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October 2009

OOW09 - RAC Performance Tuning

For all those who came to my session - many, many thanks. There is no better sight for a presenter than to see a roomful of attendees, especially with people standing near the walls. The fire marshal was not amused probably; but I was grateful. The harrowing incident of a blue screen of death on my PC - not just once but twice - just before the presentation was about to start was enough to throw me into a panic mode; but the third time was a charm. It worked. Phew!

You can download the presentation here. And while you are there, look around and download some more of my sessions as well.

Thanks a lot once again. I'm off the keynote now.

Oracle Closed World - an underground conference...

I'm here in San Francisco for the Oracle Open World conference along with four other guys from Miracle, the two crazy Miracle Finland guys and some other crazy people - we've rented a couple of big apartments as usual, and are doing work, beer and other essential stuff together.

Last year at Oracle Open World (OOW) my friend Iggy Fernandez, who edits the NOCOUG (Northern California Oracle User Group) magazine/journal, suggested an Oracle Closed World conference, where REAL, TECHNICAL presentations would take place underground in secret locations, using secret passwords, and what have you.

Well, it's here. Monday, Tuesday and Thursdag at a secret location we'll do deep and very technical presentations about various topics. The secret location (which is indeed underground) has the capability to serve beer, by the way.

Let me know if you're interested in hearing more about OCW - email me on mno@MiracleAS.dk or text me on +45 2527 7100.

Mogens

Things you never wanted to know about SAN's...

Here's some information you will try to forget after reading. It explains why SAN's always cause trouble, why "a firmware upgrade" is really a complete change of an OS and therefor really dangerous (and impossible to plan or test for) and more.

From now on, think of the firmware in a SAN as a whole OS, just bigger. Scary, right?

My question to this very smart guy I know was this:

"Could you repeat what OS'es are used in what SAN's for me? And how many code lines the ExaData is using?"

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Oracle OpenWorld first presentation

My first presentation of Oracle OpenWorld is done - it was the one I was most nervous about. It was a keynote, the opening session for the Oracle Develop conference track. As a keynote - I try to make it fun and informative but not a brain dump of all things technical.

The room filled up - which surprised me, it was 9am on a Sunday morning...

And the presentation seemed to work - I ran about 3 minutes over (need to tighten it up a tiny bit) - but it went well. Everyone laughed when they were supposed to, and didn't when they weren't. Even got a bit of spontaneous applause every now and then :)

For those that missed it, or those not at the conference that want to see it - there will be a replay tomorrow (Monday, October 12th) at 11am pacific time - see this link for details.

ID#: S312577
Title: Keynote: Oracle Develop "What Are We Still Doing Wrong"
Track: Oracle Develop: Database
Date: 11-OCT-09
Time: 09:00 - 10:00
Venue: Hilton Hotel
Room: Grand Ballroom B

Aggregating & Purging Batch Timings

Application Engine can collect timing information for the programs being execution. These 'batch timings' can be written to log file and/or tables in the database. I always recommend that this is enabled in all environments. The runtime overhead is very low, and this data is extremely valuable to determine the performance of a system over a period of time, and to identify the pieces of SQL or PeopleCode code that account for the most time. The timing data collected for individual processes can be viewed directly within the Process Monitor component.

Aggregating & Purging Batch Timings

Application Engine can collect timing information for the programs being execution. These 'batch timings' can be written to log file and/or tables in the database. I always recommend that this is enabled in all environments. The runtime overhead is very low, and this data is extremely valuable to determine the performance of a system over a period of time, and to identify the pieces of SQL or PeopleCode code that account for the most time. The timing data collected for individual processes can be viewed directly within the Process Monitor component.

ACE Directors Product Briefing '09

One of the most valuable benefits of being an Oracle ACE Director is the briefings by Oracle Product Managers at the Oracle HQ. This year the briefing was on Friday Oct 9th at Oracle conference center rather than the customary Hilton Hotel.

While I was a little disappointed at the coverage of the database topics, I quickly recovered from the alphabet soup that makes up the netherworld of middleware and tools. However, a surprise visit by Thomas Kurian to address questions from the audience about the various product roadmaps was testimonial that Oracle is dead serious about the ACE Program. That proves the commitment Oracle has made for the user community - very heartening.

As always, Vikky Lira and Lillian Buziak did a wonderful job of organizing the event. Considering about 100 ACE Directors from 20+ countries, that is no small task. Perhaps the highlight of the organization was the detailed briefing sheets Lillian prepared for each one individually, down to what car service one takes and when - simply superb! No amount of thanks will be enough. From the bottom of my heart, thank you, Vikky and Lillian. And, thank you Justin Kestelyn - for kicking off and running the event year after year.

Open World 09 Starts

Oracle Open World 2009 has officially started with the User Group sessions today. I am presenting a session today. I started off by registering and getting my cool Blogger badge holder, hanging off the even cooler ACE Director lanyard.

I went off to the first session of today on the IOUG bucket - Workload Management by Alex Gorbachev. Alex is one of those people who know their stuff; so there is always something to be learned from there. Alex successfully demonstrated the difference between Connection Load Balancing and Server Side Listener Load Balancing, with pmon trace to show how the sessions are balanced. It sheds light on the question - why Oracle is not balancing the workload.

If you didn't attend this, you should definitely download the presentation and check it out later.

Off to Oracle OpenWorld

I've been a bit busy with things recently - getting ready for Oracle OpenWorld in particular. I haven't been able to pay as much attention to asktom as I normally do - that'll change the week after OpenWorld (I'll be taking questions again that week - until then, probably not)

ID#: S312577
Title: Keynote: Oracle Develop "What Are We Still Doing Wrong"
Track: Oracle Develop: Database
Date: 11-OCT-09
Time: 09:00 - 10:00
Venue: Hilton Hotel
Room: Grand Ballroom B

ID#: S311235
Title: All About Metadata: Why Telling the Database About Your Schema Matters
Track: Oracle Develop: Database
Date: 12-OCT-09
Time: 11:30 - 12:30
Venue: Hilton Hotel
Room: Imperial Ballroom B

ID#: S311322
Title: DBA 2.0: Battle of the DBAs Revisited
Track: Database
Date: 12-OCT-09
Time: 17:30 - 18:30
Venue: Moscone South
Room: Room 103

ID#: S311234
Title: The top 10 - No, 11 - New Features of Oracle Database 11g Release 2
Track: Database
Date: 13-OCT-09
Time: 17:30 - 18:30
Venue: Moscone South
Room: Room 103

ID#: S311236
Title: Efficient PL/SQL: Why and How to Use PL/SQL to Its Greatest Effect
Track: Database
Date: 14-OCT-09
Time: 17:00 - 18:00
Venue: Moscone South
Room: Room 103

I'll be in the OTN lounge on Wednesday from 12:45pm till 1:30pm with hte "Heavy Hitters" program. Anyone is free to attend that session.

Also, I'll be in the database demo grounds in Moscone West - in the middle of the demo area. It'll say "database overview" in big letters on top and "Oracle Database 11g Release 2" underneath. I'll be manning a station there on Tuesday from 10:30am till 11:30 am and on Wednesday from 9am till 10:15am

Memorization vs. Understanding

This graphic was recently pointed out to me (thanks Jared!) and I loved it...so I thought I'd share.

The key point (as noted in the upper right) is:

Understanding how something works can drastically reduce the need to memorize a bunch of seemingly arbitrary facts.