Oracle iFS Option
In version 8.1.7 of the database, Oracle
has provided a special, extensible file system for managing and accessing
content, called the Internet File System. With iFS, companies could use an
existing Oracle database as a unified repository for storing different content
(including audio, video, e-mail, formatted text). Over time, there were several
iFS Release 18.104.22.168
iFS Release 1.1.9
iFS Release 9.0.1
iFS Release 9.0.2
The latest 9iFS version supports the Windows File System,
Network File System (Unix), Apple File Protocol, HTTP, FTP protocols and
document formats like Plain Text, Word, Excel, HTML, PDF. Previously, the iFS
were shipped separately. Eventually, the iFS became part of the Oracle 9iAS
(Application Server) software under a 'Supplemental CD's' section.
In the latest version, Oracle decided
to change the name from iFS to the Oracle Content Management SDK, keeping iFS under
the 9iAS software product.
The Oracle iFS instance is the name for the complete
administrative iFS unit. The iFS instance consists of the several main
components such as:
Domain - administrative unit for all domain nodes. The iFS Domain consist of
iFS Repository, iFS Nodes and iFS Domain Controler.
Repository - set
of Java classes and tables that manage the data in the 9iFS schema
Domain Controller - iFS monitoring and controlling software for domain
Node - iFS process running on one physical host
Protocols - protocol servers handling the communication process between client
and iFS repository (HTTP, SMB, FTP, NFS, AFP, SMTP, IMAP)
Services - user session process running on the node (Agents, Parsers,
Once iFS is installed and the iFS elements are
up and running, iFS client can start using the shared file system.
Secure access to the iFS server running on
Windows NT/2000 is controlled with the Windows security system. Secure access to the iFS server running on Windows NT/2000 is double-checked.
It is first with the Windows security system and then, after a successful logon
to the Windows domain or server, the login is checked against the iFS security.
If we do not want to handle the double security system, we can simply use a Web
Interface, where the user id is checked only once against the iFS security
with iFS running on a UNIX server; the user needs only a valid iFS
Often used praxis from the iFS client side is
to map the shared iFS resource as an "O" drive. Main advantage of iFS
is that access to iFS over standard FTP, SMB, HTTP, IMAP4, AFP and NFS clients is
provided without need to install anything on the client side.
The latest iFS version includes several
new features such as:
versioning (in the database we will have several
document versions saved, and new changes will create a new database entry
rather to replace existing one)
check-in/check-out control which allows multiple
users to share core documents
enhanced searching compatibilities and many
others such as e-mail change notification
automatic expiration for old files
auto compress for documents and format changing
on the fly
support for symbolic links
multilevel security with integrated anti-virus