Rise in planned upgrades to Oracle 11g Release 2
An increasing number of organisations throughout the UK are now planning to upgrade their Oracle systems to Oracle 11g Release 2.
11g Release 2 has only recently been made available on Linux. It will be available on other platforms, including Windows and UNIX, shortly.
With Oracle 11g Release 2, Oracle have focused on the reduction of IT costs as well as improved performance across the database technology stack.
According to Oracle 11g Release 2 will:
- Dramatically reduce server and storage costs
- Increase availability and eliminate idle redundancy
- Improve performance for all your applications
- Increase security and compliance
- Simplify your software portfolio
- Double DBA productivity
From a technical perspective, Release 2 has a number of key features:
- Maximum Availability Architecture: The primary function of ‘MAA’ is to minimise or even eliminate either planned or unplanned downtime of all layers of the technology stack, providing data protection and ‘maximum availability’.
Maximum Availability Architectures can be implemented in various different ways according to specific business requirements, the most simple of which is a set up of identically configured primary and secondary database sites. If the primary site fails, Oracle Data Guard will quickly fail over the production database role to the standby database.
Aside from providing high availability and data protection, another key benefit of utilising a Maximum Availability Architecture is the ability to migrate or upgrade applications, database and hardware then switch over with zero downtime. Storage, cluster nodes and CPUs can be added or removed online, and Backup and Reporting can also be offloaded to the standby database.
- Oracle RAC One Node: Oracle RAC One Node has been introduced to facilitate the deployment of a single line of business of group of departmental databases onto a cluster for high availability. Single instance databases can be set up in a RAC environment, taking advantage of RAC’s high availability and online patching capabilities.
- OLTP Compression: Oracle have enhanced the in-memory database cache [sitting in the Middleware layer] and have introduced support for compression ratio of 2-4 times. Both features have been introduced to improve performance. If upgrading from other supported versions of Oracle, organisations can free up half to two-thirds of existing storage space.
- Enhanced in-memory capability: Oracle have addressed the issue that large tables are too big to be read into buffer cache. Oracle 11g Release 2 distributes fragments of tables up to 3Tb across different nodes to speed up query processing. Processing can be offloaded to the middle technology tier and this can be deployed under existing applications.
- Data Warehousing: Parallel statement queuing and in-memory parallel execution have been introduced to maximise the speed and efficiency with which queries are dealt. The optimal degree of parellelisation for incoming queries can be determined. For example, depending on the complexity of an incoming query, it may be more efficient to perform an index lookup rather than a table or partition scan. Depending on resource availability, the query is assigned or queued.
- Change Assurance and Real Application Testing: Organisations can break away from old technology that may be holding back development. Oracle 11g Release 2 allows organisations to implement a ‘stress testing environment’ within which the current environment can be replicated and tested using real live production throughput. ‘Real Application Testing’ allows organisations to test infrastructure changes to the Oracle database environment, including hardware, storage, operating systems and database upgrades.
Appropriate upgrade paths to Oracle 11g Release 2 are: 18.104.22.168, 10.1.0.5, 10.2.0.2, 22.214.171.124.