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On the Topic of Technology… 7

September 26, 2014 (Back to the Previous Post in the Series) As I was walking from the back of the facility where I work to my office just recently, I started repeatedly saying to myself as I approached the office door, “that huge computer was not here when I started calling my office a second home“.  I […]

Oracle OpenWorld 2014 : ACE Director Briefing – Day 1

As I’m sure many of you will know, “the first rule of ACED is to constantly talk about ACED”. So every year they put us in a room for the 2 day ACED Briefing where “the first rule of the ACED Briefing is don’t talk about the ACED Briefing”. You can guess, this is going to be devoid of spoilers! :)

I think it is safe to say, the main focus areas of Oracle OpenWorld 2014 are reasonably predictable, but a number of the announcements related to those areas of focus are not so predictable! I think there will be something for everyone next week! That’s all I’m going to say about the ACED Briefing content! :)

Now for opinion time. This is obviously affected by what I heard during the day, but also what has been happening for the last couple of years…

In my opinion, Oracle getting into the “cloud business” over the last few years has been one of the best things to happen to the company! Why do I say this? Because “eating their own dog food” while trying to build a portfolio of cloud offerings has given them a very specific focus. Pre-cloud, many of the features that will be spoken about next week would probably not have been on the radar, even though customer’s wanted them. Now, there is a *very* big driver for getting this stuff done. If Oracle need it to build their cloud, it’s going to happen!

“I don’t care about Oracle’s public cloud”, will be the cry from some out there. Fine. You don’t have to care, but their cloud is built on the Oracle database, WebLogic, the Fusion Middleware stack, their engineered systems etc. If you care about any of the individual building blocks, Oracle’s public cloud will have a positive effect on those building blocks. Making those products lean, fast and flexible is a really important focus when you are trying to use this stuff at the scale Oracle are!

So when you are listening to the array of announcements over the coming week, I would like you to ask yourself a few questions:

  • Is this feature good for building Oracle’s cloud?
  • Do I think this feature would exist if Oracle didn’t need it for their cloud?
  • Can I make use of this feature, independent of Oracle’s cloud offering? (If I could afford it)

At the end of OOW14, when you look back as a whole, I think most people will see how Oracle entering the cloud business has had a really good knock-on effect on their product set.

On a personal note, it was fantastic being at the ACED briefing. I missed it last year and it was great to meet up with everyone again. OOW is so big it is easy to miss people. Having so many of my Oracle friends in one room is brilliant! Happy days…

In the evening I was going to go straight to bed, but Carry Millsap persuaded me to go out to eat. Well, I say persuaded me, but really I just wanted to be near him because he’s so pretty! :) Cary, Kerry, Frits, Martin, Bjoern and myself went out to a little Mexican place and I got a brilliant burrito, which I scoffed, whilst teaching them to speak proper English. They now understand the words minger, minging, muggy and bellend.



PS. As any conspiracy theorist knows, the public denial of the Oracle Games Console (OGC) by Thomas Kurian is proof of its existence. I believe it uses technology reverse engineered from the wreckage recovered from Roswell.

Oracle OpenWorld 2014 : ACE Director Briefing – Day 1 was first posted on September 26, 2014 at 4:37 pm.
©2012 "The ORACLE-BASE Blog". Use of this feed is for personal non-commercial use only. If you are not reading this article in your feed reader, then the site is guilty of copyright infringement.

Oaktable world 2014 is on!

Many Oaktable members are planning to talk about deep technical topics in Oaktable world 2014. Looking at the agenda, I am excited, so many deep topics are planned. I will be talking about in-memory internals on Monday morning at 9AM, 9/29/2014, right after Mogens’ Keynote speech. You can find all details here: Oaktable world 2014. I will post my presentation slides after the presentation.

Start your open world week presentation with mine :). Sorry, no beers planned at that time, it is 9AM, after all!

Thanks for attending my presentation at Oaktable World 2014. You can download the slides : In-memory_internals.pdf.

Also, our book Expert Oracle RAC 12c has been translated to Chinese language. You can find details about that book in one of the translator’s blog: Alex lizx.

Where the real technical talks are at OOW

What are the real technical talks at OOW amid all the marketing fluff? I don’t know all of them but I can vouch for the following


time id speaker room title
Sunday 9:00 UGF2563 Jeremiah Wilton, Marc Fielding M South 309 24/7 Availability with Oracle Database Application Continuity
9:00 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"UGF4378"]">UGF4378 Gwen Shapira M South 308 Analyzing Twitter Data with Hadoop – Live Demo
10:00 UGF3587 Tim Gorman M South 301 Scaling To Infinity: Partitioning DW on Oracle Database
11:00 UGF3147 Chris Antognini M South 304 Adaptive Query Optimization
2:30 UGF8949 12 speakers… M South 304 12 Looks at Oracle Database 12c: EOUC Short Talks
UGF8949 pt. 1 Jonathan Lewis M South 304 Ugrading to 12c – What will go wrong?
2:30 UGF2244 Connor McDonald M South 303 12c features for Developers
2:30 UGF3475 Martin Bach, Frits Hoogland M South 310 Think Exa!
3:30 UGF4042 Kyle Hailey M south 301 DevOps, Databases, and the Phoenix Project
3:30 UGF6626 Kerry,Tanel,etc M South 310 Expert Oracle Exadata: Then and Now – Panel
Monday 8 Mogens Noergaard Oaktable World Welcome
9 Riyaj Shamsudeen: in-memory internals Oaktable World in-memory internals
1 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Chris Antognini Indexes: Structure, Splits and Free Space Management Internals"]">Chris Antognini Indexes: Structure, Splits and Free Space Management Internals Oaktable World Indexes: Structure, Splits and Free Space Management Internals
11 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Martin Bach A deep dive into HCC internals and mechanics"]">Martin Bach A deep dive into HCC internals and mechanics Oaktable World A deep dive into HCC internals and mechanics
12 CMillsap, EGrancher, JLewis, JGennick Oaktable World Ted Talks
1 Jonathan Lewis Oaktable World Calculating Selectivity
2 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Greg Rahn The Current State of SQL + Hadoop"]">Greg Rahn The Current State of SQL + Hadoop Oaktable World The Current State of SQL + Hadoop
3 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Kevin Closson SLOB \u2013 For More Than I/O!"]">Kevin Closson SLOB – For More Than I/O! Oaktable World SLOB – For More Than I/O!
4 Toons Oaktable World Why DBMS’s Still Lack SQL Assertions Support (A polite excuse)
Tuesday 8 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Carlos Sierra "]">Carlos Sierra Oaktable World introducing edb360 tool
9 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Kent Graziano Worst Practices in DW Design"]">Kent Graziano Worst Practices in DW Design Oaktable World Worst Practices in DW Design
1 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Tanel Poder Hacking Oracle 12c"]">Tanel Poder Hacking Oracle 12c Oaktable World Hacking Oracle 12c
11 Jeremiah Wilton Oaktable World Oracle on EC2: You’re doing it wrong
12 KOsborne, AGorbachev, JLewis, JHarris, Oaktable World Ted Talks
1 Connor McDonald Oaktable World clone db
2 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Frits Hoogland "]">Frits Hoogland Oaktable World Profiling the logwriter and database writer (with version update)
3 #222222;" data-sheets-value="[null,2,"Alex Gorbachev"]">Alex Gorbachev Oaktable World Anomaly detection on performance data
4 Karl Arao Capacity Planning: SLAs, KPIs, Headroom, Expiry Date Oaktable World Capacity Planning: SLAs, KPIs, Headroom, Expiry Date
Wednesday 1:45 CON8134 Kellyn Pot’Vin M South 303 Zero to Manageability with EM12c
4.45 CON7726 Kellyn Pot’Vin M South 104 Oracle Exadata Database Machine Administration and Monitoring Made Easy
4:45 CON5773 Eric Grancher M South 306 Database Storage 101 Planning and Monitoring: Performance and Reliability
4:45 CON5915 Jonathan Lewis M South 102 Reading an AWR Report
Thursday 10:45 CON6812 Tanel,Kerry M South 104 Oracle Database In-Memory in Action
12:00 CON10038 Jeremiah Wilton, others M South 301 Customer Panel: Private Cloud Consolidation, Standardization & Automation
1:15 CON3671 Kyle Hailey M north 130 Lies, Damned Lies, and I/O Statistics
2:30 CON4053 Kyle Hailey M north 130 ASHmasters
2:30 CON4039 John Jay King Marriott Marquis Nob Hill C/D Gauging Oracle ADF Application Performance: Instrumenting Your Oracle ADF Code

another good link for talks at OOW14

business vision

Openworld day minus 3

Its day minus 3, or day +1 depending on your point of view at Openworld 2014.

I’m here a few days early for the Ace Director briefings, where a selection of product managers provide an insight into what is coming in the Oracle world, either at Openworld or in the coming year.

I must admit, I arrived to the briefings somewhat sceptical because a couple of years ago, when I was last at the briefings, the managers seemed very hesitant to share anything with us, generally waving us off with “you’ll need to wait until the conference”, which of course defeats the entire purpose.

However, so far, now that I’m at the conclusion of day 1, I’ve been very impressed. The product managers were very open and honest, happy to inform us of the things they’re very proud of, and also, the things that still need more work, or have not panned out as well they expected. Nice and genuine. And perhaps even more important was that there was a good amount of passion for product this year. People that are excited about their products are much more interesting to listen to.

Today has mainly been about middleware and client, which aren’t my area, but even so, its been good to see whats been happening in that area. Obviously, its all about smart phones and tablets, but there was some very impressive stuff on the UI front. Apologies, but non-disclosure agreements prohibit us from sharing too much content, but a lot of it you’ll be able to see at Openworld, or in the presentations that come later.

Thomas Kurian will be givin us an address shortly – it will be interesting to hear what’s floating his boat (so to speak).

[Disclosure: The Oracle Ace Director program has paid for my travel to Openworld]

PL/SQL New Features in Oracle Database 12c

I recently put some more PL/SQL new features articles live.

I’ve also posted a top-level new features article.

This contains a number smaller features as well as links to other articles on the site that discuss some of the new features in greater depth.

I’ve got a couple of PL/SQL books I’ve got to read and review, but I’ve been holding back because I wanted to get my take on this subject written before I was influenced by others. I guess I don’t have that excuse any more. :)



PL/SQL New Features in Oracle Database 12c was first posted on September 25, 2014 at 8:52 pm.
©2012 "The ORACLE-BASE Blog". Use of this feed is for personal non-commercial use only. If you are not reading this article in your feed reader, then the site is guilty of copyright infringement.

Oracle OpenWorld 2014 : The Journey Begins

I did my normal last minute packing last night. After a quick panic this morning, I was off in the taxi I for the airport.

I find it amazing how sense goes out of the window at airports. There was a big sign saying “Put empty trays on rollers”, so people were either leaving them or stacking them up. Either way, they were getting in the way. WTF? RTMF!

The first flight to Frankfurt was fine. While waiting to board I was staring at the guy in front thinking, “I’m sure I could do his fade better than that!” I might have to start… :)

The flight to SFO went without incident. I met Joze SenegacnikØyvind Isene, Martin Bach and Harshad Oak during it. :) Once we landed, it was the airport shuttle to the hotel, then straight out with the family for some food. Its sad that we only get to meet at conferences. :)

Tomorrow is the ACED briefing, so lots of tweets telling people I can’t tell them what his going on. :)



Oracle OpenWorld 2014 : The Journey Begins was first posted on September 25, 2014 at 5:26 pm.
©2012 "The ORACLE-BASE Blog". Use of this feed is for personal non-commercial use only. If you are not reading this article in your feed reader, then the site is guilty of copyright infringement.

Oaktable World & Delphix Labs on Mon & Tues

Next week during Oracle Open World, be sure and come on Monday and Tuesday to the free Oaktable World and  on Tuesday to Delphix hands on lab and free 90 day trial version at #CloneAttack at the same venue as Oaktable World.   The labs will also be joined by DBvisit for #RepAttack and Solarwinds (Confio) for #MonitorAttack.


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Beer, Meat, Explode


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Is X a Big Data product?

Virtually everyone in data space today claims that they are a Big Data vendor and that their products are Big Data products. Of course — if you are not in Big Data then you are legacy. So how do you know whether a product is a Big Data product?

While there might not be fully objective criteria (and mainly because Big Data definition is still in the air and people interpret it as they see fit for their purpose), I think I can provide one good suggestion on how to determine when a certain product is NOT a Big Data product. Of course, it will depend on the definition of Big Data that you believe in.

I believe that Big Data is mostly about being “affordable at scale“, quoting Jeff Needham, my good friend and fellow member of OakTable Network. In practice, that means commodity software, commodity hardware and commodity operations of the solution. I won’t define the thresholds of scale in terabytes or levels of complexity and etc but I can provide some guidelines.

Talking about commodity hardware, it’s generally based on x86 architecture (though, some say ARM is emerging but it’s been emerging way too long for my liking) with some reasonably priced components. That would typically be dual socket systems with up to few hundred GB of RAM and maybe a dozen disks or some SSDs and cost effective networking. If we narrow down to Hadoop-like architectures then a cluster node would typically cost between $4,000 and $10,000. Anything significantly above that is probably overpriced or overspec’ed.

OK. Now that we are good with hardware let’s look at software. Obviously, open-source software without any commercial support qualifies for commodity and being affordable. If you are Facebook-scale (or getting relatively close), your commercial support can be you own large scale, capable engineering team. Otherwise, you will most likely have commercial support. Back to Hadoop world, you should expect to pay for commercially supported Hadoop distribution (whoever it is out of three leading distributions — Cloudera, Hortonworks or MapR) the same order of magnitude as for the hardware itself. Annually, it would be a fraction of hardware cost or over three years it would be about the cost of hardware purchase or slightly above depending on the level of support and platform features. You get an idea. Non-open-source products licensed on similar pricing levels are Big Data products too — you don’t have to be open-source to call your technology Big Data.

Let’s take an example of a supposedly Big Data product. If a product has “Big Data” in the name, it surely must be a Big Data product. Eh?

I love quite a few Oracle products so why don’t I look at their line up… Big Data Appliance is a prebuilt Hadoop system or Hadoop appliance with 18 powerful data nodes per rack and list price tag of $525K per rack. That gets you to almost $30K per data node which is quite high and you would likely not build your own clusters like that. Add to that about $100K per year of support and maintenance for systems and OS (you can check pricing in the public engineered system price list). Big Data Appliance does include commercially supported Cloudera distribution so it might not be that terrible pricing-wise. If you have experience buying Oracle products you also know that customers don’t pay list prices. Thus, I can accept that Big Data Appliance can actually be called a Big Data product… just.

Now let’s looks at another product — Big Data SQL. It has been announced but hasn’t quite been released just yet (or did I miss it?). Awesome product, by the way. Great way to push some of data-intensive SQL processing from Oracle Database down to Hadoop. Now, it’s probably not widely known (since it wasn’t really publicly released and sold yet) that Big Data SQL is licensed per disk spindle and it’s $4,000 per spindle as list-price. Add to that typical 22% of annual software support and maintenance from Oracle. If I were to license Big Data SQL for a 100 nodes Hadoop cluster with 12 disks per node, it would cost me almost $5M based on list-price. Don’t forget to add 22% annually. This is order of magnitude more than I would spend on the hardware building such cluster. But wait, it looks like Big Data SQL is only working with Big Data Appliance. Even in this case, the cost of Big Data SQL per single rack appliance is $864K + 22% annually and that’s just one additional tool for your Big Data platform.

Based on what I know about Big Data SQL (and assuming it works as advertised when released), I love it — push code to data, scalable massive parallel processing, leveraging great features from Exadata Storage software. Great job to the folks who developed this product. Unfortunately, I cannot call it a Big Data product — it’s not affordable at scale.

So when you look at other vendors calling their product Big Data — do this costing assessment and if it doesn’t come as affordable at scale then it’s not a Big Data product. And feel free to share your assessments for the rest of us here. I’m sure not everyone will share my line of thinking here either. Fire way.

New 12c Default: Controlfile Autobackup On – But only for Multitenant

This a a little discovery from my present Oracle Database 12c New Features course in Copenhagen: The default setting for Controlfile Autobackup has changed to ON – but only for Multitenant, apparently:

$ rman target sys/oracle_4U@cdb1

Recovery Manager: Release - Production on Wed Sep 24 13:28:39 2014

Copyright (c) 1982, 2013, Oracle and/or its affiliates.  All rights reserved.

connected to target database: CDB1 (DBID=832467154)

RMAN> select cdb from v$database;

using target database control file instead of recovery catalog

RMAN> show controlfile autobackup;

RMAN configuration parameters for database with db_unique_name CDB1 are:

Above you see the setting for a container database (CDB). Now an ordinary (Non-CDB) 12c Database:

$ rman target sys/oracle_4U@orcl

Recovery Manager: Release - Production on Wed Sep 24 13:33:27 2014

Copyright (c) 1982, 2013, Oracle and/or its affiliates.  All rights reserved.

connected to target database: ORCL (DBID=1386527354)

RMAN> select cdb from v$database;

using target database control file instead of recovery catalog

RMAN> show controlfile autobackup;

RMAN configuration parameters for database with db_unique_name ORCL are:

I really wonder why we have this difference! Is that still so with Don’t believe it, test it! :-)

Tagged: 12c New Features, Backup & Recovery, Multitenant, RMAN