Archive for October 2010

Oracle XMonth

I spent most of the last week in California at Oracle’s XMonth (it was really a week so I’m not sure why they called it XMonth). Which reminds me of a tuning engagement I did a few years ago. I showed up at the client’s facilities and we started discussing the problem. They told me that their daily job was running too slow and it was causing major problems. So I asked them what time the daily job ran each day. And they told me that it ran every 20 minutes. Ha! “And why do you call it the daily job?”, I asked. They weren’t really sure. The job was taking about an hour to complete as I recall, but I digress.

At XMonth, they had three tracks: Exadata (and two others that I can’t remember). I did learn a few things I thought were worth sharing.

  1. Exalogic is not shipping yet, but we did cover it in some detail. Exalogic’s biggest advantage appears to be the Infiniband fabric. It can be connected directly to any DB server using IB (Exadata for example) and can communicate with the extremely low latency RDS protocol.
  2. Oracle has relaxed their “no changes to the Exadata configuration” stance (but only very slightly). They said that it was OK to change out the Cisco switch and replace it with some other equivalent switch.
  3. A competitive analysis of Sun’s server line was provided. It included T series, X series, and M series servers along with Exadata. Exadata pretty much kicks all other options in the teeth (in my opinion). M series are still suitable for very large applications that are unable to scale out via RAC – such are Oracle’s own MRP package which uses the dbms_pipe package limiting its ability to scale in a RAC environment. But in general, the advice to the sales team was that if you are in a competitive situation, in most cases you should lead with Exadata.

So that’s about it. Oh they also let me talk about our experiences with Exadata. That was fun and I got to try my hand at a virtual presentation, as there were participants all over the world following along with Webex. The software has gotten pretty good for doing these kinds of presentations by the way. It was good practice for the Virtual Oracle Conference we have coming up next month. (note that there are only a couple of days left to sign up at the discounted rate)

Virtual Oracle Conference

Tanel Poder has put together an Online Virtual Oracle Conference and he asked me to participate. I had to think about it for about 2 seconds before I said yes. The speakers are Tanel, Cary Millsap, Jonathan Lewis and myself. Wow! How did I sneak into that line up you might wonder. Apparently Tanel asked Tom Kyte first, but Tom had to decline. It’s not the first time I’ve played second fiddle to Tom – and hopefully won’t be the last. I feel like I’m in pretty tall cotton (as we say in Texas).

Here’s how Tanel pitched the idea to me:

My reasoning is that we start from higher level and then drill down:

1) Cary talking about how to approach things right (and eventually find the problem SQL or operations)
2) I’m drilling down inside a SQL with row-source profiling (and eventually find where is the problem)
3) Jonathan talks why it happens and what to do about it (how to help CBO by writing better SQL)
4) Kerry talks how to help CBO and fix SQL when you can’t actually change the SQL text to any better

The whole idea of running a seminar on-line without anyone traveling is a very interesting topic. The technology has progressed to the point where it is quite possible. The idea of a short conference with multiple pretty well known speakers is also pretty cool. It will be interesting to see what kind of participation we get.

The conference is scheduled to be 8 hours spread over two days, Nov. 18 and 19. Follow the link below to read more about the event including the schedule, cost, how to sign up and abstracts for the talks.

Virtual Oracle Conference

Hope to see you there!

P.S. – There is a pretty good discount if you sign up before Nov. 1.

Hotsos Symposium 2011 – Keynote

The Hotsos Symposium is, in my humble opinion, the best Oracle conference in the world. The quality of the presenters and the participants is just outstanding. So what a surprise and an honor to be invited to do the Keynote Talk at the 2011 Hotsos Symposium. I told Gary that I’d have to think about it for a day or so. Of course I agreed to do it. My good friend Karen Morton is doing the optional training day this year. She knows her stuff and is a great communicator. So I’d highly recommend sticking around for the extra day. Anyway, here’s a link to the main Hotsos Symposium page: