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  Oracle Tips by Burleson

Oracle Optimal Flexible Architecture (OFA)

In accordance with Cary V. Millsap of the Oracle National Technical Response Team, the OFA process involves the following three rules:

1. Establish an orderly operating system directory structure in which any database file can be stored on any disk resource.

  • Name all devices that might contain Oracle data in such a manner that a wild card or similar mechanism can be used to refer to the collection of devices as a unit.
  • Make a directory explicitly for storage of Oracle data at the same level on each of these devices.
  • Beneath the Oracle data directory on each device, make a directory for each different Oracle database on the system.
  • Put a file X (X is any database file) in the directory /u??/ORACLE/sid/type_desig (or on W2K or NT: C:\oracle\sid\type_desig) if and only if X is a control file, redo log file, or datafile of the Oracle database whose DB_NAME is sid. The type_desig specifies the type of file to be placed in the directory at that location and is usually data, index, control or redo.


You may wish to add an additional directory layer if you will have multiple Oracle versions running at the same time. This additional layer includes the version level.

2. Separate groups of segments (data objects) with different behavior into different tablespaces.

  • Separate groups of objects with different fragmentation characteristics in different tablespaces (e.g., donít put data and rollback segments together).
  • Separate groups of segments that will contend for disk resources in different tablespaces (e.g., donít put data and indexes together).
  • Separate groups of segments representing objects with differing behavioral characteristics in different tablespaces (e.g., donít put tables that require daily backup in the same tablespace with ones that require yearly backup).

3. Maximize database reliability and performance by separating database components across different disk resources. A caveat for RAID environments: Consider spreading datafiles across multiple controller volume groups.

  • Keep at least three active copies of a database control file on at least three different physical arrays.
  • Use at least three groups of redo logs in Oracle. Isolate them to the greatest extent possible on hardware serving few or no files that will be active while the RDBMS (relational database management system) is in use. Shadow redo logs whenever possible.
  • Separate tablespaces whose data will participate in disk resource contention across different physical disk resources. (You should also consider disk controller usage.)

This is an excerpt by Mike Aultís book ďOracle Administration & ManagementĒ.  If you want more current Oracle tips by Mike Ault, check out his new book ďMike Aultís Oracle Internals Monitoring & Tuning ScriptsĒ or Aultís Oracle Scripts Download.

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