Kamran Agayev’s Oracle Blog

Kamran Agayev’s Oracle Blog

Archive for October, 2009

Exclusive Interview with Nicolas Gasparotto

Posted by Kamran Agayev A. on October 23, 2009

Nicolas_Gasparotto

Nicolas currently works as an Oracle DBA consultant, particularly with PeopleSoft application, and is responsible for the technical support of development and production teams. Nicolas challenges himself to think differently on complex queries in order to gain milliseconds (transactional) or hours (batches) of the process time. Since 1998, Nicolas has been working with Oracle products (started with Oracle version 7.3 followed by 8i and 9i) and held many positions including developer, DBA and analyst. Nicolas is an active participant in the OTN Discussion Forums as he thrives to share personal experiences and maintain his neurons in place.

Could u please provide answer to the following questions as follows:

  • Brief information about yourself and your family

I’m French, married, one daughter 10 years old.

We live in the Netherlands for the last 2 years and a half now.

  • Your education

I finished my college, IT dedicated, in 1995.

  • Your experience with Oracle. When you started first? Has it been interest of your side or just a coincidence?

After being a COBOL developer, I started on Oracle as a developer on Oracle Application (before it is became eBusiness) in 1998.

Then started as Oracle administrator later on 2000. And Peoplesoft admin in 2002.

  • What was the motive behind to prefer Oracle? Who you have been influenced by?

Oracle is one of the greatest IT Company in the world, with one leitmotiv: “keep changing” which make me in happy to avoid having an annoying job every single day of a life.

  • What would your preference of profession if not Oracle?

Sailor.

  • What motivates you in your job?

As I explained earlier, I enjoy my job because there is always something new to learn.

  • Do you give lectures on Oracle?

No, but time to time I teach some people on SQL query and Peoplesoft.

  • Have you authored any book in Oracle?

No.

  • Do you manage with your time as to read books on Oracle? What is the name of the book that you read recently?

“Advanced Oracle SQL Programming” by L. Schneider

I was also curious about Oracle Spatial, so I read “Pro Oracle Spatial” by Euro Beinat, Albert Godfrind, Ravikanth V. Kothuri

  • What do you think on OTN forums?

OTN forums is an amazing place. When asking question, you could have an answer within minutes, but as always on Internet, you can have the best like the worst, so advices should be always taken carefully, and keep in mind that is not the Oracle support.

  • Do you refer to the documentation? And how often does it happen?

Yes, always, that’s why I’m complaining when online docs are not available, and sadly, no search feature on the downloadable docs version.

  • What is the biggest mistake you have ever made during your DBA career?

The biggest mistake would have been to forget we all were beginners, and also forget to keep us up-to-date.

  • What was your greatest achievement as an Oracle DBA?

Still being around on the stuff I like. Many of my colleagues tend to go for management, not me.

  • What is you priority to manage the challenges you face?

Keep learning the new Oracle and Peoplesoft versions.

  • How would you describe the essence of your success? According to your definition of success, how successful have you been so far?

The success is not a target, it is the way to reach it.

  • What are your best skills which make you differ from others?

I don’t know, but trying to keep a high level of knowledge on different scopes like SQL, Oracle db admin and Peoplesoft admin helped me a lot.

  • What’s your major weakness?

My migraine makes me knock-out some entire day.

  • Have you ever lost your spirit? If so, what has been the reason and how have you overcome it?

When I meet my future wife, I’ve never recovered.

  • What is the next success you would like to attain and your efforts to this end?

Let me think.

  • How do you balance your daily life with your career?

It is one of the most important challenges I’m facing.

  • Please describe your one day summary of activities?

Actually I think it’s like for million other people.

  • How many hours do you work and sleep in a day?

There is not enough hours per day, I would love 30 hours a day to be happy.

  • Where and how do you spend your daily, weekly and annual holidays?

There are no fixed rules, visit family, discover others countries…

  • Do you think about Oracle during vacations?

If there are spare days, that can happen, yes.

  • Do you have time or motivation to go in for any sports? If yes, which kind of sport do you go in for?

I’m trying to attend the most as I can to fencing club, but when I’m looking back, it is not so often.

  • What’s your favorite meal and non-alcoholic drink?

Borscht (meal and drink together) : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borscht

  • What foreign languages do you know?

French (mother tongue), English (used daily in office), Russian.

  • What’s your average typing speed?

No idea, but I’m not really fast, especially on non-French keyboard.

  • Have you ever get involved in politics?

No.

  • What are your hobbies? 

Testing new Oracle products and version on my lab.

  • How do you spend your free time?

With 18,000+ post in OTN forums, I leave you assume how I spent my free time.

And also, with my family.

  • What’s your biggest ambition?

Let me think.

  • What would be your advice to the beginners in Oracle?

Keep motivation and learning despite errors and huge way in front, because if non-beginners are more or less far away, they have the same.

  • Would you like your children to follow in your footsteps or take a different path in life?

I leave my child to decide by herself, but I’m doing my best to offer her the choice to do what she wants.

  • Do you have any followers of you?

I don’t know. I’m doing what I like for myself (including my blog), not to be followed, but if that helps people, then I’m glad.

  • What is your vision on the future of Oracle?

Oracle is constantly changing and growing, more and more during the last few years than ever. Who could have said Oracle would buy Sun 2 years ago ? So, difficult to say, but I’ll try to be there.

  • Could you please take a photo in your office near to your desktop?

The first rule here is “no picture inside the building”, the second is “keep the desk clean”. So, nothing to see.

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Posted in Expert Interviews | Leave a Comment »

Exclusive Interview with Syed Jaffar Hussain

Posted by Kamran Agayev A. on October 5, 2009

Syed_Jaffar_pic 

He’s Senior Oracle DBA with over 16 years of IT experience which also includes above 8 years of production Oracle DBA exposure. Presently the only Oracle 10g Certified Master in Saudi Arabia with Oracle RAC Expert, Oracle 8i, 9i and 10g OCP DBA and Oracle ACE credentials.Past one year and so, he has been largely working with Oracle RAC environemnts that inlcudes successful 8 node production, 6 node development RAC setups on HPUX Itaninum with EMC DMX SAN Storage. He’s one of the regular contributor at Oracle forums, oracle freelist group and occasionally writes up at his blog. He’s currently engaged in writing an Oracle 11g RAC book

 

Could u please provide answer to the following questions as follows:

Brief information about yourself and your family

I am Syed Jaffar Hussain, an Indian national currently working for Bank Inma in Saudi Arabia country.  I have 3 brothers and a sister and I am married with three sons. My wife is Ayesha and my sons are Ashfaq(9 yrs), Arfan(6 yrs) and Aahil(10 months old).

 

  • Your education

I have done my Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com) and did a diploma in Post Graduation In Computer Applications.

  • Your experience with Oracle. When you started first? Has it been interest of your side or just a coincidence?

I had first heard about Oracle technologies way back in 1997 and wanted to switch my career from FoxPro programmer to Oracle technologies.  Hence, in 1998 I have learned Oracle 7.3 version.

 

  • What was the motive behind to prefer Oracle? Who you have been influenced by?

In 1997, from few people I have heard about Oracle technologies and its influence and rapid growth in the market. Hence, I wanted to start with something new and adopted Oracle technologies.

 

  • What would your preference of profession if not Oracle?

I would have been continued as programmer.

 

  • What motivates you in your job?

Being an Oracle consultant, it gave me an opportunity to work with different clients, big clients, on different environment with different requirements.  I had a new and very challenging role with each client I have worked for.

 

  • Do you give lectures on Oracle?

I do deliver Oracle University 5 day courses on behalf of local Oracle University on different Oracle Technologies and I have also given one day seminar on RMAN in Sweden and Denmark on behalf of Oracle EMEA. Also, frequently conducts corporate tailored made Oracle training to different clients.

 

  • Have you authored any book in Oracle?

I was one of the Technical Reviewer of Oracle 11g Scheduler book by Packt Publications and currently authoring a book on Oracle 11g Real Application Clustering which covers 11gR1 and 11gR2 topics for Packt Publications along with my co-authors, Mr. Ben  and Mr. Guenadi Jilevski

 

  • Do you manage with your time as to read books on Oracle? What is the name of the book that you read recently?

 During my initial days, I used to read Oracle documents and other Oracle related books for at least not less than 6 hrs a day. Though, I don’t spend that much now, but, still reads Oracle Documentations. It’s been quite a long time that I really read any Oracle book complete.

 

  • What do you think on OTN forums?

I really have a great respect for OTN forums where you can see the top most Oracle Experts take some time from their busy schedule to answer to interesting and challenging questions. OTN Forums is one stop for all new and experienced DBA to get answers to their questions as I think a silly question is better than a stupid assumption. I have learned a lot from OTN forums and I used to spend most of my time answering on OTN Forums with the nick name The Human Fly.

 

  • Do you refer to the documentation? And how often does it happen?

As I mentioned before, I am a great fan of Oracle Documentation and really it does contains everything that you are looking for though a quite large number of pages.

 

  • What is the biggest mistake you have ever made during your DBA career?

I don’t remember any such incident, however, I want to recall an incident  that happened at one of my previous client where they were maintain a data warehouse database around 3TB sized has only one redo member and all the redo groups /members were placed in the same file system. The admin screwed up the filesystem while doing something and due to the loss of all redo log files, we were ended up restoring 3TB database.

 

  • What was your greatest achivement as an Oracle DBA?

There are quite a lot. I have done a lot of Performance Tuning and increased the performance tremendously for most of the critical application databases. I have setup Data Guard for all the banking critical application databases and done switchover and failover on demand. I have also set up 4 RAC environments with 8 and 6 node production and 3 and 6 development setup with over 100 databases across the nodes.

  

  • What is you priority to manage the challenges you face?

Understand the problem or requirement first, have detail study and think all possible way to implement or resolve the problem. Don’t panic at any situation as every problem got a solution, this is my funda that I believe in.

 

  • How would you describe the essence of your success? According to your definition of success, how successful have you been so far?

I believe that there is no short cut for success. Dedication and Hard working is only the way to success. Whatever I have done so far, I have been thoroughly successfully because of my dedication and hard working. You need to love what you are doing and put dedication and hardworking, success will follow you.

 

  • What are your best skills which make you differ from others?

My mind set and determination.

 

  • What’s your major weakness?

Believing people blindly and being too emotional.

 

  • Have you ever lost your spirit? If so, what has been the reason and how have you overcome it?

At one my previous company I gave my 4 yrs services believing that I will get all the rights that I am deserved for. However, some people back stubbed me with their cunningness to cover up their mistakes. It was a shock for me, at the same time, a big lesson to learn in my life. However, now, almighty given me that I never think of and I must remain thankful to almighty my entire life.

 

  • What is the next success you would like to attain and your efforts to this end?

I use to dream about becoming Oracle Certified Master one day, finally I have achieved OCM a year ago and since then thinking of something more challenging and ended up writing a book on RAC.

 

  • How do you balance your daily life with your career?

It’s really tough to balance the personal life along with the hectic duty hours. Working for one the biggest bank here in Saudi Arabia, I am on round the clock support and most of the week-ends working for several maintenance tasks. Sometimes, felt that I am not a good father to my kids as I am not able to spend my time with them. But, I must thankful to my wife who is so understanding about my situation and encouraging for my work.

 

  • Please describe your one day summary of activities?

I think that my everyday life is like a machinery life, no change, and daily as usual. I typically wake-up at 6am in the morning to drop my kids at school as their school start here at 7am, sometime takes my breakfast, most of the time without breakfast, comes office at 8am with 1 hrs lunch break in the afternoon. By the way, there is no static timings for leave office in the evening. Typically, I go home almost 7pm, watch TV for few hours, or sit on PC to finish any pending work and go to sleep at 12 in the night.

 

  • How many hours do you work and sleep in a day?

I work from 8am till 7pm and hardly sleep for 5 hrs a day.

 

  • Where and how do you spend your daily, weekly and annual holidays?

Every year we all go to India for a month vacation.

  

  • Do you think about Oracle during vacations?

These days, strictly NO.

 

  • Do you have time or motivation to go in for any sports? If yes, which kind of sport do you go in for?

I feel I am old enough to play any sports now. My favorite sport is Cricket.

 

  • What’s your favorite meal and non-alcoholic drink?

Hyderabadi chiken or mutton biryani with a diet pepsi.

 

 

  • What foreign languages do you know?

A Bit of Arabic language. I knew Telugu and Hindi Indian languages.

 

  • What’s your average typing speed?

My typing speed, either on Numeric pad or characters is too fast.

 

  • Have you ever get involved in politics?

Nope.

 

  • What are your hobbies? 

 Watching cricket, movies and reading news papers.

 

  • How do you spend your free time?

Watching movies.

 

  • What’s your biggest ambition?

Start my own IT company.

 

  • What would be your advice to the beginners in Oracle?

If you decide to do anything to achieve, don’t give up, do the hard work and never let your tempo goes down. Understanding the basics of any technology is the most important key factor for a good career foundation. Read and test and don’t hesitate to ask a silly question which comes to your mind.

 

  • Would you like your children to follow in your footsteps or take a different path in life?

I really don’t want my children to go through what I have gone in my life. I really want to see my children achieving great heights and definitely want them into non IT field, like Doctors or Business areas.

 

  • Do you have any followers of you?

Quite  a lot in family and friends.

 

  • What is your vision on the future of Oracle?

Oracle making life easier of most of the DBA by introducing automatic features. 

  • Could you please take a photo in your office near to your desktop?

 meatoffice02

Posted in Expert Interviews | 19 Comments »

Block developers from using TOAD and other tools on production databases

Posted by Kamran Agayev A. on October 4, 2009

Today, I’ve seen a nice example at www.psoug.org on how to prevent users from using additional tools to connect to production database. This is the AFTER LOGON trigger create ON DATABASE as follows:

CONNECT / AS SYSDBA;
 
CREATE OR REPLACE TRIGGER block_tools_from_prod
  AFTER LOGON ON DATABASE
DECLARE
  v_prog sys.v_$session.program%TYPE;
BEGIN
  SELECT program INTO v_prog 
    FROM sys.v_$session
  WHERE  audsid = USERENV('SESSIONID')
    AND  audsid != 0  -- Don't Check SYS Connections
    AND  ROWNUM = 1;  -- Parallel processes will have the same AUDSID's
 
  IF UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%TOAD%' OR UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%T.O.A.D%' OR -- Toad
     UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%SQLNAV%' OR     -- SQL Navigator
     UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%PLSQLDEV%' OR -- PLSQL Developer
     UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%BUSOBJ%' OR   -- Business Objects
     UPPER(v_prog) LIKE '%EXCEL%'       -- MS-Excel plug-in
  THEN
     RAISE_APPLICATION_ERROR(-20000, 'Development tools are not allowed here.');
  END IF;
END;
/
SHOW ERRORS
http://www.psoug.org/snippet/Block_TOAD_and_other_tools_516.htm

Posted in Administration, DBA scripts | 10 Comments »

New CertView Welcome Video

Posted by Kamran Agayev A. on October 3, 2009

A very nice tool is now available for Oracle Certified administrators. Please, take a moment to watch this video introduction. I loved it

http://blogs.oracle.com/certification/2009/09/0136.html

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a Comment »