Empowering Your Slides- Tips with PowerPoint

Ah, yes, it’s that RMOUG Training Days time of the year again!

As a techie, I didn’t put a lot of time into my slides when I first started presenting, thinking I’d simply dazzle them with my amazing knowledge.

What I found is that slide deck skills don’t just help your presentation, they help you tell the story better, which should be the goal of every presenter.  No matter how (more...)

Common Users in #Oracle 12c – what are they good for?

Common vs Local Users

Common vs Local Users

A 12c Multitenant Database is designed to make consolidation easier. The PDBs have not only their application data in separate tablespaces, they also have their application metadata in separate SYSTEM tablespaces. That’s what makes it so easy and fast to unplug a PDB.

The SYSTEM tablespace of the CDB contains the internal metadata that is shared by all PDBs. Internal metadata (the dictionary tables) and internal objects (like the DBMS* packages) (more...)

Oracle Database Cloud (DBaaS) Performance – Part 4 – Network

In the last part of this installment I'll have a brief look at the network performance measured in the Oracle DBaaS environment, in particular the network interface that gets used as private interconnect in case of RAC configuration. The network performance could also be relevant when evaluating how to transfer data to the cloud database.

I've used the freely available "iperf" tool to measure the network bandwidth and got the following results:

[root@test12102rac2 ~]# iperf3 (more...)

Hotsos Symposium 2017: Feb 27 – Mar 2 Dallas, Texas (I’m Afraid of Americans)

In just 3 weeks time, I’ll again have the pleasure of presenting at the awesome Hotsos Symposium in Dallas, Texas. It’s simply the best conference with regard to Oracle performance tuning anywhere. This year, I’ll be presenting on a couple of topics: New Index Features Introduced in Oracle Database 12c Release 2 Oracle Database 12c […]

Exadata Cell Patching – USB I/O Errors

I was playing around with the Exadata X2-2 in the Enkitec lab this weekend, and hit an interesting issue when patching the storage servers.  We were taking the system up to version for testing purposes.  I fired off the patchmgr script, and one of the storage servers failed when beginning the first phase of the patching cycle:

[root@enkdb03 patch_12.]# ./patchmgr -cells cell_group -patch -ignore_alerts

12c Database spfile Parameter alias is not created in ASM Diskgroup (Doc ID 1950769.1)

This is new as of

$ srvctl config database -d hawk
Database unique name: hawk
Database name: hawk
Oracle home: /u01/app/oracle/product/12.1.0/db_1
Oracle user: oracle
Spfile: +DATA/HAWK/PARAMETERFILE/spfile.264.934897017
Password file: +DATA/hawk/orapwhawk
Start options: open
Stop options: immediate
Database role: PRIMARY
Management policy: AUTOMATIC
Server pools: 
Disk Groups: DATA
Mount point paths: 
Type: RAC
Start concurrency: 
Stop concurrency: 
OSDBA group: dba
OSOPER group: 
Database instances: hawk1,hawk2
Configured nodes: hawk01,hawk02

Connecting to PostgreSQL

To connect to PostgreSQL, the following parameters are required:

1. Host or Host Address
2. Port
3. Database Name
4. User
5. Password

As mentioned, in my earlier post, like sqlplus in oracle, PostgreSQL has “psql”.
To connect any PostgreSQL db, you can use

1. psql
2. pgAdmin4
3. phpPgAdmin

Using psql

The default port number for PostgreSQL is 5432.

i) psql -h hostname -p port -d dbname -U username

bash-3.2$ psql -h localhost  (more...)

Oracle DBSAT first experience


Last year in October Oracle released the Oracle Database Security Assessment Tool (DBSAT) to analyzes database configurations and security policies to improve the security in your environment.

Real benefits

  • quickly identify security configuration errors in the database environment
  • lauch Security best practices
  • increase the security level of your Oracle Databases
  • reduce the attack and exposure risk

What does DBSAT check

  • User Accounts, Privileges and Roles
  • Authorization Control
  • Data Encryption
  • Fine-grained Access Control
  • Auditing Policies
  • Database (more...)

SQL Server : Back to School

In my current role about a third of the databases I look after are on SQL Server. The University as a whole has more SQL Server than Oracle, but most of the key systems are on Oracle and that is what my department work on.

I’ve been working with SQL Server since version 7.x, but it has never been a primary focus of mine. As a result, I am an “adequate” SQL Server DBA, but if I (more...)

AskTom TV

Sometimes at conferences I get asked – “How do you know all of the answers for the AskTom questions?”

I’d love to say “Because we’re super smart” Smile but the reality is, we’re just like anyone else with a passion for database technology.  We like to research things, apply our skills and use our experience to solve problems.

So I’ve realised that even though we try to give as much detail as possible when (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...)

ORA-00322: log 41 of thread 2 is not current copy

On a Data Guard Physical Standby, I noticed the following in the alert log:

Fri Jan 13 08:12:39 2017 
Errors in file /u01/app/oracle/diag/rdbms/v1s/V1S1/trace/V1S1_arc1_399861.trc: 
ORA-00322: log 41 of thread 2 is not current copy 
ORA-00312: online log 41 thread 2: '+RECOC1/V1S/ONLINELOG/group_41.3099.912775569' 
ORA-00322: log 41 of thread 2 is not current copy 
ORA-00312: online log 41 thread 2: '+DATAC1/V1S/ONLINELOG/group_41.807.912775567'

If you read metalink note:

Physical standby – alert*log shows ORA-322, ORA-312 intermittently (more...)

ORA-00314: log 42 of thread 2, expected sequence# 37363 doesn’t match 37361

On a Data Guard Physical Standby, I noticed the following in the alert log:

Mon Jan 30 12:37:22 2017
Errors in file /u01/app/oracle/diag/rdbms/v1s/V1S1/trace/V1S1_arc1_105040.trc:
ORA-00314: log 42 of thread 2, expected sequence# 37363 doesn't match 37361
ORA-00312: online log 42 thread 2: '+RECOC1/V1S/ONLINELOG/group_42.15446.927996415'
ORA-00314: log 42 of thread 2, expected sequence# 37363 doesn't match 37361
ORA-00312: online log 42 thread 2: '+DATAC1/V1S/ONLINELOG/group_42.1051.927996411'

If you read metalink note:

ORA-00314: LOG 404 OF (more...)

OUG Ireland 2017 : See You There!

I’m speaking at this years OUG Ireland event! (agenda)

I booked my flights a little later this year, so the flights are super-expensive, about £38 return. 🙂 I’ve also booked a night in the Holiday Inn. That’s right, I’m staying for both days this year! 🙂

Both my sessions are on the first day, so I will have the second day to relax and mingle. 🙂

See you there!



OUG Ireland 2017 : See (more...)

Upgrading to Exadata or later – mind the 32bit packages

This might not be relevant anymore, shame on me for keeping it draft for few months. However, there are still people running an older versions of Exadata storage software and it might still help someone out there.

With the release of Exadata storage software, Oracle announced that some 32bit (i686) packages will be removed from the OS as part of the upgrade.

This happened to me in the summer last (more...)


This is a note I wrote a couple of years ago, but never published. Given the way it’s written I think it may have been the outline notes for a presentation that I was thinking about rather than an attempt to write a little essay. Since it covers a number of points that are worth considering and since I’ve just rediscovered it by accident I thought I’d publish it pretty much as is. Many of (more...)

Oracle Cloud : 17 Months Later

I had a couple of comments on a previous email from an Oracle salesperson. In response to one of them I linked to my Oracle Cloud : First Impressions post. His reply to that was,

@ Tim. You are referring to a review from August 28, 2015? Facts from 17 months ago-Seriously? #OracleCloud has changed *significantly* in 17 months. Suggest you relook/re-evaluate your research.

So here is the update of the stuff I said 17-ish (more...)

Check Listen Ports

Just playing around.

-t: tcp
-u: udp

$ netstat -tpan

(Not all processes could be identified, non-owned process info
 will not be shown, you would have to be root to see it all.)
Active Internet connections (servers and established)
Proto Recv-Q Send-Q Local Address               Foreign Address             State       PID/Program name
tcp        0      0      *                   LISTEN      -
tcp        0      0    *                   LISTEN       (more...)

Scripts to Download Oracle Database 12c Release 2 Documentation

In the past (here, here and here) I already shared with you the scripts I use to download the Oracle Database documentation. The aim of this short post is to reference the scripts I just wrote for the latest version: 12c Release 2.

Happy downloading as well as happy reading!

How to Avoid Disasters with Delphix

Delphix focuses on virtualizing non-production environments, easing the pressure on DBAs, resources and budget, but there is a second use case for product that we don’t discuss nearly enough.

Protection from data loss.

Jamie Pope, one of the great guys that works in our pre-sales engineering group, sent Adam and I an article on one of those situations that makes any DBA, (or an entire business, for that (more...)