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Oracle Concepts - Oracle Installation

Oracle Tips by Burleson Consulting

Oracle Installation Concepts

We are now ready to move-on and take a look at how to create and install an Oracle database.

Installing Oracle and Creating a new Oracle Database

In this chapter we will discuss how you install the Oracle database software and then show you how you create an Oracle database. Finally, after you have created your Oracle database we will discuss the SQL*Plus interface to the Oracle database.

Installing and Creating Oracle Databases

Before you can create an Oracle database, you must first install the database software. The software for Oracle Database 10g comes on only one CD, so installation is easy. In this section we will discuss what you need to do before you install the Oracle software and then we will discuss the installation of the Oracle software.

Before you install the Oracle software, you need to make sure you are using the right edition and version of Oracle.

There is a separate install guide for each hardware platform and it?s critical that you read this manual before trying to install Oracle.

You would be amazed at how many times I?ve seem basic questions asked in forums where it?s clear the person asking the question had not read the instillation guide. I?ve been told that the DBA guild is considering doubling its rates for any emergency calls to fix install disasters, so read up folks! Let?s get started.

Checking the Edition and Version of Oracle

When preparing to install the Oracle software for the first time, you need determine the release and features that you desire.  When considering what version of Oracle to use, consider the following issues:

1. Features - Different versions of the Oracle database software have different functionality. Versions in Oracle are numbered, like or, and they indicate the release level of the software. Go to Oracle?s web site,, to find out what features are available in the version of Oracle you are planning to use.

2. Edition - Oracle version is one consideration, but in each version there are editions that come with different functionality. Make sure that the features you will need to use are available in your edition of Oracle. The names change with each release, but Oracle Database 10g comes in Enterprise Edition, Standard Edition and Personal Edition. Advanced functionality is missing from Standard Edition (SE) and Express Edition (XE).

3. Version - Make sure that the version you are installing is still supported by Oracle, and that it will not soon be de-supported. You should do this because it can be very time consuming (and sometimes expensive) to migrate to different versions of Oracle.

Choosing your Oracle Features

Many companies that choose to forgo the advanced features of the Enterprise Edition may save thousands of dollars per year in licensing fees. The features available in Oracle Enterprise Edition that are not available in Oracle standard edition (SE), Oracle Express (XE) and Standard Edition One (SEO) include many features that your application may not require:

* Advanced Replication - This tool provides one-way and multi-master replication (via database links) for distributed systems using the dbms_repcat package. 

* Transparent Application Failover (TAF) - Used to re-direct in-flight transactions to a failover database in the case of a server crash.

* Fast-start fault recovery - This is a method for quickly recover and synchronize the Oracle database in cases of hardware failure.

* Oracle Data Guard ? Data Guard is a semi-automated standby/failover database for database replication.

* Advanced Queuing - A software scheduling package for advanced scheduling the serialization using the dbms_aqadm package.

* SQL Optimizer Plan Stability (Stored Outlines) - This is a tool to freeze Oracle execution plans during software upgrades and change vendor SQL when you cannot tough the source SQL.

* Online index rebuilds - The ability to rebuild an Oracle index while it is being updated.

* Export transportable tablespaces - This provides the ability to transfer encapsulated tablespaces between databases.

* Materialized Views - This is a powerful tool to allow for the pre-summarization of aggregate data (averages, counts, sums) and pre-join tables together. Materialized views are especially useful in low-update databases and data warehouses.

* Bitmap indexes - Bitmaps are a unique indexing structure for fast combinations of low-cardinality data columns. Bitmap indexes are especially powerful for data warehouses and low-update databases.

* Oracle Parallel Query (OPQ) - Parallel query is a divide-and conquer approach whereby Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP) and Massively Parallel Processors (MPP) can get super-fast response time for large-table full-table scans

* Parallel DML - This is the ability to perform database changes (inserts, updates, deletes) in parallel.

* Parallel index rebuilding - This allows large Oracle indexes to be rebuilt in a fraction of the time required by a single CPU system.

* Parallel index scans - This feature allows for parallel fast full-index scans and multi-block reads of index data blocks.

* Parallel backup & recovery - This allows Oracle RMAN backups to be parallelized for super-fast backups of large databases.

* Incremental backup & recovery - This feature tracks database changes and only backs-up those components that have been changed since the last backup.

* Oracle connection manager (CMAN) - Thos tool is used for Oracle databases that must support large volumes of concurrent user connections.

* Oracle Streams - Oracle offers many different methods for database failover and replication.

Extra-cost Oracle Options

In addition, Oracle offers many extra-cost database features that you can buy independently from the edition. These include:

* Oracle Partitioning Option - Oracle divide-and-conquer approach for super-large databases. Partitioning is generally used for databases over 100 gigabytes.

* Oracle Real Application Clusters (RAC) - RAC is the Oracle flagship software for scalability and high availability. Free with Oracle Standard Edition and extra-cost with Enterprise Edition, RAC is an integral part of Oracle10g Grid computing, Oracle RAC is an extra-cost option for systems that require continuous availability and super-high scalability.

* Oracle OLAP - Oracle is a leader in data warehouse technology and has Online Analytical Processing (OLAP) tools for advanced decision support and multi-terabyte data warehouses.

* Oracle Data Mining - Advanced data warehouse systems require tools to locate hidden trends and correlations. Oracle offers a tool with advanced artificial intelligence for finding hidden data correlations in super-large databases.

* Oracle Database Diagnostic Pack - This covers access to the Oracle10g Automated Workload Repository (AWR) and Automatic Database Diagnostic Monitor (ADDM) components.

* Oracle advanced Security - Oracle advanced Security provides sophisticated security control for confidential and secure data systems.

* Oracle Tuning Pack - Oracle provides a full-suite of online tools for tuning the Oracle database. Integrated with the Oracle Enterprise Manager, Oracle tuning pack competes with many 3rd-party vendor tuning products.


* Oracle Change Management Pack - The change management pack provides complete version control and database change auditing.

Next, let?s look at how to verify your compatibility issues.

Checking for Oracle Compatibility Issues

Before you install Oracle you will need to check that your computer hardware and operating system are compatible with Oracle. It?s important to make sure that all of the pieces of your system work together, and that?s what checking compatibility is all about. You will need to check:

* OS Version - The version of the operating system

* Hardware - The hardware platform that you are running on (most releases of Oracle require at least 512k in RAM)

* OS Patches - Required patches (OS patches and hardware firmware patches as required).

* Compatibility - The compatibility of your applications with your chosen combinations of Hardware, OS and Oracle version.

Oracle database compatibility information is available from the Oracle web site ( When you install Oracle Database 10g, the installer will insure that your system is configured properly, but it may abort if you missed something.

Oracle Disk space allocation

The ?base? Oracle footprint takes a little over two gigabytes of disk space. If you are going to use other optional products, you will need to check the documentation for those products for their space requirements. Usually, when planning disk space for the Oracle installation, you want to have lots of extra space for any patches that you might need to download (patches can easily be as big as the initial install).

We recommend at least 5 gigabytes of free disk space. This makes the process of migrating to newer versions of Oracle much easier. In addition, there are plenty of logs that will end up in your installation location.  Most Oracle professionals reserve at least 5 to 10 Gigabytes for the base Oracle installation.

This is an excerpt from the bestselling "Easy Oracle Jumpstart" by Robert Freeman and Steve Karam (Oracle ACE and Oracle Certified Master).  It?s only $19.95 when you buy it directly from the publisher here.

If you like Oracle tuning, you may enjoy the new book "Oracle Tuning: The Definitive Reference", over 900 pages of BC's favorite tuning tips & scripts. 

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Note: This Oracle documentation was created as a support and Oracle training reference for use by our DBA performance tuning consulting professionals.  Feel free to ask questions on our Oracle forum.

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