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Hello Sandy, and welcome to the OTN forums!
I need an application that will allow me to save email messages from a forum and cross reference them by email address, topic, keywords, date etc. in order to make a easily searchable database out of the information contained within the emails.Well, XE doesn't "ship" with taht kind of applicaiton, nor do I know sample applications that do exactly would you are searching for. But XE could be a platform. This depends on how much of the application you expect to implement yourself and how many users would use that application. The "free version" of Oracle Database (Express Edition aka XE) is limited in various ways, e.g. to use just one CPU at a time and not more than one GB memory in total, as well as (of release 11.2) 11 GB for user data on your disk. So, if this is application shall be used by only a few users and you'll find 11 GB enough for your database, XE can be sufficient. See the [url http://docs.oracle.com/cd/E17781_01/license.112/e18068/toc.htm]Licensing Information for all details.
I know next to nothing about database software so am asking if the free version of Oracle will do what I need.
XE also comes with a lot of PL/SQL APIs that can do a lot of things for you, even SMTP support for fetching emails is possible.
As for the front end, you have Oracle Application Express (APEX) in XE that will allow you to build the frontend for your database very easy. You'll find a few example applications and a lot of tutorials on APEX that can help you with that job.
If you have your favorite development framework already, you can surely use XE as database backend for lots of frameworks, e.g. using JDBC or .NET providers.
963683 wrote:Looks like you are looking for a off-the-shelf application.
I need an application that will allow me ...
Like Udo explained in previous post, Oracle Database delivers a platform for developing and running your applications.
So either you design and develop an application, or find an application that someone else built that would allow you to store and process the email messages including some metadata.
XE also comes with APEX, which is a database application in itself, that allows you to build database centric web applications.