Archive for July 2009

Oracle introduces Patch Set Updates (PSU) for Database

On July 14th Oracle announced on MetaLink the release of a new patching strategy for the Oracle Database.

The new Patch Set Updates (PSU) will contain cumulative patches, which contain recommended bugfixes. They will be provided on a the same quarterly basis as the Critical Patch Update (CPU), therefore release months will be January, April, July and October. The Patch Set Update will be described in the release version. E.g. will be the first Patch Set Update (PSU), the second PSU etc.

As described in the release information, the PSU Patch (Patch 8576156) contains all the recommended patch bundles up to July 2009 (Generic, CRS, RAC, Services, DataGuard) as well as the Critical Patch Update July 2009. Moreover 5 additional critical bugfixes are included. OPatch version is required for installation of PSU and the PSU is rolling installable on RAC environments without downtime.

Later PSU patches can be installed on either the base release or on top of any previous PSU. For example, PSU can be installed on top of Base, PSU, PSU

As already mentioned, the customer has the option to install security patches only by installing the quarterly Critical Patch Update or to install security plus non-security bugfixes by installint the Patch Set Update (PSU). As the PSU already contains Critical Patch Update July 2009, the documentation states that future security patches are recommended to be installed not by CPU Patches but through PSU Patches.

Further information can be found in these MetaLink Notes:

854428.1 – Intro to Patch Set Updates (PSU)
850471.1 – Oracle Announces First Patch Set Update For Oracle Database Release 10.2
8576156.8 – Bug 8576156 Patch Set Update (PSU)
854473.1 – Known Issues with this Patch Set Update