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Re: why administrator refuse to give permission on PLUSTRACE

From: DA Morgan <>
Date: Sat, 10 Nov 2007 00:17:31 -0800
Message-ID: <>

joel garry wrote:
> On Nov 7, 5:58 pm, DA Morgan <> wrote:

>> joel garry wrote:
>>> Having spent several years providing DBA support as Hasta is
>>> describing, and many more on the other side of the fence, I must say,
>>> he's totally right on this one IME.
>> I have too but that isn't the way it should be and at some point we
>> need to stop pretending that mediocrity is acceptable.

> It is not acceptable. However, it is the reality, and reality is what
> we have to deal with. We can put out effort to change it, but to
> think we can make a lot of difference _quickly_ is a mistake.

Fine. <g>

But lets say that the next time someone in management asks a developer to do a DBAs job the developer just said "I don't have the proper training to be a DBA and might inadvertently do serious damage. If you want me to touch prod you will have to give me appropriate training to be a DBA."

Would the developer be fired? I doubt it and if there are plenty of better jobs to be had.

Would the DBA be told to do it? Quite likely.

If the DBA showed some integrity and demanded training would the DBA get it? I think so as long as that person was reasonable and professional.

Is there something about why IT workers are, on average, putting in 20 hour, or more, in uncompensated work each week that escapes you?

Geeks are the fools of the 21st century. Willing to work outrageous hours, meet outrageous demands, do it with inadequate training, and then without protest lose their jobs to persons in third-world countries willing to do an equally abysmal job but for less money.

Think I'm kidding? Indian companies have been caught outsourcing to China and China has been caught outsourcing to Vietnam and Mexico. Is anyone paying attention?

>> Would you accept this from your family physician? Of course he or she
>> is not an expert on every possible disease. But if they couldn't
>> triage what ails you they'd run short on patients quickly.

> Don't get me started. They're people too, and we all know people who
> have been damaged.

And we all know databases that have been damaged.

There is a reason for the Oracle security model. There is a reason that Oracle created the resource role.

>> How about your attorney? Did he or she memorize every law book on the
>> shelf? Of course not. But they know how to find what they need when they
>> need it.

> Definitely don't get me started on this one!

So you agree. <g>

>> Arguing that because the DBA doesn't know everything is a rational
>> reason to let the untrained and unqualified rat around a production
>> instance is irresponsible so lets get back to this thread.

> Did I say it was rational? No, it's just what I see. It's what we
> see on this newsgroup, and most every forum.

Then if you agree that it is irrational please join me in condemning it. That is all I've been arguing here for days.

>> The subject was ... check the Subject above ... PLUSTRACE and the claim
>> by some the developers belong on production boxes with DBA privs. And I
>> am saying absolutely NO!

> Too absolute for my taste. It only applies given some presuppositions
> which aren't universal.

Of course it is. I will also tell you, absolutely, no one but a physician should practice medicine. Would you agree? But then as a non-MD I've saved a few lives in my years here by breaking that rule. The difference is that under those conditions the alternative was worse. A developer not doing what they are not qualified to do is not a life-or-death matter.

>> Now if you think, as a developer, you belong on a production box with
>> DBA privs then focus on what I keep asking and to which not a single
>> developer has replied.

> I've lost track, what was that again?
>> If you think you've the skill to diagnose what is slow then post here
>> the methodology you use.
>> Are developers trained in the use of StatsPack?

> You've never seen someone question the usefulness of StatsPack?

That wasn't the question. The question was whether developers are trained in the tools used to diagnose database issues.

If you wish to claim StatsPacks of little or no value then I'd like to see you address that to Jonathan Lewis. <g>

>> How about ASH and AWR?

> You've never seen a system without these?

I've never seen a Developer trained in their use.

>> How about in the wait interface?

> I'd say a good argument to be made that they should be.

I agree but that is not the point: They aren't.

>> To identify problem SQL  and PL/SQL does not require knowing the
>> business rules. It does not require knowing the business logic.
>> If you think it does you've already flunked the class on tuning.

> Maybe the class isn't entirely correct then. Remember what the best
> performing SQL or PL/SQL is? That would be the SQL or PL/SQL you
> don't run. _Any_ methodology that doesn't take that into account is
> deficient.

Wonderful. I agree. But irrelevant. The issue we have been beating to death here is the claim that developers belong on production boxes to identify problems. If the developer was good enough the bad code wouldn't be on the box in the first place.

But it is ... so what experience or knowledge of tuning tools does the developer have to identify the problem statements? So far not a single developer has been able to tell me the name of the tool and the methodology they would use.

>> Fixing the problem requires that knowledge but the triage does not.
>> And the fixing takes place in Dev and Test ... not on Prod.

> Consider this: The Vice-President of Marketing, who happens to be
> married to the CEO and majority stockholder, is running a third-party
> tool on her PC that sucks entire large tables. Where do you fix that?

Probably with a crowbar but that is not the question.

>> Want to try again? <g>

> I'd rather have a nice salad. <g>

If it is toro salad served over some rice with gari I'll join you.

Daniel A. Morgan
Oracle Ace Director & Instructor
University of Washington (replace x with u to respond)
Puget Sound Oracle Users Group
Received on Sat Nov 10 2007 - 02:17:31 CST

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