Oracle Database on Oracle Linux 6.1…

I mentioned the day before Open World I put a Virtual RAC on Oracle Linux 6.1 article live. Although the procedure was complete, some of the screen shots were from an old article as I didn’t have time to redo them before my flight. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ve just run through the procedure again and taken new screen shots. As a result, I’ve allowed the article to display on the front page of the website, which is why you will see it listed as a new article there.

This kinda rounds out the whole Oracle on 6.1 stuff as there has been a single instance installation guide out forย ages and more recently the Cloud Control installation, which references it.

Remember, it’s still not certified yet, but it’s coming.

Cheers

Tim…

Update: It’s finally certified. See here.

Oracle Database 11gR2 on OL6 / RHEL6: Certified or Not?

There seems to be a little confusion out there about the certification status of Oracle Database 11gR2, especially with the release of the 11.2.0.3 patchset which fixes all the issues associated with RAC installs on OL/RHEL 6.1.

Currently, 11gR2 is *NOT* certified on OL6 or RHEL6. How do I know? My Oracle Support says so! Check for yourself like this:

  • Log on the My Oracle Support (support.oracle.com).
  • Click the “Certifications” link.
  • Type in the product name, like “Oracle Database”
  • Select the product version number, like “11.2.0.3.0”.
  • Select the platform, like “Linux x86_64” or a specific distro beneath this.
  • Click the “Search” button.

From the results you will see that Oracle Database 11.2.0.3 is certified on OL and RHEL 5.x. Oracle do not differentiate between different respins of the major version. You will also notice that it is not currently supported on OL6 or RHEL6.

Having said that, we can expect this certification really soon. Why? Because Red Hat has submitted all the certification information to Oracle and (based on previous certifications) expects it to happen some time in Q4 this year, which is any time between now and the end of the year.

With a bit of luck, by the time I submit this post MOS certification will get updated and I will happily be out of date… ๐Ÿ™‚

Cheers

Tim…

Update: It’s finally certified. See here.

Two New Articles: UDEV and Database Triggers…

I’ve recently put a couple of new articles about old subjects on the website. In both cases, the articles were initiated by forum questions, but the explanations became too painful in the format of a forum post so they graduated into articles…

  • UDEV SCSI Rules Configuration In Oracle Linux 5 : For those of you that like to follow my Virtual RAC guides, but don’t like using ASMLib, you can use this article and replace ASMLib with UDEV.
  • Database Triggers Overview : This is really a primer on database triggers. I’ve focussed mostlyย on simple DML triggers, since this is what the vast majority of trigger-related questions I’m asked relate to. Consider it the “minimum” you should know before you write a database trigger.

Cheers

Tim…

Oracle Database SQL Expert (1Z0-047)…

I can see this post degenerating into a rant, so I would like to preemptively appologize to anyone involved in the production of this exam. I’m guessing it’s a real pain to develop these exams, especially when some ass like me starts moaning about them. Added to that, I’m guessing the word “Expert” means slightly different things to different people…

I’ve been barking on recently that in my opinion, the most important skill required by any PL/SQL developer is SQL, with knowledge of PL/SQL itself coming in second place. Having recently taken the “Oracle Database 11g: Advanced PL/SQL (1Z0-146)” exam (mentioned here), I thought it was a little hypocritical not to sit the “Oracle Database SQL Expert (1Z0-047)” exam as well, so this morning I did just that.

Here are some of my thoughts on the exam, in no particular order of importance:

  • Regular Expressions: I think it is important that people understand what regular expressions can do and when it is appropriate to use them, but I don’t think it is necessary to test people on the meta-characters themselves. That’s what the docs are for.
  • Analytic Functions: No sign of them in my questions from the pool. Surely analytic functions are more important than regular expression meta-characters.
  • The majority of the exhibits were pointless. It seems like they were placed there to waste the time of people with bad exam technique, rather than to assist in answering the question. This was especially true of the schema diagrams, which I only referred to once when the datatype of one of the columns was important.
  • Several of the questions could be answered without reading the question at all, as the incorrect answers jumped out at you because they contained blatantly incorrect statements.
  • Several of the questions included the “ANY” and “ALL” comparison conditions, which are barely mentioned in the documentation (here)*. I guess these are only included in Oracle because the are part of ANSI SQL. I can’t remember ever using them in Oracle or seeing them being used by others. I have come across them in MySQL so I knew what they were for, which was fortunate.
  • There were lots of questions that included DML against inline views rather than directly against tables. It got to the point where I felt like, “If it’s got braces in it I’m going to tick it”.

I very quickly turned into a grumpy old man and started to rush through the exam, spending most of my time thinking about writing this blog post, rather than the exam itself. ๐Ÿ™‚

In the end I got 96%, which I guess means I got 3 questions wrong out of the 70. Serves me right for rushing it so I could come home and bitch about it. ๐Ÿ™‚

So I am now an “Oracle Database: SQL Certified Expert” as well as a grumpy old shite…

Cheers

Tim…

* Updated thanks to Pierre’s comment.

Oracle Database File System (DBFS) in 11gR2…

I’ve been having a play with the DBFS functionality in 11gR2.

For the most part it is extremely simple. If you are working on Linux then it’s a really neat solution. On any other platform you are limited to using the dbfs_client tool, which is currently lacking a lot of functionality. Even so, it’s a good first step.

I am having a bit of trouble with the “/etc/fstab” mounting. I’ve included it in the article, with a warning that it isn’t working for me. If anyone has got it to work I would really appreciate some input on what I’ve got wrong. The documentation is a little sparse on this subject even with some digging around it’s proving difficult.

I’ll probably be witing another article on a different aspect of DBFS soon.

Cheers

Tim…

Dipping my toe in 11gR2…

I’ve had my first play with 11gR2 today:

Nothing too unpredictable really.

I guess the most noticeable change is the new installer. I didn’t have an issue with the old installer, but a few friends from the Microsoft world had pointed out how dated it looked. The new is much cleaner, and although it will take some getting used to, I think it is a step in the right direction.

I’ve decided that I’m only going to do 64-bit installations from now on. I see little point doing the 32-bit installations, as I hope I will never work on one again. ๐Ÿ™‚

Cheers

Tim…

Database Change Notification…

I’ve recently been playing around with Database Change Notification, which is basically an asynchronous triggering mechanism. I’m not really sure why I would use it in an application, but it’s always nice to know about this stuff, just in case. I suppose it’s not drastically dissimilar to the the use of a handler module in Fine Grained Auditing…

I really need 11g to be released, then I can look at some cool new features… ๐Ÿ™‚

Cheers

Tim…