Changing user passwords and expiry in Azure AD

We've now had users created for a while in Azure AD - and here I'm talking about users that have been created directly in Azure AD - not anything that has been replicated from some 'normal' AD on prem.

What we've discovered (surprisingly....) is that the passwords on these accounts expire and have to be changed (after we think 90 days by default - but not 100% sure on that).

This is an issue (more...)

Installing Zabbix into Azure using a MySQL PaaS

For those of you that don't know Zabbix is an open source monitoring tool very much like Nagios (which i think is slightly better known).I blogged a while ago about how to set this up using Oracle as the back end system here but now I'm having to set this up in Azure I've gone a different route.

There is no Oracle PaaS solution in Azure (and likely never will be) however there are (more...)

Oracle ASM in Azure corruption – follow up

A few weeks ago i was contacted by the ASM product manager in a follow up to my post on the corruption issues i'd had with ASM in Azure. We had a conversation about the issues that I'd had and he told me that Oracle were going to be doing some more investigation into the issue with Microsoft as  it was believed that the issue really shouldn't have happened in the first place (even ignoring (more...)

Patching linux servers in Microsoft Azure

As part of our cloud migration we have to still manage a large number of traditional style machines (IaaS in new world terminology). These cover both windows and linux platforms - and actually in our case a mix of many different flavours of linux.

There are a number of ways to deal with patching - basically the exactly the same as you could do today on premise - the cloud doesn't change any of that. (more...)

Sending emails via smtp relay from azure via office365

Not the snappiest of titles i know - and actually quite a dry post without really having any screenshots -but hey they can't all look great can they......

This is just a short summary of what i had to do to set up an smtp relay on a redhat linux machine running in the azure cloud - utilizing a mail account in office365. This would enable us to send emails directly from other machines in (more...)

Joining windows azure machines to Azure Active directory (AAD) using AADDS

So my foray into the cloud world continues and I've been getting more and more involved in the windows server aspects of this. Now i know if we were truly doing proper full on cloud we wouldn't be using traditional servers we'd be using all PaaS components and we would be truly 'serverless'. However reality means that this isn't the case and a lot of our migrations to the cloud will involve retaining traditional style (more...)

Reverese tunneling for DBA’s

After quite a long time I'm finally writing up a new post for your digestion. The reason for the long gap is that I'm going through something of a career change at the moment and I'm essentially walking away from DBA work to go forth as a cloud guy - more on that in a later post......

Anyway I thought I would share another useful connectivity technique (I'm not going to call it hacking although (more...)

Connection manager – why does this seem to be a secret feature?

While looking into an issue with not having routing available to a certain network one of my colleagues suggested connection manager - something he just found when googling the problem. Now I'd heard of this from many years ago ( i thought with reference to trying to communicate with some other strange network type) but i knew basically nothing about it.

I was initially just going to suggest how we got round this sort of (more...)

Oracle ASM in Azure with premium (SSD) disks – warning

So after following my previous notes on installing ASM into Azure, i repeated everything but using premium (SSD) disks and all appeared to be well - until that is i did a data pump load into it and put some stress on the system - then (and this was consistently every time) this happened....

ORA-00354: corrupt redo log block header 
ORA-00353: log corruption near block 196020 change 378858 time 02/23/2017 23:54:17 
ORA-00312: online log 2 (more...)

Oracle ASM in Azure

Now we're doing more stuff in the cloud I've had to dust off my old sysadmin hat and start doing more of the stuff I'd forgotten about from when i was a sysadmin (10+ years ago). This week I've been setting up ASM instances in Azure so i had to do all the work around making the disk devices available to ASM.

On premises I'd just pick up the phone and say create devices for (more...)

File movement in and out of Azure

After a busy couple of weeks i finally got round to writing something new up - not strictly directly database related but If you're doing any work with Azure - getting files in and out of it is a key point of understanding. In my case i wanted to copy over some tarred up oracle software trees from on premise that we have fully patched up to date and then put onto azure servers using (more...)

Azure SQL PaaS – first look

It's been a somewhat 'interesting' week- with Oracle's frankly outrageous announcement that they are doubling the licence cost to host Oracle in Azure and AWS we've been looking again at our hosting strategy in general and have now made SQL Server our primary port. In light of that I've now been looking further into the SQL server offerings available to us.

We already have various version of SQL in use on premise in out 'normal' (more...)

Oracle image in Azure – part 2…….

The last post prompted a couple of suggestions (thanks Tim) and talking it through with a colleague at work (thanks John) and it seems i now understand what's going on.

So it seems as i suggested Oracle has released a special 'cloud' version of the database to Azure and some 12.2 features seem to have been backported to it.

The key one being Tim's suggestion

So here is a further demo...

Lets check what (more...)

Oracle uploaded a non working image to Azure cloud?

It's been a while since my last post, just seem to get out of the habit of posting and have been preparing a presentation which i'm due to give Wednesday at UKOUG but had to post this topic I've discovered over the past few days.

Initially i resisted posting as i thought i must have missed something but it seems not......

So as you may have been aware we've been using Azure quite a bit (more...)

why is sql monitor not working…..?

Today i've had to look at our nightmarish datawarehouse to try and tune some bad SQL.

Well bad does not really go far enough to be honest - it's a multi layered view with thousands of lines of SQL in total...

Here is the top bit of the execution plan - if this doesn't scare you then you've never had to tune something this big......

So just to be clear it thinks its getting 74P (more...)

Startup trigger and wallet ‘quirk’

Many of you out there will be using dataguard and i guess most of you will have some variation of the startup trigger below

on database
role varchar2(40);
select database_role into role from v$database;
if role = 'PRIMARY' then
end if;

So basically if i startup and i'm the primary start the service MYNAME_DG - all clients (more...)

V$PARAMETER nls bug ?

Today we had a strange issue when doing a standby switchover related to NLS - we had built the standby with the exact same NLS_SETTINGS in the spfile as the primary - see list below


However we noticed this behaviour:


SQL> select sysdate from dual;

02-DEC-2016 09:28:26


SQL> select sysdate from dual;


But the parameters at the database level in (more...)

Characterset again – this is beyond a joke now

So another week another characterset problem, this time it cleverly disguised itself to start with......

Here is what i was initially presented with

rman TARGET sys/password@DEMO AUXILIARY sys/password@DEMOS

run {
allocate channel prmy1 type disk;
allocate channel prmy2 type disk;
allocate auxiliary channel aux1 type disk;
duplicate target database for standby from active database
set cluster_database='false'
set db_unique_name='DEMOS'
set control_files='+DATA'
set db_create_file_dest='+DATA'
set db_recovery_file_dest='+FRA'
set fal_server='DEMOS'
set db_recovery_file_dest_size='45G'
set local_listener='(DESCRIPTION =(ADDRESS = (PROTOCOL = (more...)

SSO to zabbix with Azure AD

This is a very quick follow up to the last post and uses the same technique to enable SSO to the zabbix application.

The initial steps that need to be followed in Azure AD are exactly the same as the last post - if you want that again its here

To enable the same thing in zabbix you simple need to go to the following screen in the application

And populate the following information - (more...)

SSO to cloud control 13c with Azure active directory

So more on this cloud stuff then.....

Well in this case the work is just as applicable to a normal on premises configuration with 'standard' Active directory (other types of ldap directory can be used but i guess AD is the most widespread).

In this particular case (a follow up to my post on configuring HA for cloud control in Azure) i now want to enable single sign on to this cloud control using (more...)