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> Running SQLPLUS without ORACLE DB
post Jun 6 2012, 10:28 AM
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this may be a simple questions but I am not a DBA administrator but rather a penetration tester. I have installed an Express edition of Oracle 11 database on one host (Windows 7) and want to access to from another host (Backtrack Linux based on Debian) from SQL*PLUS Instant client.

While I managed to resolve multiple issues with shared libraries, I am still not able to run the sqlplus command as Oracle. I get the following errors:
oracle@evil:~/instantclient$ sqlplus
SP2-1503: Unable to initialize Oracle call interface
SP2-0152: ORACLE may not be functioning properly

I followed the installation manual by Oracle and also created Oracle user with 2 env. variables set to:

Note that I only installed SQPLUS client on Linux and there is no DB running. The version of sqlplus is

On different forums people advised to set other variables according to the DB installed but I have none.
All I want is to run sqlplus with the IP address, SID, port and username.

Is it feasible to have only SQL*PLUS client installed or am I still missing something else?

Thanks for any hints.

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post Jun 6 2012, 01:04 PM
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SP2-1503: Unable to initialize Oracle call interface

Cause: Indicates a library used by SQL*Plus to communicate with the database failed to initialize correctly.

Action: Check that the Oracle environment or registry entries are consistent and correct. If using the SQL*Plus Instant Client make sure the SQL*Plus and Oracle libraries are from the same release. Make sure you have read access to the libraries.


>> Express edition of Oracle 11 database on one host (Windows 7)

Verify that the Oracle service and the Oracle listener processes are running.

You should see an oracle.exe process from the Windows server.

Before you try accessing Oracle from a client, try accessing Oracle from the server itself.

You can invoke sqlplus directly from the macghine where Oracle resides.

Get that working first!

Also, try these steps:


Hope this helps . . .

Donald K. Burleson
Oracle Press author
Author of Oracle Tuning: The Definitive Reference
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