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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Future Direction - 10g Forms/Reports Developer vs JDeveloper

We are on this new effort to move some legacy rbase programs to Oracle. we are required to evaluate - a)would it be better to go with Oracle 10g forms/reports or with Jdeveloper. The data is going to reside on Oracle database servers. The concern about going with Oracle Forms/Reports was a) will Oracle support it in the future? my instant reaction was ofcourse Oracle will......we have bigger problems if Forms/Reports go away considering that the EBS Suite uses Forms/Reports technology as well.

so the final question while migrating new Apps would it be better to use Oracle Forms/Reports or Jdeveloper????? my 2 cents
1)If the application is database centric without too much business logic involved and if your team has a PL/SQL back ground as opposed to a Java backgrouund then 10g Forms/Reports may be a better bet.
2)If the team is pretty much a J2ee development team then JDeveloper may be the route to go.

I am not too worried about Oracle's strategy to support Forms/Reports (I think they will). The above is just my 2 cents any input from my blog readers will be greatly appreciated.


  • I agree, the experience of your team should be at the top of the list for this decision. If they know PL/SQL, Forms and Reports back to front then going to J2EE for a critical app is going to require more time, if not more resources.

    Another point is whether your team wants to get into java development - they may want the challenge and the chance to widen their skills.

    The opposite is true, as well; although I would be surprised if a team of java developers were keen to get into PL/SQL and Forms/Reports :)

    I'm not sure what it means for an application to be "database centric" or otherwise but I suspect it shouldn't have much bearing on the choice. Ditto for "too much business logic". I believe a large amount of complexity can be effectively reduced with a good database design and application architecture. Not always, of course; especially when you get customers who just want a single button "that will do it all for me".

    As a PLSQL/Forms/Reports developer, I think the RAD environment is much more suited to complex business requirements; but I won't be dogmatic on that because of my lack of experience with J2EE.

    By Blogger Jeffrey Kemp, at 1:43 PM  

  • My experience with the later version of Forms is that their PL/SQL engine isn't keeping pace.
    Ultimately it doesn't benefit from using the same SQL parser as the database PL/SQL, so lots of 'new' SQL just doesn't work their. And by new, I mean anything 8i or later (eg scalar subqueries, analytics...).
    Nor is it supporting EXECUTE IMMEDIATE to allow those SQLs to be run dynamically.
    The Forms version of SQL and PL/SQL doesn't have its own documentation set, so you are mostly on your own with regard to working out what works and what doesn't.
    Assuming database developers can apply their skills to Forms isn't as valid as it used to be.

    By Blogger Gary Myers, at 2:18 PM  

  • If the application is database centric, then you should seriously consider Oracle Application Express. It runs in the database and can be served of the database server or a web server. It is not as complicated as Forms or J2EE.


    By Blogger Michael A. Rife, at 6:58 PM  

  • Totally agree with Mike: take a look at Apex (that is, *if* your team is pl/sql 'minded').

    It would also solve the issue about different pl/sql engines that Gary mentioned: it all runs in the database.

    By Blogger Toon, at 11:09 PM  

  • Thank you all for your input - was greatly appreciated an added perspective is always helpful

    By Blogger Vidya Balasubramanian, at 6:51 AM  

  • Keep us posted as to what your team chooses and why.


    By Blogger Michael A. Rife, at 7:45 PM  

  • Mike I will. They are pretty much looking at a RAD tool . At this point the direction is more towards JDeveloper . As a DBA probably I wouldnt be the best person to discuss how RAD Jdeveoper is (although I plan to try it out myslef)- but I have managed Clustered App Servers in the past and know how it would fit in the scheme of things considering the Application Server. As far as APEX goes - I have a few home grown HTMLDB applications. works great! gui driven etc etc. How easy is it to customize (considering that we will have some customization going on) - I can't help but think of Portal which was pretty gui driven but when you had to customize we had to get into PDK's etc , I am assuming it is much easier to customize using APEX. Thanks a lot your input - was appreciated.

    By Blogger Vidya Balasubramanian, at 7:49 AM  

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