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Tuning

Subquery Factoring

It’s always worth browsing through the list of Oracle’s bug fixes each time a new release or patch comes out because it can give you clues about where to look for problems in your production release – and how to anticipate problems on the upgrade. This article is an example of a fix that I found while while looking at the note for 11.2.0.3 quite recently.

All Things Oracle

Last year I wrote a few articles for Simpletalk, a web service created by Redgate for users of SQL Server. This year, Redgate is setting up a similar service called “All things Oracle” (I’ve added a link in my blogroll) for Oracle users, and I’ve volunteered to write articles for them occasionally.

Some of the stuff they publish will be complete articles on their website, some will be short introductions with links to the authors’ own websites. My first article for them has just been posted – it’s an article that captures a couple of key points from the optimizer presentation I did at the UKOUG conference a couple of weeks ago.

Test Data

The UKOUG conference is over for another year – but it has left me with plenty to do and lots of things to investigate. Here’s just one little point that I picked up during one of the 10 minute “Oak Talks” that members of the Oak Table Network were doing in the lunch breaks.

There is a fairly well-known strategy for generating a list of numbers by using a “select from dual … connect by …” query, but I hadn’t realised that there were two ways of using it. The code I’ve usually used is this:

select
        rownum id 
from
        dual 
connect by 
        rownum <= 4000
;

But it looks as if most people use it like this:

select
        rownum id 
from
        dual 
connect by 
        level <= 4000
;

Tuning Oracle to Make a Query Slower

I had an interesting little project this morning. Of course it takes longer to write it down than to do actually do it, but it was kind of interesting and since I haven’t done a post in quite some time (and it’s the day before Thanksgiving, so it’s pretty quite at the office anyway) I decided to share. One of the Enkitec guys (Tim Fox) was doing a performance comparison between various platforms (Exadata using it’s IB Storage Network, Oracle Database Appliance (ODA) using it’s direct attached storage, and a standard database on a Dell box using EMC fiber channel attached storage). The general test idea was simple – see how the platforms stacked up for a query that required a full scan of a large table. More specifically, what Tim wanted to see was the relative speed at which the various storage platforms could return data.

I Can Help You Trace It

The first product I ever created after leaving Oracle Corporation in 1999 was a 3-day course about optimizing Oracle performance.

Advice from the Internet

A somewhat recursive post here. There are a number of forums around the internet which Oracle professionals increasingly use to research various issues, discover new features and diagnose problems. One such is the relatively new Database Administrators stack exchange site. For various reasons I came across this thread and in particular a piece of advice [...]

New create_1_hint_sql_profile.sql

I modified my create_1_hint_sql_profile.sql script (which I blogged about here: Single Hint Profiles) to allow any arbitrary text sting including quote characters. This is a script that I use fairly often to apply a hint to a single SQL statement that is executing in a production system where we can’t touch the code for some reason. For example, it’s sometimes useful to add a MONITOR hint or a GATHER_PLAN_STATISTICS hint to a statement that’s behaving badly so we can get more information about what the optimizer is thinking. I recently updated the script to allow special characters in the hint syntax. This feature is useful when you want to add something like an OPT_PARAM hint that takes quoted arguments.

Are you getting the most out of your Exadata performance? Part 1

In almost all of the Exadata migration projects I’ve been part of, the client sees immediate speedup & performance increase when testing their workload on Exadata (of course, we’ve made sure that we do plan & execute the tasks right). However, my performance geek’s nature usually doesn’t allow to stop there and leave the client with just 2x or 3x performance increase. For data warehousing and reporting workloads, Exadata can do much better than just 2-3x performance increase! 

This is why I will write this article series about Getting the Most out of your Exadata Performance. I will write a bunch of random articles, based on my experience and lessons learned – and some day I may consolidate it all into a more formal paper.

So, here’s the first article (PDF format).

Training Schedule for 2011 and Public Appearances

Online Seminars
A lot of people have asked me about whether I’d be doing any more seminars in the future. And the answer is yes – at least this year (might be too busy running a company the next year ;-)
I have finally put together the schedule for my 2011 seminars. In addition to the Advanced Oracle Troubleshooting seminar I will also deliver my Advanced Oracle SQL Tuning and Oracle Partitioning and Parallel Execution for Performance seminars, which I have done only onsite in past.
So, check out the seminars page:
Also don’t forget the Expert Oracle Exadata virtual conference next week!
Public Appearances

Oracle OpenWorld 2. October
  • I will talk about Large-Scale Consolidation onto Oracle Exadata: Planning, Execution, and Validation
  • Session ID 09355
Maybe I’ll lurk around the UKOUG venue as well in december ;-)

Cardinality Feedback

I ran into an interesting issue last week having to do with plan stability. The problem description went something like this:

“I have a statement that runs relatively quickly the first time I run it (around 12 seconds). Subsequent executions always run much slower, usually around 20 or 30 minutes. If I flush the shared pool and run it again elapsed time is back to 12 seconds or so.”

The query looked a little like this: