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What is the best way to quickly learn a new complex Forms application?

SebaVasta
SebaVasta Member Posts: 29 Red Ribbon

So, I join this company. They have a 20 year old very complex Oracle Forms system (11g Forms, 11g DB).

How do you guys get about getting to know a complex Oracle Forms system when you join a new organisation?

One of my methods I used some time ago was to create a temp table and add after IUD triggers to every table. In the triggers I write code to write the trigger name and the backtrace into the temp table. This way when I run a form and do stuff like IUD I can query this temp table and figure out which tables were IUDd into and where the code originated. After all the purpose of every form is to do IUD. You do processing and then finally have to write to tables.

However, this method cannot be done in every place as some do not allow creating triggers for every table like this.

Another method is of course is to just read the code in the form. But this takes lots of time and since there is very little or no comments in code it is difficult to understand what is going on. Another method is debugging Forms but this also is very time consuming.

So, I like to know how you tackle this conundrum. What the methods you have used to get acquainted with a complex Oracle Forms system when you join a new company.

How long does it normally take on average to get to know a new application 'well'?

I would really appreciate to know your own experiences and also any tips, tricks & advice.

fmz

Best Answer

  • Michael Ferrante-Oracle
    Michael Ferrante-Oracle Member Posts: 6,545 Employee
    Accepted Answer

    Welcome to the world of "Oracle Forms". You can find the latest product information on the Forms product page. You will also find links to relevant documentation for the latest and previous versions there too.

    https://www.oracle.com/application-development/technologies/forms/forms.html

    Regarding your question, my opinion is that you don't start by making something that is already complex more complex. Creating test tables, triggers, etc will do nothing more than add to the complexity. I recommend becoming a knowledgeable "user" first. This is where many developers go wrong in my opinion. They think that because they are familiar with a portion of the code that they "get it". However, they have rarely taken the time to understand the user experience. By actually using the application (even if only against test data) you often will quickly understand its flow. If you can become familiar with the app flow, even if just at a high level at first, you can begin to guess what the code is doing. As a result, actually looking at the code becomes more obvious.

    Depending on your area of responsibility, another thing to consider is that your new organization is using a desupported version of this software. If it is in your area of responsibility to maintain the installations, it might be a good starting place to consider upgrading to a supported version (e.g. 12.2.1.4). Getting an understanding of the software and its installation process will help you to better understand the applications you maintain (and create). Get your hands on a test environment (or VM) and do some installation experiments with the latest release. Of course, be sure to review the documentation before starting. There are approximately 5 high level steps to performing the installation after you have first verified that the machine on which you are installing is prepared to receive it.

    1. Install JDK 8 (64bit)
    2. Install FMW Infrastructure 12.2.1.4
    3. Install Forms/Reports 12.2.1.4 software
    4. Run Repository Creation Utility (RCU) against v12+ Oracle DB
    5. Run Configuration Wizard to create the WLS Domain

    Links to all the above software can be found on the Forms product page (click on Download button near the top).

    If you have question, this forum is a great place to ask them.


    Michael Ferrante

    Senior Principal Product Manager

    Application Development Tools

    Oracle


    SebaVastafmz

Answers

  • Michael Ferrante-Oracle
    Michael Ferrante-Oracle Member Posts: 6,545 Employee
    Accepted Answer

    Welcome to the world of "Oracle Forms". You can find the latest product information on the Forms product page. You will also find links to relevant documentation for the latest and previous versions there too.

    https://www.oracle.com/application-development/technologies/forms/forms.html

    Regarding your question, my opinion is that you don't start by making something that is already complex more complex. Creating test tables, triggers, etc will do nothing more than add to the complexity. I recommend becoming a knowledgeable "user" first. This is where many developers go wrong in my opinion. They think that because they are familiar with a portion of the code that they "get it". However, they have rarely taken the time to understand the user experience. By actually using the application (even if only against test data) you often will quickly understand its flow. If you can become familiar with the app flow, even if just at a high level at first, you can begin to guess what the code is doing. As a result, actually looking at the code becomes more obvious.

    Depending on your area of responsibility, another thing to consider is that your new organization is using a desupported version of this software. If it is in your area of responsibility to maintain the installations, it might be a good starting place to consider upgrading to a supported version (e.g. 12.2.1.4). Getting an understanding of the software and its installation process will help you to better understand the applications you maintain (and create). Get your hands on a test environment (or VM) and do some installation experiments with the latest release. Of course, be sure to review the documentation before starting. There are approximately 5 high level steps to performing the installation after you have first verified that the machine on which you are installing is prepared to receive it.

    1. Install JDK 8 (64bit)
    2. Install FMW Infrastructure 12.2.1.4
    3. Install Forms/Reports 12.2.1.4 software
    4. Run Repository Creation Utility (RCU) against v12+ Oracle DB
    5. Run Configuration Wizard to create the WLS Domain

    Links to all the above software can be found on the Forms product page (click on Download button near the top).

    If you have question, this forum is a great place to ask them.


    Michael Ferrante

    Senior Principal Product Manager

    Application Development Tools

    Oracle


    SebaVastafmz
  • User_MKCUX
    User_MKCUX Member Posts: 2 Green Ribbon
    edited April 5

    @networthzone

    Hello. I also learn a new complex Forms application in a quick time. If you get any solution. please mention me to. Thanks in advance.



  • User_MKCUX
    User_MKCUX Member Posts: 2 Green Ribbon

    @skicka blommor could you get any solution?

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