If you've been reading this book sequentially, you should understand the basics of the Oracle database architecture by now. This chapter begins with a description of how to install a database and get it up and running. (If you've already installed your Oracle database software, you can skim through this first section.) We'll describe how to create an actual database and how to configure the network software needed to run Oracle. Finally, we'll discuss how users access databases and begin a discussion of how to manage databases—a topic that will be continued in subsequent chapters.
Prior to Oracle8i, the Oracle installer came in both character and GUI versions for Unix. The Unix GUI ran in Motif using the X Windows system. Windows NT came with a GUI version only. Since Oracle8i, the installer has been Java-based.
The Oracle installer is one of the first places in which you can see the benefits of the portability of Java; the installer looks and functions the same way across all operating systems. For some time now, installing Oracle has been quite simple, requiring only a few mouse clicks and answers to some questions about options and features.
Oracle made great strides in further simplifying installation with Oracle Database 10g. Both that install and the installation of Oracle Database 11g can be accomplished in less than 20 minutes. Figure 3-1 shows a version of the launch screen of the installer for Oracle Database 10g