Opatch PSU October 2014 Fails..Or “Why Did I Try This Again?”

After upgrading to Oracle, it was a fine moment to also apply the latests PSU, while working at it anyway.

However, after running all the prerequisites and checks who where all claiming success,  the patch did not want to apply at all. Following the log trail is fairly easy to do, and soon  the underlying failing issue was found:

Copyright (c) 2013, Oracle Corporation. All rights reserved.

Oracle Home : /oracle/
Central Inventory : /home/oracle/oraInventory
from : /oracle/
OPatch version :
OUI version :
Log file location : /oracle/

Verifying environment and performing prerequisite checks...
Prerequisite check "CheckActiveFilesAndExecutables" failed.
The details are:

Following executables are active :
UtilSession failed: Prerequisite check "CheckActiveFilesAndExecutables" failed.
Log file location: /oracle/

OPatch failed with error code 73

This led to some steps to take into account BEFORE attempting the patch:

  • The OPatch version is in BOTH the ORACLE DB HOME, as well as in the
  •  Set the ORACLE_BASE variable.
  •  Double check if the file: /oracle/
    actually contains the correct base.
  • If the patch keeps failing: make sure all connections to the database are gone, NO SQLPLUS sessions should be active. Neither any Listeners. One might even shutdown the database.


The file /oracle/ should NOT be in use when the patch wants to roll..if in use, the patch will fail.

To find the process(es) holding a lock on this file, run the following command:

$ sudo /sbin/fuser /oracle/

If anything returns, it is the process number holding the lock. ‘ps -ef |grep

‘ (minus the ‘m’) and the culprit becomes visible.

The RAC processes will be shutdown by the OPatch process, however any sessions will not.

Hope this helps! Happy patching (if such thing is possible 🙂 )

About GemsOfProgramming

Beeing a previously enthusiastic Java programmer, I rolled into the Oracle Database Administration world. It turned out I got a knack for this, and since approx. 2000 I'm a full time DBA. My experiences touches lot of Oracle products like Forms and Reports 9/10, JDAPI, Application Server, Weblogic Fusion and of course: Oracle Enterprise Databases, JavaFX, Swing and other Java components.
This entry was posted in Databases, Technical Stuff, upgrade. Bookmark the permalink.

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