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Oracle 10g New Features Overview

The overall focus of the Oracle 10g new features is of course grid computing, the idea of which is the introduction of computing power available on demand much like electricity. Or as Giga Research put it: "In basic terms grids are clusters of computers or servers that are linked together enabling the pooling of computing resources" ("Defining  Grid Computing", Giga Research, August 2002).

The main driver for this focus in Oracle 10g is the fact that  many if not most organisations have more computing resources than they actually need most of the time, due to systems being sized to handle the peak load which might occur just once per year. In fact research by Forrester concluded "Globally, firms spend more than $49 billion a year on servers and CIOs report that server utilization is 60% or less". (Forrester Research, April 2002)

The specific Oracle 10g new features that take advantage of the grid are Real Application Clusters (not entirely new but enhanced from Oracle 9i), Automatic Storage Management (ASM) new in Oracle 10g, Oracle Streams and Oracle Resource Manager (again, both of these have been enhanced from Oracle 9i).

Underneath the grid computing umbrella, the Oracle 10g new features can be organised into 5 broad categories:
  1. Manageability/automation - in other words decreasing the amount of time spent on routine tasks to leave more time for strategic tasks
    • Common Manageability Infrastructure
    • Storage Enhancements
    • Space Management
    • Other Manageability Enhancements
    • Human Error Correction (including flashback database)
  2. Availability
    • Recovery through resetlogs
    • Backup and recovery
    • Data Guard
    • Online redefinition
    • LogMiner
  3. Performance
    • Resource Manager
    • Wait interface enhancements
    • End to end application testing
    • SQL tuning advisor
  4. Business Intelligence/Data Warehousing
    • Materialized view refresh and query rewrite 
    • Asynchronous change data capture
    • Materialized view refresh and query rewrite 
  5. Application Development
Tying everything together is Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM) which has also been enhanced for Oracle 10g.

OEM in Oracle 10g is installed at the same time as the database and now has a web-based architecture. This eliminates the need to install a separate application to access the OEM console and means the console can also be accessed from a web-enabled PDA via EM2GO. OEM also provides fully functional administration and monitoring after  database creation.

The main enhancements to Enterprise Manager for Oracle 10g are in terms of improved ease of use, reduced implementation costs and management of the whole Oracle environment including Oracle  Application Server, business applications, storage, network, operating system and hardware.

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