a proper hostname. If you just press [Enter] here, you’ll get given the default suggestion of ‘osrvr.test.lab’. If you want a better name than that, just type a fully-qualified hostname (i.e., with a domain name component separated by periods/fullstops), as you see me doing above.

If you don’t have a proper domain name, just make one up: ‘dizwell.home’, after all, doesn’t have any real validity outside the confines of my own study.

Other than that, just follow the Atlas prompts until it completes and triggers a reboot of your Korora server.

6.0 Installing Oracle 12c

As with many ’boutique’ distros, when you start the Oracle installation, you’ll be told your server doesn’t meet requirements:

It is fine to click [Yes] here to ignore the warning, though, and proceed with the installation regardless.

Otherwise, you can mostly click [Next] through the installation wizard and nothing very alarming will happen at all! There are, for example, no compilation errors during the installer’s linking phase.

There are no compilation errors raised during the installation’s phase.

As a result of there being no linking errors, an atlas-postinstall.sh script is created in the oracle user’s Documents directory. This can be run once the linking phase is complete (or after the entire installation, including database creation, completes), if you would like to do so. Running it is entirely optional.

Since I am my own oracle user, you here see me travelling to my own Documents directory and discovering the existence of a script called atlas-postinstall.sh. Note that it is already executable: Atlas created it that way. So all I have to do is type:

./atlas-postinstall.sh

…to run it. Nothing appears to happen when you do, and there’s no indication of success or failure: but it has done its job anyway. Its effects can be seen in this screenshot:

The return from that simple SQL query is displaying quite nicely in the terminal session entirely because the post-install script has set decent defaults for page- and line-size in SQL*Plus. Without it, the results would be visually scrambled to the point of illegibility.