Quick Fix: Broken “Select All” Checkbox in Tabular Forms

I recently came across this problem in APEX 4.1 and thought I’d post the solution here for the benefit of others, since the solution is quite obscure.

Problem

The “select all” checkbox in an APEX 4.1 tabular form only selects the first row.

Solution

Background color for checked row and/or Background color for current row in the report template used by the tabular form must be populated.

These values are passed to the initReport function that initialises tabular form variables. In APEX 4.1, if both of these values are not set, initialisation doesn’t take place, which compromises other tabular form functions, including those for row selection.

The reason I don’t normally set these colour values in my APEX themes is because I prefer to separate structure (templates) from style (CSS). This approach has many benefits particularly when applying multiple skins to the same APEX application, as is the case with my Echo Theme for APEX 4.

It’s a pity that omitting such a trivial and misplaced colour value should have such a negative consequence. Fortunately, the value can be set to “null”, which fixes the problem without committing theme developers to a hard coded colour.

 

Drag and Drop Data into Your APEX Application

APEX has always had a strong link to spreadsheets: it was originally marketed as an easy way to turn spreadsheets into fully functioning applications. But some people just don’t want to give up their spreadsheets! Recently I was approached by APEX Home to develop functionality, using APEX, that allowed users to drag data from a spreadsheet into the application. I’m really pleased with the solution; it makes the most of a number of key features of APEX, is wonderfully user-friendly and provides something of true benefit to end users. For more information and to see a demo click here.

Freelance Oracle APEX Developer for Hire

For the past four years I’ve been working with Oracle APEX and this blog demonstrates just some of the things I’ve done. After working as an APEX contractor for a year, I’ve decided to go it alone and establish myself as a freelance Oracle APEX developer trading as Silvercore Solutions Limited.

There are various benefits to using freelance developers, and APEX lends itself perfectly to this model. As a rapid development tool, APEX allows you to develop a fully functional application in just a few weeks; recruiting an APEX contractor can take much longer. With contractors you are often tied into a long-term contract and also have to pay high agency fees. As a freelance developer I don’t have any of these drawbacks. You can hire me for anything from a day upwards, there are no agency fees and no lengthy contracts and because my overheads are so low my rates are very competitive. In fact, there are so many benefits to using freelance developers I’ve written an article on it here.

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Accessing /i/ using FTP

When I recently upgraded to Windows 7, which includes Internet Explorer 8, I found myself unable to connect to the images directory on Oracle APEX. As I write a lot of JavaScript code I often need to access the /i/ directory. This is only a problem for installations that use an EPG, i.e. Oracle XE (which I’m using) or Oracle 11g.

I would normally connect the first time using web folders in IE which would then add the location to My Network Places in Windows Explorer, however IE8 doesn’t have web folders. When you go to File > Open, there isn’t an option to open as web folder. So I tried to add a new network place myself. Read the rest of this entry »

Installing APEX 3.2.1

I know Oracle APEX 3.2.1 has been out for a little while now, and Oracle APEX 4.0 is on the horizon, but following my recent installation of Oracle XE on Windows 7 and subsequent upgrade to APEX 3.2.1 I thought I’d provide the steps I took to upgrade to version 3.2.1.

The steps provided are for upgrading to APEX 3.2.1 from an earlier version on Oracle XE. However, I’ve also included notes for upgrading and if you are using the EPG on 11g or a HTTP server on10g. Hopefully this will come in handy to anyone starting out with APEX.
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Windows 7 + Oracle XE + Open Source

I recently decided to treat myself to a new laptop (and I also decided to start blogging again as I’ve been a bit busy recently). I’d previously been using a rather old Dell desktop running APEX 3.2.1 and Oracle XE on Windows XP Home edition. Although not officially supported, Oracle XE was running rather happily on Windows XP Home edition. And I’ve heard all the horror stories about Windows Vista, so when I had to choose Vista or Windows 7 I decided to try Windows 7. I was already running XE on an unsupported version of Windows, so why not try another? So I ordered my shiny new laptop with Windows 7 Professional.

My other aim was to use as many open source programs as possible. I’d done my time with Microsoft, my Office version was very old, I haven’t used IE in years (other than for testing purposes) and I wasn’t convinced about iTunes. I also wanted an easy installation and I knew I would need to upgrade APEX which I hadn’t had to do for a few months. I know I was asking a lot, but I was hopeful. Did it work?

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Using jQuery to Fix Broken APEX Interactive Report Drop-Down Menus

Whilst creating a new APEX theme recently I encountered an interesting problem whereby changes I had made to the CSS style sheet were causing the in-built Interactive Report header menus to drop down in the wrong place. The IR drop-down menus were consistently being rendered too far down and to the right of where they were supposed to be. After some investigation I discovered the cause of this problem and came up with a simple fix using jQuery.
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Problem Upgrading to APEX 3.2 – “Resource /i is Locked by Name”

In my last post I wrote about a problem I had using a DOCTYPE in themes running on APEX 3.1.2. I also commented that the underlying cause of the problem had been fixed in the upcoming 3.2 release that was being previewed at apex.oracle.com. When 3.2 was released last week I hastily downloaded it and set about upgrading my 3.1.2 installation. A lot of my current work depends on the included fixes and I was anxious to get back to working on my new themes. Unfortunately I encountered an obscure error during the upgrade that proved hard to track down: “ORA -31110: Action failed as resource /i is locked by name”.  After some digging I finally found the cause of the error and, more importantly, the solution. Read the rest of this entry »

Problems Using a DOCTYPE in APEX Theme Templates

When I began creating new APEX themes one of the first things I did was replace all of the table layouts from the supplied templates with standards compliant XHTML and CSS. Naturally this involved declaring an XHTML DOCTYPE at the beginning of each page template. Unfortunately, adding a valid DOCTYPE had the adverse effect of breaking some of the core APEX Javascript relating to dynamic pull down menus and interactive reports. It seems this disappointing scenario has now been resolved with the forthcoming APEX 3.2. Yay!

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Working with APEX Theme Files using WebDAV

An APEX theme consists of HTML templates and CSS and image files. The HTML templates are imported into an APEX application when a theme is imported, but the external theme CSS and image files must be separately copied to the APEX images directory. Even on local APEX installations the APEX images directory must be accessed via the Embedded PL/SQL Gateway (EPG) or a HTTP web server. WebDAV is perfect for this.

WebDav is an extension to the HTTP protocol that allows users to access and manage files on web servers. Web folders are the Microsoft Windows implementation of WebDAV. A web folder is a very easy way to access the APEX images directory. Read the rest of this entry »