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Appending Data to UNIX Files

Oracle Database Tips by Donald Burleson

Advanced Oracle Utilities: The Definitive Reference by Rampant TechPress is written by top Oracle database experts (Bert Scalzo, Donald Burleson, and Steve Callan).  The following is an excerpt from the book.

To redirect program output, UNIX provides the << and >> commands.  This is very useful when the Oracle DBA wants to keep logs in the UNIX environment.  A typical usage might be to write a notation to the Oracle alert log that the file has been checked for errors.  The command below could be used for this purpose:

echo '*****Alert log checked at 2/5/2002 by Andrew Kerber ****' >> \


The >> command can also be used to append to an existing file of errors.  A common application is to keep a running list of all Oracle trace file names.  The following command can be used to write all new trace file names into a list. Note that the first command line uses a single ">" to recreate the trace_file_names.lst file, while subsequent redirects use the ">>" directive to append new entries to this file.


ls –al $DBA/$ORACLE_SID/bdump/*.trc  > /tmp/trace_file_names.lst
ls –al $DBA/$ORACLE_SID/udump/*.trc >> /tmp/trace_file_names.lst
ls –al $DBA/$ORACLE_SID/cdump/*.trc >> /tmp/trace_file_names.lst


Next, it may be necessary to suppress UNIX command output. 

Redirecting Output to a NULL Device

If one does not wish to see the output of a UNIX command (typically a batch job), use the /dev/null device to suppress the output. The /dev/null device is the equivalent of the DD DUMMY syntax in the Cobol.  The /dev/null device is often used in scheduled tasks (using the UNIX crontab utility) if the output from the command is not required. In the next example, submit a large batch job and suppress the output.


The ampersand causes UNIX to run the job in the background (detached from the starting process), and the "2>&1" syntax tells UNIX to redirect the standard error output to standard output.  In this example, all possible output from large_file.exe will be suppressed:


./large_job.exe & 2>&1 > /dev/null

The tee command can be used to redirect multiple output streams.

Get the Complete
Oracle Utility Information 

The landmark book "Advanced Oracle Utilities The Definitive Reference"  contains over 600 pages of filled with valuable information on Oracle's secret utilities. This book includes scripts and tools to hypercharge Oracle 11g performance and you can buy it for 30% off directly from the publisher.




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