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

How to Patch an Oracle Database Under SAP

Are you thinking of patching an Oracle database which sits under an SAP system?
If you have a specific bug and you’ve identified the Oracle patch number that fixes the bug, you’d be tempted to just download the patch from Oracle.

According to SAP, you should not download any patches from Oracle directly.  As you know, the Oracle binaries themselves are slightly different for an SAP system.
Instead, if you have the Oracle patch number, search through the README files that come as part of the SAP Bundle Patch (SBP) for Oracle downloads located on the marketplace:  to see if the Oracle patch is included in the bundle patch.

If you can’t see it in there, then it may be worth asking SAP to clarify if/when they may include it in the next bundle patch.
Each bundle patch is released monthly, but it may not mean that relevant Oracle patches older than a month are included in the bundle.

The bundle patches themselves are cumulative, so you only need to apply the latest one.  It includes specific Oracle patches, plus a CPU patch (dependent on the date/time of the released SBP).

Remember to re-check the SAP notes about Oracle database parameters after applying SBPs, since SAP usually update the notes at each SBP release, to include any relevant _fix_control or event parameter settings.

Intel CPU Flags from dmidecode on Linux

If you run the dmidecode command on a Linux machine, you get a nice list of the Intel CPU flags for the CPUs on your machine, plus a handy text description:

FPU (Floating-point unit on-chip)
VME (Virtual mode extension)
DE (Debugging extension)
PSE (Page size extension)
TSC (Time stamp counter)
MSR (Model specific registers)
PAE (Physical address extension)
MCE (Machine check exception)
CX8 (CMPXCHG8 instruction supported)
APIC (On-chip APIC hardware supported)
SEP (Fast system call)
MTRR (Memory type range registers)
PGE (Page global enable)
MCA (Machine check architecture)
CMOV (Conditional move instruction supported)
PAT (Page attribute table)
PSE-36 (36-bit page size extension)
CLFSH (CLFLUSH instruction supported)
DS (Debug store)
ACPI (ACPI supported)
MMX (MMX technology supported)
FXSR (Fast floating-point save and restore)
SSE (Streaming SIMD extensions)
SSE2 (Streaming SIMD extensions 2)
SS (Self-snoop)
HTT (Hyper-threading technology)
TM (Thermal monitor supported)
SBF (Signal break on FERR)