Hosted by Chevron

August 17, 2006

at Chevron, San Ramon, CA


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See directions to the conference location near the bottom of this page.


8:00 - 9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast - Refreshments Served
9:00 - 9:30 General Session and Welcome - Darrin Swan, NoCOUG President
9:30 - 10:30 Keynote: Software Programmers: Heroines and Heroes of the Twenty-First Century - Steven Feuerstein, Quest Software
10:30 - 11:00 Break
  Room 1220 Room 1240 Room 1130
11:00 - 12:00
Session 1
Six Steps to Unit Testing Happiness by Steven Feuerstein, Quest Software Oracle 10g SQL Tuning Secrets by Donald Burleson, Burleson Consulting Introduction to Oracle Spatial Using Public Data by Richard Flores, Isinglass, Inc.
12:00 - 1:00 Lunch
1:00 - 2:00
Session 2
How Much do Concurrent Updates Impact Query Performance in Oracle? by Roger Schrag, Database Specialists Creating a Self-tuning Oracle 10g Database by Donald Burleson, Burleson Consulting J2EE: Black Box in the Oracle World by Don Bergal, Confio Software
2:00 - 2:15 Break
2:15 - 3:15
Session 3
Top 36 Wait Events by Kyle Hailey, Independent consultant SQL Sucks! by Iggy Fernandez, Verizon Oracle 10g, CoolThreads and Containers by Michael O'Connor, Sun Microsystems
3:15 - 3:45 Raffle and Refreshments
In the vendor area.
3:45 - 4:45
Session 4
Issues and Remedies Surrounding Blocking Locks: Asking the Right Questions and Taking the Appropriate Actions by Vilin Roufchaie, DBPulse Group Logical E/R Modeling: The Definition of "Truth" for Data by Jeffrey Jacobs, Covad Communications Extending OEM Grid Control Functionality With Plug-Ins by Randy Arseneau, BEZ Systems
5:00 - ??? NoCOUG networking and happy hour at Marriott San Ramon At Bishop, 2600 Bishop Dr, San Ramon, CA 94583, (925) 867-9200
(Directions: Leaving the conference, go straight across Bollinger onto Camino Ramon. Turn left onto Bishop Dr. Arrive at 2600 Bishop Dr.)

Mark your calendar for NoCOUG's Fall Conference:
November 2, 2006 at PG&E in San Francisco.



Speaker Abstracts for Spring Conference


“Software Programmers: Heroines and Heroes of the Twenty-First Century” - Steven Feuerstein, Quest Software

It is well past time for programmers to recognize that the role we play in our society goes far beyond our cubicles. What we do - the code we write, the bugs we don't manage to fix - has an enormous impact on the world, on the daily lives of millions of people. In other words, we - programmers and DBAs both - are very powerful. And as Spidey's uncle said, "With great power comes great responsibility." This keynote presentation explains just how and why our jobs and our work product are vastly more important than you might have been thinking. We will then explore the ways in which attendees can accept their responsibility and becomes the heroines and heroes of the 21st century.

Room 1220
“Six Steps to Unit Testing Happiness” - Steven Feuerstein, Quest Software

We all know that we should thoroughly test each individual program or unit of code (this is called "unit testing"). Yet few of us feel that we do test our code adequately. There are many reasons for this, ranging from poor support for testing in tools to managers who don't understand what is needed to a lack of standardization around how to write and run tests. This presentation will both review high-level principles for unit testing and also provide pragmatic tips for improving your test process.

“How Much do Concurrent Updates Impact Query Performance in Oracle?” - Roger Schrag, Database Specialists

Oracle has a strict read-consistency model that sets it apart from other database products such as Microsoft's SQL Server. You can update rows in a table while I query those very same rows. Your updates will not get lost, my query results will not be corrupted, and neither of us will block the other from doing their work. The net result is that with Oracle we can run batch jobs, data loads, and reports all at the same time and never worry about things like "dirty reads" or "read locks." However, this great functionality comes at a cost to performance -- Oracle has to do more work to ensure read-consistency if one user is updating a table while another user is querying it. This raises the question: Just how much slower will a report run if a batch update job is running at the same time? In this presentation we will look briefly at how Oracle implements the read-consistency model, and then we will focus on quantifying the performance cost. We will look at reproducible examples, TKPROF reports, and v$ views in order to measure how much slower a query runs when the tables being read are undergoing concurrent updates. Would it be faster to run the update jobs and the report jobs sequentially instead of at the same time? You will have the tools to answer questions like this after attending this session.

“Top 36 Wait Events” - Kyle Hailey, Independent consultant

Ever wonder what the explanations, causes, and solutions were for Oracle wait events? Ever been frustrated with the lack of documentation on Oracle wait events? Here is a presentation on the causes and solutions to the top 36 most frequently encountered wait events which cover over 95% of the wait time in Oracle customer databases.

“Issues and Remedies Surrounding Blocking Locks: Asking the Right Questions and Taking the Appropriate Actions” - Vilin Roufchaie, DBPulse Group

Managers and DBAs often receive calls to kill a session or group of sessions because their application process isn't performing due to being blocked by a session's blocking lock . The information received is often sparse, inadequate, or erroneous at best. Hence, it will be up to the DBA to make sense of the information in hand and to probe further and deeper to determine the real causes of the "slow-performing database" and, in case of a true blocking lock, be able to pinpoint the harm-causing session. This presentation covers some of the important technical details and decision-making procedures production managers and DBAs will be faced with, and many factors they must take into consideration before pulling the plug on a blocking session that could potentially be executing an important application. Locks (enqueues) and blocking locks will be discussed, followed by specific SQL examples and solutions to illustrate various problematic scenarios of a blocking session's identification and possible elimination .

Room 1240
“Oracle 10g SQL Tuning Secrets” - Donald Burleson, Burleson Consulting

This presentation will focus on real-world techniques for improving the speed of SQL queries with a focus on the new Oracle10g features. The topics will include the new Oracle parameters that affect SQL performance, the use of hints to change SQL execution plans, re-writing SQL queries in more efficient forms and the use of advanced techniques such as Materialized Views, replacing SQL with PL/SQL, the new automated CBO statistics collection, and using the new Oracle10g CPU costing approach. Presented by the author of High-Performance SQL Tuning by Oracle Press, this presentation will show actual case studies to illustrate the performance differences with these approaches to SQL tuning. Best of all, the presenter will share his proven SQL tuning secrets that ensure optimal SQL execution.

“Creating a Self-tuning Oracle 10g Database” - Donald Burleson, Burleson Consulting

Oracle started to create the mechanism for a self-tuning database with Oracle 9i and has begun the automation of many tuning actions in Oracle 10g. This exciting presentation will show the Automated Storage Management (ASM) and Automated Memory Management (AMM) tools and describe their internal mechanisms for re-allocating RAM regions within the Oracle10g SGA. This presentation also shows how you can extend upon these automation features to make Oracle 10g even more self-managing. Using the existing data from the Automated Workload Repository and Automatic Session History tables, this presentation will show you how to create sophisticated scripts to detect anomalies and how to dynamically invoke the dbms_scheduler utility to automatically repair the process. This is an indispensable presentation for any Oracle professional who wants to know how to automate their manual decision rules within the automation framework of Oracle 10g. This presentation will show working code from real-world Oracle 10g databases.

“SQL Sucks!” - Iggy Fernandez, Verizon

I recently participated in a major SQL tuning project for a Fortune 500 company and came away with the realization that all database engines -- including Oracle -- are severely handicapped in their ability to find good execution strategies for SQL queries because they assume that all the columns of a table have independent data distributions. Also, they don't know how many rows will be created when two tables are joined. As an example the query "SELECT * FROM EMPLOYEES WHERE LAST_NAME = 'SCHROEDER' AND ETHNICITY = 'EAST INDIAN'" will probably not return any rows but Oracle has no way of knowing this. Since the search for the best execution strategy is heavily influenced by the estimates of the cardinalities of SQL operations such as Selection and Join, it is an exercise that is always doomed to failure. We analyze the problem and discuss the workarounds.

“Logical E/R Modeling: The Definition of "Truth" for Data” - Jeffrey Jacobs, Covad Communications

Logical entity/relationship (E/R) models, also referred to as "conceptual" or "semantic" models, define the information requirements of the enterprise, independent of the resulting implementation. A well defined E/R model is the key to successful development of data-oriented applications. This presentation will provide an overview of the fundamentals of E/R modeling as the definition of the information requirements of the enterprise. It will focus on the underlying concepts and notations, with a strong emphasis on the semantic content of the E/R model.

Room 1130
“Introduction to Oracle Spatial Using Public Data” - Richard Flores, Isinglass, Inc.

Oracle Spatial can play an important part in the storage and decision support analysis of geographic data for business. Through example, this presentation will introduce Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and computer cartography, the basics of Oracle Spatial, and the acquisition and use of freely available geographic data.

“J2EE: Black Box in the Oracle World” - Don Bergal, Confio Software

Traditional J2EE application performance monitoring tools that are intended to monitor, analyze, and resolve performance bottlenecks, generally fall short in its core mission. At issue is the inability to correlate collected system resource and server metrics to provide a clear resolution to performance problems within the J2EE web, application and database layers. Most Java performance tools lack visibility into the database and/or database tools lack visibility back into the Java layer(s). This training session will cover how to extend Oracle Wait Time methodology to J2EE applications and gain end-to-end visibility from both the DBA and J2EE architects' perspective to help solve complex application problems.

“Oracle 10g, CoolThreads and Containers” - Michael O'Connor, Sun Microsystems

This talk will explore the use of Sun's latest technology innovations including Chip Multi-threading and Open Source Solaris 10 Containers to host Oracle 10g databases. The presentation will explore performance characteristics of current CMT implementations for Oracle database workloads and provide best practice recommendations for safely consolidating multiple Oracle 10g database instances onto a single SPARC or AMD Opteron based host.

“Extending OEM Grid Control Functionality With Plug-Ins” - Randy Arseneau, BEZ Systems

With OEM Grid Control R2, Oracle now maintains a central repository of performance data for its users to interact with. This set of information is fed to the central repository from the OEM collection agents that are deployed on each of the monitored servers. OEM also provides a facility called the Management Plug-In where customers can define and deploy their own target types within the product. In this presentation we will focus on two key areas within the OEM framework: The standard "Oracle Instance" target type, and Management Plug-Ins to extend OEM collection capabilities. Attendee will learn what Oracle Instance data is persisted in the OEM central repository and what data is retrieved and displayed dynamically. Scheduling and purging consideration for this data will also be discussed. The bulk of the discussion will be on how to extend the base set of captured data by the creation of Management Plug-Ins that will allow new sets of data to be captured and stored within the OEM repository.


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Directions to Chevron Park in San Ramon:

6101 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA 94583.

Please note that the conference building is just after the Chevron Campus.
Upon arrival, enter the building at the East entrance where you'll find NoCOUG representatives ready to sign you in.

From Highway 680 South:
Exit at Bollinger Canyon Road. Turn left onto Bollinger Canyon Road (heading east over the freeway). After passing Chevron Park Circle West, turn right into Bishop Ranch 1. Address 6101 is the first building after entering the parking lot. Park anywhere not restricted.

From Highway 680 North:
Exit at Bollinger Canyon Road. Turn right onto Bollinger Canyon Road (heading east). After passing Chevron Park Circle West, turn right into Bishop Ranch 1. Address 6101 is the first building after entering the parking lot. Park anywhere not restricted.

Copyright © 2006 NoCOUG.  All rights reserved.