Oracle Forms Tabular Data-Blocks in APEX

Oracle Forms Tabular Data-Blocks in APEX

I’ve worked with Oracle Forms for about 13 years and so when I first looked at learning APEX my thought process was “I used to do this in Oracle Forms, how do I do it in APEX?”. My early learning consisted of looking for concepts in which I was familiar with and then learning how to achieve it in APEX.

One of the most commonly used components I used in Oracle Forms were the multi-row tabular style data-blocks. This is often used for representing multiple rows of data in a “report style” layout. It’s a good choice for showing the results of a search filter or child records from a selected parent record.

The closest alternative in APEX is the Tabular Form. My ideas are illustrated in a video blog which shows the creation an APEX Tabular Form region and then using it to insert and modify table data.

Before (Oracle Forms)


After (APEX)


APEX has several advantages over Forms.

  • Extremely modern user interface.
  • Highly configurable wizard supporting multiple primary keys, ROWIDs and supporting several ways of obtaining a primary key value.
  • Customisable using several templates and CSS.
  • Supports multi-row deletes.
  • Supports row pagination.
  • Supports Row Level Validation with “go to error” quick links.
  • Supports branching to other pages following change.
  • Uncluttered toolbar menu; only implementing the relevant features for the tabular form.

Matt Mulvaney Contributor
Senior Oracle APEX Development Consultant , Explorer UK Ltd

Matt is an experienced APEX solution designer having designed numerous complex systems using a broad range of Oracle Technologies. Building on his previous experience of Oracle Forms & PL/SQL, he is entirely focused on providing functionally rich APEX solutions. Matt promotes APEX as a software platform and openly shares best practises, techniques & approaches. Matt has a passion for excellence and enjoys producing high quality software solutions which provide a real business benefit.

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