Here at work, I've been readying a new server for our scheduling application, which was once known as Netscape Calendar, then became CS&T Corporate Time, then Steltor CorporateTime, next Oracle CorporateTime, and finally morphed into Oracle Calendar. There may be some other iterations in there that I missed, but in any case, it's been passed around the tech world all most as much as WordPerfect. We're currently running on Oracle version 5.4, but I decided that as long as we're moving to a new box, we should upgrade to the latest version I had media for, 126.96.36.199. No, there haven't been that many versions in between, it went from 5.3 to 5.4 to 5.5 to 188.8.131.52. Don't ask me why.
Well, here's where the problem starts. Version 5.x was this slightly arcane Unix-ish app that also ran on Windows. It had its own database, and you could get it set up and running pretty easily in under half an hour.
Version 184.108.40.206 is now part of their "Collaboration Suite", and it requires that you also install Oracle "Single Sign-On Server" and Oracle's "Directory Server" at the very minimum. It was three CDs of stuff, filled with who knows how many things I've got to patch, before I could even start the installation of the new Calendar app. The Directory server installation routine died somewhere along the way, so I wasn't able to continue, and decided, instead, to just give up. I'm not an Oracle DBA, and I'm not about to become one. Why do they insist on taking a nice little calendar application that anyone could run, and making it a super complex system that requires several other pieces their customers don't want to use? They're almost begging me to dump them for Exchange.
As I mulled the best way to get out of this debacle, we contacted Oracle, mostly to gripe at them for this situation, only to learn that the new 220.127.116.11 version does allow us to install it as a standalone application again. Reading through the documentation (ugh) leads me to believe this may indeed be possible, or it may be that the Oracle tech person didn't understand our question afterall, and their idea of standalone is somehow different from mine. In any case, Microsoft products are starting to seem "open" after dealing with this Oracle mess, and I'm starting to wish the product was owned by Netscape again.