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October 2012


Thanks to all those people that attended my session last week at OpenWorld.

A number of people have asked for copies of the slides.  I will post them here as soon as I get back home to Perth.

Thanks for your patience.

….Posted from yet-another-airport-kiosk :-)

Update: Slides below

OOW slides

OOW eof

So OOW 2012 is over – it was a pleasant and interesting week. Cary’s closing presentation was a joy to listen to and a great way to end the conference.

I’m sitting (actually standing – I’ll be sitting for most of 10.5 hours soon enough) in the BA lounge at SFO, sipping a remarkably nice Chardonnay: The Director’s Cut 2010, from the vineyards of Francis Ford Coppola. Lightly oaked, and a lovely compromise between the delicate sparseness of the Old World and the usual fruity agressiveness of the New World. It’s quite hard to resist the second glass – but if I don’t the flight home will be tough.

Thanks to those who have donated to my son’s half-marathon for malaria. It takes place on Sunday, so I’ll probably be somewhere on the route cheering him on, but I haven’t picked a spot yet.






There’s never enough time to read everything that’s worth reading, so even though Guy Harrison’s blog is one of the ones worth reading I find that it’s often months since I last read it. Visiting it late last night, I found an interesting batch of articles spread over the last year about the performance of SSD – the conclusions may not be what you expect, but make sure you read all the articles or you might end up with a completely misleading impression:

250 Posts !!

WordPress reported that my last post on Exadata Storage Indexes was my 250th !! Who would have thought …

Openworld day 4

Its the penultimate day at openworld

First up was Gwen Shapira’s ( talk on Big Data and its integration into the "enterprise" and database.  This was perhaps the most relevant of big data talks this week, because I imagine anyone at an Oracle conference already has some (significant) investment in what could be called "conventional" database technology, and might be looking at how "big data" is going to fit into that picture.

So Gwen gave an excellent overview into how this might occur, why it might occur, and some strategies on how to do it without spectacularly failing :-)  

Indexing 12c

Another little detail that Hermann Baer mentioned in his presentation yesterday was the ability to create multiple indexes with the same column definition – something which currently gets you Oracle error “ORA-01408: such column list already indexed.” 

No details, and there’s always the “safe harbour” slide of course – the one which says seomthing about the presentation being only an indication of current thinking and nothing is guaranteed to appear.

Exadata Storage Indexes – Part I (Beginning To See The Light)

Thought I might discuss Exadata Storage Indexes, explore what they are, how they work and discuss their advantages and disadvantages. Following is but a brief introduction on this very cool Exadata feature. A Storage Index basically maintains summary information about database table data down on the Exadata storage servers. The information consists of the minimum value, the maximum […]

Oracle OpenWorld 2012 : Day 3

Day 3 was similar to day 2 for me. I spent a lot of time hanging around the RAC Attack sessions. A lot of people pass through, so in addition to helping people set up virtualized RAC, there are always interesting people to talk to.

I did some serious demo grounds cruising again, including:

Openworld day 3

Yesterday was another day of good quality sessions at OpenWorld.  Yes its true that there are many sessions that could only be described as pure marketing, but with a little effort, there are gems in the agenda !

It started with partitioning facilities that are coming in 12c.

Interval/Reference partitions will be supported, although no word on whether you can have subpartitions under interval based range partitions.  Time will tell.

One of the nice things was the CASCADE option coming for truncate/exchange partition.  In the past, when you had foreign keys between tables (as of course we always should :-) ), then truncate (being a DDL) would require a lot of manual FK maintenance before and after the truncate command.

This restriction has been lifted to a reasonable degree in 12c.

Partitioning 12c

Most useful presentation of OOW so far, from Hermann Baer of Oracle on improvements in partitioning features in 12c – and there are lots of useful ones, including:

Online move of a partition – so easy to compress a partition when it has reached its final “read-only” state

multiple partition maintenance in one operation – e.g. merge 3 monthly partitions into one quarterly partition, or split one partition into 24 (think about “how do I partition a non-partitioned table”, and 12c has just made it easier and quicker – exchange it into an empty partitioned table, then do one massive split).

partial indexing – define which partitions of a partitioned table should be included in the indexes you create on the table – and the optimizer also knows that different partitions need different plans (an enhancement of “table expansion”.