Patching Oracle database home 19.5 fails with Copy failed of mgr_help.jar

Today I wanted to patch a 19c client home on Windows, which had a patch level of 19.5 (Windows Bundle Patch: 30151705). I wanted to patch this to (at the time of writing) the latest greatest 19.9 (Window Bundle patch: 31719903).

To my surprise I got this during patching:

Copy failed from 'D:\stage\Oracle 19C client\19c patch\31719903\files\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar' to 'D:\oracle19c\clt19000x64\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar'...
Please verify all applications associated with the Oracle Home 'D:\oracle19c\clt19000x64' are shut down. If this is AIX, please perform solution documented in Note 739963.1 on https://myoraclesupport.oracle.com.

Do you want to retry copying the file? [y|n]
y
User Responded with: Y


Retry copying the file to 'D:\oracle19c\clt19000x64\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar'.

and at the end:

The following actions have failed:
Copy failed from 'D:\stage\Oracle 19C client\19c patch\31719903\files\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar' to 'D:\oracle19c\clt19000x64\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar'...

Do you want to proceed? [y|n]
y
User Responded with: 
Patch 31719903 successfully applied.
Sub-set patch [30151705] has become inactive due to the application of a super-set patch [31719903].
Please refer to Doc ID 2161861.1 for any possible further required actions.
OPatch Session completed with warnings.
Log file location: D:\oracle19c\clt19000x64\cfgtoollogs\opatch\opatch2020-12-23_13-59-28PM_1.log

OPatch completed with warnings.

I found this odd, and searched in the readme of this Bundle Patch where I found this:

Issue 3


        If you upgrde this patch on top 19.5 you will face below issue. Please find the MOS link for more info Doc ID 2628965.1


        NApply was not able to restore the home.  Please invoke the following scripts:
      - restore.[sh,bat]
      - make.txt (Unix only)
        to restore the ORACLE_HOME.  They are located under
        "C:\v\db_home\.patch_storage\NApply\2020-01-14_03-40-41AM"


        UtilSession failed: ApplySession failed in system modification phase... 'ApplySession::apply failed: Copy failed from 'C:\db_home\30445947\files\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar' to 'C:\db_home\network\tools\help\mgr\help\mgr_help.jar'...


        Work around this patch:
        You have to remove mgr_help.jar from your DB_HOME path(C:\db_home\network\tools\help\mgr\help) and apply 19.6 patch.

Now before I utter my complaints about the contents of Issue 3, I must mention that before I did this patch, I backed up the Oracle client home. Just to be sure if anything went wrong, I’m still able to restore my backup.

So there are a few things wrong here:

  • The mentioned Doc ID 2628965.1 did not give results in MOS
  • In the mentioned .patch_storage location I found no restore.bat nor anything like that
  • The Work around is not the whole story, and will not work

In the Oracle client home I saw that mgr_help.jar that I need to remove in the mentioned path, is not a file, but is a name of a directory with the same name, and in that directory there is a file mgr_help.jar. My guess is that the directory names mgr_help.jar and the file mgr_help.jar in that directory both have to be removed. And after that you can patch to a subsequent patch.

So I restored my backup of the Oracle client home first, deleted the directory mgr_help.jar in the Oracle client home and the file mgr_help.jar within and patched again. All was good after that.

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