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Oracle, Technical

DBCA Missing – Oracle 11.2 ASM/Grid

Oracle provides three ways to manage ASM: (1) through SQL, (2) through the web-based database console or grid control, and (3) through the server-based java GUI tool DBCA.  These are your choices for adding storage, replacing a disk, growing a volume, etc. But if you’re an experienced DBA who recently started playing with 11gR2 ASM, you may have been surprised to find that DBCA is missing from the ASM/grid installation!

DBCA is not missing by mistake – this is a change in Oracle 11g Release 2.  There is a new server-based java GUI tool for ASM management: ASMCA.

A Few ASM-related 11gR2 Changes

You might remember that there haven’t been major changes in Oracle clustering since version 10gR1 – when Oracle introduced their Clusterware package. But 11gR2 brings big changes and big new features to database clustering.

Here are a few that I found very noticeable when installing a cluster:

New Tool: ASMCA

  • You can’t defer storage configuration until after CRS installation.  Furthermore, raw/block storage is no longer supported.  Before you begin the CRS install you must either (1) install and configure a Cluster Filesystem or (2) prepare storage for ASM.
  • The CRS install includes ASM.  This means that the bare-minimum space requirements are higher by about 3 or 4 GB.  (I used to run ASM and DB from a single home for VMware test/educational environments.)
  • You can’t do any ASM operations when connected as sysdba!  A new role called “sysasm” was introduced in 11gR1… it’s now the only way to manage ASM.  Connect / as sysasm.
  • There’s a new tool called ASMCA to manage ASM.  DBCA isn’t even installed in the ASM/Grid home.  This tool is pretty slick – it also manages the new ASM dynamic volumes and ASM cluster filesystems.

I noticed that there wasn’t much on google about ASM and DBCA.  Hopefully this will save you a few minutes of head-scratching if you’re trying out 11g Release 2 for the first time.  Happy testing!

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About Jeremy Schneider

Doing stuff with Oracle Database, Performance, Clusters, Linux. about.me/jeremy_schneider

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