Testing Lost Writes in Oracle and with Data Guard

Topic: This post is about lost writes in Oracle and in particular on techniques to reproduce and investigate the effects of lost writes in a test environment and with Data Guard

Motivations: Imagine this scenario: a production system has two standbys to protect against disaster and to load balance read-only load (with (more...)

AWR Analytics and Oracle Performance Visualization with PerfSheet4

Topic: This post describes PerfSheet4, a tool for performance analysis aimed at streamlining access and visualization of Oracle's AWR data. The tool is aimed at DBAs and Oracle performance analysts. PerfSheet4 is a spin off of previous original work by Tanel Poder, rewritten and integrated with additional functionality for AWR analysis and with important changes to the user interface.

Context: There is much information in the counters and metrics of Oracle's AWR that can be of substantial help for troubleshooting and for capacity planning. Besides the standard AWR report, time-based analysis is often very useful. However this type of access is (more...)

Active Data Guard and UKOUG 2012

I am looking forward to participating again to the UKOUG annual conference (and also to attend the Sunday's OakTable event). This is for me a great opportunity to meet and discuss with many passionate Oracle experts who regularly attend the conference and also to get up-to-date with the latest technology and news from the Oracle community.
My colleague Marcin and I have just finished preparing our presentation on the subject of Active Data Guard. I have enjoyed the work even though, as it is often the case, this has taken quite some effort from both of us to reach the level of details (more...)

On Command-Line DBA

Topic: A review of the command-line monitoring scripts that I currently use for Oracle.

Command-line is still very useful for Oracle database administration, troubleshooting and performance monitoring. One of the first thins that I do when I want to work with a given Oracle database is to connect as a privileged user with Sql*plus and get information on the active sessions with a script. I will run the script a few times to get an idea of what's happening 'right now' and get a possible starting point for more systematic tuning/troubleshooting if needed.
I liken this approach to examining a few pictures from a remote (more...)

How to Turn Off Adaptive Cursor Sharing, Cardinality Feedback and Serial Direct Read

Scope: New features and improvements on the SQL (cost-based) execution engine are great. However sometimes the need comes to turn some of those new features off. Maybe it's because of a bug that has appeared or simply because we just want consistency, especially after an upgrade. This is often the case when upgrading an application that has been tuned already with heavy usage of hints for critical SQL.The discussion of pros and cons of using hints is a very interesting topic but outside the scope of this entry.

When this is relevant: using a full set of hints (an (more...)