Installing Oracle XE under Debian/(K)Ubuntu is easier than Windows

Yesterday I installed Oracle XE at my Ubuntu Linux server at
home. I wanted to do this for a long time but was a bit scared because
installing non open source applications under Linux can be really painful. I
searched on google and found a tutorial on OTN. That’s a  promising start.

My server has the “Breezy” version of Ubuntu installed, but
other versions should also work (Ubuntu is built on Debian, so Debian also

Log in as root user  (sudo su under Ubuntu)

First you have to add a repository to your sources.list (located at /etc/apt/sources.list):
deb unstable main non-free

No update you repository:
apt-get update

And execute the command to install Oracle XE:
apt-get install oracle-xe

Oracle XE will be downloaded now, you have to press Y a few times and finally you get the following message:

Let’s do that then. You’re now asked for the port numbers of
Oracle Application Express  (apex) and
the database listener. I initially thought it was a good idea to run apex on
port 80 (because Tomcat was already running on port 8080). But I got some
errors and finally found  out that
running it on a port lower than 1024 wasn’t such a good idea after all.

The final steps are entering a password for SYS and SYSTEM
and tell the system you want to load Oracle on boot time.

Now go to http://localhost:8080/apex
and you’re ready to go.

Problems I ran into

The first problem was that I didn’t have enough swap space.
Luckily the article on OTN gave me the solution to this problem.

The next problem was that I wanted to run apex on port 80.
That wasn’t such a good idea so I had to change the port number.

Changing the portnumber can be done in sqlplus (located at /usr/lib/oracle/xe/app/oracle/product/10.2.0/server/bin)

SQL> begin

 2    dbms_xdb.sethttpport('8081');

 3  end;

 4  /

PL/SQL procedure successfully completed.


I never thought it would be this easy to install an
application like Oracle on Linux. I have some experience with Linux, but I
think anyone who can use Oracle can install it on Linux.  The Debian package system works great, it
downloads all the dependencies and takes care of installation and uninstallation.


7 thoughts on “Installing Oracle XE under Debian/(K)Ubuntu is easier than Windows

  1. One ever tried to secure (correctly install) oracle software under Windows without using local admin… Windows Linux = BIG difference (i like ux)

  2. Under Windows you had to find and download the .exe and tell Oracle that you’re not a friend of Osama Bin Laden. But the difference is not too big, you’re right about taht, installation of XE under Windows can be done with a few clicks.

  3. Hi

    I agree that it is simple and reliable, I’m not sure that I’d agree that it was easier than windows though, that is just a double click on a downloaded .exe and off you go.

  4. I did the same thing a few weeks ago. One of the problems I ran into was this.

    The Oracle XE Debian package by default installs all files into /usr/lib/oracle. On my system I didn’t have enough space on the partition that contained /usr/lib so I created a symlink from /usr/lib/oracle to another partition and then installed Oracle XE.
    The installation went OK, but running the “oracle-xe configure” part generated loads of errors. Only when I resized the partition and made sure enough disk space was available, everything went OK.

    Please note there also is an Oracle XE Client package available. On my Debian desktop pc I have installed this package. After that, I manually had to create a network/admin directory in the client install dir and add a tnsnames.ora file to that containing the correct configuration for my XE database. After modifying my .bashrc file in my home dir to always load the settings in the script I can now use sqlplus from the command line to connect to my XE database using the SID specified in tnsnames.ora 🙂

    Greets, Wouter

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