I think part of the problem was that I had all these conflicting sources of information. Bruno, your article was very clear but made no mention of the glibc-2.1.3-stubs.tar, which a co-worker informed me was needed (is that because your article is aimed at RH 7.1 not 7.2?). Then I found the Learning Linux article mentioned above, which seemed to be derived from your article and also mentioned the stubs, so I decided to use that as a basis. Then my co-worker pointed out all these Metalink articles which gave even more information. I think maybe I'm just suffering from information overload!! (I've just now found this
article which is written specifically for Red Hat 7.2 and which claims it's really simple, but makes no mention of the stubs thing either!) I'm also a bit confused about which Java JDK I need - Blackdown or IBM.
The strange thing is that I've installed Oracle many times before, going back to version 7 and it's usually been quite straight-forward.
I think I'll start again from a clean sheet and follow one set of instructions at a time (starting with Bruno's seeing as I've got his attention!
I'll be back!