RCU connection issues (11g/12c)


I have run into a few install issues with OBIEE the last couple years, and some of them have been odd enough I feel necessary to document – Both for my sanity and yours. Today I will cover connectivity issues with the RCU database.

OBIEE 11g (

URG Packets

This one was a real head-scratcher. I would start a fresh install of OBIEE 11g, but in certain network environments coreapplication_obisch1 would fail to start. The error logs would show things like this:

[2013-05-08T15:55:10.000-05:00] [OracleBISchedulerComponent] [ERROR:1] [] [] [ecid: 004r3gaH1w^6iK3Lzmw0yW0000ft000000] [tid: a1d08700]
[nQSError: 17011] SQL statement execution failed. [[
[nQSError: 17001] Oracle Error code: 3135, message: ORA-03135: connection lost contact
Process ID: 24076
Session ID: 15 Serial number: 32281

Running tcpdump on OBIEE server and Database server would show traffic flow, and first glance of firewall logs showed no denies. Then I discovered that some Oracle developer decided to be fancy and use URG packets for just PART of the scheduler component. I had never even heard of URG packets before!

To watch for URG packets using tcpdump, try this on both servers tcpdump 'tcp[13] & 32 != 0'. In my case I saw the packets leave the OBIEE server, but never make it to the database server. Example of packet output:

12:39:44.727770 IP obiee-d03.domainname.48902 > obitest-db1.domainname.ricardo-lm:
Flags [P.U], seq 1168:1169, ack 1804, win 371, urg 1, options [nop,nop,TS val 1642810414
ecr 1621708054], length 1

I tried looking for an Oracle Doc that I had the detailed this issue, but I can no longer find it. I do know it affects Version and later. Jeremy Stretch has a good writeup about URG packets here – Which I enjoy because he mentions that it “isn’t employed much by modern protocols” and it was “surprisingly difficult to find other uses of it in real-world captures”.

OBIEE 12c (

Oracle Advanced Security

During the install of OBIEE 12c components would fail to start. This seemed strange to me because I have many 11g RCUs running on the same database server without issue. The log files did not show anything useful.

Luckily I quickly remembered that the DBA had recently enabled Oracle Advanced Security (encryption/verification), and started digging deeper. I asked the DBA to disable OAS, and sure enough it installed fine. Then I had him enable it again, and I restarted OBIEE – Which failed.

Followed Oracle Support Doc 2121702.1, and the fix was simple: Added EncryptionLevel=1 to both opss_datasource and biplatform_datasource in the odbc.ini file, but this was a post install task. I will still require that the DBAs disable OAS during the install/configure process, until I can get to the point of modifying the odbc.ini file.

Applies to: Business Intelligence Suite Enterprise Edition - Version to [Release 12g] Oracle Database - Enterprise Edition - Version and later

Andrew Martin
Lead BI Infrastructure Architect


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