WebLogic 12cR3 articles

WebLogic 12cR3 was released towards the end of last week, so this weekend I had an install-fest.

I also did some minor amendments to some existing articles.

From a newbie administrator perspective, like me, there is very little difference between WebLogic 12cR2 and 12cR3, so most of the time it is business as usual.

To coincide with this new release, Packt are doing a $10 promotion for WebLogic eBooks (WebLogic Partner Community EMEA).



Automatic Diagnostics Repository (ADR) in Oracle Database 12c

There’s a neat little change to the Automatic Diagnostics Repository (ADR) in Oracle 12c. You can now track DDL operations and some of the messages that would have formerly gone to the alert log and trace files are now written to the debug log. This should thin out some of the crap from the alert log hopefully. Not surprisingly, ADRCI has had a minor tweak so you can report this stuff.

You can see what I wrote about it here:

Of course, the day-to-day usage remains the same, as discussed here:



BGOUG Spring 2014 : Summary

I know I keep calling it the “spring” conference, but in my mind the two BGOUG conferences are always spring and autumn. This year the “spring” conference was a little late, hence my apparently strange blog titles. 🙂

I was initially planning to get a taxi from Sandanski to Sofia airport. Fortunately Sve and Mimi were driving back at the same time, so I got a lift with them, which was much better company.

The flight from Sofia to Munich went as planned. After a 110 minute layover in Munich, it was time for the last leg of the journey to Birmingham. Once again, so drama there.

So now I’m home and my 5th BGOUG conference is over. Once again, Melina and the BGOUG team did a great job. No offence to any other user group, but BGOUG is still my favourite conference of the year!

Thanks to everyone at BGOUG for making this run so smoothly. Thanks to the Oracle ACE Program for letting me “fly the flag” for the program. Your support is much appreciated! Thanks to all the other speakers. Your advice and support is always welcome. Of course, thanks to all the attendees who came to my sessions and made me feel so welcome. I look forward to seeing you all again next year.

I’ve shared a few photos on Google+.





BGOUG Spring 2014 – Day 2

The Day 1 evening festivities consisted of lots of food, followed by a group doing a display of traditional dances. Once they had finished it was up to me to teach the Bulgarians how their local dances should really be done. Needless to say I smashed it! 🙂

Day 2 started with a swim and breakfast. When I say swim, I really mean gentle floating, wishing I was still in bed.

The first session I went to was Joel Goodman‘s session on “RAC Global Resource Management”. Lot’s of good stuff! Joel is like a walking Oracle encyclopedia.

Next up was “Oracle 12c Automatic Data Optimization” by Joel Goodman. Nice feature. Once again, another thing added to my to-do list. I think the developers have done a really bad job of naming the views and some of the procedures for this feature. I would have abbreviated words and added underscores to stay under the object name size limit. The naming feels like “Peter and Jayne do programming”. Ugly, ugly, ugly! In terms of the feature itself, the main issue here is ILM doesn’t work with the multitenant option. I’m sure this will be fixed in future, but for now it is a big flaw. Even so, lots of potential here.

After lunch it was “Utilizing new CBO features after upgrade to 12c – Practical example” by Joze Senegacnik. I have to admit, I turned up late for this one. Very sorry mate! The part of this session I saw focussed on a specific customer upgrade from 11g to 12c.

I ducked out of the last session on the day and headed back to my room. During the day I had been asked a few questions I did not know the answer to, but I know other people who probably do, so I pinged out a few emails.

In the evening we took a quick sightseeing trip to Melnik. We had a walk through the town and did a quick tour of a famous winery.

From there is was back to the hotel to get some food, then bed.

I’ve got an early start this morning to begin my trip home. I’ll write a summary post when I get back.



BGOUG Spring 2014 – Day 1

The morning started out with a family swim with the wife and daughter.

The first session I attended was “Auditing in Oracle Database” 12c by Maja Veselica. I haven’t spent any time looking at 12c auditing yet, so this was a great introduction. I think I’m going to need to spend some time on this stuff. It looks like there are quite a number of changes to auditing in Oracle 12c.

My first session came next. The room was quite full, which was nice. It’s good to see such a good turnout for PL/SQL. Together we are strong! 🙂

After lunch I went to watch “Understanding Oracle GoldenGate” by Svetoslav Gyurov. I’ve had GoldenGate on my to-do list since it was aquired by Oracle and I’ve still not got round to using it, so it was cool to see an introductory session on it. Sve can reach the top of the screen, even without a ladder. 🙂

Next up was “Do Oracle Cloud Applications stack up?” by the wife. You’ve gotta show some support or they just go on at you! This focussed on a customer story about how Fusion Apps on the Cloud was the correct choice. Many of the points raised were true of a variety of cloud solutions. Resistance is futile. We will all be water droplets in the cloud soon!

Next up was my introductory WebLogic session. I think it went down quite well. There were some nice messages/retweets on Twitter. 🙂

The final session of the day was “Real-World DataGuard” by Yavor Ivanov. The introduction part of the talk covered familiar ground for me, but as the session progressed there were a number of thing mentioned that were new for me. I’ve put another note in my to-do list to spend some more time of data guard, especially in 12c.

So I’m back in my room, writing up this blog post before the evening meal and dancing. I don’t have any presentations to give tomorrow, so I can relax and enjoy other people’s sessions.

As always, a great first day at the BGOUG conference!



BGOUG Spring 2014 – Day -1

The flight from Birmingham Airport to Frankfurt went to plan. The landing was quite possibly the smoothest one I had ever experienced. Very impressive. I got off the plane to find my connecting flight had been moved to another terminal. I was pretty worried by this as Frankfurt is a massive airport and I already had a short connection time. Luckily I made it. The flight to Sofia went without a hitch.

On arrival, I met up briefly with some of the other speakers before we were whisked away to Sandanski. It was a 3 hour drive, but I was chatting with the wife all the way, so it went quickly.

Once we got settled, we took a quick tour of the hotel spa. It was then I remembered I had no swimming gear. A quick shopping trip down the road and I had swimming shorts and some goggles. Then it was off to the pool, so I could float around and complain about the possibility of sunburn. 🙂

In the evening we met up with some of the other speakers and the BGOUG folks for dinner in a restaurant right next to the hotel. After that it was back to the room to get some much needed sleep. What with the 03:30 start, two flights, a 3 hour drive and a quick session in the pool I was completely knackered.



BGOUG Spring 2014 – The Journey Begins

I’m sitting at Birmingham airport, waiting to start my journey to Sandanski. I’ve got a flight to Frankfurt, a sprint to the flight for Sofia, then a 2-3 hour drive to Sandanski. It’s going to be a long day. 🙂

The airport is really busy. It seems lots of flights leave between 05:00-06:00 on a Thursday. One of the food places is playing plinky-plinky music and I’ve just had to listen to some racist a-holes spreading their uneducated garbage. Very annoying…

Can you tell I am tired and in a bad mood? 🙂

It’s going to be worth the hassle though. I’m going to be reunited with my wife and daughter. Unfortunately Dad can’t make it to this conference. We will all meet up at OOW this year, where I think we should recreate this family photo.



Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7 Released

It feels almost like heresy to discus something that isn’t Oracle-related on the day that Oracle announced the new In-Memory Database Option, but something else was also released today. Red Hat gave birth to Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) 7.

I’m a big fan of all things Linux. I’m typing this blog post on a Fedora 20 desktop at home. I’m a rabid fan of Oracle Linux for servers at home and at work. As a result, the birth of RHEL7 is a pretty big deal for me.

I’ve been playing with the Oracle Linux 7 betas for a while (OL7 Install, DB 11gR2 Install, DB 12c Install). I expect we will see the birth of Oracle Linux 7 pretty soon, which is where it gets really interesting for me.

I’m sure it’s going to take quite a long time for Oracle to start supporting their products on RHEL7/OL7, but this is the future, so you’ve for to get your skates on! 🙂



Enterprise Manager Cloud Control 12c Release 4 (12cR4) Articles

I’ve started to play around with Enterprise Manager Cloud Control 12R4. The clean installations on Oracle Linux 5 and Oracle Linux 6 were really easy. You can see how I did them here.

I used as the database repository. I’ll probably have a go with a 12c database in future, which is now supported, but my main focus this time was to check out something similar to what I have at work. Forgive my caution, but I’ll not be using 12c database for my EM repository for a while yet. Cloud Control is too important to risk…

I wasn’t going to bother with an upgrade article because  wrote a good blog post about the upgrade here. Whilst going through the upgrade, there were a few things I needed to make extra notes on, since I have an terrible memory, so it ended up as a separate article.

Ultimately, you are going to need to read the upgrade docs because there are lots of caveats to think about, depending on what options you use.

Previous upgrades at work were a pain, but we had a more complicated installation with multiple management servers and a separate database. More recently we switched to running a simple configuration (DB and OMS on the same server) on an Oracle Linux VM. That makes doing a trial run of the upgrade at home a more realistic test. Whether it’s an improved Cloud Control upgrade process or the fact this is a single machine setup, the upgrade was really easy. Now that I’ve practiced the upgrade at home, I’m feeling relatively confident doing the upgrade in production. I’ll probably leave it until I get back from Bulgaria (BGOUG). It’s not really fair to change everything and then leave the country… 🙂



What happens if you try it?


QuestionI get asked a lot of questions about Oracle! I find it amazing how often people will fire a question to a forum or social media and wait for response, rather than try the thing out for themselves. My response is often, “What happens if you try it?”. In some cases, their response to that is, “I don’t want to risk it on my production environment”.

It’s incredible how many people are running applications in production without development and test/UAT environments. Even 3rd party apps need a testing ground! Even if you don’t have a formal dev and test environment, the ease of creating a test environment on your PC using virtualization means there are very few grunt DBA tasks you can’t practice before you attempt them for real!

Thanks to the influence of people like Tom Kyte, I learnt early on that I need to test stuff for myself. If you want to progress in IT, you will do it a lot quicker by trying stuff out for yourself…