So, Tuesday dawned bright and … er, well I didn’t go in for the first session of the day (not that I’d found one I wanted to go in for anyway, so nothing lost there!) but I was definitely there for the second session!
Who’s Afraid Of Analytic Functions? – Alex Nuijten
Alex is someone I’ve known from the OTN SQL & PL/SQL forum for quite some time now, although I’ve only met him in person a couple of times now. He’s a massive proponent of analytic functions (as am I – seriously, they *rock*!) and I couldn’t miss his analytics talk. Sorry Niall – I would have loved to have gone to yours too, but this just pipped yours!
This was one of the few that I came out of thinking that maybe I wasn’t actually so dumb after all! As with everything, there are lots of ways of doing the same thing, and although I’m fairly comfortable with analytic functions, there are still ways that I approach things that aren’t the most efficient. Some of Alex’s examples highlighted that for me!
If you aren’t familiar or comfortable with analytic functions yet, I would highly recommend you go see one of Alex’s talks on the subject!
A Year In Purgatory – Diary Of An 11.2 Upgrade – Connor McDonald
This was a presentation that very nearly wasn’t given! Debra Lilley had seen it when Connor did it in Perth, and was determined to get him to do it at UKOUG. Given that he’d already used up both slots for other presentations, this one was going to be saved for next year but, due to someone else having to pull out at the last minute, Debra got her wish!
All I can say about this is poor, poor Connor and his team (I assume there was a team?!). He took us through all the mishaps that occured in the past year or so when upgrading to an 11g Rac environment. As per his normal presentation style there was plenty of humour and entertainment, but I’m amazed that he’s got any hair left after the nightmare he described!
Troubleshooting The Most Complex Oracle Performance Problem I’ve Ever Seen – Tanel Poder
This was an intersting talk in that for most of it, I was scratching my head as to why it was an Oracle problem! It turned out to be a problem that Doug Burns had encountered (sorry, no spoilers here!), and whilst I basically followed things, I think it was more aimed at a DBA than someone like me. Still, it’s interesting to pick up little tips and tricks on the O/S side of things. And of course, the more I know about the underneath areas of Oracle, the easier it is to talk to my DBAs!
It’s All In The Index – Michael Salt
Poor Michael only just made his presentation, by the sounds of it – massive train problems! However, he made it and produced a useful talk on indexes and how they can be used to improve the performance of poorly running SQL statements.
I didn’t always agree with what Michael said (add an index to aid queries on tables where the data is stored in the wrong datatype? Fix the table/data, not mitigate the symptoms! Meanwhile, back in the real world, I know that’s not always possible!), but he did throw up an interesting off-the-cuff remark that completely stopped me in my tracks! I’ll be blogging on this shortly!
Beating The Oracle Optimizer – Jonathan Lewis
This was a tour of how to optimise a two-table query in 7 different ways – some of which I would never have come up with in a million years! An excellent presentation, as always.
This also happened to be the one that Jonathan asked me to be his alarm clock! I was so worried about missing the 10min / 5min warnings that he’d requested, I was checking the time every other minute or so throughout his presentation… only for him to finish 3 minutes before I was due to give him his 10 minute warning! By this time, I was panicking that the time on both my watch and my mobile phone was wrong or something, whereas Jonathan had apparently been thinking that I’d be waving at him any second for quite a while! Hehehe; I got all worked up for no reason!
Challenges And Chances Of The 11g Query Optimizer – Christian Antognini
This was a bit of a whistlestop tour through the 11g Query Optimizer changes and what we could expect to see once we’ve upgraded to 11g. Some of these I’d already seen covered in earlier presentations, such as SQL Plan Management, but others I was completely unaware of! A useful session to go to if, like me, you’re contemplating upgrading to 11g.