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  Oracle Tips by Burleson

UNIX Shutdown

For UNIX, several things need to be done to ensure shutdown occurs. The following procedure, for the HP-UX version of UNIX, demonstrates these steps:

      1.    Log in as root.

      2.    Edit the /etc/oratab file. Make the last field a Y for the $ORACLE_SID you want shut down.

      3.    Add the following links to your /etc/init.d rcx.d files (where x is the run level).

ln -s /etc/init.d/Dbora /etc/init.d/rc0.d/K01Dbora

ln -s /etc/init.d/Dbora /etc/init.d/rc6.d/K01Dbora     

You should alter the shutdown script ($ORACLE_HOME/bin/dbshut) to do a SHUTDOWN IMMEDIATE. This backs out any uncommitted user transactions, logs them out, and then shuts down the database. If a normal SHUTDOWN is performed, the system politely waits for all users to log off of Oracle. If Joe is on vacation and left his terminal up in a form, you could have a long wait. The other shutdown, SHUTDOWN ABORT, should only be used for emergencies, as it stops the database just as it is, with operations pending or not. A SHUTDOWN ABORT will require a recovery on startup. The new command option , SHUTDOWN TRANSACTIONAL allows transactions to finish, then logs the user off and performs shutdown.


The preceding provides for automatic shutdown when the operating system shuts down. For a normal shutdown, execute the dbshut procedure for UNIX. If it has been created, the stop<sid>.cmd script is used to shut down an Oracle instance on NT.


      To perform a manual shutdown on all systems, perform the following procedure:

      1.    Log in to SVRMGR as INTERNAL; if on 9i, use the SQLPLUS /NOLOG and log in as either SYS or "/" using the AS SYSRemote DBA qualifier.

      2.    Issue the appropriate SHUTDOWN command.

a.    No option means SHUTDOWN NORMAL.  The database waits for all users to disconnect, prohibits new connects, then closes and dismounts the database, then shuts down the instance.

b.    SHUTDOWN IMMEDIATE.  Cancels current calls like a system interrupt, and closes and dismounts the database, then shuts down the instance. PMON gracefully shuts down the user processes. No instance recovery is required on startup.

c. SHUTDOWN ABORT.  This doesn’t wait for anything. It shuts the database down now. Instance recovery will probably be required on startup. You should escalate to this by trying the other shutdowns first.

d. SHUTDOWN TRANSACTIONAL. Like SHUTDOWN IMMEDIATE, only it waits for transactions to complete, then boots off any users and shuts down the database.

Killing Oracle User Processes

There are a number of reasons to kill Oracle user processes. (Note: By “killing Oracle processes” I mean killing nonessential database processes.) These nonessential database processes usually consist of terminal sessions that are left connected after real work has been accomplished. These active sessions result in problems when the database has to be shut down for either backup or maintenance operations. As long as there is an active session, a normal-mode shutdown will hang. Coming in on Monday to discover that the database couldn’t shut down, and thus couldn’t be backed up, is a frustrating experience. Oracle has provided the immediate shutdown mode, but this isn’t always reliable and, in some situations, can result in an inconsistent backup. The abort shutdown option will shut down the database, but you then have to restart and perform a normal shutdown before any backup operations, or risk an inconsistent backup. Therefore, it is important for the Remote DBA to know how to kill these processes before operations of this type are accomplished.

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