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Amazon Relational Database Service
User Guide (API Version 2014-10-31)

Upgrading the Oracle DB Engine

When Amazon RDS supports a new version of Oracle, you can upgrade your DB instances to the new version. Amazon RDS supports the following upgrades to an Oracle DB instance:

  • Major Version Upgrades – from 11g to 12c.

  • Minor Version Upgrades

You must perform all upgrades manually, and an outage occurs while the upgrade takes place. The time for the outage varies based on your engine version and the size of your DB instance.

For information about what Oracle versions are available on Amazon RDS, see Appendix: Oracle Database Engine Release Notes.

Overview of Upgrading

Amazon RDS takes two DB snapshots during the upgrade process. The first DB snapshot is of the DB instance before any upgrade changes have been made. If the upgrade doesn't work for your databases, you can restore this snapshot to create a DB instance running the old version. The second DB snapshot is taken after the upgrade completes.

Note

Amazon RDS only takes DB snapshots if you have set the backup retention period for your DB instance to a number greater than 0. To change your backup retention period, see Modifying a DB Instance Running the Oracle Database Engine.

After an upgrade is complete, you can't revert to the previous version of the database engine. If you want to return to the previous version, restore the DB snapshot that was taken before the upgrade to create a new DB instance.

If your DB instance is in a Multi-AZ deployment, both the primary and standby replicas are upgraded. The primary and standby DB instances are upgraded at the same time, and you experience an outage until the upgrade is complete.

Major Version Upgrades

Amazon RDS supports the following upgrades to an Oracle DB instance.

Current Version Upgrade Path

11.2.0.4.v1, 11.2.0.4.v3 – 11.2.0.4.v12

Upgrade directly to 12.1.0.2.v8.

11.2.0.2.v3 – 11.2.0.2.v7

First upgrade to 11.2.0.4.v12, then upgrade to 12.1.0.2.v8.

Oracle Minor Version Upgrades

You must modify the DB instance manually to perform a minor version upgrade. Minor version upgrades do not occur automatically.

The following minor version upgrades are not supported.

Current Version Upgrade Not Supported

12.1.0.2.v6

12.1.0.2.v7

12.1.0.2.v5

12.1.0.2.v7

12.1.0.2.v5

12.1.0.2.v6

Oracle SE2 Upgrade Paths

The following table shows supported upgrade paths to Standard Edition Two (SE2). For more information about the License Included and Bring Your Own License (BYOL) models, see Oracle Licensing.

Your Existing Configuration Supported SE2 Configuration

12.1.0.2 SE2, BYOL

12.1.0.2 SE2, BYOL or License Included

12.1.0.1 SE1, BYOL or Licence Included

12.1.0.1 SE, BYOL

12.1.0.2 SE2, BYOL or License Included

11.2.0.4 SE1, BYOL or Licence Included

11.2.0.4 SE, BYOL

12.1.0.2 SE2, BYOL or License Included

Option and Parameter Group Considerations

Option Group Considerations

If your DB instance uses a custom option group, in some cases Amazon RDS can't automatically assign your DB instance a new option group. For example, this occurs when you upgrade from version 12.1.0.1 SE or SE1 to version 12.1.0.2 SE2, or when you upgrade to a new major version. In those cases, you must specify a new option group when you upgrade. We recommend that you create a new option group, and add the same options to it as in your existing custom option group.

For more information, see Creating an Option Group or Making a Copy of an Option Group.

Parameter Group Considerations

If your DB instance uses a custom parameter group, in some cases Amazon RDS can't automatically assign your DB instance a new parameter group. For example, this occurs when you upgrade from version 12.1.0.1 SE or SE1 to version 12.1.0.2 SE2, or when you upgrade to a new major version. In those cases, you must specify a new parameter group when you upgrade. We recommend that you create a new parameter group, and configure the parameters as in your existing custom parameter group.

For more information, see Creating a DB Parameter Group or Copying a DB Parameter Group.

Testing an Upgrade

Before you perform a major version upgrade on your DB instance, you should thoroughly test your database and all applications that access the database for compatibility with the new version. We recommend that you use the following procedure.

To test a major version upgrade

  1. Review the Oracle upgrade documentation for the new version of the database engine to see if there are compatibility issues that might affect your database or applications. For more information, see Database Upgrade Guide in the Oracle documentation.

  2. If your DB instance uses a custom option group, create a new option group compatible with the new version you are upgrading to. For more information, see Option Group Considerations.

  3. If your DB instance uses a custom parameter group, create a new parameter group compatible with the new version you are upgrading to. For more information, see Parameter Group Considerations.

  4. Create a DB snapshot of the DB instance to be upgraded. For more information, see Creating a DB Snapshot.

  5. Restore the DB snapshot to create a new test DB instance. For more information, see Restoring From a DB Snapshot.

  6. Modify this new test DB instance to upgrade it to the new version, by using one of the following methods:

  7. Perform testing:

    • Run as many of your quality assurance tests against the upgraded DB instance as needed to ensure that your database and application work correctly with the new version.

    • Implement any new tests needed to evaluate the impact of any compatibility issues that you identified in step 1.

    • Test all stored procedures, functions, and triggers.

    • Direct test versions of your applications to the upgraded DB instance. Verify that the applications work correctly with the new version.

    • Evaluate the storage used by the upgraded instance to determine if the upgrade requires additional storage. You might need to choose a larger instance class to support the new version in production. For more information, see DB Instance Class.

  8. If all tests pass, then perform the upgrade on your production DB instance. We recommend that you don't allow write operations to the DB instance until you confirm that everything is working correctly.

AWS Management Console

To upgrade an Oracle DB instance by using the AWS Management Console, you follow the same procedure as when you modify the DB instance. For more detailed instructions, see Modifying a DB Instance Running the Oracle Database Engine.

CLI

To upgrade an Oracle DB instance by using the AWS CLI, call the modify-db-instance command with the following parameters:

  • --db-instance-identifier – the name of the db instance.

  • --engine-version – the version number of the database engine to upgrade to.

  • --allow-major-version-upgrade – to upgrade major version.

  • --no-apply-immediately – apply changes during the next maintenance window. To apply changes immediately, use --apply-immediately. For more information, see The Impact of Apply Immediately.

You might also need to include the following parameters. For more information, see Option Group Considerations and Parameter Group Considerations.

  • --option-group-name – the option group for the upgraded db instance.

  • --db-parameter-group-name – the parameter group for the upgraded db instance.

Example

The following code upgrades a DB instance. These changes are applied during the next maintenance window.

For Linux, OS X, or Unix:

Copy
aws rds modify-db-instance \ --db-instance-identifier <mydbinstance> \ --engine-version <12.1.0.2.v8> \ --option-group-name <default:oracle-ee-12-1> \ --db-parameter-group-name <default.oracle-ee-12.1> \ --allow-major-version-upgrade \ --no-apply-immediately

For Windows:

Copy
aws rds modify-db-instance ^ --db-instance-identifier <mydbinstance> ^ --engine-version <12.1.0.2.v8> ^ --option-group-name <default:oracle-ee-12-1> ^ --db-parameter-group-name <default.oracle-ee-12.1> ^ --allow-major-version-upgrade ^ --no-apply-immediately

API

To upgrade an Oracle DB instance by using the Amazon RDS API, call the ModifyDBInstance action with the following parameters:

  • DBInstanceIdentifier – the name of the db instance.

  • EngineVersion – the version number of the database engine to upgrade to.

  • AllowMajorVersionUpgrade – set to true to upgrade major version.

  • ApplyImmediately – whether to apply changes immediately or during the next maintenance window. To apply changes immediately, set the value to true. To apply changes during the next maintenance window, set the value to false. For more information, see The Impact of Apply Immediately.

You might also need to include the following parameters. For more information, see Option Group Considerations and Parameter Group Considerations.

  • OptionGroupName – the option group for the upgraded db instance.

  • DBParameterGroupName – the parameter group for the upgraded db instance.

Example

The following code upgrades a DB instance. These changes are applied during the next maintenance window.

Copy
https://rds.amazonaws.com/ ?Action=ModifyDBInstance &AllowMajorVersionUpgrade=true &ApplyImmediately=false &DBInstanceIdentifier=mydbinstance &DBParameterGroupName=default.oracle-ee-12.1 &EngineVersion=12.1.0.2.v8 &OptionGroupName=default:oracle-ee-12-1 &SignatureMethod=HmacSHA256 &SignatureVersion=4 &Version=2014-10-31 &X-Amz-Algorithm=AWS4-HMAC-SHA256 &X-Amz-Credential=AKIADQKE4SARGYLE/20131016/us-west-1/rds/aws4_request &X-Amz-Date=20131016T233051Z &X-Amz-SignedHeaders=content-type;host;user-agent;x-amz-content-sha256;x-amz-date &X-Amz-Signature=087a8eb41cb1ab5f99e81575f23e73757ffc6a1e42d7d2b30b9cc0be988cff97

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