This blog contains experience gained over the years of implementing (and de-implementing) large scale IT applications/software.

“Fix” Control and ORA-00940: invalid ALTER command

Upon startup of an Oracle database I received Oracle error:
ORA-00940: invalid ALTER command

I eventually managed to narrow this down to a “_fix_control” setting.

The database is for an SAP system and the init.ora was updated after following SAP note 830576 (Parameter recommendations for Oracle 10g).
I noticed that I had misread the note and applied a “_fix_control” parameter setting for a slightly (only by a patchset update) higher version of Oracle.

Take care when reading this note and make sure you test the startup and shutdown of the database before going home!

UPDATE: This is a bug.  See here.

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