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Don Burleson Blog 







ORA-00205: error in identifying controlfile

Oracle Database Tips by Donald BurlesonOctober 23, 2015

Question: I have question regarding 10g control file setting. I have taken over an admin duties on a 10g DB on a windows servers. The database was installed by the previous DBA.  The control file is named file_name.ora is not correct. I've been getting the following ORA message:

"ORA-00205: error in identifying controlfile" 

What is the best way to re-create control file in the correct format and store it in the right place?

Answer:  The oerr utility show this for the ORA-00205 error:

ORA-00205: error in identifying control file, check alert log for more info

Cause: The system could not find a control file of the specified name and size.

Action: Check that ALL control files are online and that they are the same files that the system created at cold start time.

Your database must be shutdown first. (And probably it is not working right now.)

First of all, create pfile from spfile by issuing this command:

SQL> create pfile from spfile;

Then look under the directory of $ORACLE_HOME\database. You will find a newly created pfile. (Its name is init<SID>.ora) Edit newly created pfile to correct controlfile locations. Then issue the command below:

SQL> create spfile from pfile;

After that, database will see controlfiles. But if you also have changed datafile locations; you have to rename datafiles in mount mode.


If you have lost only one of many control files, the procedure is different.  It is a standard practice to have at least two control files (normally three), so you need to identify the surviving control files and replace the missing one with one of the others.




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