It’s a new year and already there’s another great review of my book Oracle Shell Scripting!

Gaadha wrote on Amazon

I am very happy the way this book is written. It’s very concise but covers all the major topics that an Oracle programmer needs to know.One thing that specifically interests me is that each chapter is very small..so you really feel like completing a chapter!Great Work!!!

As companies are cutting back on training and trying to do more with less I expect we’re going to start to see more interest in tech books again, especially ones like this that help you do more with less!

Oracle Shell ScriptingCheck out my book Oracle Shell Scripting, only $34.95 from Rampant TechPress.

Buy it now!


Oracle EMEA has launched a pilot Web 2.0 program where a character called ‘The Oracle Node” can do a search on the entire OTN website for content you are interested in. This was created and aimed at developers to help encourage registration and downloads on OTN.

The program has a strong web 2.0 aspect with details about the Node on many of the networking websites. Since this is a pilot program, we thought you might be interested in getting involved with the project by suggesting new sources of information, building up and spreading of the Node virally. We welcome your feedback, suggestions and ideas you may have to help improve the Node.

I am the node and I’m here to hurt you

Go ahead, click through and form your own opinion… All I can say is what the hell is Oracle thinking? If you can stomach the orbiting pod long enough to navigate to the end of one of these paths you’ll be faced with a sliding wall of nausea which may somehow contain some relevant information, but with no discernible organization.

I have come up with two acceptable explanations… Someone at Oracle just finished a class on Flash and needed a project, or someone at Oracle just finished a study on motion sickness and needed a project.

You can grow a beautiful garden out of a pile of shit, but it’s hard to see anything fertile about iamthenode.com at this point.

Well, things have been busy for me (hence the break from blogging) but interest in my Oracle Shell Scripting book remains strong! Just today this (5 star) review showed up on Amazon from Srinivas Gaddam:

Excellent presentation
If you are working on Oracle products, you know problems can get complex and the internet will have million possible solutions, but if you are looking for just one that works you should own this book.

Thanks a lot Srinivas! This comment hits on one of the reasons I wrote the book: to give a coherent but concise treatment of shell scripting for Oracle while giving plenty of usable scripts to get people started quickly!

Ever wonder what your DBAs do when they’re not dealing with your crisis of the day? Friend and coworker Bob Watkins highlights the DBA’s main tasks in this recent article on Tech Republic.

It’s been said that the database administrator (DBA) has three basic tasks. In decreasing order of importance, they are: protect the data, protect the data, and protect the data.

Although data integrity is clearly the #1 job (who cares if the database is available or fast if the data isn’t good), the DBA has many other jobs as well. Here’s a list of the actual tasks that a DBA performs. (Some duties are common to all DBAs, and others are only required in some database environments.)

Check out the full article where Bob goes on to touch on all the major areas of the typical DBA job including backup and recovery, security, upgrades, tuning and troubleshooting. If you’re looking for a job description for a DBA this is a very good one.

Since the contents of variables will, well, vary it is often useful to be able to make decisions based on them. Strings and numbers can be easily compared to explicit values or other variables. Here is a simple example:

$ i=107
$ if [ $i -gt 100 ]
> then
> echo "Wow, i got all the way up to $i"
> else
> echo "i is only up to $i"
> fi
Wow, i got all the way up to 107
$ i=22
$ if [ $i -gt 100 ]
> then
> echo "Wow, i got all the way up to $i"
> else
> echo "i is only up to $i"
> fi
i is only up to 22

Here we see a simple if statement. When executed the expression within the brackets is evaluated to either true or false. If the expression is found to be true the commands after the then will be executed, otherwise the commands after the else are executed.

The expression shown here is the greater than expression (>). The symbols we typically use for greater than and less than have specific significance in the UNIX shell, so to compare values we use -gt for greater than and -lt for less than. Comparisons can also be made between strings of text. More information about comparing text and numbers can be found in my book.

Oracle Shell ScriptingFor more information like this check out my book Oracle Shell Scripting, only $34.95 from Rampant TechPress.

Buy it now!


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