Dizwell Informatics

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Atlas – Installing Oracle on Mint 18+

1.0 Introduction

Linux Mint is a derivative of the Ubuntu distro (which is, of course, itself a derivative of Debian). Its big claim to fame was that it included multimedia codecs ‘out of the box’ where Ubuntu did not: it was claimed that this made it a lot simpler for novices to use. Lately, however, even Mint makes you install these codecs as a separate, post-install activity …so it’s not quite as ‘ready to roll’ as it used to be!

On the other hand, it has lately switched to following only the LTS (long term support) versions of Ubuntu, making it a bit more conservative than before. It means experiments the upstream Ubuntu developers might be making with Mir, Wayland or other new-fangled technologies do not gum up the works in Mint (at least, not for a couple of years!)

In short, think of it as Ubuntu LTS with a green theme, a sensible desktop environment and (arguably) a little more user-friendliness than Ubuntu.

Incidentally, do not confuse “Linux Mint” (which is an Ubuntu derivative) with “Linux Mint Debian Edition” (LMDE), which is a different distro that looks the same but is built directly as a Debian derivative). Atlas runs on both Mint and LMDE, but this page is about Mint, not LMDE! See this completely different page if you are wanting LMDE information.

Atlas (and Oracle 12c!) runs fine on any Mint version from 18 upwards.

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.

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 Mint-specific notes.

2.0 What’s been tested?

  • Mint 18, 18.1

3.0 Operating System media

Mint is available in different forms, depending on what desktop environment you want to use. There are separate ISOs for Cinnamon and MATE desktops, for example. See the project’s download page for details of the latest versions available, and the flavours they come in.

The screenshots shown here indicate that I downloaded and installed from the 18.1 Cinnamon ISO, but the choice of desktop environment is irrelevant to Atlas.

4.0 Operating System installation issues

There are no deviations from the ‘accept the defaults’ approach when installing the operating system.

5.0 Running Atlas

I had no problems getting my Mint 18.1 (Cinnamon) VM displaying large screen resolutions. I specifically didn’t have to install any of the ‘guest additions’ to get it displaying at comfortably large resolutions, no matter what virtualization solution I was using (but, for the record, I used VirtualBox for the screenshots shown below).

Note that Linux Mint 18.1 came with wmctrl installed already, so I didn’t even have to do anything to make that Atlas prerequisite come about!

Immediately after the first post-install reboot, therefore, I was able to do the standard:

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

…after which, I simply followed the prompts.

6.0 Installing Oracle 12c

The Oracle 12c installation is not the smoothest!

It will start by claiming that your environment does not meet minimum standards:

That dialog box can be dismissed by clicking [Yes] -and don’t worry about it, because your environment is just fine!

The installation will then fail during the linking phase:

Mint is one of the few distros these days that breaks in this sort of way. Fortunately, Atlas has already prepared a fixup script for you in the oracle user’s Documents directory (in this case, I’m my own oracle user, so the Documents directory in question also belongs to me):

So here you see me open a terminal session and change to my Documents directory. A listing of that directory’s contents shows the existence of a file called atlas-fixup.sh. It has already been made executable by Atlas, so there is no need to chmod it further. You therefore (as yourself, not as root) run that script using just the command shown:  ./atlas-fixup.sh.

Mere seconds later, once you’ve supplied the sudo password, this ‘Fixup Script Applied’ pop-up appears in the middle of your screen, telling you to click [OK] to close it, switch back to the Oracle Installer and then click the [Retry] button. (There’s also a warning displayed in the terminal session about GtkDialog mapped without a transient parent… that can be ignored entirely!)

So do all of that:

…and here you see that the series of green and yellow ticks shown in the Oracle installer windows has now gone past the ‘Link binaries’ item that was causing all the trouble before. Therefore, all binaries have been compiled correctly and you can be sure that, from this point on, the installation will succeed:

Note that because you were required to run the atlas-fixup script during the installation, there is no separate post-install script to be run. If you run SQL*Plus in a sufficiently wide terminal session, you’ll discover that line length and page size have already been set to vaguely sensible values already, without you needing to do anything further to make that happen:

Incidentally: the command you see me typing here (“sql“) is the alias of the full command (“sqlplus / as sysdba“). It is aliased with a reference to the rlwrap utility, so that if you get into SQL*Plus using it, you can press the up and down cursor keys to retrieve and scroll through any previous SQL commands you’ve typed. If you ever need the vanilla, un-rlwrapped version of SQL*Plus, however, then just type the full-blown sqlplus  command and you’ll be running the exact same program as before but without a command line history.