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RE: DBA Interview Questions

From: Alex <>
Date: Wed, 24 Nov 2004 12:01:39 -0800 (PST)
Message-ID: <>

Thia may actually take 2 hrs of a good discussion. I'd personally hire this guy if he answered 80% of these questions! "Bobak, Mark" <> wrote:I think one of the best ones is from Tom Kyte.

Describe the various components that make up a database. Then, go into detail describing the various components that make up an instance. How do these components interact and work together?

Anyone who can do a good job describing the databases (datafiles, redo, controlfiles) and the instance (various background processes and what they do, SGA, how it's divided up, etc) is going to have a pretty good knowledge of Oracle.

If candidate survives that one, favorite questions seem to be:

Describe a recent database corruption issue and how you recovered from = it.

What's a nested loop join? Sort-merge join? Hash join? semi-join? anti-join? Self-join? outer join?

Describe scenarios where it may or may not be appropriate to use a B*Tree or bitmap index.

Describe your approach to tuning SQL. What tools do you use? How do you approach the problem? How can you measure the improvement that's been achieved?

A user complains that the system is slow. What do you do? Where do you begin?

There's some questions that ought to keep him busy for a while...;-)

Good luck,


> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> []On Behalf Of Freeman, Donald
> Sent: Wednesday, November 24, 2004 2:29 PM
> To: Oracle-L (E-mail)
> Subject: DBA Interview Questions


> We have a position open suddenly and I'll be participating in =3D
> interviewing my contract co-dba next week for a Oracle 9i=20
> data warehouse =3D
> position. One of the resumes I read mentioned the applicant had =3D
> experience in performance tuning by 'tuning buffer cache hit=20
> ratios' and =3D
> that made me want to buckle down and ask a few appropriate questions.
> I first plan to ask what a buffer cache hit ratio is and then what a =
> 10046 trace is: If they can explain how to use it and=20
> explain waits =3D
> then I'll know I've got a winner. =3D20
> Whats the quickest way to find out if somebody knows something about =
> tuning? I'm just a novice myself and would like to be sure=20
> that the =3D
> guy/gal we hire knows more than I do and can strengthen us in=20
> that area. =3D

> The guy we interviewed today didn't know what system stats and =3D
> histograms were and didn't know what RAC was. Hopefully we'll do =3D
> better next week when we resume. If anybody is interested in these =
> kind of contract positions you have to get on the list with=20
> Deloitte and =3D
> Touche. They are our primary contractors.=3D20

> Don Freeman
> Database Administrator 1
> Pennsylvania Dept of Health
> Bureau of Information Technology

> --

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Received on Wed Nov 24 2004 - 13:57:37 CST

Original text of this message