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APEX 5.0: Upgrade to the newest FontAwesome Icon Library

Patrick Wolf - Wed, 2015-05-13 03:39
Oracle APEX 5.0 ships with FontAwesome version 4.2.0 which will automatically be loaded if your application is using the Universal Theme. This makes it super easy to add nice looking icons to your buttons, lists and regions. But how can you integrate the most … Continue reading →
Categories: Development

APEX 5.0 - New Features Training

Denes Kubicek - Mon, 2015-05-11 23:42
Unser Training startet in knapp drei Wochen. Es ist zeit sich anzumelden. Wir (Dietmar und Denes) haben Tobias Arnhold eingeladen und er erzählt über das Thema Migration auf APEX 5.0. Tobias ist einer der wenigen Betatester von APEX 5.0 in Deutschland gewesen und hat die wertvolle Erfahrungen damit gemacht, die er mit uns teilen wird.

Unsere Themen zu APEX 5.0 sind zahlreich und vielfälltig. Wir decken fast alles wissenswertes ab:

1. Page Designer,
2. Universal Theme,
3. Dutzende von kleinen aber unbekannten Verbesserungen,
4. Interactive Reports,
5. File-Handling,
6. Deprecated Features und Known-Issues,
7. Modale Dialoge,
8. Mobile Anwendungen
9. Viele weitere Themen wie Auswirkungen der neuen Features auf bestehende Komponenten:

   a.Forms und Tabular Forms
   b.Plugins und Dynamic Actions

10. Migrationsthemen

Categories: Development

APEX 5.0 Universal Theme Bug - Update

Denes Kubicek - Sat, 2015-05-09 02:08
The APEX team came up with a temporary fix for this issue. Please visit this forum posting for all the updates on the issue. Basically, you need to run a small function on page load. The solution is also described there.

By the way this is one of the three bugs I have discovered so far.

Categories: Development

Leveraging Icon Fonts (Font Awesome) in Oracle ADF - 500 New Icons for your app

Shay Shmeltzer - Thu, 2015-05-07 15:51

Icon fonts are a growing trend among web developers, they make it quite simple to add icons to your web site and resize them for better responsive design.

Font Awesome is a popular open source icon font - providing over 500 icons that you can add to your application. I got several questions over the past couple of weeks about using these icons in ADF applications, so here is a short video showing you how to set this up with ADF 12.1.3 and using skins. (Quick note - before 12.1.3 you couldn't include these type of font in the skin css file - and you would have needed to directly refer to the CSS file from each page in your app - one more reason to upgrade your application to 12.1.3).

The basic steps:

  • Create a new skin for your ADF application (if you don't know how to do this, see this blog entry).
  • Download font awesome and copy the font-awesome-4.3.0 directory into your new skin directory
  • Copy the @font-face entry from the font-awesome.min.css file into your new skin.css file
  • Update the path in the various URI entries so it reflects the new relative location of the font files
  • Create class entries in your skin CSS for the icons you want to use - remember to add a font-family: FontAwesome; to make sure they use the new font.
  • Assign the classes to the styleclass property of your ADF Faces components.

Here is a demo showing how it is set up and how it works:

The skin1.css in the video is this:

@charset "UTF-8";

/**ADFFaces_Skin_File / DO NOT REMOVE**/

@namespace af "";

@namespace dvt "";

@font-face {

    font-family: 'FontAwesome';

    src: url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.eot?v=4.3.0');

    src: url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.eot?#iefix&v=4.3.0')format('embedded-opentype'), url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.woff2?v=4.3.0')format('woff2'), url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.woff?v=4.3.0')format('woff'), url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.ttf?v=4.3.0')format('truetype'), url('font-awesome-4.3.0/fonts/fontawesome-webfont.svg?v=4.3.0#fontawesomeregular')format('svg');

    font-weight: normal;

    font-style: normal;


.heart:before {

    content: "\f004";

    font-family: FontAwesome;


.mail:before {

    content: "\f003";

    font-family: FontAwesome;

If you want to see how this could help with responsive design try this in your CSS as an example. Then resize the width of the browser window to see how the icons will change their size dynamically:

.heart:before {

    content: "\f004";

    font-family: FontAwesome;

    font-size: x-large;


.mail:before {

    content: "\f003";

    font-family: FontAwesome;

    font-size: x-large;


@media screen and (max-width:950px) {

    .heart:before {

        content: "\f004";

        font-family: FontAwesome;

        font-size: small;


    .mail:before {

        content: "\f003";

        font-family: FontAwesome;

        font-size: small;


Categories: Development

APEX 5.0: Universal Theme Migration Guide available!

Patrick Wolf - Thu, 2015-05-07 02:59
Do you want to use the new Universal Theme for your existing applications? Then you should definitely have a look at the Universal Theme Migration Guide my colleagues Shakeeb Rahman and Tim Chambers have just published.
Categories: Development

APEX 5.0 Universal Theme Bug

Denes Kubicek - Wed, 2015-05-06 02:13
The problem I described here is strange. In my case and I tested it on several laptops with many browsers and multiple installations, appears to be a Universal Theme related bug and occurs in some specific constellation - in my case on Windows 8.1 running FireFox or Google Chrome (IE11 works as expected). I noticed this problem while working on the Tabular Form chapter for the new Expert APEX book. The first thought I had is that I see pink elephants because the colleagues I asked to check the issue couldn't confirm it - they were using different OS. This seems to be somehow Windows 8.1 related by I am not 100% sure. Your help would be great and if you have the same problem, please join the post and provide your input.

Categories: Development

APEX 5.0: Custom Favicon for Applications using Universal Theme

Patrick Wolf - Mon, 2015-05-04 06:08
For applications which are using Universal Theme you don’t have to modify the Page Template anymore if you want to replace the default favicon with a custom one. Instead follow these steps: Go to Shared Components Click Application Definition Attributes (in Application … Continue reading →
Categories: Development

APEX You Tube Channel

Denes Kubicek - Sun, 2015-05-03 02:56
Great idea to organize the Oracle APEX YouTube Channel. David Peake has started a Video Series about the new Page Designer in APEX 5.0. You should have a look.

Categories: Development

Our new Oracle APEX YouTube Channel is up and running!

Patrick Wolf - Sat, 2015-05-02 07:12
Check out our new Oracle APEX YouTube Channel! Our Product Manager David Peake has started a Video Series about the new Page Designer in Oracle Application Express 5.0. It’s a great start to get familiarized with the new IDE to edit … Continue reading →
Categories: Development

jQuery Toggle Image

Denes Kubicek - Thu, 2015-04-30 06:20
For this, you will need two lines of code. In case you want to save the values, there is a bit more work to do but everything can be done using standards.

Categories: Development

jQuery - Replace Image

Denes Kubicek - Wed, 2015-04-29 11:06
I am posting this just because I am getting questions related to this or similar issues all the time. In this example you can see how you can replace images on the fly in your page using Dynamic Actions. There are at least two good ways to do that:

1. Rendering images in a report. Refreshing a report is a predefined event in a Dynamic Action and doesn't require coding.


2. Using jQuery to do that.

Categories: Development

Tabular Form - Change Column Type

Denes Kubicek - Wed, 2015-04-29 05:34
Just started a new version of My Demo Application - based on APEX 5.0 and Universal Theme. There, I will rework the old content and provide some interesting new possibilities (as of 4.2). In this example I am showing how to change the column type from Text to Display in a tabular form.

When could this be useful? For example if you have a certain group of users not allowed to edit a column and you don't want to create additional and conditional columns. Eventually you can use this to set only specific rows to display only depending on your application logic.
Categories: Development

Oracle Developer Cloud Service - Automating Builds for Oracle ADF Applications

Shay Shmeltzer - Tue, 2015-04-28 11:49

Following up on the previous blog that showed how to get your ADF application into the Developer Cloud Service git repository, this entry will show you the next step in the lifecycle - executing builds.

The Oracle Developer Cloud Service (DevCS) supports build automation with both Maven and Ant scripts - and in this demo I'm showing you how to use the Ant option. One of the unique aspects of DevCS for customers who are  using Oracle ADF and JDeveloper is that the cloud comes pre-configured with the ADF libraries needed to compile your code, and also with support for OJDeploy so you can leverage deployment profiles that you defined for your application.

In fact DevCS comes with support for two ADF versions - and 12.1.3 (as of the time of this blog).

In the video below you'll see

  • How to add a build file for your ADF application
  • How to  configure the build file to work in the cloud environment
  • How to define a build job and execute it
  • How to look at the log files for the build job
  • How to automate the build execution to happen when changes are committed to the git repository

The build in the example above just does the packaging, but in more realistic scenarios you can use similar build processes to create ADF libraries from projects, automate testing, modify configuration and more.

There are a couple of files that are used in the demo that you might want to use in your implementation:

The build.xml file: 

  <property environment="env" /> 
  <property file=""/>
    <target name="deploy" description="Deploy JDeveloper profiles">
    <taskdef name="ojdeploy"
    <ora:ojdeploy xmlns:ora="oraclelib:OJDeployAntTask"
        <ora:parameter name="workspace"
        <ora:parameter name="profile"
        <ora:parameter name="nocompile" value="false"/>
        <ora:parameter name="outputfile"

The file I used can be found here.

The mask for the build automatic execution is */1 * * * *

Note that in the properties file there are references to environment variables that you will need to change if you are looking to deploy an 11.1.1.* app - specifically the options for 12 and 11 are:

Categories: Development

Little quiz: Ordering/Grouping – Guess the output

XTended Oracle SQL - Tue, 2015-04-28 06:20

How many times have you guessed the right answer? :)

select * from dual order by -1;
select * from dual order by 0;

[collapse] 2

select *                   from dual                                     order by -(0.1+0/1) desc;
select 1 n,0 n,2 n,0 n,1 n from dual group by grouping sets(1,2,3,2,1,0) order by -(0.1+0/1) desc;

[collapse] 3

select 1 n,0 n,2 n,0 n,1 n from dual group by grouping sets(1,2,3,2,1,0) order by 0;
select 1 n,0 n,2 n,0 n,1 n from dual group by grouping sets(1,2,3,2,1,0) order by 0+0;
select 1 n,0 n,2 n,0 n,1 n from dual group by grouping sets(1,2,3,2,1,0) order by 3+7 desc;
select 1 n,0 n,2 n,0 n,1 n from dual group by grouping sets(1,2,3,2,1,0) order by -(3.1+0f) desc;

[collapse] 4

select column_value x,10-column_value y from table(ku$_objnumset(5,4,3,1,2,3,4)) order by 1.9;
select column_value x,10-column_value y from table(ku$_objnumset(5,4,3,1,2,3,4)) order by 2.5;
select column_value x,10-column_value y from table(ku$_objnumset(5,4,3,1,2,3,4)) order by 2.7 desc;
select column_value x,10-column_value y from table(ku$_objnumset(5,4,3,1,2,3,4)) order by -2.7 desc;


Categories: Development

APEX 5.0 - PL/SQL Function Returning Error Text - Bug 20971572

Denes Kubicek - Tue, 2015-04-28 05:25
I prefer using PL/SQL Function Returning Error Text while creating validations. Two days ago I discovered a bug - it is not possible to create the function if no error message entered. This bug has been documented and will probably be fixed in 5.1. The workaround is to enter a dummy text like "ERROR" or similar.

Categories: Development

APEX 5.0 and Standard Report Column

Denes Kubicek - Tue, 2015-04-28 05:20
If you are using the new Page Designer in APEX 5.0, you may search for the "Standard Report Column" in the list of column types. If you switch to the component view, you will see it. In the Page Designer you don't have the old column types any more. You should choose "Plain Text" and activate the option "Escape special characters" on the bottom of the column options.

Categories: Development

Expert Oracle APEX 2nd Edition

Denes Kubicek - Mon, 2015-04-27 12:19
Just submitted first of my two chapters (Tabular Forms) for the new Expert Oracle APEX 2nd Edition. The chapter is covering the most important practices in Tabular Form handling. Also, a couple of neat features like cascading select lists in Tabular Forms - this time using standards only. Still not sure when the book will be published but it should happen soon.

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Categories: Development

Using the Oracle Developer Cloud Service for Git version management for JDeveloper/ADF apps

Shay Shmeltzer - Thu, 2015-04-23 10:35

The Oracle Developer Cloud Service (DevCS for short) provides a complete cloud-hosted development platform for your team. This makes it very easy to start adopting development best practices for your team, and adopt a more agile development approach.

If you haven't tried it yet, you should!

It's simple to get a free trial instance - just sign up for a trial of the Java cloud service (which, by the way, will take you through anOracle ADF based registration wizard) and an instance of the Developer cloud service will be provisioned for you as part of the trial. No need for any additional machines or installations on your side.

I'm going to write a couple of blogs about the various features that DevCS provides such as build and continuous integration, but let's start with the very basic feature we all should be using - source code management.

Every project needs to do version management - even if you are a single developer - and with DevCS there is no server and network setup required. Create a new DevCS project and 10 seconds later you have your git server accessible from any computer that has internet access.

The demo below is using JDeveloper 12.1.3 and the sample summit ADF application that you can get from OTN. 

In the demo I start from scratch and demo how to

  • create a new DevCS project
  • check code into the git repository
  • branch my code to work on fixes
  • submit the changes back
  • how to do code review by team members
  • merge fixes to the master branch


Go ahead try it out with your project and your team.

If you are new to git (which has quickly became the new standard for source management) - check out the Oracle A-Team blog entry that explains a good workflow for team work with git that you can adopt. 

Have any further questions about using the Developer Cloud Service? Ask them on the DevCS community page

Categories: Development

Dynamically refresh a part of a page (PPR) in Oracle MAF

Shay Shmeltzer - Wed, 2015-04-22 10:23

A common question for developers who are just starting with Oracle MAF, especially if they have a background in Oracle ADF, is how do you do a partial page refresh in Oracle MAF.

Partial Page Refresh basically means that I want to change something in my UI based on another event in the UI - for example hide or show a section of the page. (In ADF there is a partialTrigger property for components which is not there in MAF).

In MAF the UI behaves differently - it is not based on JSF after all - the UI directly reflects changes in managed beans as long as it knows about changes there. How does it know about changes? For this you need to enable firing change event notifications. This is actually quite easy to do - just turn on the checkbox in JDeveloper's accessors generation and it will do the job for you.

Here is a quick demo showing you how to achieve  this:

Here is the code used.

in AMX page:

     <amx:tableLayout id="tl1">

      <amx:rowLayout id="rl1">

        <amx:cellFormat id="cf2">

          <amx:listView var="row" showMoreStrategy="autoScroll" bufferStrategy="viewport" id="lv1">

            <amx:listItem id="li1">

              <amx:outputText value="ListItem Text" id="ot2"/>

              <amx:setPropertyListener id="spl1" from="#{'true'}" to="#{viewScope.backingPPR.showIt}"


              <amx:setPropertyListener id="spl2" from="#{'false'}" to="#{viewScope.backingPPR.showIt}"






      <amx:rowLayout id="rl2" rendered="#{viewScope.backingPPR.showIt}">

        <amx:cellFormat id="cf1">

          <amx:commandButton text="commandButton1" id="cb3"/>




in managed bean:

     boolean showIt = false;

    public void setShowIt(boolean showIt) {

        boolean oldShowIt = this.showIt;

        this.showIt = showIt;

        propertyChangeSupport.firePropertyChange("showIt", oldShowIt, showIt);


    public boolean isShowIt() {

        return showIt;


    public void addPropertyChangeListener(PropertyChangeListener l) {



    public void removePropertyChangeListener(PropertyChangeListener l) {



Categories: Development

Enable Real Application Security (RAS) in APEX 5.0

Dimitri Gielis - Mon, 2015-04-20 15:25
Oracle Database 12c introduced Oracle Real Application Security (RAS), the next generation Oracle Virtual Private Database (VPD). In APEX 5.0 RAS is declaratively build-in. Follow the below steps to enable it:

Login to the INTERNAL workspace and go to Manage Instance > Security:

In the Real Application Security section set Allow Real Application Security to Yes.

Next login to the Workspace your Application is build in and go to your Authentication Scheme.
You'll see a new section in there called Real Application Security.

The dropdown has following possibilities:

  • Disabled: Real Application Security does not get used in the application. 
  • Internal Users: APEX creates a RAS session and assumes that all users are internal and passes false via the is_external parameter to dbms_xs_sessions.assign_user. 
  • External Users: RAS session created and true gets passed via the is_external parameter to dbms_xs_sessions.assign_user. 

The last two options enable RAS Mode and make the Dynamic Roles and Namespaces shuttle available. (from the help in APEX) Make sure that the users get privileges to access the application's schema objects. For External Users, you can for example grant database privileges to a RAS Dynamic Application Role and configure it in this authentication scheme as a Dynamic Role. You can also enable roles via a call to apex_authorization.enable_dynamic_groups, e.g. in a Post-Authentication procedure.

You can read more about Oracle Real Application Security and view an entire example how to set up RAS at the database side. I'm still learning about all the RAS features myself too, but thought to already share the above. I plan to include a chapter in my e-book about RAS and APEX 5.0 with a real-case example, as I see a big benefit for using it in a highly regulatory, secure and audited environment.

Categories: Development