After a very relaxed day I followed the others virtually on their travel to Dubai. All but Osama were too tired to go out and opted for a quit night and early sleep. So after a quick run that left my soaked in sweat I met Osama for some catching up since I have not seen him since UKOUG Tech 13 back in december.
Dubai is a very exciting destination. Two million people from all over the world are living in a rather compact space that has erupted from the desert in the past few decades. It has become the business hub of the golf region with many major banks and services companies occupying a stunning set of skyscrapers, all of which are overshadowed by the majestic Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest building at 830 meters.
The event location was chosen wisely by Vishnu Vinnakota of prosec in the sizzling marina district at a very nice hotel which featured the largest projector screen I have had the honor of presenting on. There were no complaints of a too small font for some of the code examples this time.
We started with the proven Exadata performance expert panel which we have done at most of the stops before and all that practice made perfect, we even spiced things up a bit by letting someone else present “their” slides.
Mike talked about IO performance and started with a review of how physical disc drives work and why they are limited to a maximum of 200-300 IOPS each. He then showed how this number can be increased by using RAID technology, compared this to modern flash based devices and showed ways how to benchmark and monitor the IO system. Great basic content that should be known by all DBAs.
After a lunch that had me go for seconds three times, I was scheduled to talk about flashback data archives. But I also had requests from the attendees to talk about SQL plan management and 12c new features. All three are full 45 to 60 minute presentations but I managed to get to the gist of each of them in about 15 minutes and was able to deliver all three topics.
Osama discussed high availability options for fusion middleware from self-written scripts to full blown cluster and provided many tricks to manage those things in the stack above the database that we dbas so often neglect and forget about.
I was excited to meet fellow ACE Director Joel Perez for the first time and he did not disappoint when he presented about how to upgrade from 11g single instance to 12c RAC with minimal downtime. In addition to this specific project there was also a lot of information about backup, restore and replication.
The final words once again belonged to Jim who wrapped it up in style while the rest of us once again admired his eloquence in speaking and presenting. Unfortunately, he had to cut his presentation short because we (the others) overran a bit on time which is a shame because I was very much looking forward to his examples on histograms. I saw him prepare the slides on the plane to Cairo and thought it was quite hilarious. I guess this will now premiere with another audience at another conference (and I will not give away what it is).
Overall, the tour was a huge success, especially given the fact that this was the first of its kind and these were all the first time we had done anything in these cities and did not really know what to expect. A big thank you to Tariq and Syed who masterminded this tour, the local event organizers who did their very best to provide the forum for us to present and reach out to the local users and of course to the Oracle Technology Network and ACE program for being the sponsor and enabling us do to this.
I very much hope that we can establish the tour as a solid event in the region and keep improving it year by year. I know that I and all of the other speakers would be proud and more than happy to be back again.