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 Custom SQL*Plus prompt tips

Oracle Database Tips by Donald BurlesonMarch 17, 2015

Question:  How do I customize my prompt in SQL*Plus with my $ORACLE_SID?

Answer:  In complex Oracle environments it is not uncommon for the Oracle professional to get confused about their "current" Oracle session as defined by the $ORACLE_SID environment variable. This can cause serious problems when commands are accidentally entered into the wrong database!

The solution to this problem is to enhance the standard SQL*Plus prompt of "SQL>" to include the database name.

To change the SQL prompt to show the user ID and database (instance) name, Oracle provides a special SQL*Plus file called glogin.sql. By changing the directives of the glogin.sql file in the $ORACLE_HOME/sqlplus/admin directory, you can enhance the SQL*Plus prompt to include the database name.

set termout off
define new_prompt='nolog'
column value new_value new_prompt

select
username ||
': ' ||
substr(substr(global_name,1,30),1,
instr(substr(global_name,1,30),'.')-1)
value
from
user_users,
global_name;


set sqlprompt "&new_prompt> "
set termout on
This will change your prompt as follows:
set ORACLE_SD=PROD;
export ORACLE_SID
sqlplus system/manager
PROD> select name from v$database;
PROD
1 Row selected.
PROD>


Note that this prompt is set at entry to SQL*Plus and it will not change if you connect to another database using the SQL*Plus connect statement. The following example clarifies this limitation of the SQL*Plus prompt.

set ORACLE_SD=PROD;
export ORACLE_SID
sqlplus system/manager
PROD> select name from v$database;
PROD
1 Row selected.
PROD> connect system/manager@TEST
Connected.
PROD> select name from v$database;
TEST
1 Row selected.


   
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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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