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Chris Foot's Oracle10g Blog Chris Foot's Oracle10g Blog

Now that we have used 10G DBConsole's toolsets to identify the top resource consumers, our next step is to determine the access paths our poorly performing queries are taking. This series of blogs begins with a high-level overview of Oracle query optimization. We'll also learn the difference between estimated and runtime access paths. Subsequent blogs will provide details on the various tools we can use to retrieve access path information.
Monday, November 20, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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In part three of this series, we'll use 10G Grid Standalone to identify the top resource consumers for a given instance. We'll learn that 10G's DBConsole is able to provide us with all of the information we need to identify the top resource consumers, what resources they are consuming and the SQL they are executing.
Monday, November 13, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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In my previous blog, we discussed the investigative process used to determine exactly what application component is causing the performance problem. This blog will cover the various Grid Control and Host Monitoring Tools we can use to further drill down into the database ecosystem (database, O/S, hardware server) to provide us with additional diagnostic information. In future blogs, we’ll continue our investigation using Grid Control’s database performance monitoring and analysis tools.
Monday, November 06, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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Those that excel at tuning understand that the tuning process starts with an understanding of the problem and continues with the DBA collecting statistical information. Information collection begins at a global level and then narrows in scope until the problem is pinpointed. Part 1 of this series provides hints and tips that can be used to determine what architectural component is causing the problem. In subsequent blogs, we’ll learn how to use the toolsets provided in Oracle9I and Oracle10G to continue the investigation.
Monday, October 30, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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I thought I would spend one of the last few blogs in this series by discussing the importance of soft skills. If you want to remain competitive in this profession, you must be able to communicate effectively. I'll provide you with a few helpful hints and tips to improve your verbal and written communication skills.
Monday, October 23, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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This blog will provide you with some hints and tips that will help you obtain the most benefit when you attend “Old OU” (Oracle University). I’ll also provide some recommendations to help you pass the Oracle Certification Exams.
Monday, October 16, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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Database administrators are much more than just “table jockeys.” Because of our well-rounded expertise, we are often asked to help evaluate third-party business applications, application development tools and database administration and monitoring products. Over the years, I have developed a Product Evaluation Methodology that you may find helpful.
Monday, October 09, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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I’ll provide you with a quick preview of the last few remaining blogs on this topic. I’ll be taking a one-week vacation and I’ll see you back here in two weeks!
Monday, September 25, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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Ever look at a screen’s output and get that puckered feeling in the pit of your stomach? If you have been working in this profession for any amount of time, you know the feeling I’m talking about. The feeling that makes you think you would rather be living in Montana making woodcarvings at a roadside stand than being a DBA. I’ll be taking a somewhat lighthearted look at the perils of our profession and discuss ways to reduce problem occurrences.
Monday, September 18, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (2)
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The next few blogs in this series provide readers with miscellaneous hints and tips to enhance their skill sets and improve their ability to provide quality support to their customers. In my next blog, we’ll look at “Paranoid DBA” best practices.
Monday, September 11, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (0)
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Ever fumble around at 2 AM looking for that SQL statement you wrote a while back? You know, that one special script that will give you just the information you need to solve the problem and go back to bed? I must admit, I have done my fair share of moonlight script hunting. This blog will provide you with a few recommendations on naming convention best practices.
Tuesday, September 05, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (2)
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Database administrators are ultimately responsible for guaranteeing the quality of their organization’s database environments. From protecting against unauthorized access to providing 24x7 availability – “the buck stops at the DBA Unit.” Although the database infrastructure (DB binaries, O/S, hardware) doesn’t change much, there is one component that usually changes a lot – the application. This blog provides readers with helpful hints and tips on application change management best practices.
Tuesday, August 29, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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We are going to cover a lot of different topics in the next few blogs. The information will range the spectrum, from keeping our environments organized and uncluttered to backup and recovery best practices.

This blog will focus on the most important responsibility we are charged with as DBAs - ensuring that our organization’s databases can be quickly and easily recovered.
Monday, August 21, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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Let's continue our discussion on the Non-Technical Art of Being a Successful DBA. The intent of this blog is to help administrators design and standardize on a formalized design review process. The goal of the design review process is to identify and address application design, process flow, program logic and SQL statement problems early in the development lifecycle. Identifying these issues early in the development lifecycle allows them to be more easily addressed than if they were to be identified during later stages.
Monday, August 14, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (2)
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I absolutely and firmly believe that Data Administrators are the unsung heroes of the Information Technology profession. This blog will be shorter than most. The reason is that I don't consider myself qualified to instruct others in the Data Administration function. I will state that after twenty years of working as DBA, I can perform the basic functions fairly well when I need to. The intent of this blog is to provide readers with a launching point to start their education and stress the importance of effective data resource management.
Monday, August 07, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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Let’s start our series on the Non Technical Art of Being a Successful DBA by covering the art of good documentation. Although the importance of a well thought out and detailed documentation library is blatantly obvious, creating documentation is the task most often postponed by an overworked DBA unit.
Monday, July 31, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (2)
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One of the benefits of my 20-year career (I think) is that most of the jobs I have held can be described as somewhat “unforgiving”, shall we say… What these jobs taught me is that I needed more than just technical expertise to become successful in my chosen profession. I quickly learned that becoming proficient at the various disciplines I will be discussing in upcoming blogs was just as challenging to me as honing my technical skill sets.

I’ve been able to learn from my mistakes and make changes in my technical and non-technical approach to database administration to overcome my shortcomings. I’d like to cover some of my personal best practices that have made my life as a DBA more productive and my customers and co-workers happier.
Monday, July 24, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (5)
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Oracle 10G introduced a new type of tablespace called a Bigfile Tablespace. When I read the 10G New Features manual and found out that you could create a terabyte sized datafile using the Bigfile option, I wanted to immediately find an environment that had enough free disk to allow me to create my first terabyte datafile. That was over a year ago and I still haven't found a server with a free terabyte of disk that I can use for testing. Even though I haven't made it into the terabyte datafile club yet, I thought I would discuss Bigfile tablespaces in this blog.
Monday, July 17, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (3)
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I have taught hundreds of people how to administer Oracle during my career as an Oracle instructor. For those of you just entering this profession, here is my most sage piece of advice:

"The hallmark of a good DBA is not knowing everything, it's knowing where to look when you don't."

I thought it might be beneficial for us to review some of the various technical resources currently available to us. You'll find a listing of my favorite authors, bloggers and websites in this blog. The list will also include my favorite educational website of all time, the Oracle Knowledge Center. I'll be off on vacation next week, so I'll see you in two weeks!
Monday, July 03, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (1)
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I thought I’d provide you with a couple of quick SQL*PLUS tips and tricks this week. Some of the features are new in 10G, while others are available in earlier releases. I think you’ll find them all to be very helpful.
Tuesday, June 27, 2006  |  Permalink |  Comments (3)
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