Enterprise Manager Silent Installation


This is another post in my series on silent installations using response files. In previous posts, I covered silent installations for the Grid Infrastructure, RDBMS, post installation configuration steps, and creating the listener and database using response files. In this post, I’ll cover installing Enterprise Manager using a response file.

Generating the Response Files

Unlike all the other installations and configurations using response files, for some reason Oracle Corporation in its wisdom has seen fit not to simply provide RSP files for an Enterprise Manager installation – they need to be generated (which probably just extracts them from the zip files, anyway, or am I being far too cynical?!) To do this, use a command like the following:

Of course, I had FTP’ed the files to this host, and there was no execute permission on the em13200p1_linux64.bin file:

So what went wrong this time? This is the line that tells you:

End-of-central-directory signature not found.

The first zip file didn’t copy correctly. You can also see that from the size of the file, around 540 MB instead of the nearly 2 GB it should be. Notice it did extract three response files anyway, but I couldn’t be sure they were complete (and needed to reload the second file anyway!). So I loaded it again, and again three response files were generated. The Advanced Installation and Configuration Guide tells you to only use new_install.rsp, so ignore the other two files for now. Also, notice the spurious error message about /tmp? If I look at that it would seem to have plenty of free space:

Anyway, I told it another directory (/u01/app/em/stage) which I had to create before running the command successfully.

Using the Response File

Of all the response files I’ve worked with during this series of posts, I have to say the EM response file was the pickiest, most annoying file of the lot! When you look at the file, you’ll see a lot of variables associated with a value. When you start editing the file, they are of this sort of format:


Make sure you have either changed all the <string> parts to something else or get rid of them entirely, as the stupid installer will complain about them otherwise! A couple of other issues I found along the way:

  • ORACLE_INSTANCE_HOME_LOCATION – this does NOT mean ORACLE_HOME for the RDBMS, it means the GC_INST directory. If you point it to ORACLE_HOME, it will complain because the directory is not empty. 🙂
  • SOFTWARE_LIBRARY_LOCATION – make sure this is outside the middleware home or it will complain that you have provided an invalid Software Library location.
  • DECLINE_SECURITY_UPDATES – do not leave this at FALSE while SECURITY_UPDATES_VIA_MYORACLESUPPORT is set to FALSE or it will still go looking for updates and complain about an invalid MOS credential format (because that’s empty).

So with all of that preamble, here’s the new_install.rsp file I ended up with (with hostnames and passwords deliberately obfuscated, of course!):

Now let’s try installing it again:

This time it’s complaining about two things. Firstly, I was lazy when I created the database and forgot to change it from US7ASCII. Doesn’t matter in this case as there’s no need for Unicode support in this environment, but if I went back and redid it I’d change it to AL32UTF8 as suggested. Secondly, the database has OPTIMIZER_ADAPTIVE_FEATURES=TRUE. Note this is not a change I made, so it’s complaining about a default setting. To my mind, the installer should change that if it doesn’t like it, but Larry clearly didn’t listen to me. 😉 I have to manually change the parameter and then rerun the script. This time it’s successful BUT it does take a couple of hours to run!

In particular, look at line 408 in that last code box – THAT’S where it waits for a LONG time!!!

Post Installation Steps and Checks

Finally, we need to login as root and run allroot.sh:

And then check the status of the agent as oracle:

And we’re done!


After 22 years of working at Oracle in just about every role except Marketing and Support, I am now working as a Senior Managed Services Consultant with Data Intensity, specializing in Oracle Database technology, High Availability and Disaster Recovery solutions. I am also a member of the OakTable Network, and have presented at RMOUG Training Days, Hotsos Symposia, Oracle OpenWorld conferences, and other user group events. I have co-authored the Expert Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c and Practical Oracle Database Appliance books published by Apress, and am one of the authors of the Building Database Clouds in Oracle Database 12c book published by Addison Wesley.


  1. Hello Pete,

    Thank you for sharing the knowledge. I am trying to use the response file as well, as at some point the GUI Installer does not allow me to introduce password fields.
    One thing I need to figure out is: what are the codes for the plugins listed in the GUI? Where can I find them, to add a couple to the PLUGIN_SELECTION={} ?

    Thank you very much,

  2. I found it in the uncompressed software and figured out the acronyms from the names in the GUI.

    Thank you,

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