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Feb 25th, 2013 — Mar 3rd, 2013 Generate the Custom HTML Email for this Issue
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Volume 180, Issue 4 << Previous Issue | Next Issue >>
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Database Isolation in the Private and Public Cloud
Oracle RAC in Solaris 11 Zones Generally Does the Job; Use Encapsulation when Security Issues Demand It
The isolation of natively consolidated databases, whether private or public, on a a single shared Oracle Grid Infrastructure can generally be accommodated by the provisions built in to Oracle Database, B.R. Clouse posts, citing "Best Practices for Database Consolidation in Private Clouds" for details. Database clouds hosting databases with security or compliance considerations can be isolated through the encapsulation techniques, either logical or physical, provided by Oracle Database 11g R2 RAC in Solaris 11 Zones. A second white paper, "Encapsulating Oracle Databases with Oracle Solaris 11 Zones," explains this capability. Clouse also recommends the white paper "The Oracle Optimized Solution for Enterprise Database Cloud."
Adam Leventhal Ponders the Issue of Systems Software: Alive or Dead?
Far From a Dead Species, He Contends
A comment by a prospective employee sent Adam Leventhal on a mission. The comment echoed one of the applicant's college professors who asserted that systems programming was at a dead end. Leventhal defined four sorts of "systems programming." Among the four types are:

  • supporting systems software
  • accidental systems software
  • replacement systems software
  • intentional systems software

That said, is systems programming truly dead? No, Leventhal responds. "As more and more critical applications build on an interface, the more value there is in improving the systems software beneath it. Systems software is defined by the constraints; it’s a mission and a mindset."

Myth Busters Department: 'A Solaris tmpfs Uses Real Memory'
Alan Hargreaves Demonstrates the Truth of His Assertion

Whatever you may have heard, Alan Hargreaves establishes that a Solaris tmpfs uses real memory. This is because, he asserts, a tmpfs uses pageable kernel memory although, if necessary, these pages can be paged to the swap device: a guaranteed result if you put more data onto a tmpfs than you have physical memory. For the skeptics, Hargreaves provides a three-step test that demonstrates what happens in free memory when a user creates a 1GB file in /tmp. Whatever one may have thought, he concludes, tmpfs does not steal some of the disk allocated as swap to use as a filesystem without impacting memory.

Since You Asked... A Couple of Oracle Solaris Resources
IBM AIX to Solaris Migration and Oracle Solaris on Oracle x86 Systems
Larry Wake recommends two Oracle Solaris Resources: "IBM AIX to Oracle Solaris Technology Mapping Guide" and "Oracle's x86 Systems: The Best x86 Platforms for Oracle Solaris." The first title is a 55-page technical white paper identifying and comparing the differences between AIX 7.1 and Oracle Solaris 11. The second was the featured topic on the February 26th webcast on Oracle Solaris on Oracle's x86 systems, which mentioned the bidirectional connection between Oracle Solaris and x86 systems' service processors, and the accompanying white paper mentioned above covers the Oracle Solaris-Aware Service Processor, and other details as well. The webcast itself is now available for replay.
Locks and Killing Sessions in Oracle SQL Developer
The Answer to 'Who's Got My App Tied Up?'
Under the formidable title "Locks and Killing Sessions in Oracle SQL Developer" Jeff Smith instructs readers of his blog in how to 1) identify the activity that causes the Windows "busy" hourglass cursor to linger on their monitor screens and 2) how to "kill" the offending session. He starts on the Tools tab and selects Monitor Sessions, whose context menu allows users to initiate a trace and execute a kill. Under the Database Administration and Locks category, Smith leads readers to the Blocking Locks by User report and, from there, to the trigger pull "Kill Session." BANG! The app is all yours.
Replication Performance Improvements in MySQL 5.6
Reduces Risk of Losing Data When Master Fails and Improves Read Consistency from Slaves
The replication performance of MySQL 5.6 has been improved in a number of ways, Mat Keep blogs. Using MySQL replication to scale out a database across commodity nodes and as a foundation for High Availability (HA) will demonstrate performance improvements resulting from a combination of Binary Log Group Commit, multi-threaded slaves, and Optimized Row-Based Replication. Furthermore, Keep continues, higher replication performance directly translates to reduced risk of losing data in the event of a failure on the master; improved read consistency from slaves; and resource-efficient binlogs traversing the replication cluster. These improvements allow developers and DBAs to get ahead of performance demands, Keep concludes.
Cloud Computing
Oracle Announces Latest Release of Oracle RightNow Cloud Service
Offers Rapid Response to Complex Customer Issues

Oracle has released Oracle RightNow Cloud Service, which includes new capabilities to help organizations automate the management and deployment of the complex business policies required to support customers. The February 2013 release of Oracle RightNow Cloud Service is the only cross-channel cloud service and support solution on the market that offers this level of rapid delivery and easy maintenance of highly complex business policies. Oracle RightNow Policy Automation empowers an organization’s policy experts to manage policies and updates efficiently, and to deliver answers to customer questions effectively over the web, avoiding higher cost escalations.

Performance Tuning an Exalogic System
Surveying What's Built in and What Users can Do for Themselves
Rick Ramsey addresses both the built-in Exalogic optimizations and the DIY types. The built-ins come in two forms: generic optimizations, designed to integrate Infiniband networking seamlessly into all the hardware, software, and firmware distributed throughout the system, and optimizations to run-time components that have been engineered directly into Oracle WebLogic Server (WLS), Coherence, and Tuxedo.

The DIY optimizations, as outlined by Ramsey and drawn by him from the Exalogic: Administration Tasks and Tools white paper, include tunings to middleware, platform, infrastructure, middleware runtime environment, and tuning the applications themselves. Ramsey comments briefly on each of these, noting instances when "enough is enough."

Videos and Presentation Slide Decks from the IOUG 2013 Exadata Virtual Conference
Of Interest to Oracle DBAs Familiar with RAC, 11gR2, ASM and to Database Machine Administrators

A number of videos and presentation slide decks from the Independent Oracle Users Group's recent 2013 Exadata Virtual Conference are now available online. Javier Puerta reports that topics include:

  • Exadata for Oracle DBAs
  • Lessons Learned: A DoD Exadata Migration
  • Exadata Software Maintenance
  • Demystifying Exadata I/O Resource Management (IORM)
  • Exadata in EBS Techniques for POV to Production and Beyond!
  • Exadata Database Machine IOUG – Exadata SIG Update
  • Exadata Evolution from V1 to X3 with Deep Dive into the features
  • MAA Architecture and Operational Best Practices for Oracle Exadata
There Are Reasons Oracle WebLogic Server 12c Has 43% Market Share
Performance Improvements Inherent in New Release Boost Adoptions
The new features in Oracle WebLogic Server 12c, which contribute to its 43% market share, result in lower cost of operations, improved performance, enhanced scalability, support for the Oracle Applications portfolio, and improved developer productivity, Juergen Kress posts. He draws reader attention to a number of training aids, which include:
  • "Benefits, Strategies, and Best Practices for upgrading to Oracle WebLogic Server"
  • "Java Management Extensions with Oracle WebLogic Server 12c"
  • "Oracle Learning Library Self-study Tutorials"
Sun Tape
Oracle's StorageTek SL150 Modular Tape Library Perfect for Entry-level, Mid-level Markets
Cost Effective, Scalable, Partner Friendly Solution Drives Adoptions
Maureen Slavin, Senior Manager, Storage Product Enablement, Oracle, discusses the StorageTek SL150 Modular Tape Library in an OPN PartnerCast video. The growth and diversity of data is chiefly responsible for the need driving this product, according to Slavin. The SL 150 has great appeal for the entry level and mid-level markets, she says. Expansion by the customer of up to 450 Terabytes (TB) in 21U rackspace accounts for much of this appeal, she asserts. Oracle Fusion Middleware makes management of all this storage extremely easy to use and very cost effective. Suport for the SL150 is very partner friendly, further adding to the product's appeal.
Top Ten Articles for last few Issues
Vol 180 Issue 1, 2, 3; Vol 179 Issues 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5
We track how frequently each article is viewed on the web site to determine which the readers consider the most important. For last week, the top 10 articles were:

  • The Document Foundation Announces LibreOffice 4.0
  • Five Perspectives on Virtual Networks
  • SPARC T4 Digest and Crypto Optimizations in Solaris 11.1
  • Oracle's StorageTek Tape Products Capture Awards, Media Attention
  • How to Avoid Erroneous Results in Performance Testing
  • Oracle and Linux Foundation Partnership Growing Stronger
  • NetBeans IDE 7.3 now in GA
  • JavaOne 2012 Videos Posted on OracleLearning YouTube Channel
  • Java Spotlight Episode 121: Kirk Pepperdine on System Performance Tuning @javaperftuning
  • In Touch (February 2013): Spotlight on Cloud

The longer version of this article has list of top ten articles for the last 8 weeks.

    How to: Build a Private Virtual Network with Zones in Solaris 11
    Networking with a 'Roll-your-own' Virtual Switch
    Courtesy of User 13333379, readers are alerted to Stefan Schneider"s multi-part how-to on building a private virtual network with Solaris 11 Zones. Among the several tasks Schneider leads readers through are:
    • Creating a virtual switch (gbswitch0) inside your Solaris 11 servers
    • Creating virtual network interfaces which will be attached to the virtual switch
    • Creating zones which will use the virtual switch
    • Configuring the routing to keep all communication inside your Solaris server
    • Configuring a network address translation (NAT) which allow your internal zones to access external services like DNS
    • Configuring a reverse proxy for the public network interface.
    Two Update Downloads for Oracle VM 3.2
    Include Bug Fixes; SPARC Agent Update Not Yet Available
    The latest Oracle VM 3.2 update is available on My Oracle Support, Honglin Su posts. The patch updates, Oracle VM Manager 3.2.2 and Oracle VM Server for x86 3.2.2, include all the cumulative bug fixes that have been integrated since 3.2.1 release. Oracle VM Server 3.2.2 build 520 has been validated with Oracle VM Manager 3.2.2 build 520. There's no SPARC Agent update at this time, Su notes. The post provides links to both upgrades as well as to installation instructions. In addition, a list of notable bug fixes is also part of the post.
    White Paper: Implementing Root Domains with Oracle VM Server for SPARC
    Introduces Root Domain Model as One of Several Architectures Supported by Oracle VM Server for SPARC
    "Implementing Root Domains with Oracle VM Server for SPARC," a new Oracle white paper by Mikel Manitius, Michael Ramchand, and Jeff Savit, describes how to use Oracle VM Server for SPARC root domains (domains that are assigned a PCIe bus) along with Solaris zones for maximum performance and a high degree of flexibility. This combination can be used to provide bare-metal performance and eliminate dependencies between domains, and can be a useful alternative to deployments based on service domains and virtual I/O, co-author Savit posts. The paper introduces the root domain model as one of several architectures Oracle VM Server for SPARC product supports.
    Java Technology
    Java Spotlight Episode 122: Ashwin Rao on NetBeans 7.3 Release @netbeans
    NetBeans Group Product Manager on What's New in NetBeans
    Ashwin Rao, Group Product Manager for NetBeans with the Oracle Developer Tools organization, joins host Roger Brinkley on Episode 122 of the Java Spotlight for a discussion of NetBeans 7.3 Release. Formerly with Sun, Rao has also held various technical positions at Baan, a Netherlands-based ERP software provider, including developer / team lead on the R&D team, working on next-generation ERP platform and tools.
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