May 2001

The Specialist
Database News You Can UseMay 2001
A monthly newsletter for Oracle users
from Database Specialists, a consulting firm
specializing in Oracle technology
In this issue:

Cloning an Oracle Database for Testing

There are times when a DBA would like to be able to make an exact copy of a production database for testing purposes. If you were planning to migrate from Oracle Applications 10.7 to 11i, for example, you’d want to test out the migration procedure before attempting the migration on the production system. This act of copying a database is called “cloning.”

There are many ways to clone a database. The better techniques allow copying a production database without disrupting users with downtime. You can use Recovery Manager to clone a database, or you can use any number of homemade scripts. One such set of scripts for cloning databases was published in Oracle Magazine some time back. You can read this helpful article and download the scripts at

Data Guard: Oracle Feature Protects Your Data Against Corruption

A topic recently presented at a Database Specialists DBA Roundtable was Oracle’s Data Guard feature for automating the management of standby databases. Data Guard provides a pre-tested solution so you don’t have to code your own scripts for standby database synchronization, monitoring, and failover. Database Specialists team member Igor Gurovich shared his experience deploying Data Guard in a production environment and explained to the group that he found this tool very useful and easier to work with than the Oracle8i managed standby database feature which often requires a lot of manual effort.

Data Guard will be built into the Oracle9i database for most platforms. Data Guard is currently available for Oracle8i on the Sun platform in the form of a separate module that you download from the Oracle Technology Network. You can download it from

NoCOUG Spring Conference: A Big Success

On May 16, a large group of Oracle DBAs and Developers attended the Northern California Oracle Users Group quarterly meeting. With 150 in attendance, top presenters shared their knowledge on topics including Oracle9i Real Application Clusters, New Solutions Areas in Oracle9iAS – Integration and Collaboration, Text in Oracle, and Leveraging Oracle Data for Web-based Reporting. Many of the presentations made at the meeting are available online now for download. Be sure to check out the NoCOUG website at

Repository for Oracle Books

Looking for one place to find the right reference book or how-to guide? Well, look no further than This site is an uncluttered way to search specific Oracle topics.

You can find books specific to Oracle running on a particular operating system. Or, you can focus on books geared especially to DBAs. There is also a wide selection of books that would appeal to developers, organized by programming languages and technologies.

Although this site is presented in conjunction with, you’ll find it useful even if you don’t chose to purchase through them. Check it out at

Database Specialists President Receives IOUG-A Award

Roger Schrag, Database Specialists’ president, received an award for “Outstanding Volunteer” at the International Oracle Users Group Conference in Orlando earlier this month. The Northern California Oracle Users Group Chapter nominated Roger for the outstanding volunteer work he has done for the group over the past year. 

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