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Don Burleson Blog 







ORA-03297 Tips

Oracle Database Tips by Donald BurlesonDecember 8,  2015


Question:  When I attempt to let go of space by resizing my datafile I get ORA-03297.  How do I get around this ORA-03297 error and resize my data file?

ALTER DATABASE DATAFILE '/d001/pi2006_01.dbf' RESIZE 3000M;
ERROR at line 1:
ORA-03297: file contains used data beyond requested RESIZE value

Answer:  First, always remember that disk has become very cheap, and you should only reclaim space in an emergency when you have mis-judged your disk space requirements.  The Oracle documentation notes the following about ORA-03297:

ORA-03297: file contains used data beyond requested RESIZE value

Cause: Some portion of the file in the region to be trimmed is currently in use by a database object

Action: Drop or move segments containing extents in this region prior to resizing the file, or choose a resize value such that only free space is in the trimmed.

Here is a sequence of steps to fix the ORA-03297 error:

1 - First, query the dba_extents view, and run oracle scripts to map out the free space in the data file.

2 - Purge the recycle bin and try again. 

3 - Try coalescing the tablespace (alter tablespace fred coalesce;)

If these do not fix the ORA-03297 error, you need to reorganize the objects in the tablespace's data file such that there is only free space into the area that you want to delete.  To reorganize the objects in the data files tablespace, you have these options:

- Try "alter tablespace" coalesce

- Reorganize objects with Data Pump export/import

- The "alter table" shrink space command

- Use "alter index" rebuild (if there are indexes in the tablespace)

- Reorganize the tablespace objects with dbms_redefinition or Create table As Select (CTAS) - This copies the table rows into a clean area, lowering the high-water-mark, and packing the rows densely.

Phillip Bracken notes these solutions on the ORA-03297 error:

"You are trying to shrink the tablespace below its high water mark. If you are running Oracle 10g and are using locally management tablespaces with Automatic Storage Management and row movement enabled on the tables, you could issue an Alter Table Shrink.

If you are not at Oracle 10g or are not using locally managed tablespaces, the only way around this is to drop or move the tables or indexes containing extents above region in the tablespace you are trying to resize it to, or try a different size that is not below the tablespace's high water mark."



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