Heap Of Trouble


"But I suppose there's a lot to see everywhere, if only you keep your eyes open."
-- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth 

Oracle Support recently updated what I call a ‘blast from the past’; it involves a subpool memory leak in Oracle 11.2.0.1 and shared cursors. Originally submitted in 2010 this issue was updated the end of last year to reflect the status of ‘Fixed in Product Version 12.1’. There (more...)

“Say What?!?!?”


"The only thing you can do easily is be wrong, and that's hardly worth the effort." 
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

Oracle can lie to you. Not like a disreputable uwed-car salesman but more like the ‘little white lie’ sometimes told in order to hide less-than-desirable parts of the truth. And it’s not Oracle, really, it’s the optimizer and it does it by reporting query plans that may not accurtely report the execution path. (more...)

Export-Import Business


"Don't you know anything at all about numbers?"

"Well, I don't think they're very important," snapped Milo, too embarrassed to admit the truth.

"NOT IMPORTANT!" roared the Dodecahedron, turning red with fury. "Could you have tea for two without
the two -- or three blind mice without the three? Would there be four corners of the earth if there
weren't a four? And how would you sail the seven seas without a seven? (more...)

You’re On A Roll(back)


"I know one thing for certain; it is much harder to tell whether you are lost than whether 
you were lost, for, on many occasions, where you are going is exactly where you are. On 
the other hand, if you often find that where you've been is not at all where you should have 
gone, and, since it's much more difficult to find your way back from someplace you've never 
left, I suggest you go  (more...)

Results, What Results?


"For instance," said the boy again, "if Christmas trees were people and people were Christmas trees,
we'd all be chopped down, put up in the living room, and covered in tinsel, while the trees opened our presents."
"What does that have to do with it?" asked Milo.
"Nothing at all," he answered, "but it's an interesting possibility, don't you think?"
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth 

Oracle offers a results cache in the (more...)

Hakan You Do That?


"Everyone understands numbers. No matter what language you speak,
they always mean the same thing. A seven is a seven anywhere in the world." 
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth 

An interesting problem submitted to Oracle Support involves a possibly little-known aspect of a table called the Hakan Factor. The problem description, in brief, states that the Hakan Factor isn’t preserved for a partitioned table when a single partition is compressed. Why is this a (more...)

You’re Not Allowed


"Have you ever heard a blindfolded octopus unwrap a cellophane-covered bathtub?"
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth 

Recently a thread in an Oracle forum I frequent asked the following question:

“… is there a way to restrict the login to database only from the application which we have made.”

That, of course, is not an easy question to answer as several possibilities emerge with none of them foolproof. Let’s look at those options.

The (more...)

“But, You Don’t Understand…”


"Let me try once more," he said in an effort to explain. "In other words--"

"You mean you have other words?" cried the bird happily. "Well, by all means, use them.
You're certainly not doing very well with the ones you have now."
- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth 

A seemingly constant battle in many forums is getting those who post questions to be clear in what they are asking. Some questions are (more...)

What’s In A (User) Name?


"So each one of you agrees to disagree with whatever the other one agrees with,
but if you both disagree with the same thing, aren't you really in agreement?"
- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

Recently a blog post caught my attention, primarily because it was talking about primary keys in a database. In the post an interesting situatino was presented, one involving using a username column as the key. The point was made (more...)

It Isn’t The Index


"If you want sense, you'll have to make it yourself."
- Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

One of the more confusing statistics in Oracle is, apparently, one called the clustering factor. Associated with an index (as evidenced by the columns in DBA_INDEXES) it’s actually dependent on the table data, more specifically the distance between ‘jumps’ for a given index key. Let’s define a ‘jump’ to be the number of blocks between rows containing the (more...)