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Oracle WebCenter Quick Start for the Uninitiated Java Developer : Page 2

A quick start guide to get WebCenter up and running in JDeveloper for portal developers more familiar with other environments like Eclipse.


WebCenter Installation Step 1: Install the JDK

In theory you can get by with any compatible JDK, but in practice your life will be easier with JRockit for a WebCenter application. The installation process is simple; just run the executable and remember where you installed it. I installed it under C:\Oracle\Middleware\jrockit-jdk1.6.0_29-R28.2.0-4.1.0 (which is the path shown in the Step 3 and 4 examples).

WebCenter Installation Step 2: Run RCU

First, log into your Oracle database and set the WebCenter perquisite values:

  • Processes=500
  • Sessions=500
  • Open_cursors=500

More is better for deployment environments though the above should be sufficient for any local development.

Next, open a command window, navigate to [where you unzipped it to]\rcuHome\BIN and run rcu.bat. It is a very simple installer. If you are going to be running WebCenter Content for the tutorial on the same database, you can save some time by selecting both the Enterprise Content Management components and the WebCenter Suite components. If you are not sure, select both anyway; it really doesn't impact the performance on your local development environment.

WebCenter Installation Steps 3 and 4: Install WebLogic Server and JDeveloper

These are lumped together because the installation processes for WebLogic Server and JDeveloper are identical. Simply CD to where you have the JARs (very convenient to have them in the same place) and run the following commands (assuming you installed JRockit where I did in step 1; otherwise change the path to suit your environment):

C:\Oracle\Middleware\jrockit-jdk1.6.0_29-R28.2.0-4.1.0\bin\java -Xmx1024m -jar C:\Users\[USER_NAME]\Desktop\temp\DeleteSoon\wls1035_generic.jar

Follow the prompts, nothing special here.

C:\Oracle\Middleware\jrockit-jdk1.6.0_29-R28.2.0-4.1.0\bin\java -Xmx1024m -jar C:\Users\[USER_NAME]\Desktop\temp\DeleteSoon\jdevstudio11115install.jar

Follow the prompts, nothing special here, either.

WebCenter Installation Step 5: Add WebCenter

To add WebCenter, follow these steps:

  1. Start JDeveloper with [where-ever-you-installed-it]\ jdeveloper.exe (you can create a link to this where it is handy for you, too).
  2. Go to Help\Check for Updates.
  3. Hit the next button and select the WebCenter Extension (If you use a supported source control application, you can save time by selecting that module at this time as well)
  4. Follow the prompts. JDeveloper will prompt you to restart.

WebCenter Installation Step 6: Stir

After the restart, exit JDeveloper, navigate to C:\Users\[USERNAME]\AppData\Roaming\JDeveloper and delete system11., and then start JDeveloper again.

WebCenter Installation Step 7: Serve Warm

If you are going to do the Oracle tutorial, go to Step 1: Create a Custom WebCenter Portal Application and follow the steps through to the point where you start your application. Once satisfied that you can, you can go back to the start of the tutorial and skip what you have done here.

If you are jumping in on your own or have other plans for getting started, simple click New Application, and select WebCenter Portal Application. Fill in values that make sense for you until you get to the "Configure WebCenter Settings" screen. At that point you can click Finish, then right click on the Portal project and select Run. Wait for a while and then the application will launch in a browser.

A Lesson Learned

The first time out I installed WebCenter I did it manually as well. I ended up with two sets of WebCenter configurations added to the WebLogic Domain Wizard. What is installed by adding the WebCenter option through JDeveloper is all you need to do development on your local development environment. You may also want to install WebCenter Content (formerly known as UCM) on your local development environment, but only do so if you do not have a separate environment to connect to. Note that running WebCenter, JDeveloper and UCM on a local development machine can use up a lot of system resources and may not leave enough CPU capacity to finish reading this article.


If you are an experienced portal developer but new to JDeveloper, you are probably used to Eclipse. The first time I tried working in JDeveloper after a decade of using Eclipse I was reminded of a time when I overheard someone trying to provide a very long and unusual surname over a bad phone connection. After several attempts at spelling the name and not being understood he finally said, "It's spelled just like elephant, except all the letters are different."

JDeveloper looks enough like Eclipse to give one the impression that it works the same too. In reality, a few things are the same (such as starting and stopping servers) but many things are very different. Hopefully, clearing this first hurdle will accelerate your learning of the WebCenter environment, which is being rapidly adopted in enterprises across the globe.

Next Steps

I found the following sites useful in making use of the environment created in this article.

If you have particular needs for using WebCenter and you can't find helpful documentation, please email me at ryanmunro@fywservices.com and I will either respond with the short answer or write another article to address it.

Ryan Munro built his first custom portal applications in 1996 and has since participated in the release of more than 20 portal applications across a dozen industries using multiple vendor products such as Teamsite, Epicentric, Sharepoint, Plumtree, Liferay, WebLogic Portal, and a few custom frameworks including one he designed and built himself based on Apache Struts Tiles.
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