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September 2011

Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) Installation / Configuration

Earlier Oracle announced the Oracle Database Appliance which is a really cool RAC-in-a-box. And here at Enkitec office we are very lucky to get our hands dirty and play with this new beast </p />

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Oracle Database Appliance – (Baby Exadata?)

Oracle today announced a new database appliance product. It’s called Oracle Database Appliance (ODA). I’m not crazy about the name, but I really like the product. Here’s a picture of the one in Enkitec’s lab:
The project was code named “Comet” – thus the yellow sticky note. ;)

I really like that name better than ODA, so I think I will just stick with Comet.

Oracle Database Appliance…

The Oracle Database Appliance has been released. It looks like a pretty neat bit of kit for the SMB market. It’s listed in a couple of locations, each page with links to different technical docs, so it’s worth looking at both:

Interesting point’s include:

  • It’s a 2 node RAC on Oracle Linux 5.5 implementation.
  • Two 6-core Xeons per node.
  • 96G Memory per node.
  • 12 TB shared disk, but triple-mirrored, so  you have 4TB of storage.
  • Mirrored “Solid-state disks for redo logs to boost performance.” I can see that point generating some discussion. :)
  • No hardware upgrade/expansion options.
  • Pay-as-you-grow licensing available.

For the full lowdown, check the technical docs under the top-level links.

If you like the one-vendor-supplies-all approach, this is kinda neat and a lot less complex than a full blow Exadata system.



RAC Attack in OTN Lounge at OOW11

Want to get your hands on a key technology in both the Exadata Database Machine and the newly announced Oracle Database Appliance?

If you’ll be at OpenWorld – in just 11 days – then the IOUG RAC SIG is putting together a special event for you!  (You might have already heard about this on Twitter or from Justin at the OTN Blog.)

Every day from 9am to 1pm, find our table in the OTN Lounge (on Howard Street) and we’ll help you get an 11gR2 RAC cluster database running inside virtual machines on your own windows-based laptop. You can experiment boldly – if you make a mistake then you won’t have to start over; we can easily “reset” your virtual machines to any point.

More oradebug

Alex commented on my post about " oradebug " about the select statement on x$ksmfsv which holds a list of all fixed variables amongst other things and joined it to x$ksmmem to get the absolute address in the SGA to....[Read More]

Posted by Pete On 21/09/11 At 07:26 PM

Oracle Database Appliance — What Does It Mean for You and Your Business?

When I first heard about Oracle Database Appliance and what it does, I got really excited — I saw great potential in this product. When we got our hands dirty and started testing the appliance, I become confident that this product will be a hit. Now it’s finally the time when I can share my [...]

In the abstract

During conference season, it can be a challenge to come up with abstracts that you can feel passionate about, while making sure to craft them in a way that is both attractive to selection committees and the audience you feel like you want to reach. I often find that tri-purpose (satisfying myself, a committee, and the potential audience) to be daunting and occasionally conflicting — leading to abstract paralysis.

Starting today, I’m going to work harder at it. If you’ve been to any of my presentations in the recent past, you know that I like to spend more time on what I think are technical “culture” issues rather than examples of how to implement or interpret the technical features of the latest software release. It’s an area that I’m passionate about, and it’s one that I feel is drastically underrepresented and underserved at most technical conferences.

The biggest challenge I have with those kinds of presentations is making them selectable and attractive — for the topics mostly concern our ability to collaborate and communicate effectively in support of our business and mission objectives. And in that case, we all feel (myself included) like we’re from Lake Wobegon.

To me, no where is this more apparent than in the discussions about the Agile movement in software development, testing and production operations. Fellow Oak Table member Martin Widlake has some excellent examples of these issues in his 2 recent blog posts on the subject:

“Friday Philosophy – Why Doesn’t Agile Work?” and “In Defense of Agile Development (and their Ilk)”

(I especially like “Ilk”)

In a small, forgotten corner of the Internet, I belong to a Yahoo! Group (yes, they still exist!) on Agile Databases, which has as its description:

Discussion about Database management with regards to Extreme Programming practices and principles.

You can visit the group here.

In a recent discussion, there was a post from Scott Ambler that I found myself violently agreeing with:

A question was asked about coordinating and scheduling changes made by database and ETL teams with the development teams in order to reduce confusion and churn during development.

Question / Comment: While one or more code iterations are taking place in parallel, the data design and ETL are working on their iteration of the db schema and data, which will be consumed by later code iterations.

Scott’s Comment / Answer: Better yet, this could occur in a “whole team” manner where data-experienced people are embedded in the actual team.  This can improve productivity by reducing overall overhead.  Unfortunately this can be difficult in many companies due to the organizational complexities resulting from the cultural impedance mismatch between data and development professionals.

(Emphasis mine)

I feel like I’ve have the privilege of working in places where those organizational complexities and cultural impedance mismatches were overcome and I’d love to talk about what I think made that happen.

Now just to write some compelling abstracts on the subject — ideas welcome!

Using TKPROF for Analyzing 10046 Extended SQL Trace Files – What is Wrong with this Quote?

September 21, 2011 I have written a couple of blog articles on the topic of reading 10046 extended SQL trace files.  Some of those blog articles are listed below: 10046 Extended SQL Trace Interpretation 10046 Extended SQL Trace Interpretation 2 10046 Extended SQL Trace Interpretation 3 Brain Teaser: 10046 Extended SQL Trace Shows “EXEC #435118472:c=15600,e=510″, How is that Possible? [...]


Laszlo has published his slides from Hacktivity in Budapest last weekend where he shows how the Oracle undocumented oradebug command can be used to exploit the database; covering turning off authentication, turning off audit and more. His slides are here....[Read More]

Posted by Pete On 21/09/11 At 12:54 PM

APAC OTN Tour: First stop Beijing, China…

With OOW fast approaching, the last thing I wanted to do was be left without a passport, but the week after I return from OOW I have the first leg of the APAC OTN tour in Beijing. A little over a week ago I sent off all my documents, including my passport, and I’ve had a nagging feeling in my guts ever since. This morning I received my passport and a single entry visa for China along with it a wave of relief.

Applying for visas is very stressful when you have other trips on the calendar. I know some of the other people on the tour have got a more visas to apply for and less time to do it, so I hope they can cope with the stress better than me. :)

So I’m £84 + £11 postage out of pocket, but travel approval permitting, I should be fine for Beijing. The Auckland and Perth legs are fine because I don’t need a visa for New Zealand and I’ve already been to Australia this year, so my ETA is still valid.

Now take a deep breath and relax…



PS. For anyone else travelling to OOW, make sure to apply for your ESTA, or check last years is still valid… ;)