RU

DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE and Out-Of-Place Patching

Well, you see, this is most likely my special DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE week. And since I receive quite a number of questions, it may be good to discuss here about DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE and Out-Of-Place Patching?

DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE and Out-Of-Place Patching

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Out-of-place Patching

When you patch out-of-place with a new home – which is clearly our recommendation – you may see another tiny pitfall with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE.

When you check DBA_DIRECTORIES, you will find two directories being related to DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE.

SQL> select directory_name, directory_path from dba_directories where directory_name like '%OPTIM%'

DIRECTORY_NAME	     DIRECTORY_PATH
-------------------- --------------------------------------------------
DBMS_OPTIM_LOGDIR    /u01/app/oracle/product/19/cfgtoollogs
DBMS_OPTIM_ADMINDIR  /u01/app/oracle/product/19/rdbms/admin

You see the “19” in the …

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DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE and disabling another fix

Yes, DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE week it is. As I received so many good questions and input after my blog post whether you should enable _fix_controls with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE or not, now I can easily fill the rest of the week with new content. Today it will be about a customer’s question regarding DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE and disabling another fix.

Disabling another fix

The setup is pretty simple. Stefan wanted to disable a different fix while he had all fixes from the most recent RU enabled on purpose. Sounds simple but has a dangerous pitfall.

This is what …

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Should you enable _fix_controls with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE?

Today, Paul mailed me asking a question we internally discussed many times in the past weeks: Should you enable _fix_controls with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE? And there is no easy simple answer. But I can give a recommendation based on my experience from many projects.

DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE – a quick recap

Just in case you haven’t dealt with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE recently, here is a quick recap.

With below procedure, you can list the available potentially behavior changing optimizer fixes in the current patch bundle – and you can turn them on or off at will:

SQL> set serveroutput on;
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After patching, Spatial Index creation fails with ORA-13249

Thanks again to Peter Lehmann from T-Systems for highlighting this issue to me. After patching, Spatial Index creation fails with ORA-13249. And Peter’s customer was quite worried. But see what may have caused this, and how we fixed it.

After patching, Spatial Index Creation Fails with ORA-13249

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What happened?

Peter patched a system from 19.10.0 to 19.11.0. This database has undergone an upgrade from 12.2.0.1 to 19.7.0 before, then got patched to 19.9.0 before. The database has the Oracle Locator only but no Spatial installed. The patching including datapatch worked fine. All seemed to be good. Until the customer tried to …

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Patching all my environments with the July 2021 Patch Bundles

It’s patching day again. Hurray! Or not. I realize that at patching day, the 19c bundles are all missing. So wrote this blog post a bit after the usual release day. In my case this will include Oracle 19.12.0 RU and the July 2021 RU for Oracle 12.2.0.1. Please find the details about Patching all my environments with the July 2021 Patch Bundles below.

As usual, an important annotation upfront: I patch in-place due to space issues. But in reality, you please patch always out-of-place with a separate home. Please see this blog post

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AutoUpgrade may run into a timeout when GI is lower than 19.10.0

The other day I received a question from a colleague about the risk of having GI and database both not being on the same RU. And a long while ago I blogged about it. We recommend that you keep it in synch. But you don’t have to. At the same time I received a wish from Ernst Leber to post something on the blog he and his colleague had trouble with when upgrading to 19c in a RAC environment. AutoUpgrade hung. But he titled his email with “not an AutoUpgrade problem!”. Still I agree, it is worth to write …

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Bug Fixing Support for Oracle 18c ends June 30, 2021

Time flies so quickly. I remember when we had intense discussions with a very large automotive customer whether they should use Oracle 18c, or rather wait for Oracle 19c. They went straight to Oracle 19c. But I know that many customers out there are still on Oracle 18c. So this date coming up in less than 3 weeks is very important for you. Bug Fixing Support for Oracle 18c ends June 30, 2021.

Oracle Database 18c

I quickly checked on my blog. On March 20, 2018 I wrote When will Oracle Database 18c

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Why do you need a password to download older patch bundles?

A customer raised this question recently: Why do you need a password to download older patch bundles? The customer wanted to download a PSU from July 2020 on the MyOracle Support (MOS) platform but this wasn’t possible without a password.

Why do you need a password to download older patch bundles?

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Why is there an extra password required?

In MOS Note: 888.1 – Master Note for Database Proactive Patch Program we documented the following:

1.4 Policy to obtain older Oracle Database Bundles, Updates & Revisions

Through our review of customer Service Requests (SRs), we find that customers frequently run into issues because they have unknowingly downloaded

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New parameters and features in Oracle Database 19.11.0

As usual, as soon as I apply the newest RU, I do also a quick check for New parameters and defaults in Oracle Database 19.11.0.

New parameters and features in Oracle Database 19.11.0

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New Parameters in Oracle 19.11.0

Based on customer feedback, there is one really big improvement since this RU release. Not only new features but also parameter changes get listed. You will find them in the 19c New Features Guide.

In this RU you will find only 1 new parameter:

  • drcp_dedicated_opt
    The description says “Turn on/off dedicated optimization for DRCP” – and the default is “YES
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Oracle 19c Installation with 19.11.0 RU, OJVM and some other fixes

In an previous blog post we showed how to install and patch in one single action. And as I use this technique all the time when I setup new homes, would like to show you an Oracle 19c Installation with 19.11.0 RU, OJVM and some other fixes. The purpose of this blog post is mainly to demonstrate again how you can install and patch in one action. But also to help you avoiding a pitfall when you apply the OJVM RU from April 2021.

What do we need?

At first, let us …

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Patching all my environments with the April 2021 Patch Bundles

Oh well, time flies. And it is April 2021, and hence I will start Patching all my environments with the April 2021 Patch Bundles. In my case, this will be 19.11.0 and 12.2.0.1 Release Updates. But there will be an additional blog post for the OJVM bundle, too.

As usual, an important annotation upfront: I patch in-place due to space issues. But in reality, you please patch always out-of-place with a separate home. Please see this blog post about how to apply the RU directly when you provision a new home with OUI

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ORA-12638 on Windows only from Oracle 19.10.0 onwards

You like unexpected changes and surprises, don’t you? And especially those which aren’t in the patch notes or the docs. I blogged about such changes a few weeks ago. And thanks to the people reading this blog, I learned now about another change with Oracle 19.10.0 on the Windows platform. You may receive now an ORA-12638 on Windows only from Oracle 19.10.0 onwards.

What has been changed?

So at first, thanks to Ernst and Marcus for bringing this to my attention. This is an issue which happens on MS Windows only.

When you …

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You may need a one-off for DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE in 19.10.0

It’s been a while since I blogged about the DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE – and to me, the package is still sort of a mystery. Ideally you can least and enable or disable behavior changing optimizer fixes per RU. And in Oracle 19.10.0, you will find a new surprise. So You may need a one-off for DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE in 19.10.0.

You may need a one-off for DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE in 19.10.0

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Quick Recap

Just in case you haven’t dealt with DBMS_OPTIM_BUNDLE yet or for a while, a quick recap.

With this procedure, you can list the available patches to turn on or off at will:

SQL> set serveroutput 
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No RURs for 12.2.0.1 – and Oracle 11.2.0.4 left Extended Support

Last week I blogged about the quarterly patching fun when applying the Release Updates to my environments. But I completely forget to mention and explain a few things. There are No RURs for 12.2.0.1 – and Oracle 11.2.0.4 left Extended Support.

No RURs for 12.2.0.1 - and Oracle 11.2.0.4 left Extended Support

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No Release Update Revisions for Oracle 12.2.0.1

Thanks to my friend Rodrigo Jorge who messaged me on the weekend. He goes way deeper with applying the quarterly patches and highlights the differences. And he recognized and blogged already about the fact that there are no RURs available for Oracle 12.2.0.1.

And …

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Patching all my environments with the January 2021 Patch Bundles

Groundhog day on the upgrade blog. It’s time for my quaterly Patching all my environments with the January 2021 Patch Bundles blog post. And still no RAC and ASM. Sorry for that … too many virtual events and other tasks since months unfortunately.

Patching all my environments with the January 2021 Patch Bundles

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As usual, an important annotation upfront: I patch in-place due to space issues. But in reality, you please patch always out-of-place with a separate home. Please see this blog post about how to apply the RU directly when you provision a new home with OUI.

Security Alert January 2021

Find …

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Why is there a lib32 directory in Oracle 19.8.0 and 19.9.0?

I received two emails from different customers within a week – and both asked the same thing: Why is there a lib32 directory in Oracle 19.8.0 and 19.9.0? In one case, it was more like “We are wondering” but in the other case it caused issues during patching.

Why is there a lib32 directory in Oracle 19.8.0 and 19.9.0?

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What happens?

Due to a packaging issue most likely, there is a lib32 directory appearing after you patch your homes to either 19.8.0 or 19.9.0. With the next RU, 19.10.0, this should not be the case anymore.

Why does this sound strage?

The first customer who …

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ORA-29702 – and your instance does not startup in the cluster anymore

This is the right blog post for a Friday 13th. And please forgive me – I wanted to put this on the blog earlier as two of my customers hit this weeks ago already. But it must have fallen through the cracks. Still, now it is hopefully not too late to tell you what you should do if you hit ORA-29702 – and your instance does not startup in the cluster anymore. Especially when you tested a database upgrade – and after a restore, the database doesn’t want to start, no matter what you try.

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Why is the 19.9.0 Release Update not available yet for MY platform?

I’ve had a week off and tried to relax and stay away from work topics (which worked quite well this time). The downside is 300+ emails in the inbox. And I spotted several ones already asking: Why is the 19.9.0 Release Update not available yet for MY platform?

Details for Patch 123456789 not found.

At first, this is not a uncommon question. And the root cause is two-fold. As you know from my quarterly blog posts such as Patching all my environments with the October 2020 Patch Bundles, these notes are important:

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APAC OUG: Welcome to the Jungle – Database Patching Insights

October 19-30 – APAC Virtual Groundbreakers Tour

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Patching all my environments with the October 2020 Patch Bundles

I have to confess: Time didn’t allow to rearrange my lab yet to have GI and ASM. Hence, this will be another blog post about Patching all my environments with the October 2020 Patch Bundles with only non-RAC patching. But it is in the works …

As usual, an important annotation upfront: I patch in-place due to space issues. But in reality, you please patch always out-of-place with a separate home. Please see this blog post about how to apply the RU directly when you provision a new home with OUI.

Security Alert

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Install and Patch in one single action with OUI

This is such a common case: You want to install a new Oracle Home and you’d like to apply the most recent patch bundle to it as well. But as we don’t officially offer Gold Images to download where the RU is included already, you have to do three tasks instead of one. But you can avoid this and Install and Patch in one single action with OUI.

Recommendation and 3 standard actions

We always recommend that you apply the most recent RU. Hence, usually you will download Oracle Database 19.3.0 from …

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Patching all my environments with the July 2020 Patch Bundles

Quarterly routine: When the new security alert get published, then it is patching time again. I’ll show you as usual how Patching all my environments with the July 2020 Patch Bundles works. And I heard your comments – in the next round in October, I will do this for GI and OJVM most likely, too. If not earlier …

And just an important annotation upfront: I patch in-place due to space issues. But in reality, you please patch always out-of-place with a separate home.

Security Alert July 2020

This is the Security Alert for

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Special characters show junk in CLOB columns after upgrade to Oracle 19.7.0 with JDBC

When you’d copy & paste the above title into a search engine, you may come across a very similar sounding blog post I wrote two years ago. Today, my dear colleague Dirk asked me on behalf of a customer if it’s possible that this bug is back in 19.7.0. Of course, I said “No”, for sure not. Bug 26380097 was fixed in Oracle 18c already. Gladly, Dirk insisted. So I checked the SR his customer opened.

And now I can write an unplanned blog post about Special characters show junk in CLOB columns

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Does your GI RU/RUR patch level has to match your database’s?

A long while ago I blogged about whether you should keep your patch versions between Grid Infrastructure and Databases Homes in synch, or not. And today, Daniel dropped me a note mentioning that this old blog post may need an update for 18c/19c. He’s right. And as I’ve had trouble finding my old blog post, I title this one a bit more obvious: Does your GI RU/RUR patch level has to match your database’s?

Does your GI RU/RUR patch level has to match your database's?

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Before Oracle Database 18c

Since Oracle 18c we move from a 5-number release schema to a 3-number one. …

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Oracle 12.2.0.1 – Clarification for Limited Error Correction Support

A few weeks ago, you read the announcement of the availability of Limited Error Correction Support for Oracle Database 12.2.0.1. But many of you had some questions right away. I could answer most of them easily. But it was clear to us that there was more information needed. Hence, we published more information for Oracle 12.2.0.1 – Clarification for Limited Error Correction Support.

Oracle 12.2.0.1 - Clarification for Limited Error Correction Support

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What has been announced in April 2020?

Just a few weeks ago we announced the availability of Limited Error Correction Support for Oracle 12.2.0.1 after November 2020. You could find …

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