Using Ansible for executing Oracle DBA tasks.

This post looks like I am jumping on the bandwagon of IT orchestration like a lot of people are doing. Maybe I should say ‘except for (die hard) Oracle DBA’s’. Or maybe not, it up to you to decide.

Most people who are interested in IT in general will have noticed IT orchestration has gotten attention, especially in the form of Puppet and/or Chef. I _think_ IT orchestration has gotten important with the rise of (more...)

Add Color to VIM?

In Fedora 20, documents have no color coding when you edit them with vi or vim. That’s because Fedora installs vim-minimal by default. You can check what’s running with the following command at a shell prompt in the terminal:

rpm -qa | grep vim

It should print the following to console:

vim-minimal-7.4.179-1.fc20.x86_64

You can download and install vim with the enhanced version by using the following syntax:

sudo yum install vim-enhanced

Grid logging in 12.1.0.2

Most of the talk about Oracle’s release of 12.1.0.2 is about the InMemory feature, but more things have changed, for example some essential things about loggin in the Grid Infrastructure have changed. Normally in Oracle Grid Infrastructure logging for Grid components was done in $GI_HOME:

oracle@dm01db01(*gridinfra):/home/oracle> cd $ORACLE_HOME/log/`hostname -s`/
oracle@dm01db01(*gridinfra):/u01/app/12.1.0.2/grid/log/dm01db01>

There we have the main alert log for GI and several subdirectories for the GI binaries where they write (more...)

Oracle IO wait events: db file sequential read

(the details are investigated and specific to Oracle’s database implementation on Linux x86_64)

Exadata IO: This event is not used with Exadata storage, ‘cell single block physical read’ is used instead.
Parameters:
p1: file#
p2: block#
p3: blocks

Despite p3 listing the number of blocks, I haven’t seen a db file sequential read event that read more than one block ever. Of course this could change in a newer release.

Implementation:
One of the important things (more...)

Wrapping SQL*Plus

One annoying thing from installing Oracle Database 11g on Fedora, was that the up arrows for command history didn’t work. I decided to fix that today after seeing Lutz Hartmann’s article on rlwrap. Unfortunately, the epel (Extra Packages for Enterprise Linux) package he recommended doesn’t run on Fedora 20. You can read my tale of woe, or skip to the .bashrc function that fixed it when I installed only rlwrap.

Attempting it on yum, (more...)

Viewing ASM trace files in VIM: Which Way Do You Use?

cafepress_womens_cap_sleeve_tshirt

A couple of people have asked me recently about a classic problem that most DBAs know: how to view ASM trace files in the VIM editor when the filenames start with a + character. To my surprise, there are actually quite a few different ways of doing it. Since it’s come up, I thought I’d list a few of them here… If you have another one to add, feel free to comment. I know that (more...)

Clobbering grub.conf is Bad

I’m sharing this in the hope of saving someone from an unwelcome surprise.

Background

I recent upgraded an Exadata system from 11.2.3.2.1 to 11.2.3.3.1. Apart from what turns out to be a known bug[1] that resulted in the patching of the InfiniBand switches “failing”, it all seemed to go without a snag. That’s until I decided to do some node failure testing…

Having forced a node (more...)

Oracle 12.1.0.2 ASM Filter Driver: Advanced Format Fail

wrong-way

In my previous post on the subject of the new ASM Filter Driver (AFD) feature introduced in Oracle’s 12.1.0.2 patchset, I installed the AFD to see how it fulfilled its promise that it “filters out all non-Oracle I/Os which could cause accidental overwrites“. However, because I was ten minutes away from my summer vacation at the point of finishing that post, I didn’t actually get round to writing about what (more...)

How to get insights into the Linux Kernel

This is probably as much a note-to-self as it can possibly be. Recently I have enjoyed some more in-depth research about how the Linux kernel works. To that extent I started fairly low-level. Theoretically speaking, you need to understand the hardware-software interface first before you can understand the upper levels. But in practice you get by with less knowledge. But if you are truly interested in how computers work you might want to consider reading (more...)

Changes in Oracle Linux 7

The following is a list of changes I noted during installation of Oracle Linux 7. I imagine the same will apply to Red Hat Enterprise Linux 7, but I haven’t verified that to be the case.

Setting the Hostname

I was accustomed to updating /etc/sysconfig/network with the hostname of my machine as documented here for Oracle Linux 7. I did this and was then surprised to find that my hostname was not picked up. On returning (more...)

Upgrading clustered Grid Infrastructure to 12.1.0.2 from 12.1.0.1.3

Oracle 12.1.0.2 is out, after lots of announcements the product has finally been released. I had just extended my 12.1.0.1.3 cluster to 3 nodes and was about to apply the July PSU when I saw the news. So why not try and upgrade to the brand new thing?

What struck me at first was the list of new features … Oracle’s patching strategy has really changed over time. I (more...)

Oracle 12.1.0.2 ASM Filter Driver: First Impressions

This is a very quick post, because I’m about to log off and take an extended summer holiday (or vacation as my crazy American friends call it… but then they call football  “soccer” too). Before I go, I wanted to document my initial findings with the new ASM Filter Driver feature introduced in this week’s 12.1.o.2 patchset.

Currently a Linux-only feature, the ASM Filter Driver (or AFD) is a replacement for ASMLib (more...)

Implications of threaded_execution = true in 12c

I had an interesting discussion as part of my latest presentation at the UKOUG RAC CIA & Database Combined SIG. Part of my talk was about the implications of the new threaded execution model in Oracle.

Since “we do not use Windows” (except for gaming) I can’t compare the Windows thread model to the new 12c implementation on UNIX. There are however interesting implications when switching to the new model, some of which I’d like (more...)

Setting up Direct NFS on Oracle 12c

Direct NFS is a great feature that I have finally had the time to investigate further. Since I always forget how to set it up and I didn’t find blog posts about this subject elsewhere I decided to put something together.

In this configuration I am using a virtual machine named server1 to export a directory to server2. Oracle is not as lenient as myself and may have certain support requirements when it comes to (more...)

Oracle Linux and MySQL : Progress

A few months ago I wrote about some MySQL on Oracle Linux migrations we were working through. It’s been a long time coming, but last weekend was the go-live for this batch of migrations. So far so good! :)

Most of the elapsed time since my last post on this subject has been spent with the developers and users testing the migrations.

The process has taken a bit longer than some people would have liked. Rather (more...)

Fedora VMWare Upgrade

New update of VMWare came out, and it is time to upgrade VMWare Tools. Here’s an update on the instructions for upgrading VMWare Tools:

  1. Navigate to the VMWare Menu, choose Virtual Machine and in the drop down menu Install VMWare Tools. This will mount a virtual CD in the Oracle Unbreakable Linux virtual machine and it launches the following dialog box:
VMware962

  1. Open a terminal session by right clicking anywhere in the desktop, and then choose (more...)

Why does the Optimiser not respect my qb_name() hint?

I recently was involved in an investigation on a slow-running report on an Exadata system. This was rather interesting, the raw text file with the query was 33kb in size, and SQL Developer formatted the query to > 1000 lines. There were lots of interesting constructs in the query and the optimiser did its best to make sense of the inline views and various joins.

This almost lead to a different post about the importance (more...)

Getting the database parameters from a spfile

There’s been some debate about how to get the parameters from a spfile. A spfile is a binary version of the parameter file of the Oracle database.

I added to the debate that my experience is that there are is some weirdness with using the strings command on the spfile. The discussion was on twitter, I didn’t add that doing that it most of the time meant it costed more time than I saved from (more...)

Using git for revision control for Oracle DBAs

This post is aimed at people working with code, scripts and/or any other means of textual files. I try to give my point of view on revision control and git as revision control system in particular.

The first thing you should ask yourself is: why using revision control in the first place? I think that’s a good and fair question. A lot of people I talk to see revision control as something that’s for developers (more...)

Mounting VMWare-Volumes/Disks with Debian

Some time ago a vmware server did not recognize any more a data disk. This disk was formatted with vmfs v3 (enter the vmware server via ssh and type mount..). First thing i did, was creating an image of this disk, to play around without any danger of data loss.

There is a good article how to mount vmfs, but on debian i had to install the package otherosfs.

After i installed this (more...)