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  Oracle Tips by Burleson

The rowid Concept in Oracle9i

Under Oracle8, the concept of OBJECTS was introduced, then expanded in Oracle8i. In 9i, these OBJECTS identifiers have been added to the rowid, giving an EXTENDED ROWID format, which is 10 bytes long, versus the 6 bytes that was the norm in Oracle7. The Oracle8 and Oracle8i rowid is a  VARCHAR2 representation of a base-64 number (remember that base-64 starts at B, not A; A is used to designate 0). The rowid is displayed as follows:



   See Code Depot

The new parts of the rowid are the object number and the relative file number. Multiple files can have the same relative file number because Oracle assigns the number based on a tablespace. This means that these numbers are unique only per tablespace, which means that you cannot derive an absolute address directly from the new rowid. This also means that the new rowid addressing scheme is tablespace-relative.

The new rowid contains the data object number, which increments when an object’s version changes. An object’s version changes whenever a table is truncated or a partition is moved. The data object number is not related to the object ID.

The rowid can be easily manipulated with the DBMS_ROWID package (.If, against Oracle admonitions not to, you used rowid in your Oracle7 application, you will have to familiarize yourself with this package..

  •  Old rowids (called restricted rowids) will be automatically converted to the new format if:

You use export/import to move data.

You use the migration utility.

You use the ODMA to upgrade to 9i.

If you used rowids in your Oracle7 application and stored them as columns in other tables, then these columns will have to be manually changed to the new format using the DBMS_ROWID package. If a column in a table has been designated as a datatype of rowid, it will be altered to accept the new format during migration; this will not affect the data in the column.


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