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Re: "Depreciated" Parameters In SPFILE

From: DA Morgan <>
Date: Thu, 16 Aug 2007 09:00:32 -0700
Message-ID: <>

Bob Jones wrote:

> "Charles Hooper" <> wrote in message 

>> On Aug 14, 11:26 pm, wrote:
>>> On Aug 15, 9:37 am, "Dereck L. Dietz" <> wrote:
>>>> Oracle 10g, Windows 2003 Server
>>>> This may seem an easy question but I can't seem to find an answer.
>>>> If an Oracle instance is set up for automatic memory management and 
>>>> there
>>>> are some parameters, such as bitmap_merge_area_size (etc) which are 
>>>> non-zero
>>>> and which Oracle recommends using the PGA_AGGREGATE_TARGET instead 
>>>> ,should
>>>> such parameters be zeroed out in the SPFILE?
>>>> I know the manual says they aren't recommended except in Shared Server
>>>> environments but what should be done in a Dedicated Server environment?
>>>> Thanks.
>>> The old _AREA_SIZE  parameters are silently ignored if the new
>>> parameter is present.
>>> You may want to leave them in the spfile at their non-zero values,
>>> however, in case you switch to shared server mode (or, remembering
>>> that an instance can do both shared- and dedicated-server mode at the
>>> same time, in case one or two of your users need to connect in shared
>>> mode).
>>> If you really want to get rid of the old parameters, don't just zero
>>> them out, though. Delete them from the spfile entirely:
>>> alter system reset sort_area_size scope=spfile sid='*';
>>> ...that way, the parameter still has a non-zero default value for
>>> those rare occasions when it might be needed.

>> Helpful advice, I wasn't aware of how to remove a parameter from a

>> But, the _AREA_SIZE parameters are not silently ignored. In my
>> testing, the _AREA_SIZE parameters set the minimum values for those
>> memory areas, and Oracle is able to adjust the value of the parameter
>> upward as needed. If I recall correctly, SORT_AREA_SIZE may be
>> automatically adjusted up to 5% of the PGA_AGGREGATE_TARGET and
>> HASH_AREA_SIZE up to 10% of the PGA_AGGREGATE_TARGET. Prior to
>> implementing Oracle, I found one query that was sorting to
>> the temp tablespace under Oracle (PGA_AGGREGATE_TARGET set at
>> 4000MB, 5% = 200MB) that was not sorting to the temp tablespace under
>> Oracle with a SORT_AREA_SIZE of 10MB. Oracle was
>> apparently adjusting the SORT_AREA_SIZE to be just large enough for
>> the session to perform a one pass sort to disk. I bumped the
>> SORT_AREA_SIZE to 20MB, resulting in the elimination of the sort to
>> the temp tablespace.

>> Metalink Notes:223299.1, 223730.1 both agree with you that the
>> _AREA_SIZE parameters ARE silently ignored. But, those articles are
>> apparently wrong. A write-up by Burleson quoted contents of those
>> Metalink articles, which lead to the development of this article that
>> provides a test case that shows that the parameters are not ignored:
> Wow, this guy really has too much time in his hands, or he just hate this 
> Don guy too much. It is pointless to set _AREA_SIZE when using 

You really need to drop the attitude or learn about the "rule of holes:" When you are in one stop digging.

Howard is 100% correct in everything he wrote. And you will find the exact same criticism from Tom Kyte, and Jonathan Lewis, and many others who are the experts in our community.

In case you are not familiar with Howard ... you might want to review this:

Daniel A. Morgan
University of Washington (replace x with u to respond)
Puget Sound Oracle Users Group
Received on Thu Aug 16 2007 - 11:00:32 CDT

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