IOUG-A Live! 2001 Revisited

by Stephen Andert

After overcoming transportation challenges Sunday evening, I was able to get checked in for the conference before they closed for the evening. The shuttle service the next day and for the rest of the conference was much smoother.

On Monday morning, the opening keynote speaker, Don Jenkins from Compaq, had some information on how Compaq's clustering efforts were making their platform (Tru64 unix) the best place to run Oracle 9i RAC (Real Application Clusters). Some of the benefits he listed were:

-Transparent node failover

-Load balancing

-Simpler management

Personally, I thought that their recommendation to use more smaller machines instead of fewer large machines to enhance scalability was interesting from a company that makes some of the big boxes.

The presentation titled "Top DBA SQL Scripts Transformed into PL/SQL Proactive Monitoring Routines" at first appeared to be covering things that I was already doing. Then the presenter explained how to maximize the benefits of scheduling these jobs in the database with procedures instead of using sql scripts from cron. The biggest benefits I saw were the ability to log errors for all jobs to a single table and the ability to log the start and end times to monitor the execution times for trend analysis.

Gaja's Mini Lesson on Myths and Folklore about Oracle 8i Performance Tuning was one of the best sessions I attended. The myths that he presented I had heard and read about as fact. He gave some very specific instructions on how to tune using the "Wait Interface". If you are responsible for tuning Oracle databases, I strongly suggest you read up on the "Wait Interface".

One of the most popular sessions was by IOUG president, Rich Niemiec. "Performance Tuning used by the Experts; Others will require Oxygen!" was so popular that they had to add a second time slot for him to present it again to accomodate the several hundred that couldn't get in the room the first time.

Another great part of the conference was meeting people from the mailing list/discussion groups. The mailing list get together was a lot of fun. Meeting authors of books I have read is also fun as you get to know the other side of them. (The non-computer geek side!)

As you can guess, I am eagerly awaiting this year's IOUG-A Live! 2002 event next week in San Diego, CA. I will be bringing you some of the highlights on a daily basis. If you have questions that you would like answered, please send them to me and I will do my best to search out experts to get the answers.