Install Oracle Database Client Step by Step

To administer your Oracle Database remotely, you will need to connect to the database instance, especially from an SQL*Plus terminal. To be able to do that, you may install the Oracle Database Client and configure it correctly.

The Oracle Client is a software suite allowing you to administer your database remotely, perform basic network configurations, write PL/SQL applications, connect your database to Java, Python type applications, etc.

This guide provides instructions about installing and configuring Oracle Database Client on Windows. The installation process is identical on Linux.

Oracle Database Client requirements

You can easily install the Oracle Client on a 64-bit Windows PC with a modern processor (AMD or Intel), 2GB of RAM and 2GB of free disk space. Oracle Database Client for Windows x64 is supported on the major x64 distributions (Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 10, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2016). We recommend you update Windows before starting the client installation.

You also need to connect the client machine to a network and ensure it is able to communicate with the database server. In some cases, you may add exceptions to your firewall on the server side to allow network traffic between the server and the client.

Moreover, we will make sure that the database server is running correctly and is able to serve remote connections. Apart from network connectivity, a listener must be configured on the database server.

Oracle also recommends creating a standard non-administrative user account on the client machine to run the Windows services for the Oracle home. In this tutorial, we’ll call this user Client.

Oracle Database Client Download

You can download the Oracle Database Client for Windows for free from Oracle’s Technology Network website. We will focus here on version 19c. Oracle recommends using an Oracle Client version that matches the highest Oracle database version that you need to connect to. Using older clients to connect to newer database versions can cause issues.

The Oracle Client is available in 32-bit and 64-bit versions. The choice of which version to install depends on the architecture of your OS.

Downloading the Oracle Client requires an Oracle account. This account will allow you to download other Oracle products and access Oracle Cloud services.

Once you have created your account, select the right version for your needs and accept the Oracle License Agreement to start the download.

Related: Configure & Connect SQL Developer to Oracle Database (19c, 18c, 12c)

Install Oracle Database Client on Windows step by step

After checking the hardware and software prerequisites and downloading the Oracle Database Client software, you can install it by following the simple steps below. Note that the installation process is almost similar for versions 12c, 18c and 19c of Oracle Database Client. So, let’s get started.

1. Navigate to the installation folder and launch the setup file

After downloading the Oracle Client, you can unzip it to a directory of your choice, then run the setup.exe file.

Install Oracle Database Client on Windows 12. Provide Oracle Home user account details

In this step, enter the Oracle Home user credentials (user name and password) you create earlier. You can also create a new account or use a built-in Windows account (for example, the one you use to launch setup.exe).

Install Oracle Database Client on Windows 23. Select a location for Oracle base directory

In this step, you can provide the Oracle base directory which contains the Oracle Client software and related configuration files, then click “Next” to perform prerequisite checks.

Install Oracle Database Client on Windows 3After the prerequisite checks, you should have a summary of your installation configuration. If there is no error, then click on “Install” to install the product. Otherwise, go back to section 1 to audit your environment.

Install Oracle Database Client on Windows 4Then wait a few minutes for the installation wizard to copy the files, perform setup and basic configuration and finish the installation. You can close the window once the installation is complete.

In the next section, we will configure the Oracle Client to connect with the Oracle Database server.

Configuring and testing Oracle Database Client

After installing the Oracle Client, you can use it to access and administer your Oracle database remotely but you will need to configure it first. This configuration can be done with tools available immediately after the client installation. We’ll use Oracle Network Manager to create a database service linked to the remote Oracle Database instance.

1. Launch Oracle Net Manager from Windows Start menu

Configure Oracle Client

2. Add a new  database service

Select “Service Naming” and click on the “+” button.

Configure Oracle Client 23. Give a name to the remote database service name

Select a name (identifier) for the database service name and click on “Next”.Configure Oracle Client 24. Configure the network access protocol

In this step, provide the Oracle Database hostname or IP address and a port number to access the database instance. The port number must be the same as the one configured in the listener at the server side.Configure Oracle Client 45. Specify database instance name

Enter the global database name of the remote database (eg. db.ept.sn) and optionally the connection mode. The database name might be ORCL if the database server is installed with default configurations.

Configure Oracle Client 46. Perform a connectivity test to the remote database

Before finishing the service name configuration, you can run a test to check if you can access the remote database with the parameters you provided. The wizard will try to connect to the server with a default user account, namely Scott.

Configure Oracle Client 6Depending on the database creation options on the server side, Scott account might not exit or is locked.

Configure Oracle Client 7You can change the user account you want to use for the test by clicking on “Change Login”. If the test runs successfully, then you can close the windows and finish the service name configuration.

Configure Oracle Client 8

7. Save the network configuration

Configure Oracle Client 9

Connecting to the remote database using SQL*Plus

You can now access your Oracle Database server from the Client using tools like SQL*Plus or Oracle SQL Developer. For example, you can open a command prompt and connect to the Oracle Database instance with the following command:

sqlplus username/password@service_name

For example

sqlplus hr/hr@client_access

Still having questions on how to install the Oracle Client? Leave a comment below!

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2 thoughts on “Install Oracle Database Client Step by Step”

  1. Hey alec, i followed your blogs for installation of DB , creating the DB and client ocnfiguration.#
    I am stuck at testing the connection from client with the below error “ORA-12514: TNS:listener does not currently know of service requested in connect descriptor”. what should be service name here? can you please help with the step? thanks in advance

    1. Hi Chandra,

      Did you configure a listener on the server side? If so, make sure it is attached to the database and running correctly.

      Make sure you use the correct parameters (host name or IP address and port number)

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