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02 May 2006

OCM preparation

The OCM 10g Upgrade is currently under development, and the OCM 10g exam should be available in May.

How will I prepare for the 10g OCM?

  • Part I, get confident with the environment :
    According to, the exam will be on redhat AS3 with DB RHAS3 is not free. If I had not RH in my company, I would then probably use WhiteBox Linux or a similar RedHat clone to get an environment as close as possible to the lab. It seems very important to me is to get the same terminals (Gnome) and the same Browser (Mozilla 1.6).

    I am trained to customized my environment within seconds. For example, I like to have a bookmark for 10G Book List, one for the Reference, one for SQL Reference, one for PL/SQL Packages Ref and one for RMAN Reference. So within one click, I can reach the appropriate book. I also like to shortcut most of my commands... I like to type pmon instead of ps -ef |grep ora_pmon and so I defined some aliases. I am able to define those below plus a few more obscure ones in less than one minute.

    alias abort='echo shutdown abort|sqlplus -L -s / as sysdba'
    alias alert='vi $ORACLE_HOME/admin/$ORACLE_SID/bdump/alert_$ORACLE_SID.log'
    alias nomount='echo startup nomount quiet|sqlplus -L -s / as sysdba'
    alias ora='cd $ORACLE_HOME'
    alias pmon='ps -ef | grep [p]mon'
    alias startup='echo startup quiet|sqlplus -L -s / as sysdba'
    alias sysdba='sqlplus -L / as sysdba'
    alias tns='cd $ORACLE_HOME/network/admin'

    I have read man vi until my eyes hurt. I have trained using GNOME keyboard shortcuts until my finger skin burnt.

    I have shortcut to set my oracle homes, and I am proficient with Unix commands.

    With the few commands I defined, I am able to do most maintenance tasks and to call the oracle binaries like sqlplus faster than Lucky Luke.

    I have read the SQL reference manual, the reference manual, and the RMAN reference manual.
    I can type in less than two minutes the complete syntax for creating a database. I am familiar with the most commonly used character sets. I can create tablespaces, add and remove files (well, removing logfile and tempfiles only in 10gR1).

    I have a bulletproof backup and recovery strategy. I know how to check critical ORA- message in the alert log, I can identify the missing files / directories on disk, I can recover from any error.

    I know -almost- every listener.ora, sqlnet.ora (except the security related ones), and tnsnames.ora. I can create sqlnet.ora, listener.ora, tnsnames.ora, start and stop my listener within one minute.

  • Part II, read the specification
    I print the documentation and I make sure I have understood the objectives. I try every scenario. In order to save time during the preparation, I am using scripts, so that I can generate a few databases quickly. For each scenario, I am generating errors. If you train with a collegue, try to generate the most surprising database corruption for your collegue at each scenario ;-)

    There is a RAC scenario. I have received an Egenera blade to test Oracle Real Application Cluster, with up to 8 nodes. I documented in a previous post the steps I followed to install RAC on my notebook before receiving the Egenera hardware : Suse10 10gR2 Laptop Rac.

    ... invest enough time ... do not schedule it too early ... search for articles in Oracle magazine ...

  • Part III, relax
    It is a nice challenge. Do sleep enough before the exam. Book a quiet hotel at least one day before. Do not work on the day before. Just rest.

    Blogger APC said...

    >> I can type in less than
    >> two minutes the complete
    >> syntax for creating a database.

    A while back somebody picked me up for describing someone as being "one of those scary OCM types". I think the above claim validates my point exactly.

    Good luck Laurent, although I suspect you don't really need it.

    Cheers, APC

    2/5/06 18:15  
    Anonymous Anonymous said...

    It is amazing, i think, if i per accident ;-) would get access to your box, i'll feel me quite comfortable ;-) - here are mine aliases:
    alias bdump='cd $ORACLE_BASE/admin/$ORACLE_SID/bdump/'
    alias cdump='cd $ORACLE_BASE/admin/$ORACLE_SID/cdump/'
    alias dbs='cd $ORACLE_HOME/dbs'
    alias disp='export DISPLAY=$(ip):0.0'
    alias pmon='ps -ef|grep pmon|grep -v grep|cut -c58-'
    alias sid='echo $ORACLE_SID'
    alias talert='tail -f $ORACLE_BASE/admin/$ORACLE_SID/bdump/alert_$ORACLE_SID.log'
    alias tns='cd $ORACLE_HOME/network/admin'
    alias udump='cd $ORACLE_BASE/admin/$ORACLE_SID/udump/'
    alias valert='vi $ORACLE_BASE/admin/$ORACLE_SID/bdump/alert_$ORACLE_SID.log'

    Seriously, - i'm sure , such prepared you'll get enough time to drink a cup coffee during the sessions.

    Best regards


    2/5/06 19:44  
    Blogger Aman Sharma said...

    Hi sir
    Thanx alot for sharing and guiding this information for OCM preparation.I believe nothing is tough and unachieveable.All one needs is to be determined and focused.I have started my prepration.Hope to get inputs and guidance from you in future also.
    Thanx and regards
    Aman Sharma

    3/5/06 06:12  
    Blogger The Human Fly said...

    Good input for OCM preparation. I hope you will finish your OCM upgrade when the exams are scheduled. I will be taking my two advacned courses on backup & recovery and RAC in order to meet the pre-requisit courses for OCM.
    Good luck.

    The Human Fly...

    13/5/06 10:00  
    Anonymous Martin said...

    > It seems very important to me is to get the same terminals (Gnome) and the same Browser (Mozilla 1.6).

    When looking at they explicitly mention "KDE":
    "Practice in a representative environment; you can download Oracle products from the Oracle Technology Network. Use either a United Linux or RedHat Linux operating system. Both support KDE."
    I'm currently preparing thus on KDE, but would have a better feeling if both oracle and you would mention the same desktop environment ...
    Wish you a nice weekend,

    26/5/06 19:04  
    Blogger Laurent Schneider said...

    well, oracle education probably overused copy-paste... in 9i, the browser was Konqueror on United Linux + KDE 3.0.

    On 10g, they will be using RHEL AS3 and the firefox browser, so I could suppose it will be Gnome.

    26/5/06 23:23  

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