Are Oracle GUIs causing a decline in DBA salaries?

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Geomancer

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Apr 25, 2003, 4:15:15 PM4/25/03
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Has anyone noticed that the Oracle GUI tools and wizards are making it
far too easy to be an Oracle DBA?

Just for fun, I asked my 9-year-old daughter to install Oracle9i on a
PC, and she was successful without a word of assistance from me. (BTW,
she though it was "real boring")

Anyhow, I hear that the next OEM is going to be so easy that even an
MSCE will be able to do Oracle DBA work, and I'm worried.

How will us Oracle DBAs be able to justify our salaries once Oracle
becomes as easy to use as MS-Access?

James Williams

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Apr 25, 2003, 4:55:57 PM4/25/03
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Well, it won't stop. The DBA's get dirty looks everytime checks are
passed out and companys cut costs!

IBM calls in autonomic.

This is the trend with all software and all vendors. I just had a guy
try to sell me on a SQL Server app because he claims its cheaper. Note
all the jobs moving overseas. From the standpoint of capitalism you
must not be scared but learn the game and diversify. Learn to provide
a service. For instance, my side business is computer unrelated and
would allow me to continue on if the bean-counter's wish to send my
job overseas. Learn from the Enron's of the world before it is too
late not to put all your eggs in one basket and by all means live
within your means and trust GOD!

On 25 Apr 2003 13:15:15 -0700, pharfr...@hotmail.com (Geomancer)
wrote:

Karsten Farrell

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Apr 25, 2003, 5:19:37 PM4/25/03
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pharfr...@hotmail.com said...
It's a good thing you had her do it on Windows instead of Linux or Unix!
It's a good thing you didn't ask her to install Oracle9iDS.

Installing is the "easy" part ... but you do have a point. Personally,
I'm glad Oracle makes the "drudge" jobs a bit easier. I like OEM.

I'm more concerned about Open Source databases stealing away a big chunk
of Oracle's customers, leaving a lot of Oracle DBAs pounding the
pavement, looking for a job. How many companies will look at the price
of Oracle versus MySQL and ask "Do we *really* need all that power?"

MS Access will rule the low-end and Oracle/SQLServer will rule the high-
end and MySQL will yank away the middle layer. Uh-huh. And pigs will
fly.
--
/Karsten
DBA > retired > DBA

Jeffrey Hunter

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Apr 25, 2003, 9:28:48 PM4/25/03
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No need to worry. If that day ever does come, Oracle was already
thinking ahead and created 9iAS Enterprise Edition. ;-)

-- jeff

Jeffrey Hunter
jhu...@iDevelopment.info
www.iDevelopment.info

Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191346457...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...

Chris

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Apr 26, 2003, 9:07:16 AM4/26/03
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"Geomancer" <pharfr...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:cf90fb89.03042...@posting.google.com...

> Anyhow, I hear that the next OEM is going to be so easy that even an
> MSCE will be able to do Oracle DBA work, and I'm worried.

The next OEM is web based. It ain't any better than what's available now. It
just works through firewalls.
If your have seen OEM for 9ias then you get the picture.

Dave Hau

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Apr 26, 2003, 3:01:09 PM4/26/03
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"Karsten Farrell" <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message
news:MPG.191346457...@news.la.sbcglobal.net...

Regarding open source databases stealing away Oracle's customers, I think
that'll happen, but not in a significant way. Open source databases will
never achieve the level of performance of Oracle or DB2 because of patents.
Unlike "new" technologies like web server where Apache can take a lead, or
EJB app servers where JBoss can take a lead, databases have been around for
such a long time that major ideas have already been patented. It's hard for
MySQL or PostgreSQL to come up with totally new ideas and therefore it's
hard for them to achieve comparable level of performance as the major
commercial databases.

Just my 2c.

Cheers,
Dave

Daniel Morgan

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Apr 26, 2003, 4:14:04 PM4/26/03
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Dave Hau wrote:

Patents expire.

But I think there is another reason and that is the size of the project to
implement the features. There is just a minimum number of competent developers
that must be involved in a project to build something as complex as Oracle. And
to keep them working together as a team, year after year, without paying them as
employees is virtually impossible.

Once a project gets larger than a couple of guys in a garage incorporated ... it
becomes very hard to sustain without revenue.
--
Daniel Morgan
http://www.outreach.washington.edu/extinfo/certprog/oad/oad_crs.asp
(remove one 'x' from my email address to reply)


tingl

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Apr 26, 2003, 7:44:47 PM4/26/03
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Why do you ask such a question? Do pilots get pay less because more things
on the planes are automated?

"Geomancer" <pharfr...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:cf90fb89.03042...@posting.google.com...

Daniel Morgan

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Apr 26, 2003, 9:07:01 PM4/26/03
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tingl wrote:

And to the load of traditional responsibilities one can add 9iAS, Java, XML,
etc.

And with 10i new things you can barely imagine.

Tim X

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Apr 27, 2003, 4:54:09 AM4/27/03
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>>>>> "Karsten" == Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> writes:

Karsten> pharfr...@hotmail.com said...


>> Has anyone noticed that the Oracle GUI tools and wizards are
>> making it far too easy to be an Oracle DBA?
>>
>> Just for fun, I asked my 9-year-old daughter to install Oracle9i
>> on a PC, and she was successful without a word of assistance from
>> me. (BTW, she though it was "real boring")
>>
>> Anyhow, I hear that the next OEM is going to be so easy that even
>> an MSCE will be able to do Oracle DBA work, and I'm worried.
>>
>> How will us Oracle DBAs be able to justify our salaries once
>> Oracle becomes as easy to use as MS-Access?
>>

Karsten> It's a good thing you had her do it on Windows instead of
Karsten> Linux or Unix! It's a good thing you didn't ask her to
Karsten> install Oracle9iDS.

Karsten> Installing is the "easy" part ... but you do have a
Karsten> point. Personally, I'm glad Oracle makes the "drudge" jobs a
Karsten> bit easier. I like OEM.

Karsten> I'm more concerned about Open Source databases stealing away
Karsten> a big chunk of Oracle's customers, leaving a lot of Oracle
Karsten> DBAs pounding the pavement, looking for a job. How many
Karsten> companies will look at the price of Oracle versus MySQL and
Karsten> ask "Do we *really* need all that power?"

Karsten> MS Access will rule the low-end and Oracle/SQLServer will
Karsten> rule the high- end and MySQL will yank away the middle
Karsten> layer. Uh-huh. And pigs will fly. -- /Karsten DBA > retired
Karsten> > DBA

While it might be easier to install Oracle, I don't think that is
really the main skill of a DBA - the real DBA skills come in the
maintenance of the system, not the initial installation. While I'm
actually not a fan of GUIs, I guess they can help take some of the
drudgery out of some tasks, but apart from the trivial stuff, you
still need an understanding of what is going on if you are really
going to be effective.

Personally, I think the bigger threat to DBAs is the growing number of
managers who are primarily bean counters and have little to no
technical knowledge or understanding. These managers seem to swallow
the sales pitches of people like hardware vendors. Instead of the
manager talking to their DBAs about how they can improve performance
etc, they seem to bypass them completely and go straight to the
hardware sales consultant and ask them what to do - the usual answer
is buy more disk/memory/cpus etc, when often the DBA would have been
able to come up with suggestions which require less hardware outlay
etc.

I've been quite amazed at how many MySQL databases are out there -
while they are a reasonable basic sql database, they are really not
much more useful than MS access in many respects - last time I looked,
you could only perform a subset of sql queries - limited nested
queries, limited in-line views, limitations on the combinations of
fields and how they are used (e.g. order/group by only allowed on
columsn which are selected in the outer select clause etc). There was
only very limited support for stored procedures and I don't think
there was support for triggers, check constraints or foreign keys. A
lot of this may have changed, but I suspect MySQL is still very light
weight.

I think a database which will become more prevalent is Postgres -
while slower than MySQL, it has a much richer set of features and
comes a lot closer to the feature set offered by Oracle.

There has certainly been a decline in the number of pure DBA positions
and this is likely to continue. However, I don't think we will see a
day where there is not some form of DBA role - it is possible the
distinction between system administrator and DBA will become more
blurred - or possibly DBA and developer will be less
distinct. Personally, I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing -
I've often seen difficulties and disagreements which a primarily due
to sys admins and dbas not communicating properly because they both
understand the system at different levels and it can be difficult to
find a common channel of communication. Greater understanding of the
requirements and limitations at both levels can only help in the
problem solving process.

Tim
--
Tim Cross
The e-mail address on this message is FALSE (obviously!). My real e-mail is
to a company in Australia called rapttech and my login is tcross - if you
really need to send mail, you should be able to work it out!

Ryan

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Apr 27, 2003, 2:45:36 PM4/27/03
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"Geomancer" <pharfr...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:cf90fb89.03042...@posting.google.com...

salaries are down because the IT market in general is horrible and there
demand is in the toilet. Its not the GUIs. Its the market.

Oracle as easy to use as Access? its not about ease of use, its what you are
doing with it. You really think that if Oracle was as easy to use as Access,
it still would take alot of effort to build and maintain the Amazon.com's
database? Or The Social Security Agencies data warehouses? Its what you are
trying to do.

The thing is that if you have something simple that you can run in Access
you would have to be a fool to pay for Oracle in the first place. Why would
you? You dont need it.

Its the market. There are too many applicants for every job. It could pick
up a little in the next 2 years, problem is that there was so much
over-demand in the 1990s, you have a ton of Oracle people out there.

Ryan

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Apr 27, 2003, 2:47:24 PM4/27/03
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"Geomancer" <pharfr...@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:cf90fb89.03042...@posting.google.com...

one other point. Ease of use allows you to concentrate on the business
logic. Programming today is MUCH easier than in 1960. Back then you had to
worry about every bit of space since storage was so small and programming
languages were like writing math. Now that the languages are easier, has the
demand dropped. NO, what you are seeing are far more advanced applications
and simulations. Why? Because you can concentrate on implementation rather
then low level programming.


Nuno Souto

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Apr 27, 2003, 7:26:03 PM4/27/03
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pharfr...@hotmail.com (Geomancer) wrote in message news:<cf90fb89.03042...@posting.google.com>...

>
> How will us Oracle DBAs be able to justify our salaries once Oracle
> becomes as easy to use as MS-Access?


If you believe that bullshit about "as easy as",
you'll believe anything...


Cheers
Nuno Souto
wizo...@yahoo.com.au.nospam

Holger Marzen

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Apr 28, 2003, 2:41:11 AM4/28/03
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* On 25 Apr 2003 13:15:15 -0700, Geomancer wrote:

> Has anyone noticed that the Oracle GUI tools and wizards are making it
> far too easy to be an Oracle DBA?

Until the first crash or slowdown.

Niall Litchfield

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Apr 28, 2003, 5:36:56 AM4/28/03
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"tingl" <all...@one4all.not> wrote in message
news:PREqa.41971$ey1.3...@newsread1.prod.itd.earthlink.net...

> Why do you ask such a question? Do pilots get pay less because more things
> on the planes are automated?
arguably yes.


--
Niall Litchfield
Oracle DBA
Audit Commission UK


Hans Forbrich

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Apr 28, 2003, 12:44:36 PM4/28/03
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Nuno Souto wrote:

> If you believe that bullshit about "as easy as",
> you'll believe anything...

Why of course ... grab the mouse, cover your eyes, point and click. What could be easier? Mind you, it's insane
but who said anything about needing to do real DBA work?

It's management's perception that counts. And if management thinks it can be done in 1/2 the time and at 1/2 the
cost with 1/2 the expertise using GUI, they have the right to pay for what they get <g>

In the long run, they end up calling the experts to bail the boat and then they pay 5-25 times as much ... as the
song goes "when will they ever learn?"


Karsten Farrell

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Apr 28, 2003, 1:16:13 PM4/28/03
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forb...@telusplanet.net said...

> Why of course ... grab the mouse, cover your eyes, point and click. What could be easier? Mind you, it's insane
> but who said anything about needing to do real DBA work?
>
> It's management's perception that counts. And if management thinks it can be done in 1/2 the time and at 1/2 the
> cost with 1/2 the expertise using GUI, they have the right to pay for what they get <g>
>
I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here. Why are GUI users
equated with unskilled, rank amateurs? Why is something that makes my
job easier a bad thing? And what's wrong with providing tools to assist
those who ain't an old goat like me (eg, newbie DBAs)?

I didn't use GUIs with Oracle 5, 6, or 7 ... any more than I used a GUI
to write my Fortran or Cobol programs ... but I don't see how a DBA who
uses a GUI today is _less_ skilled than one who doesn't. Using the
command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who doesn't.

And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
the time. If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.

This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.

Let the flames begin!

TurkBear

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Apr 28, 2003, 2:05:30 PM4/28/03
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Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote:

Flame one ( actually not):

Having 1 less skill ( the knowledge of command-line interfaces) does make one less skilled..
As to how important this lack is, it depends on whether there will ALWAYS be a GUI interface available when you need to fix a
hosed Oracle installation....The command line will be there..( unless the OS is gone)

It is a tool to assist and most tasks ( but not all, especially if the database has crashed and needs detailed and specific
recovery techniques ) can be accomplished thru a GUI,but ONLY knowing the GUI is a problem....

Know all you can...Too much knowledge is an oxymoron....


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Hans Forbrich

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Apr 28, 2003, 5:51:10 PM4/28/03
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Karsten Farrell wrote:

> I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here. Why are GUI users
> equated with unskilled, rank amateurs? Why is something that makes my
> job easier a bad thing? And what's wrong with providing tools to assist
> those who ain't an old goat like me (eg, newbie DBAs)?
>
> I didn't use GUIs with Oracle 5, 6, or 7 ... any more than I used a GUI
> to write my Fortran or Cobol programs ... but I don't see how a DBA who
> uses a GUI today is _less_ skilled than one who doesn't. Using the
> command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who doesn't.
>
> And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> the time. If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
> there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.
>
> This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.

As usual, you have an entirely valid point. GUIs *can and should* be used as yet another tool in the toolbelt. It's
the user, not the tool, that makes the difference! And I certainly have been pushing OEM (or other GUI admin tools) to
my client base as much as possible because "anything is better than the nothing I see in use."

My experience, unfortunately, is that management tends to assume GUI based product needs less skill set so they can
save big piles of money by understaffing and underskilling the positions. That is my primary gripe.

The other gripe I have against GUI is that, by it's very nature, the GUI leads you through a specific thought process
and that process is provided by the GUI developer, not the user (and certainly not the user's exerience) so we have to
pray that the tool designer has better experience and good reasons for the design. Witness the differences in PC-based
accounting packages ... accounting engines are all basically the same (how many variations in accounting are really
allowed???) but different users swear by this or that entirely package on the GUI and some users simply can not switch
GUIs.

Peter

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Apr 28, 2003, 6:06:44 PM4/28/03
to
On Fri, 25 Apr 2003 21:19:37 GMT, Karsten Farrell
<kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote:

>pharfr...@hotmail.com said...
>> Has anyone noticed that the Oracle GUI tools and wizards are making it
>> far too easy to be an Oracle DBA?
>>
>> Just for fun, I asked my 9-year-old daughter to install Oracle9i on a
>> PC, and she was successful without a word of assistance from me. (BTW,
>> she though it was "real boring")
>>
>> Anyhow, I hear that the next OEM is going to be so easy that even an
>> MSCE will be able to do Oracle DBA work, and I'm worried.
>>
>> How will us Oracle DBAs be able to justify our salaries once Oracle
>> becomes as easy to use as MS-Access?
>>
>It's a good thing you had her do it on Windows instead of Linux or Unix!


Is MS Windows taking over Linux and Unix? People say MS Windows will
continue to do better and better technologically, overtaking Unix,
therefore graphical interface will be more important.

Joel Garry

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Apr 28, 2003, 6:48:56 PM4/28/03
to
Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...

> forb...@telusplanet.net said...
> > Why of course ... grab the mouse, cover your eyes, point and click. What could be easier? Mind you, it's insane
> > but who said anything about needing to do real DBA work?
> >
> > It's management's perception that counts. And if management thinks it can be done in 1/2 the time and at 1/2 the
> > cost with 1/2 the expertise using GUI, they have the right to pay for what they get <g>
> >
> I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here. Why are GUI users
> equated with unskilled, rank amateurs? Why is something that makes my
> job easier a bad thing? And what's wrong with providing tools to assist
> those who ain't an old goat like me (eg, newbie DBAs)?

The problem is, management too often does not want to pay for
experience if they don't have to, and the GUI's allow them not to - to
a point. So you wind up with unemployed or underemployed experienced
people, and places that don't have experienced people when they need
them for a brief fix. I've been getting a number of inquiries lately
that indicate the latter, and I have to tell them "sorry, I'm boooked
right now." It becomes a scheduling problem for an independent,
because you can't depend on lots of little onesy-toosey things like
this to come in a smooth time-scale. So everyone loses. I keep
telling people it would be cheaper and more cost-effective to just
hire me, but they insist on throwing more money at me. And I get the
impression that groups of DBA's who get together to try to handle such
a market don't do too well either.

To answer your first question; because GUI's are designed for and used
by rank amateurs. Now, I just posted a few minutes ago advising
someone to use a GUI, I understand they are useful as you say, even to
experienced folk (perhaps more so, as they can understand what the
limitations are). So in actuality, they are a tool, no more. But the
perception belies "no less." And they certainly make it a _lot_
easier to do things in a non-repeatable manner. I still must insist
that anything to be done more than twice must be doable in some sort
of command file, else the likelihood of errors is much greater than
most people will admit. And even twice is pushing it.

>
> I didn't use GUIs with Oracle 5, 6, or 7 ... any more than I used a GUI
> to write my Fortran or Cobol programs ... but I don't see how a DBA who
> uses a GUI today is _less_ skilled than one who doesn't. Using the
> command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who doesn't.

I disagree, because I think it takes less abstract understanding to
use the command line - rather than understanding concepts (and perhaps
misunderstanding them), the command line pretty much requires you
understand the workings as well as the concepts. It's also easier for
some things to get log files to see later what happened.

>
> And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> the time. If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
> there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.

But it requires experience to know the limits. When crunch time comes
and help becomes hindrance...

Ever see grants and privileges get propagated so that everyone has
everything?

>
> This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.

There's gotta be a "real old men" joke in there somewhere! :-)

>
> Let the flames begin!

We have ignition!

jg
--
@home.com is bogus. Would you like Wi-Fi with that?
http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/uniontrib/mon/business/news_mz1b28wifi.html

Nuno Souto

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Apr 28, 2003, 7:02:49 PM4/28/03
to
Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...

> I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here.

You definitely are...

> Why are GUI users
> equated with unskilled, rank amateurs?


Who said they were?


> Why is something that makes my
> job easier a bad thing?

Who said it made your job easier? Ah, the vendor
of the GUI tool... Of course!

> And what's wrong with providing tools to assist
> those who ain't an old goat like me (eg, newbie DBAs)?
>

Who says they assist? Ah, the vendor
of the GUI tool... Of course!


> I didn't use GUIs with Oracle 5, 6, or 7 ... any more than I used a GUI
> to write my Fortran or Cobol programs ... but I don't see how a DBA who
> uses a GUI today is _less_ skilled than one who doesn't. Using the
> command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who doesn't.
>


Who said he/she is more skilled? Ah, the vendor
of the GUI tool... Of course!


> And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> the time.


Prove it. Or are you trying to tell me that
an "alter tablespace add datafile" runs faster
if it is started by a GUI?


> If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
> there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.
>


The keyword there is "help". Remains to be proven
that a GUI really "helps" anything. I'm sorry, but
vendor claims don't cut the mustard with me.

> This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.

Oh, I've been in touch with my feminine side for
a looooong time! :)

Cheers
Nuno Souto
wizo...@yahoo.com.au.nospam

Jim Kennedy

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Apr 28, 2003, 10:04:46 PM4/28/03
to

<snip for brevity>


> Is MS Windows taking over Linux and Unix? People say MS Windows will
> continue to do better and better technologically, overtaking Unix,
> therefore graphical interface will be more important.
>

It has nothing to do with a GUI. Unix has a GUI also. You are discussing
what people use as a desktop OS not a server - two different things. Highly
irrelevant. A GUI does not make up for lack of competence in a field. Good
DBA's know about the architecture, are excellent problem solvers and all of
that has nothing to do with a GUI. The job goes far beyond creating a table
or an index.
Jim


Daniel Morgan

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Apr 29, 2003, 1:54:14 AM4/29/03
to
Jim Kennedy wrote:

And by way of adding proof to the pudding. Today I was consulting at a company
where the "DBA" claimed 5 years experience and was managing mulitple Oracle
databases using the latest tools from BMC.

Size of the shared pool? 15MB
Number of records that could be updated before running out of rollback space?
less than 75K
Passwords for default Oracle schemas unchanged
Need it go on?

Karsten Farrell

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Apr 29, 2003, 11:46:36 AM4/29/03
to
john....@dot.state.mn.us said...

> Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote:
>
> >forb...@telusplanet.net said...
> >> Why of course ... grab the mouse, cover your eyes, point and click. What could be easier? Mind you, it's insane
> >> but who said anything about needing to do real DBA work?

<snip>

> >I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here. Why are GUI users
> >equated with unskilled, rank amateurs? Why is something that makes my
> >job easier a bad thing? And what's wrong with providing tools to assist
> >those who ain't an old goat like me (eg, newbie DBAs)?

<snip>

> >Let the flames begin!
>
> Flame one ( actually not):
>
> Having 1 less skill ( the knowledge of command-line interfaces) does make one less skilled..
> As to how important this lack is, it depends on whether there will ALWAYS be a GUI interface available when you need to fix a
> hosed Oracle installation....The command line will be there..( unless the OS is gone)
>
> It is a tool to assist and most tasks ( but not all, especially if the database has crashed and needs detailed and specific
> recovery techniques ) can be accomplished thru a GUI,but ONLY knowing the GUI is a problem....
>
> Know all you can...Too much knowledge is an oxymoron....
>
> ----== Posted via Newsfeed.Com - Unlimited-Uncensored-Secure Usenet News==----
> http://www.newsfeed.com The #1 Newsgroup Service in the World! >100,000 Newsgroups
> ---= 19 East/West-Coast Specialized Servers - Total Privacy via Encryption =---
>

That was one of the nicest flames I've ever received!

And yes, you are right ... the GUI is not always available. But way back
in ancient history I faced the same problem when I made a bunch of
command aliases in VMS (if you've ever heard of that o/s). Whenever I
walked over to another user's desk (mostly non-GUI terminals then) and
tried to help them, I lost contact with all my carefully designed
aliases. So even in a command-line only mode, you can set yourself up
for frustration when you step outside your own environment.

And of course, you gave the solution to GUI and non-GUI arguments ...
know both.

Karsten Farrell

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Apr 29, 2003, 12:13:41 PM4/29/03
to
forb...@telusplanet.net said...

> My experience, unfortunately, is that management tends to assume GUI based product needs less skill set so they can
> save big piles of money by understaffing and underskilling the positions. That is my primary gripe.
>
> The other gripe I have against GUI is that, by it's very nature, the GUI leads you through a specific thought process
> and that process is provided by the GUI developer, not the user (and certainly not the user's exerience) so we have to
> pray that the tool designer has better experience and good reasons for the design. Witness the differences in PC-based
> accounting packages ... accounting engines are all basically the same (how many variations in accounting are really
> allowed???) but different users swear by this or that entirely package on the GUI and some users simply can not switch
> GUIs.
>
Thanks for the kind words ... that I snipped out. :)

On your primary gripe, I'm not sure that the current tight financial
environment can be blamed on GUIs. My experience is that management
usually has no clue what the technical people actually do ... whether
they use a GUI or the command-line. I have had bosses who stand over my
shoulder when I work ... but thankfully not often. The others never see
how I accomplish my assigned tasks.

As for your second statement (gripe), I have to agree. Many times using
a GUI will only get you so far ... and you have to switch over to non-
GUI mode to complete a task. However, I also find that's true no matter
what tool I use ... and also in other fields (like when you buy a car
with "standard" features, but you wish the designer would have added
your favorite feature).

Personally, I like the "Create like" command in OEM ... and the
"spreadsheet" result set in Toad, compared to the Solaris command-line
sqlplus for a table with lots of columns.

Karsten Farrell

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 12:27:32 PM4/29/03
to
Comments embedded...

joel-...@home.com said...


> The problem is, management too often does not want to pay for
> experience if they don't have to, and the GUI's allow them not to - to
> a point. So you wind up with unemployed or underemployed experienced
> people, and places that don't have experienced people when they need
> them for a brief fix.

<snip>
I think the current desire on the part of management to pay less for
employees is only marginally based on the fact that GUIs exist. Yes, I
know a number of DBAs who can't find a job because they're
"overqualified." And most of them don't use a GUI.

I've mentioned before that the company where I work hired me, in part,
because they got my experience very cheaply (I work for a lot less than
others with less experience will accept). I do sometimes use a GUI. Is
there a lesson in there?

> >
> > And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> > the time. If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
> > there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.
>
> But it requires experience to know the limits. When crunch time comes
> and help becomes hindrance...
>
> Ever see grants and privileges get propagated so that everyone has
> everything?

Oh, absolutely! Give everybody DBA privileges and the DBA can go on
vacation. :) But again, is this caused by a GUI or a lazy DBA?

>
> >
> > This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.
>
> There's gotta be a "real old men" joke in there somewhere! :-)

Even if there isn't, I laughed.

> jg
> --

Karsten Farrell

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 12:44:53 PM4/29/03
to
Now this is more like it ... a real flame!

wizo...@yahoo.com.au said...


> Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...
>
> > I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here.
>
> You definitely are...

Yeah, and my hearing is getting worse ... and I need my bifocals to read
this. Of course, I have to use the large icons on the toolbar of my
newsreader.

>
> > Why are GUI users
> > equated with unskilled, rank amateurs?
>
>
> Who said they were?

Well, I kinda got the feeling that everyone was.

> > Why is something that makes my
> > job easier a bad thing?
>
> Who said it made your job easier? Ah, the vendor
> of the GUI tool... Of course!

Actually, yes. As a matter of fact, they did say that in the ads. But
you know what? I agree with them.

<snipped rest of the comments about the vendor telling me so>

> > And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> > the time.
>
> Prove it. Or are you trying to tell me that
> an "alter tablespace add datafile" runs faster
> if it is started by a GUI?

Uh, no, I'm not trying to tell you that. The command, once it reaches
Oracle, doesn't run any faster or slower based on what tool I used on
the client side. But a GUI tool does help me - admittedly, only
sometimes - diagnose a problem quicker or see what needs to be fixed
more easily.

Just a couple of examples -- there's the nice graphic in OEM that shows
the percent of tablespaces used (much easier to get a quick overview
than looking at the actual numbers in a command-line query against the
data dictionary). There are all those graphs in the OEM Performance Pack
that give, in my opinion, a clearer picture of the "health" of various
portions of the database.

But there are times when the GUI gets in my way. I never use the Net8
Assistant. Much quicker for me to jump into tnsnames.ora with vi and
copy/paste. And I don't know how anyone ever used the Oracle Terminal
GUI to setup vt220 character-mode terminal emulators.

>
> > This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.
>
> Oh, I've been in touch with my feminine side for
> a looooong time! :)

Cool!

>
> Cheers
> Nuno Souto
> wizo...@yahoo.com.au.nospam

Hans Forbrich

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 1:05:58 PM4/29/03
to
Karsten Farrell wrote:

> On your primary gripe, I'm not sure that the current tight financial
> environment can be blamed on GUIs. My experience is that management
> usually has no clue what the technical people actually do ... whether
> they use a GUI or the command-line. I have had bosses who stand over my
> shoulder when I work ... but thankfully not often. The others never see
> how I accomplish my assigned tasks.

Has little or nothing to do with the financial environment. Has everything to do with the approach used by vendors to "get
to management and convince them why it is important to buy xyz". The general pitch used by anyone in the GUI world is 'ease
of use', quickly followed by 'more productive', 'reduced cost', 'lower training' and 'fewer skills'.

So I should really revise my primary gripe from blaming it on "management assumption that GUI product saves money" to
"management gullability in believing the vendors assumptions that GUI product saves money" <g>

Once the decision has been made, the techies have to live with it or go away. I have yet to see a situation where a
technical person, using technical arguments, can overturn a management decision that is based on money. A technical person's
only hope is to use money arguments grounded in, but not using, technical aspects.

And other than an emergency restore/recovery/restart situation, my experience is that management tends to stay away. (In
that situation they hover, which increases nervousness and likelyhood of failure - when will they ever learn?>


Hans Forbrich

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 1:31:58 PM4/29/03
to
Karsten Farrell wrote:

> Now this is more like it ... a real flame!

(Hey, if you're looking for a flame war, I'll try to help. I'm not very good at it though.)

> wizo...@yahoo.com.au said...
> > Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...
> >
> > > I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here.
> >
> > You definitely are...
>
> Yeah, and my hearing is getting worse ... and I need my bifocals to read
> this. Of course, I have to use the large icons on the toolbar of my
> newsreader.

They do make larger monitors these days. (I try not to wear my bifocals too often. <g>)

> >
> > > Why are GUI users
> > > equated with unskilled, rank amateurs?
> >
> >
> > Who said they were?
>
> Well, I kinda got the feeling that everyone was.

There are 10 kinds of GUI users in the world*. Those that understand what they are doing, and those that use the
blind-folded point and click under the assumption that the GUI developer is smart.

> > > Why is something that makes my
> > > job easier a bad thing?
> >
> > Who said it made your job easier? Ah, the vendor
> > of the GUI tool... Of course!
>
> Actually, yes. As a matter of fact, they did say that in the ads. But
> you know what? I agree with them.

At least one company has made a great deal of $ convincing people that GUI is easier ...... and therefore cheaper,
requires less training and requires less skill.

I can certainly understand that GUI >>can be<< easier (except on the wrist). The rest, however is not automatic no matter
how many idiots believe it so.

In general it is MUCH more expensive in the additional resources required - every stopped to look at the percent CPU
wasted in supporting graphics mode? In the less disciplined, it also supports the development of very sloppy habits.

> <snipped rest of the comments about the vendor telling me so>
>
> > > And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> > > the time.
> >
> > Prove it. Or are you trying to tell me that
> > an "alter tablespace add datafile" runs faster
> > if it is started by a GUI?
>
> Uh, no, I'm not trying to tell you that. The command, once it reaches
> Oracle, doesn't run any faster or slower based on what tool I used on
> the client side. But a GUI tool does help me - admittedly, only
> sometimes - diagnose a problem quicker or see what needs to be fixed
> more easily.
>
> Just a couple of examples -- there's the nice graphic in OEM that shows
> the percent of tablespaces used (much easier to get a quick overview
> than looking at the actual numbers in a command-line query against the
> data dictionary). There are all those graphs in the OEM Performance Pack
> that give, in my opinion, a clearer picture of the "health" of various
> portions of the database.
>
> But there are times when the GUI gets in my way. I never use the Net8
> Assistant. Much quicker for me to jump into tnsnames.ora with vi and
> copy/paste. And I don't know how anyone ever used the Oracle Terminal
> GUI to setup vt220 character-mode terminal emulators.

A GUI is a visual tool and as such comes with all the benefits and limitations of visual perception. Video compression is
much easier than audio compression - since there is visual retention, you only need to keep the change from the previous
frame. Same thing here, a glance will tell when something deviates from standard visual memory.

I contend: GUIs are great for monitoring - anyone who uses command line for monitoring is missing something. GUIs are
lousy for implementing, unless the user is a semi-trained monkey.

> >
> > > This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.
> >

"Real men know their tools and use the right one at the right time."

>
> > Oh, I've been in touch with my feminine side for
> > a looooong time! :)

> Cool!

/Hans
(to take a line from you Karsten: DBA > architect > retired > consultant)

*There are 10 kinds of people in the world -those that understand binary and those that don't.


Karsten Farrell

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 2:02:32 PM4/29/03
to
forb...@telusplanet.net said...

> /Hans
> (to take a line from you Karsten: DBA > architect > retired > consultant)
>
> *There are 10 kinds of people in the world -those that understand binary and those that don't.
>
LOL. Both of these comments are great!

Glen A Stromquist

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 3:20:43 PM4/29/03
to
Karsten Farrell wrote:
> forb...@telusplanet.net said...
>
>>/Hans
>>(to take a line from you Karsten: DBA > architect > retired > consultant)
>>
>>*There are 10 kinds of people in the world -those that understand binary and those that don't.
>>
>
> LOL. Both of these comments are great!

Just my .02 as a fairly "new" DBA - I do believe that GUI's definatly
make some things faster/easier, checking and adding or increasing
datafile (size) for one. For myself I have always utilized both the
command line interface and whatever GUI's are available for whatever I'm
doing, some things are just plain faster thru a command - period.
Personally I prefer to look at my tablespace usage thru OEM rather than
a sql command or script, but I usually have both at hand, especially
since my semi-rural home is relegated to dial up and a 28.8 connection,
working from the SQL> prompt is a must.

Whatever I do within OEM while I'm at work, I usually show the SQL it
will be running and paste or preferably type it in to a SQL window just
so it stays in my mind. I can definatly see big problems if a DBA used
nothing but a GUI (and could quite possibly get away with this for quite
some time) and be totally lost the first time he/she had to add or
increase the size of a datafile manually to get a database running
again. I've seen (windows) network admins totally lost at a command
prompt if they had to do anything more complex than copy a few files.

As for the original poster, yes IMO I think it has the potential to
lower the average DBA salary, as *most* management usually seldom does
see past the eye-candy and if they think that a database can be made
easy enough to maintain thru GUI's then just tack the workload on to one
or more of the network admins, not to mention that the preferred
solution these days if things are to slow is just to throw more
processor power / memory at it.

cheers!


Frank

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 4:53:34 PM4/29/03
to
Peter wrote:

>
> Is MS Windows taking over Linux and Unix? People say MS Windows will
> continue to do better and better technologically, overtaking Unix,
> therefore graphical interface will be more important.
>

Bill Gates:

"If you can't get it to work properly, at least
make it look good".

"The internet is a hype. Windows will not have internet access"

"640kB is not a barrier, as there will never be any program
requiring more memory than 640kB"


--
Regards, Frank van Bortel

Frank

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 5:04:47 PM4/29/03
to
Hans Forbrich wrote:
> Karsten Farrell wrote:
>
>
>>Now this is more like it ... a real flame!
>
>
> (Hey, if you're looking for a flame war, I'll try to help. I'm not very good at it though.)
>
>
>>wizo...@yahoo.com.au said...
>>
>>>Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...
>>>
>>>
>>>>I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here.
>>>
>>>You definitely are...
>>
>>Yeah, and my hearing is getting worse ... and I need my bifocals to read
>>this. Of course, I have to use the large icons on the toolbar of my
>>newsreader.
>
>
> They do make larger monitors these days. (I try not to wear my bifocals too often. <g>)
>
>
>>>>Why are GUI users
>>>>equated with unskilled, rank amateurs?
>>>
>>>
>>>Who said they were?
>>
>>Well, I kinda got the feeling that everyone was.
>
>
> There are 10 kinds of GUI users in the world*. Those that understand what they are doing, and those that use the
> blind-folded point and click under the assumption that the GUI developer is smart.
>
>

Wizards! How about Wizards? They really make life easier.
And a monkey can operate them. We all know monkeys are
cheaper than DBA's (Dik Bil Apen, dutch for Fat Ass Monkeys),
now that the mercury project is halted.
Just like pre-server-error triggers; just working out an example
where the error is actually fixed before it happens.

If only I could find a way to call the Tuning Wizard before
performance drops...
Anyone knows if there's a pre-performance-drop trigger in 10i?

<snip>

Niall Litchfield

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 5:06:57 PM4/29/03
to
"Frank" <fvanb...@netscape.net> wrote in message
news:3EAEE64E...@netscape.net...

> Peter wrote:
>
> >
> > Is MS Windows taking over Linux and Unix? People say MS Windows will
> > continue to do better and better technologically, overtaking Unix,
> > therefore graphical interface will be more important.
> >
> Bill Gates:
>
> "If you can't get it to work properly, at least
> make it look good".

Never said.


>
> "The internet is a hype. Windows will not have internet access"

Never said

> "640kB is not a barrier, as there will never be any program
> requiring more memory than 640kB"

Very common quote or variations therof - no-one can quite pin down where or
when it was said.

There are plenty of arguments for *nix over windows, those based on untruths
seem to me unhelpful.


--
Niall Litchfield
Oracle DBA
Audit Commission UK

*****************************************
Please include version and platform
and SQL where applicable
It makes life easier and increases the
likelihood of a good answer
******************************************


Frank

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 5:19:12 PM4/29/03
to

Should have left out the quotes; I don't know him personally,
so actually cannot quote - sorry for that.

Peter

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 5:36:48 PM4/29/03
to
On Tue, 29 Apr 2003 23:19:12 +0200, Frank <fvanb...@netscape.net>
wrote:


He said Windows is better than Unix. Did he ever say that?

Hans Forbrich

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 8:30:57 PM4/29/03
to
Peter wrote:

> Is MS Windows taking over Linux and Unix? People say MS Windows will
> continue to do better and better technologically, overtaking Unix,
> therefore graphical interface will be more important.

I run several machines -
- Windows: 95, 98SE, NT4 and 2000Pro,
- Unix: Solaris 8,
- Linux: SuSE 8.2 and SLES 8

Considering I have the same number of blue screens on each Windows machine as
well as DLL issues, I have to admit I see no technological advances at all in
any Windows platform upgrades, never mind going against *nix. The lipstick
on the pig is getting glossier, though!

I also happen to feel the KDE 3.1 is superior to Windows GUI >>for my
purposes<<

Hans Forbrich

unread,
Apr 29, 2003, 8:40:54 PM4/29/03
to
Frank wrote:

> > There are 10 kinds of GUI users in the world*. Those that understand what they are doing, and those that use the
> > blind-folded point and click under the assumption that the GUI developer is smart.
> >
> >
>
> Wizards! How about Wizards? They really make life easier.
> And a monkey can operate them. We all know monkeys are
> cheaper than DBA's (Dik Bil Apen, dutch for Fat Ass Monkeys),
> now that the mercury project is halted.
> Just like pre-server-error triggers; just working out an example
> where the error is actually fixed before it happens.
>

Wizards! Yes, I see them in a card game. I think in a standard deck they are called 'Joker'.

Wizards are very, very useful for getting people to do exactly what the designer intrended to have happen. (Sadly the
designer's intention need not coincide with the user's need, but that's a fish of a different colour. At the least the
result meets design intent.)

>
> If only I could find a way to call the Tuning Wizard before
> performance drops...
> Anyone knows if there's a pre-performance-drop trigger in 10i?

Now there's a GREAT idea. Let's see what other triggers we could use:

- issue-disk-P.O.-before-space-runs-out
- pre-apply-patch-autotest
- pre-execute-query-rewrite-to-match-users-needs
- pre-9th-instance-on-512M-machine-vendor-call

and of course

- bob-the-CPU-hog-just-signed-on--time-to-offhook-the-phone
(oooops - more than 30 char)

ideas?

Noons

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 1:48:30 AM4/30/03
to
Following up on Karsten Farrell, 30 Apr 2003:

>
> Yeah, and my hearing is getting worse ... and I need my bifocals to read
> this. Of course, I have to use the large icons on the toolbar of my
> newsreader.


and you want a GUI?????
:D

>
> Well, I kinda got the feeling that everyone was.


Nope. What was said is that GUI DBA tools do NOT
necessarily help people be more productive. That
is completely different from saying users of said
tools are lesser beings, no?


> Actually, yes. As a matter of fact, they did say that in the ads. But
> you know what? I agree with them.

Why?


> Uh, no, I'm not trying to tell you that. The command, once it reaches
> Oracle, doesn't run any faster or slower based on what tool I used on
> the client side. But a GUI tool does help me - admittedly, only
> sometimes - diagnose a problem quicker or see what needs to be fixed
> more easily.

"sometimes" is the word. Ergo, it's far from essential
and anyone sustaining that it is essential
is trying to snow me.


>
> Just a couple of examples -- there's the nice graphic in OEM that shows
> the percent of tablespaces used (much easier to get a quick overview
> than looking at the actual numbers in a command-line query against the
> data dictionary).


I'm not interested in "overviews" when I'm managing space.
It either tells me the RATE OF CHANGE and if it is exceeding
what my capacity is or it is useless and just a gimmick
to give me a "warm pants feeling" that my "monitor" looks
good...

> There are all those graphs in the OEM Performance Pack
> that give, in my opinion, a clearer picture of the "health" of various
> portions of the database.
>

No they don't. They are as confusing and mixed up and
just plain inneffective as they can get. They are a
throwback to the bad days of "ratios". Totally useless
for anything nowadays.


> Assistant. Much quicker for me to jump into tnsnames.ora with vi and
> copy/paste.


Quite frankly, the Net Assistant is one that I use
ALL the time! The syntax and inter-version differences
of tnsnames.ora are complex enough that I'd prefer to
have a tool that does all that rubbish for me.


> And I don't know how anyone ever used the Oracle Terminal
> GUI to setup vt220 character-mode terminal emulators.
>


I can't talk about the GUI, but the original oraterm
product was quite easy to use (character mode) and
it worked quite well. Of course, it helped if someone
setting up a VT220 actually KNEW what the codes were.
But that was a given back when VT220s were relevant.


--
Cheers
Nuno Souto
wizo...@yahoo.com.au.nospam

Niall Litchfield

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 3:53:39 AM4/30/03
to
"Peter" <pe...@nomorenewsspammin.ca> wrote in message
news:44stavceo2pbi7esb...@4ax.com...

>
> He said Windows is better than Unix. Did he ever say that?

I suspect that he may have claimed, and MS certainly has, that Windows is to
be preferred to Unix for a number of reasons. I doubt that many of the
arguments will be technical though, but to do with business cases.

Guido Konsolke

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 5:46:25 AM4/30/03
to
"Hans Forbrich" <forb...@telusplanet.net> schrieb im Newsbeitrag
news:3EAF1A73...@telusplanet.net...
(snipped from start to here)

> > Anyone knows if there's a pre-performance-drop trigger in 10i?
>
> Now there's a GREAT idea. Let's see what other triggers we could use:
>
> - issue-disk-P.O.-before-space-runs-out
> - pre-apply-patch-autotest
> - pre-execute-query-rewrite-to-match-users-needs
> - pre-9th-instance-on-512M-machine-vendor-call
>
> and of course
>
> - bob-the-CPU-hog-just-signed-on--time-to-offhook-the-phone
> (oooops - more than 30 char)
>
> ideas?
>
Hi Hans,

certainly ;-):
immediate-rollback-after-commit
and for Client-Server-Forms: when-nothing-happens

Greetings,
Guido


Niall Litchfield

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 6:26:01 AM4/30/03
to
"Guido Konsolke" <Guido.K...@triaton.com> wrote in message
news:10516956...@news.thyssen.com...

> Hi Hans,
>
> certainly ;-):
> immediate-rollback-after-commit

Its in 9i and called Flashback query :(

> and for Client-Server-Forms: when-nothing-happens
LOL

Joel Garry

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 6:39:18 PM4/30/03
to
"Niall Litchfield" <n-litc...@audit-commission.gov.uk> wrote in message news:<3eaf8105$0$4860$ed9e...@reading.news.pipex.net>...

> "Peter" <pe...@nomorenewsspammin.ca> wrote in message
> news:44stavceo2pbi7esb...@4ax.com...
> >
> > He said Windows is better than Unix. Did he ever say that?
>
> I suspect that he may have claimed, and MS certainly has, that Windows is to
> be preferred to Unix for a number of reasons. I doubt that many of the
> arguments will be technical though, but to do with business cases.

It may be embarrassing to unix advocates, but bg did used to own Xenix
( a pc unixalike from years ago). He may well have been ahead of the
curve. And of course there are those who think certain DOS was
unix-derived (something I find both insulting and perhaps true).

As for the "Windows is better than Unix," search slashdot for stuff
like Steve Ballmer saying linux is the greatest threat.
http://slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=01/01/10/1947202&mode=thread

The 640K stuff: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/15180#fn*

jg
--
@home.com is bogus.

"Running around robbing banks all wacked on the Scooby Snacks." - Fun
Lovin' Criminals.

Joel Garry

unread,
Apr 30, 2003, 7:19:02 PM4/30/03
to
Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191847d0a...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...

> Comments embedded...
>
> joel-...@home.com said...
> > The problem is, management too often does not want to pay for
> > experience if they don't have to, and the GUI's allow them not to - to
> > a point. So you wind up with unemployed or underemployed experienced
> > people, and places that don't have experienced people when they need
> > them for a brief fix.
> <snip>
> I think the current desire on the part of management to pay less for
> employees is only marginally based on the fact that GUIs exist. Yes, I
> know a number of DBAs who can't find a job because they're
> "overqualified." And most of them don't use a GUI.

I again disagree - poor managers hire those most like themselves, so
they understand fiddling with a PC more than performing DBA tasks.



>
> I've mentioned before that the company where I work hired me, in part,
> because they got my experience very cheaply (I work for a lot less than
> others with less experience will accept). I do sometimes use a GUI. Is
> there a lesson in there?

Perhaps because my experience only ranges from 20-something to
40-something, but I've found companies are much happier with me when
they pay more money to do the same thing as other companies paid less
for. I can only interpret this as them having to emotionally justify
the higher cost to themselves. Sorta like women will judge guys more
attractive if they are with prettier women. I would guess you pulled
it off like Mercedes salesmen say even rich guys like getting a good
deal. Have you seen the GUI's in Mercedes? Yechh. At least it's not
as bad as BMW iDrive. The lesson is don't get stuck with a bad GUI,
even if it is part of a good deal.

>
> > >
> > > And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> > > the time. If there's a GUI tool that helps me do my job, I use it. If
> > > there isn't a GUI tool available, then I do it the old-fashioned way.
> >
> > But it requires experience to know the limits. When crunch time comes
> > and help becomes hindrance...
> >
> > Ever see grants and privileges get propagated so that everyone has
> > everything?
> Oh, absolutely! Give everybody DBA privileges and the DBA can go on
> vacation. :) But again, is this caused by a GUI or a lazy DBA?

Think about what it requires to propagate them via command lines viz.
a GUI. The point I was trying to make is that the GUI makes wrong
things too easy as well as right things. So you have the increased
productivity, as the vendors say :-) and things spiral out of control
because more wrong things are done than right. With no audit trail or
logs, of course.

Of course, it can happen in a non-GUI enviroment, but that is more
often because there is no DBA rather than a lazy one (or maybe that's
just my skewed experience - I have very little experience going into a
well-run [from a DBA viewpoint] shop, and am not sure I would do well
if I did!). And of course, some of the best programmers and DBA's are
"lazy workaholics" - stay up all night to optimize some bit of code to
save work!

>
> >
> > >
> > > This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.
> >
> > There's gotta be a "real old men" joke in there somewhere! :-)
> Even if there isn't, I laughed.

Then I've done my job!

>
> > jg
> > --

jg
--
@home.com is bogus.

http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/uniontrib/wed/business/news_1b30spam.html

Niall Litchfield

unread,
May 2, 2003, 3:35:06 PM5/2/03
to
"Joel Garry" <joel-...@home.com> wrote in message
news:91884734.03043...@posting.google.com...

> And of course, some of the best programmers and DBA's are
> "lazy workaholics" - stay up all night to optimize some bit of code to
> save work!

Hey - I resemble that remark.

Though you missed the bit where I find a neater version on asktom.....

Followed by the bit where I realize I didn't need the code anyway...

And the bit where I realize there was some actual work to be done.

ho hum.


--
Niall Litchfield
Oracle DBA
Audit Commission UK

Joel Garry

unread,
May 2, 2003, 7:56:02 PM5/2/03
to
Hans Forbrich <forb...@telusplanet.net> wrote in message news:<3EAEB5E3...@telusplanet.net>...

> Karsten Farrell wrote:
>
> > Now this is more like it ... a real flame!
>
> (Hey, if you're looking for a flame war, I'll try to help. I'm not very good at it though.)

Just think of it as severe uncompression of repressed uncivility.

>
> > wizo...@yahoo.com.au said...
> > > Karsten Farrell <kfar...@belgariad.com> wrote in message news:<MPG.191701b35...@news.la.sbcglobal.net>...
> > >
> > > > I'm sorry, but I must be missing something here.
> > >
> > > You definitely are...
> >
> > Yeah, and my hearing is getting worse ... and I need my bifocals to read
> > this. Of course, I have to use the large icons on the toolbar of my
> > newsreader.
>
> They do make larger monitors these days. (I try not to wear my bifocals too often. <g>)

I've had these lineless trifocals the last couple of years, and am
deciding they suck. I had the opportunity to get specific computer
glasses and blew it. The problem with the trifocals is they are too
narrow in the reading part, so I'm always having to move my head to
get a particular part of the screen in focus, bad enough for a command
line or hardcopy, but killer looking over a whole screen. I must look
like a confused parrot. And I'm always getting eyeball-burned by
stupid java-enabled web pages that do screwy things if the monitor and
settings aren't set to jam as much smallness as possible onto the real
estate. Come on "webmasters," learn how to make your pages fit in
arbitrary panels (you too, Google!)! Not to mention hard-coded or
hard-graphed literals that wind up in the wrong places. Harumph!

And of course, the larger the monitor, the worse the resolution. Well
at least I haven't had a old blurry vaxstation in a while (knock on
plastic...).

>
> > >
> > > > Why are GUI users
> > > > equated with unskilled, rank amateurs?
> > >
> > >
> > > Who said they were?
> >
> > Well, I kinda got the feeling that everyone was.
>
> There are 10 kinds of GUI users in the world*. Those that understand what they are doing, and those that use the
> blind-folded point and click under the assumption that the GUI developer is smart.

LOL

>
> > > > Why is something that makes my
> > > > job easier a bad thing?
> > >
> > > Who said it made your job easier? Ah, the vendor
> > > of the GUI tool... Of course!
> >
> > Actually, yes. As a matter of fact, they did say that in the ads. But
> > you know what? I agree with them.
>
> At least one company has made a great deal of $ convincing people that GUI is easier ...... and therefore cheaper,
> requires less training and requires less skill.
>
> I can certainly understand that GUI >>can be<< easier (except on the wrist). The rest, however is not automatic no matter
> how many idiots believe it so.

I'd like to see someone like the Gartner group quantify the $. Not
likely.

>
> In general it is MUCH more expensive in the additional resources required - every stopped to look at the percent CPU

I'm not sure this is a good argument given the distributability of the
presentation layer. Of course, I use my pc mostly with a bunch of
X-windows running vt emulation :-) and oem sometimes and a vendors
thin-client and a browser... And of course whatever stupid office
software my customers use, which is the only reason why I'm on a PC in
the first place.

> wasted in supporting graphics mode? In the less disciplined, it also supports the development of very sloppy habits.

That is very true, of course. But hey, if no one needs a DBA
anymore... :-)

>
> > <snipped rest of the comments about the vendor telling me so>
> >
> > > > And in many cases, using a GUI does allow a DBA to do some tasks in half
> > > > the time.
> > >
> > > Prove it. Or are you trying to tell me that
> > > an "alter tablespace add datafile" runs faster
> > > if it is started by a GUI?
> >
> > Uh, no, I'm not trying to tell you that. The command, once it reaches
> > Oracle, doesn't run any faster or slower based on what tool I used on
> > the client side. But a GUI tool does help me - admittedly, only
> > sometimes - diagnose a problem quicker or see what needs to be fixed
> > more easily.
> >
> > Just a couple of examples -- there's the nice graphic in OEM that shows
> > the percent of tablespaces used (much easier to get a quick overview
> > than looking at the actual numbers in a command-line query against the
> > data dictionary). There are all those graphs in the OEM Performance Pack
> > that give, in my opinion, a clearer picture of the "health" of various
> > portions of the database.
> >
> > But there are times when the GUI gets in my way. I never use the Net8
> > Assistant. Much quicker for me to jump into tnsnames.ora with vi and
> > copy/paste. And I don't know how anyone ever used the Oracle Terminal
> > GUI to setup vt220 character-mode terminal emulators.
>
> A GUI is a visual tool and as such comes with all the benefits and limitations of visual perception. Video compression is
> much easier than audio compression - since there is visual retention, you only need to keep the change from the previous
> frame. Same thing here, a glance will tell when something deviates from standard visual memory.

While I certainly agree with the last sentence (for example, I think
being able to see a Big Brother screen change color from across the
room is the koolest thing in the world), I think there just hasn't
been enough done in the audio display world... I was going to post a
link to some cool thing that makes chirping noises so you can hear
when everything is ok, but couldn't find it right away, oh well...

>
> I contend: GUIs are great for monitoring - anyone who uses command line for monitoring is missing something. GUIs are
> lousy for implementing, unless the user is a semi-trained monkey.
>
> > >
> > > > This idea that "real men don't use GUIs" is an old myth.
> > >
>
> "Real men know their tools and use the right one at the right time."

"Anyone can fix things with the right tools. It takes a REAL MECHANIC
to fix things without the right tools." - My dad.

>
> >
> > > Oh, I've been in touch with my feminine side for
> > > a looooong time! :)
>
> > Cool!

Down under where? http://www.songfacts.com/detail.lasso?id=721

>
> /Hans
> (to take a line from you Karsten: DBA > architect > retired > consultant)
>
> *There are 10 kinds of people in the world -those that understand binary and those that don't.

The company that prints my checks offers a hex check - secret messages
in hex for geeks on the checks!

jg
--
@home.com is bogus.

"They beat the rhythm with their bones." - Soundgarden

Galen Boyer

unread,
May 2, 2003, 9:07:18 PM5/2/03
to
On Mon, 28 Apr 2003, kfar...@belgariad.com wrote:

> Using the command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who
> doesn't.

No, it doesn't. I think the thing people notice with the command line
is that they can query everything Oracle will expose to them. With a
gui, they are relegated to that which the GUI provides.

But, the more important distinction is that there are outside tools that
allow one to be extremely productive with a command-line that can never
be duplicated in a GUI, like, scripting. Once you start doing your work
by utilizing multiple tools to do it, instead of the one-stop shopping
of GUI you sort of never go back...

I try them both and what I find is that I'll use a GUI for a bit and
find what I like that I didn't have before and then run over to sqlplus
and write the script that gives me the same answer.

--
Galen deForest Boyer
Sweet dreams and flying machines in pieces on the ground.

Joel Garry

unread,
May 5, 2003, 8:48:26 PM5/5/03
to
Galen Boyer <galen...@hotpop.com> wrote in message news:<u3cjwe...@hotpop.com>...

> On Mon, 28 Apr 2003, kfar...@belgariad.com wrote:
>
> > Using the command line doesn't make a DBA _more_ skilled than one who
> > doesn't.
>
> No, it doesn't. I think the thing people notice with the command line
> is that they can query everything Oracle will expose to them. With a
> gui, they are relegated to that which the GUI provides.
>
> But, the more important distinction is that there are outside tools that
> allow one to be extremely productive with a command-line that can never
> be duplicated in a GUI, like, scripting. Once you start doing your work
> by utilizing multiple tools to do it, instead of the one-stop shopping
> of GUI you sort of never go back...

What really drives me nuts about GUI's is there is no reason they
should be mutually exclusive with command lines and scripts - even OEM
has "SHOW SQL" tabs. The fact that they appear to be is bad GUI
design. I seem to recall some of the products do simply run scripts,
which can be observed and changed. But I guess ever since .inp files
went away... :-)

>
> I try them both and what I find is that I'll use a GUI for a bit and
> find what I like that I didn't have before and then run over to sqlplus
> and write the script that gives me the same answer.

LOL! Done that too. Still like some of the pretty pictures though.

jg
--
@home.com is bogus.

Engage!

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