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Oracle Performance Firefighting Perfect Paperback – 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Perfect Paperback: 406 pages
  • Publisher: OraPub, Inc.; 4th edition (2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0984102302
  • ISBN-13: 978-0984102303
  • Product Dimensions: 8.8 x 7 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,368,250 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Format: Perfect Paperback
This review covers the June 2010 fourth printing of the "Oracle Performance Firefighting" book. I bought a PDF copy of the book direct from the OraPub site. The author's excellent "Forecasting Oracle Performance" book was a factor in my decision to purchase this book, as was my desire to learn something new while trying to maintain previously acquired knowledge. As stated in this book, the author has roughly 20 years of experience working with Oracle Database, worked with Cary Millsap at Oracle Corporation for a period of time, and conducts a successful consulting and training business. I recognize the names of three of the six technical reviewers listed in the book as well known experts in the Oracle community. The author's website states that there are no known issues/errata starting with the third printing (November 2009) of the book. All of the components for the book's success are in place, so how did the book perform?

There are definitely positive moments in the book, where the book successfully communicates complicated topics using very clear statements. The book publisher selected a font size and margin size that packs a significant amount of detail into each of the book's 387 pages. There are several well-placed helpful diagrams with no space wasting cartoon drawings. The author introduced his three circle analysis which involves identifying the intersection of the Oracle Database, the Application, and the Operating System to help pinpoint the source of performance problems. Several examples were provided where the author used the Linux strace command to troubleshoot Oracle Database performance problems. The book recommends against modifying the _SPIN_COUNT hidden initialization parameter, which is a wise advisement.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
You may all know Tom Kyte, Jonathan Lewis and others as famous speakers and writers about Oracle Internals and Performance troubleshooting.
Craig may not be as famous as they are but its "Oracle Performance Firefighting" Book is probably so far the best book written about Oracle internals & Performance troubleshooting.
It's all about correlating Application, Operating system and Oracle Engine in order to understand where the bottleneck is located and what you should do in order to solve it.
Craig provides the very strong "3 cricles" global approach which can be applied to any Oracle performance issue and also delivers the most complete description about Oracle internals and how by understanding them you can move forward with your performance troubleshooting challenge. Just as an example, Craig does not simply describe how latches and mutexes work, He also provides practical solutions to solve any kind of latch contention you can experiment. Definitly the most comprehensive book written on a very touchy topic.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
While researching a particular nasty bug involving In-Memory Undo (IMU), I found a white paper written by Craig Shallahamer that clearly and concisely explained this feature. I was so impressed by the quality of this white paper that I went to his OraPub website to see what else might be available from Craig. I saw that this book had just recently been published, and bought it instantly. I carried it with me to the next NoCOUG conference, and showed it to all who would listen.

Craig has written a practical, informative, and very clear book that integrates important Oracle performance and scalability topics with valuable communication and problem solving advice. His lively explanations of latching, wait events, the buffer cache, the shared pool, and redo mechanisms alone are worth the price of the book. Combined with excellent communication tips, a foundation of queueing theory, real-world examples, and a freely available toolkit, this book is truly invaluable.

At the core of this book are explanations of important Oracle internals, especially latching, the wait interface, the buffer cache, shared pool, and redo mechanisms. Craig delves into the internals with just enough detail to enable practical problem solving, while completely avoiding any unnecessary detail. Craig's simple analogies and clear graphics greatly enhance readability. For example, his lively analogy for Oracle's general latching mechanism is both useful and unforgettable, a true classic! Craig explains Oracle's wait interface with a unique analogy involving application programmers who want to add instrumentation to their own code; this perspective is very accessible for newcomers to the wait interface, and provides insight even to experienced users.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
This book provides the Oracle performance practitioner a time tested performance management strategy. Coined at the OraPub 3-Circle Analysis, Craig Shallahamer describes his proven method for navigating the dicey waters of performance firefighting. This book goes far beyond Oracle tips, tricks, and techniques. OraPub 3-Circle Analysis is a means of efficiently diagnosing just where system problems exist. When database issues compromise business service delivery, this method can make all the difference.

Beyond a means for accurate diagnosis, Oracle Performance Firefighting describes a way "telling the story" to stakeholders. This can be as important as identifying where the problems exist. Craig provides the steps he has used many times in the real world. It starts with separately documenting metrics from the application, operating system, and Oracle itself. These detailed working documents typically contain actual diagnosis script output. Information from the detailed analysis documents is then captured into Performance Summary in which each subsystem's situation is described along with their relationships. The final two steps for telling the story are presenting Recommendations and an Executive Summary. The Executive Summary "introduces the entire exercise and sets the stage so anyone can understand the importance of your task".

In addition to the softer side performance management strategy, Craig is no stranger to Oracle internals and why they matter. He has leveraged their deep understanding, combined with years of teaching and consulting through the OraPub enterprise, in the creation of Oracle Performance Firefighting.
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