Oracle question bank

Oracle Concepts and Architecture Database Structures.

1. What are the components of Physical database structure of Oracle Database?.

ORACLE database is comprised of three types of files. One or more Data files, two are more Redo Log files, and one or more Control files.

2. What are the components of Logical database structure of ORACLE database?

Tablespaces and the Database’s Schema Objects.

3. What is a Tablespace?

A database is divided into Logical Storage Unit called tablespaces. A tablespace is used to grouped related logical structures together.

4. What is SYSTEM tablespace and When is it Created?

Every ORACLE database contains a tablespace named SYSTEM, which is automatically created when the database is created. The SYSTEM tablespace always contains the data dictionary tables for the entire database.

5. Explain the relationship among Database, Tablespace and Data file.

Each databases logically divided into one or more tablespaces One or more data files are explicitly created for each tablespace.

6. What is schema?

A schema is collection of database objects of a User.

7. What are Schema Objects ?

Schema objects are the logical structures that directly refer to the database’s data. Schema objects include tables,views,sequences,synonyms, indexes, clusters, database triggers, procedures, functions packages and database links.

8. Can objects of the same Schema reside in different tablespaces.?


9. Can a Tablespace hold objects from different Schemes ?


10. what is Table ?

A table is the basic unit of data storage in an ORACLE database. The tables of a database hold all of the user accessible data. Table data is stored in rows and columns.

11. What is a View ? ( Combination of data by creating views of tables)

A view is a virtual table. Every view has a Query attached to it. (The Query is a SELECT statement that identifies the columns and rows of the table(s) the view uses.)

12. Do View contain Data ?

Views do not contain or store data.

13. Can a View based on another View ?


14. What are the advantages of Views ?

? Provide an additional level of table security, by restricting access to a predetermined set of rows and columns of a table.
? Hide data complexity.
? Simplify commands for the user.
? Present the data in a different perpecetive from that of the base table.
? Store complex queries.

15. What is a Sequence ?

A sequence generates a serial list of unique numbers for numerical columns of a database’s tables.

16. What is a Synonym ?

A synonym is an alias for a table, view,sequence or program unit.

17. What are the type of Synonyms ?

There are two types of Synonyms Private and Public.

18. What is a Private Synonyms ?

A Private Synonyms can be accessed only by the owner.

19. What is a Public Synonyms ?

A Public synonyms can be accessed by any user on the database.

20. What are synonyms used for ?

Synonyms are used to : Mask the real name and owner of an object.
Provide public access to an object
Provide location transparency for tables,views or program units of a remote database.
Simplify the SQL statements for database users.

68. What is Cursor ?

A Cursor is a handle ( a name or pointer) for the memory associated with a specific statement

21. What is an Index ?

An Index is an optional structure associated with a table to have direct access to rows,which can be created to increase the performance of data retrieval. Index can be created on one or more columns of a table.

22. How are Indexes Update ?

Indexes are automatically maintained and used by ORACLE. Changes to table data are automatically incorporated into all relevant indexes.

23. What are Clusters ?

Clusters are groups of one or more tables physically stores together to share common columns and are often used together.

24. What is cluster Key ?

The related columns of the tables in a cluster is called the Cluster Key.

25. What is Index Cluster ?

A Cluster with an index on the Cluster Key.

26. What is Hash Cluster ?

A row is stored in a hash cluster based on the result of applying a hash function to the row’s cluster key value. All rows with the same hash key value are stores together on disk.

27. When can Hash Cluster used ?

Hash clusters are better choice when a table is often queried with equality queries. For such queries the specified cluster key value is hashed. The resulting hash key value points directly to the area on disk that stores the specified rows.

111. What is a Procedure ?

A Procedure consist of a set of SQL and PL/SQL statements that are grouped together as a unit to solve a specific problem or perform a set of related tasks.

112. What is difference between Procedures and Functions ?

A Function returns a value to the caller where as a Procedure does not.

113. What is a Package ?

A Package is a collection of related procedures, functions, variables and other package constructs together as a unit in the database.

114. What are the advantages of having a Package ?

Increased functionality (for example,global package variables can be declared and used by any proecdure in the package) and performance (for example all objects of the package are parsed compiled, and loaded into memory once)

115. What is Database Trigger ?

A Database Trigger is procedure (set of SQL and PL/SQL statements) that is automatically executed as a result of an insert in,update to, or delete from a table.

116. What are the uses of Database Trigger ?

Database triggers can be used to automatic data generation, audit data modifications, enforce complex Integrity constraints, and customize complex security authorizations.

117. What are the differences between Database Trigger and Integrity constraints ?

A declarative integrity constraint is a statement about the database that is always true.
A constraint applies to existing data in the table and any statement that manipulates the table.

A trigger does not apply to data loaded before the definition of the trigger, therefore, it does not guarantee all data in a table conforms to the rules established by an associated trigger.

A trigger can be used to enforce transitional constraints where as a declarative integrity constraint cannot be used.

28. What is Database Link ?

A database link is a named object that describes a “path” from one database to another.

29. What are the types of Database Links ?

Private Database Link, Public Database Link & Network Database Link.

30. What is Private Database Link ?

Private database link is created on behalf of a specific user. A private database link can be used only when the owner of the link specifies a global object name in a SQL statement or in the definition of the owner’s views or procedures.

31. What is Public Database Link ?

Public database link is created for the special user group PUBLIC. A public database link can be used when any user in the associated database specifies a global object name in a SQL statement or object definition.

32. What is Data Block ?

Network database link is created and managed by a network domain service. A network database link can be used when any user of any database in the network specifies a global object name in a SQL statement or object definition.

33. What is Data Block ?

ORACLE database’s data is stored in data blocks. One data block corresponds to a specific number of bytes of physical database space on disk.

34. How to define Data Block size ?

A data block size is specified for each ORACLE database when the database is created. A database users and allocated free database space in ORACLE datablocks. Block size is specified in INIT.ORA file and cann’t be changed latter.

35. What is Row Chaining ?

In Circumstances, all of the data for a row in a table may not be able to fit in the same data block. When this occurs , the data for the row is stored in a chain of data block (one or more) reserved for that segment.

36. What is an Extent ?

An Extent is a specific number of contiguous data blocks, obtained in a single allocation, used to store a specific type of information.

37. What is a Segment ?

A segment is a set of extents allocated for a certain logical structure.

38. What are the different type of Segments ?

Data Segment, Index Segment, Rollback Segment and Temporary Segment.

39. What is a Data Segment ?

Each Non-clustered table has a data segment. All of the table’s data is stored in the extents of its data segment. Each cluster has a data segment. The data of every table in the cluster is stored in the cluster’s data segment.

40. What is an Index Segment ?

Each Index has an Index segment that stores all of its data.

41. What is Rollback Segment ?

A Database contains one or more Rollback Segments to temporarily store “undo” information.

42. What are the uses of Rollback Segment ?

Rollback Segments are used :To generate read-consistent database information during database recovery to rollback uncommitted transactions for users.

43. What is a Temporary Segment ?

Temporary segments are created by ORACLE when a SQL statement needs a temporary work area to complete execution. When the statement finishes execution, the temporary segment extents are released to the system for future use.

44. What is a Data File ?

Every ORACLE database has one or more physical data files. A database’s data files contain all the database data. The data of logical database structures such as tables and indexes is physically stored in the data files allocated for a database.

45. What are the Characteristics of Data Files ?

? A data file can be associated with only one database.
? Once created a data file can’t change size.
? One or more data files form a logical unit of database storage called a tablespace.

46. What is a Redo Log ?

The set of Redo Log files for a database is collectively known as the database’s redo log.

47. What is the function of Redo Log ?

The Primary function of the redo log is to record all changes made to data.

48. What is the use of Redo Log Information ?

The Information in a redo log file is used only to recover the database from a system or media failure the prevents database data from being written to a database’s data files.

49. What does a Control file Contain ?

A Control file records the physical structure of the database. It contains the following information.

? Database Name
? Names and locations of a database’s files and redolog files.
? Time stamp of database creation.

50. What is the use of Control File ?

When an instance of an ORACLE database is started, its control file is used to identify the database and redo log files that must be opened for database operation to proceed. It is also used in database recovery.

51. What is a Data Dictionary ?

The data dictionary of an ORACLE database is a set of tables and views that are used a read-only reference about the database.

It stores information about both the logical and physical structure of the database, the valid users of an ORACLE database, integrity constraints defined for tables in the database and
space allocated for a schema object and how much of it is being used.

52. What is an Integrity Constrains ?

An integrity constraint is a declarative way to define a business rule for a column of a table.

53. Can an Integrity Constraint be enforced on a table if some existing table data does not satisfy the constraint ?


54. Describe the different type of Integrity Constraints supported by ORACLE ?

NOT NULL Constraint – Disallows NULLs in a table’s column.
UNIQUE Constraint – Disallows duplicate values in a column or set of columns.
PRIMARY KEY Constraint – Disallows duplicate values and NULLs in a column or set of columns.
FOREIGN KEY Constrain – Require each value in a column or set of columns match a value in a related table’s UNIQUE or PRIMARY
CHECK Constraint – Disallows values that do not satisfy the logical expression of the

55. What is difference between UNIQUE constraint and PRIMARY KEY constraint ?

A column defined as UNIQUE can contain NULLs while a column defined as
PERIMETER KEY can’t contain Nulls.

56. Describe Referential Integrity ?

A rule defined on a column (or set of columns) in one table that allows the insert or update of a row only if the value for the column or set of columns (the dependent value) matches a value in a column of a related table (the referenced value). It also specifies the type of data
manipulation allowed on referenced data and the action to be performed on dependent data as a result of any action on referenced data.

57. What are the Referential actions supported by FOREIGN KEY integrity
constraint ?

UPDATE and DELETE Restrict – A referential integrity rule that disallows the update or deletion of referenced data.

DELETE Cascade – When a referenced row is deleted all associated dependent rows are deleted.

58. What is self-referential integrity constraint ?

If a foreign key reference a parent key of the same table is called self-referential integrity constraint.

59. What are the Limitations of a CHECK Constraint ?

The condition must be a Boolean expression evaluated using the values in the row being inserted or updated and can’t contain subqueries,sequence,the SYSDATE,UID,USER or USERENV SQL functions, or the pseudocolumns LEVEL or ROWNUM.

60. What is the maximum number of CHECK constraints that can be defined on a column ?

No Limit.


61. What constitute an ORACLE Instance ?

SGA and ORACLE background processes constitute an ORACLE instance. (or)
Combination of memory structure and background process.

62. What is SGA ?

The System Global Area (SGA) is a shared memory region allocated by ORACLE that contains data and control information for one ORACLE instance.

63. What are the components of SGA ?

Database buffers, Redo Log Buffer the Shared Pool and Cursors.

64. What do Database Buffers contain ?

Database buffers store the most recently used blocks of database data. It can also contain modified data that has not yet been permanently written to disk.

65. What do Redo Log Buffers contain ?

Redo Log Buffer stores redo entries a log of changes made to the database.

66. What is Shared Pool ?

Shared Pool is a portion of the SGA that contains shared memory constructs such as shared SQL areas.

67. What is Shared SQL Area ?

A Shared SQL area is required to process every unique SQL statement submitted to a database and contains information such as the parse tree and execution plan for the corresponding statement.

68. What is Cursor ?

A Cursor is a handle ( a name or pointer) for the memory associated with a specific statement.

69. What is PGA ?

Program Global Area (PGA) is a memory buffer that contains data and control information for a server process.

70. What is User Process ?

A user process is created and maintained to execute the software code of an application program. It is a shadow process created automatically to facilitate communication between the user and the server process.

71. What is Server Process ?

Server Process handle requests from connected user process. A server process is in charge of communicating with the user process and interacting with ORACLE carry out requests of the associated user process.

72. What are the two types of Server Configurations ?

Dedicated Server Configuration and Multi-threaded Server Configuration.

73. What is Dedicated Server Configuration ?

In a Dedicated Server Configuration a Server Process handles requests for a Single User Process.

74. What is a Multi-threaded Server Configuration ?

In a Multi-threaded Server Configuration many user process share a group of server process.

75. What is a Parallel Server option in ORACLE ?

A configuration for loosely coupled systems where multiple instance share a single physical database is called Parallel Server.

76. Name the ORACLE Background Process ?

DBWR – Database Writer.
LGWR – Log Writer
CKPT – Check Point
SMON – System Monitor
PMON – Process Monitor
ARCH – Archiver
RECO – Recover
Dnnn – Dispatcher, and
LCKn – Lock
Snnn – Server.

77. What Does DBWR do ?

Database writer modified blocks from the database buffer
cache to the data files.

78.When Does DBWR write to the database ?

DBWR writes when more data needs to be read into the SGA and too few are database
buffers free. The least recently used data is written to the data files first. DBWR also writes
when CheckPoint occurs.

79. What does LGWR do ?

Log Writer (LGWR) writes redo log entries generated in the redo log buffer of the SGA to
on-line Redo Log File.

80. When does LGWR write to the database ?

LGWR writes redo log entries into an on-line redo log file when transactions commit and
the log buffer files.

81. What is the function of checkpoint(CKPT)?

The Checkpoint (CKPT) process is responsible for signaling DBWR at checkpoints and
updating all the data files and control files of the database.

82. What are the functions of SMON ?

System Monitor (SMON) performs instance recovery at instance start-up. In a multiple
instance system (one that uses the Parallel Server), SMON of one instance can also
perform instance recovery for other instance that have failed SMON also cleans up
temporary segments that are no longer in use and recovers dead transactions skipped
during crash and instance recovery because of file-read or off-line errors. These
transactions are eventually recovered by SMON when the tablespace or file is brought
back on-line SMON also coalesces free extents within the database to make free space
contiguous and easier to allocate.

83. What are functions of PMON ?

Process Monitor (PMON) performs process recovery when a user process fails PMON is
responsible for cleaning up the cache and Freeing resources that the process was using
PMON also checks on dispatcher and server processes and restarts them if they have

84. What is the function of ARCH ?

Archiver (ARCH) copies the on-line redo log files to archival storage when they are full.
ARCH is active only when a database’s redo log is used in ARCHIVELOG mode.

85. What is function of RECO ?

RECOver (RECO) is used to resolve distributed transactions that are pending due to a
network or system failure in a distributed database. At timed intervals,the local RECO
attempts to connect to remote databases and automatically complete the commit or rollback
of the local portion of any pending distributed transactions.

86. What is the function of Dispatcher (Dnnn) ?

Dispatcher (Dnnn) process is responsible for routing requests from connected user
processes to available shared server processes and returning the responses back to the
appropriate user processes.

87. How many Dispatcher Processes are created ?

Atleast one Dispatcher process is created for every communication protocol in use.

88. What is the function of Lock (LCKn) Process ?

Lock (LCKn) are used for inter-instance locking when the ORACLE Parallel Server option
is used.

89. What is the maximum number of Lock Processes used ?

Though a single LCK process us sufficient for most Parallel Server systems upto Ten Locks
(LCK0,….LCK9) are used for inter-instance locking.


90. Define Transaction ?

A Transaction is a logical unit of work that comprises one or more SQL statements executed by a single user.

91. When does a Transaction end ?

When it is committed or Rollbacked.

92. What does COMMIT do ?

COMMIT makes permanent the changes resulting from all SQL statements in the transaction. The changes made by the SQL statements of a transaction become visible to other user sessions transactions that start only after transaction is committed.

93. What does ROLLBACK do ?

ROLLBACK retracts any of the changes resulting from the SQL statements in the transaction.

94. What is SAVE POINT ?

For long transactions that contain many SQL statements, intermediate markers or savepoints can be declared which can be used to divide a transaction into smaller parts.
This allows the option of later rolling back all work performed from the current point in the transaction to a declared savepoint within the transaction.

95. What is Read-Only Transaction ?

A Read-Only transaction ensures that the results of each query executed in the transaction are consistence with respect to the same point in time.

96. What is the function Optimizer ?

The goal of the optimizer is to choose the most efficient way to execute a SQL statement.

97. What is Execution Plan ?

The combinations of the steps the optimizer chooses to execute a statement is called an
execution plan.

98. What are the different approaches used by Optimizer in choosing an execution plan ?

Rule-based and Cost-based.

99. What are the factors that affect OPTIMIZER in choosing an Optimization approach ?

The OPTIMIZER_MODE initialization parameter Statistics in the Data Dictionary the
OPTIMIZER_GOAL parameter of the ALTER SESSION command hints in the

100.What are the values that can be specified for OPTIMIZER MODE Parameter ?


101. With the Optimizer always use COST-based approach if OPTIMIZER_MODE is set to “Cost’?

Presence of statistics in the data dictionary for atleast one of the tables accessed by the SQL statements is necessary for the OPTIMIZER to use COST-based approach.
Otherwise OPTIMIZER chooses RULE-based approach.

102. What is the effect of setting the value of OPTIMIZER_MODE to ‘RULE’ ?

This value causes the optimizer to choose the rule_based approach for all SQL statements
issued to the instance regardless of the presence of statistics.

103. What are the values that can be specified for OPTIMIZER_GOAL parameter
of the ALTER SESSION Command ?


104. What is the effect of setting the value “CHOOSE” for OPTIMIZER_GOAL,
parameter of the ALTER SESSION Command ?

The Optimizer chooses Cost_based approach and optimizes with the goal of best
throughput if statistics for atlas one of the tables accessed by the SQL statement exist in the
data dictionary. Otherwise the OPTIMIZER chooses RULE_based approach.

105. What is the effect of setting the value “ALL_ROWS” for
OPTIMIZER_GOAL parameter of the ALTER SESSION command ?

This value causes the optimizer to the cost-based approach for all SQL statements in the
session regardless of the presence of statistics and to optimize with a goal of best

106. What is the effect of setting the value ‘FIRST_ROWS’ for
OPTIMIZER_GOAL parameter of the ALTER SESSION command ?

This value causes the optimizer to use the cost-based approach for all SQL statements in
the session regardless of the presence of statistics and to optimize with a goal of best
response time.

107. What is the effect of setting the ‘RULE’ for OPTIMIER_GOAL parameter of
the ALTER SESSION Command ?

This value causes the optimizer to choose the rule-based approach for all SQL statements
in a session regardless of the presence of statistics.

108. What is RULE-based approach to optimization ?

Choosing an executing planbased on the access paths available and the ranks of these
access paths.

109. What is COST-based approach to optimization ?

Considering available access paths and determining the most efficient execution plan based
on statistics in the data dictionary for the tables accessed by the statement and their
associated clusters and indexes.


110. What are the different types of PL/SQL program units that can be defined and stored in ORACLE database ?

Procedures and Functions,Packages and Database Triggers.

111. What is a Procedure ?

A Procedure consist of a set of SQL and PL/SQL statements that are grouped together as a unit to solve a specific problem or perform a set of related tasks.

112. What is difference between Procedures and Functions ?

A Function returns a value to the caller where as a Procedure does not.

113. What is a Package ?

A Package is a collection of related procedures, functions, variables and other package constructs together as a unit in the database.

114. What are the advantages of having a Package ?

Increased functionality (for example,global package variables can be declared and used by any proecdure in the package) and performance (for example all objects of the package are parsed compiled, and loaded into memory once)

115. What is Database Trigger ?

A Database Trigger is procedure (set of SQL and PL/SQL statements) that is automatically executed as a result of an insert in,update to, or delete from a table.

116. What are the uses of Database Trigger ?

Database triggers can be used to automatic data generation, audit data modifications, enforce complex Integrity constraints, and customize complex security authorizations.

117. What are the differences between Database Trigger and Integrity constraints ?

A declarative integrity constraint is a statement about the database that is always true.
A constraint applies to existing data in the table and any statement that manipulates the table.

A trigger does not apply to data loaded before the definition of the trigger, therefore, it does not guarantee all data in a table conforms to the rules established by an associated trigger.

A trigger can be used to enforce transitional constraints where as a declarative integrity constraint cannot be used.


118. What are Roles ?

Roles are named groups of related privileges that are granted to users or other roles.

119. What are the use of Roles ?

REDUCED GRANTING OF PRIVILEGES – Rather than explicitly granting the same set of privileges to many users a database administrator can grant the privileges for a group of related users granted to a role and then grant only the role to each member of the group.

DYNAMIC PRIVILEGE MANAGEMENT – When the privileges of a group must
change, only the privileges of the role need to be modified. The security domains of all users granted the group’s role automatically reflect the changes made to the role.

SELECTIVE AVAILABILITY OF PRIVILEGES – The roles granted to a user can be selectively enable (available for use) or disabled (not available for use). This allows specific control of a user’s privileges in any given situation.

APPLICATION AWARENESS – A database application can be designed to
automatically enable and disable selective roles when a user attempts to use the application.

120. How to prevent unauthorized use of privileges granted to a Role ?

By creating a Role with a password.

121. What is default tablespace ?

The Tablespace to contain schema objects created without specifying a tablespace name.

122. What is Tablespace Quota ?

The collective amount of disk space available to the objects in a schema on a particular tablespace.

123. What is a profile ?

Each database user is assigned a Profile that specifies limitations on various system resources available to the user.

124. What are the system resources that can be controlled through Profile ?

The number of concurrent sessions the user can establish the CPU processing time available to
the user’s session the CPU processing time available to a single call to ORACLE made by a
SQL statement the amount of logical I/O available to the user’s session the amout of logical I/O
available to a single call to ORACLE made by a SQL statement the allowed amount of idle time
for the user’s session the allowed amount of connect time for the user’s session.

125. What is Auditing ?

Monitoring of user access to aid in the investigation of database use.

126. What are the different Levels of Auditing ?

Statement Auditing, Privilege Auditing and Object Auditing.

127. What is Statement Auditing ?

Statement auditing is the auditing of the powerful system privileges without regard to specifically named objects.

128. What is Privilege Auditing ?

Privilege auditing is the auditing of the use of powerful system privileges without regard to specifically named objects.

129. What is Object Auditing ?

Object auditing is the auditing of accesses to specific schema objects without regard to user.


130. What is Distributed database ?

A distributed database is a network of databases managed by multiple database servers that appears to a user as single logical database. The data of all databases in the distributed database can be simultaneously accessed and modified.

131. What is Two-Phase Commit ?

Two-phase commit is mechanism that guarantees a distributed transaction either commits on all involved nodes or rolls back on all involved nodes to maintain data consistency across the global distributed database. It has two phase, a Prepare Phase and a Commit Phase.

132. Describe two phases of Two-phase commit ?

Prepare phase – The global coordinator (initiating node) ask a participants to prepare (to promise to commit or rollback the transaction, even if there is a failure)

Commit – Phase – If all participants respond to the coordinator that they are prepared, the coordinator asks all nodes to commit the transaction, if all participants cannot prepare, the coordinator asks all nodes to roll back the transaction.

133. What is the mechanism provided by ORACLE for table replication ?

Snapshots and SNAPSHOT LOGs

134. What is a SNAPSHOT ?

Snapshots are read-only copies of a master table located on a remote node which is periodically refreshed to reflect changes made to the master table.

135. What is a SNAPSHOT LOG ?

A snapshot log is a table in the master database that is associated with the master table. ORACLE uses a snapshot log to track the rows that have been updated in the master table. Snapshot logs are used in updating the snapshots based on the master table.

136. What is a SQL * NET?

SQL *NET is ORACLE’s mechanism for interfacing with the communication protocols used by the networks that facilitate distributed processing and distributed databases. It is used in Clint-Server and Server-Server communications.


137. What are the steps involved in Database Startup ?

Start an instance, Mount the Database and Open the Database.

138. What are the steps involved in Database Shutdown ?

Close the Database, Dismount the Database and Shutdown the Instance.

139. What is Restricted Mode of Instance Startup ?

An instance can be started in (or later altered to be in) restricted mode so that when the database is open connections are limited only to those whose user accounts have been
granted the RESTRICTED SESSION system privilege.

140What are the different modes of mounting a Database with the Parallel Server ?

Exclusive Mode If the first instance that mounts a database does so in exclusive mode, only that Instance can mount the database.

Parallel Mode If the first instance that mounts a database is started in parallel mode, other instances that are started in parallel mode can also mount the database.

141. What is Full Backup ?

A full backup is an operating system backup of all data files, on-line redo log files and control file that constitution ORACLE database and the parameter.

142. Can Full Backup be performed when the database is open ?


143. What is Partial Backup ?

A Partial Backup is any operating system backup short of a full backup, taken while the database is open or shut down.

144. What is On-line Redo Log ?

The On-line Redo Log is a set of tow or more on-line redo files that record all committed changes made to the database. Whenever a transaction is committed, the corresponding redo entries temporarily stores in redo log buffers of the SGA are written to an on-line redo
log file by the background process LGWR. The on-line redo log files are used in cyclical fashion.

145. What is Mirrored on-line Redo Log ?

A mirrored on-line redo log consists of copies of on-line redo log files physically located on separate disks, changes made to one member of the group are made to all members.

146. What is Archived Redo Log ?

Archived Redo Log consists of Redo Log files that have archived before being reused.

147. What are the advantages of operating a database in ARCHIVELOG mode over
operating it in NO ARCHIVELOG mode ?

Complete database recovery from disk failure is possible only in ARCHIVELOG mode.
Online database backup is possible only in ARCHIVELOG mode.

148. What is Log Switch ?

The point at which ORACLE ends writing to one online redo log file and begins writing to
another is called a log switch.

149. What are the steps involved in Instance Recovery ?

Rolling forward to recover data that has not been recorded in data files, yet has been
recorded in the on-line redo log, including the contents of rollback segments.

Rolling back transactions that have been explicitly rolled back or have not been committed
as indicated by the rollback segments regenerated in step a.

Releasing any resources (locks) held by transactions in process at the time of the failure.

Resolving any pending distributed transactions undergoing a two-phase commit at the time
of the instance failure.

Data Base Administration.

Introduction to DBA

1. What is a Database instance ? Explain

A database instance (Server) is a set of memory structure and background processes that
access a set of database files.

The process can be shared by all users.

The memory structure that are used to store most queried data from database. This helps
up to improve database performance by decreasing the amount of I/O performed against
data file.

2. What is Parallel Server ?

Multiple instances accessing the same database (Only In Multi-CPU environments)

3. What is a Schema ?

The set of objects owned by user account is called the schema.

4. What is an Index ? How it is implemented in Oracle Database ?

An index is a database structure used by the server to have direct access of a row in a table.

An index is automatically created when a unique of primary key constraint clause is specified in create table comman (Ver 7.0)

5. What is clusters ?

Group of tables physically stored together because they share common columns and are often used together is called Cluster.

6. What is a cluster Key ?

The related columns of the tables are called the cluster key. The cluster key is indexed using a cluster index and its value is stored only once for multiple tables in the cluster.

7. What are the basic element of Base configuration of an oracle Database ?

It consists of
one or more data files.
one or more control files.
two or more redo log files.
The Database contains
multiple users/schemas
one or more rollback segments
one or more tablespaces
Data dictionary tables
User objects (table,indexes,views etc.,)
The server that access the database consists of
SGA (Database buffer, Dictionary Cache Buffers, Redo log buffers, Shared SQL pool)
SMON (System MONito)
PMON (Process MONitor)
LGWR (LoG Write)
DBWR (Data Base Write)
CKPT (Check Point)
User Process with associated PGS

8. What is a deadlock ? Explain .

Two processes wating to update the rows of a table which are locked by the other process
then deadlock arises.

In a database environment this will often happen because of not issuing proper row lock
commands. Poor design of front-end application may cause this situation and the
performance of server will reduce drastically.

These locks will be released automatically when a commit/rollback operation performed or
any one of this processes being killed externally.


9. What is SGA ? How it is different from Ver 6.0 and Ver 7.0 ?

The System Global Area in a Oracle database is the area in memory to facilitates the
transfer of information between users. It holds the most recently requested structural
information between users. It holds the most recently requested structural information about
the databse.

The structure is Database buffers, Dictionary cache, Redo Log Buffer and Shared SQL
pool (ver 7.0 only) area.

10. What is a Shared SQL pool ?

The data dictionary cache is stored in an area in SGA called the Shared SQL Pool. This
will allow sharing of parsed SQL statements among concurrent users.

11. What is mean by Program Global Area (PGA) ?

It is area in memory that is used by a Single Oracle User Process.

12. What is a data segment ?

Data segment are the physical areas within a database block in which the data associated
with tables and clusters are stored.

13. What are the factors causing the reparsing of SQL statements in SGA ?

Due to insufficient Shared SQL pool size.

Monitor the ratio of the reloads takes place while executing SQL statements. If the ratio is
greater than 1 then increase the SHARED_POOL_SIZE.


14. What is Database Buffers ?

Database buffers are cache in the SGA used to hold the data blocks that are read from the
data segments in the database such as tables, indexes and clusters
DB_BLOCK_BUFFERS parameter in INIT.ORA decides the size.

15. What is dictionary cache ?

Dictionary cache is information about the databse objects stored in a data dictionary table.

16. What is meant by recursive hints ?

Number of times processes repeatedly query the dictionary table is called recursive hints. It
is due to the data dictionary cache is too small. By increasing the SHARED_POOL_SIZE
parameter we can optimize the size of Data Dictionary Cache.

17. What is meant by redo log buffer ?

Change made to entries are written to the on-line redo log files. So that they can be used in
roll forward operations during database recoveries. Before writing them into the redo log
files, they will first brought to redo log buffers in SGA and LGWR will write into files
frequently. LOG_BUFFER parameter will decide the size.

18. How will you swap objects into a different table space for an existing database ?

Export the user

Perform import using the command imp system/manager file=export.dmp
indexfile=newrite.sql. This will create all definitions into newfile.sql.

Drop necessary objects.

Run the script newfile.sql after altering the tablespaces.

Import from the backup for the necessary objects.

19. List the Optional Flexible Architecture (OFA) of Oracle database ? or How can we
organise the tablespaces in Oracle database to have maximum performance ?

SYSTEM – Data dictionary tables.
DATA – Standard operational tables.
DATA2- Static tables used for standard operations
INDEXES – Indexes for Standard operational tables.
INDEXES1 – Indexes of static tables used for standard operations.
TOOLS – Tools table.
TOOLS1 – Indexes for tools table.
RBS – Standard Operations Rollback Segments,
RBS1,RBS2 – Additional/Special Rollback segments.
TEMP – Temporary purpose tablespace
TEMP_USER – Temporary tablespace for users.
USERS – User tablespace.

20. How will you force database to use particular rollback segment ?


21. What is meant by free extent ?

A free extent is a collection of continuous free blocks in tablespace. When a segment is
dropped its extents are reallocated and are marked as free.

22. How free extents are managed in Ver 6.0 and Ver 7.0 ?

Free extents cannot be merged together in Ver 6.0.
Free extents are periodically coalesces with the neighboring free extent in Ver 7.0

23.Which parameter in Storage clause will reduce no. of rows per block ?

PCTFREE parameter

Row size also reduces no of rows per block.

24. What is the significance of having storage clause ?

We can plan the storage for a table as how mach initial extents are required, how much can
be extended next, how much % should leave free for managing row updations etc.,

25. How does Space allocation table place within a block ?

? Each block contains entries as follows
? Fixied block header
? Variable block header
? Row Header,row date (multiple rows may exists)
? PCTEREE (% of free space for row updation in future)

26. What is the role of PCTFREE parameter is Storage clause ?

This is used to reserve certain amount of space in a block for expansion of rows.

27. What is the OPTIMAL parameter ?

It is used to set the optimal length of a rollback segment.

28. What is the functionality of SYSTEM table space ?

To manage the database level transactions such as modifications of the data dictionary table
that record information about the free space usage.

29. How will you create multiple rollback segments in a database ?

Create a database which implicitly creates a SYSTEM Rollback Segment in a SYSTEM

Create a Second Rollback Segment name R0 in the SYSTEM tablespace.

Make new rollback segment available (After shutdown, modify init.ora file and Start

Create other tablespaces (RBS) for rollback segments.

Deactivate Rollback Segment R0 and activate the newly created rollback segments.

30. How the space utilisation takes place within rollback segments ?

It will try to fit the transaction in a cyclic fashion to all existing extents. Once it found an
extent is in use then it forced to acquire a new extent (No. of extents is based on the optimal

31. Why query fails sometimes ?

Rollback segment dynamically extent to handle larger transactions entry loads.

A single transaction may wipeout all avaliable free space in the Rollback Segment
Tablespace. This prevents other user using Rollback segments.

32. How will you monitor the space allocation ?

By quering DBA_SEGMENT table/view.

33. How will you monitor rollback segment status ?

Querying the DBA_ROLLBACK_SEGS view
IN USE – Rollback Segment is on-line.
AVAILABLE – Rollback Segment available but not on-line.
OFF-LINE – Rollback Segment off-line
INVALID – Rollback Segment Dropped.
NEEDS RECOVERY – Contains data but need recovery or corupted.
PARTLY AVAILABLE – Contains data from an unresolved transaction involving a
distributed database.

34. List the sequence of events when a large transaction that exceeds beyond its
optimal value when an entry wraps and causes the rollback segment to expand into
another extend.

Transaction Begins.

An entry is made in the RES header for new transactions entry

Transaction acquires blocks in an extent of RBS

The entry attempts to wrap into second extent. None is available, so that the RBS must

The RBS checks to see if it is part of its OPTIMAL size.
RBS chooses its oldest inactive segment.
Oldest inactive segment is eliminated.
RBS extents
The Data dictionary table for space management are updated.
Transaction Completes.

35. How can we plan storage for very large tables ?

Limit the number of extents in the table
Separate Table from its indexes.
Allocate Sufficient temporary storage.

36. How will you estimate the space required by a non-clustered tables ?

? Calculate the total header size
? Calculate the available dataspace per data block
? Calculate the combined column lengths of the average row
? Calculate the total average row size.
? Calculate the average number rows that can fit in a block
? Calculate the number of blocks and bytes required for the table.

After arriving the calculation, add 10 % additional space to calculate the initial extent size
for a working table.

37. It is possible to use raw devices as data files and what is the advantages over file.
system files ?


The advantages over file system files.

I/O will be improved because Oracle is bye-passing the kernnel whicl writing into disk.
Disk Corruption will be very less.

38. What is a Control file ?

Database’s overall physical architecture is maintained in a file called control file. It will be
used to maintain internal consistency and guide recovery operations. Multiple copies of
control files are advisable.

39. How to implement the multiple control files for an existing database ?

Shutdown the databse
Copy one of the existing control file to new location
Edit Config ora file by adding new control
Restart the database.

40. What is meant by Redo Log file mirrorring ? How it can be achieved ?

Process of having a copy of redo log files is called mirroring.

This can be achieved by creating group of log files together, so that LGWR will
automatically writes them to all the members of the current on-line redo log group. If any
one group fails then database automatically switch over to next group. It degrades

41. What is advantage of having disk shadowing/ Mirroring ?

Shadow set of disks save as a backup in the event of disk failure. In most Operating
System if any disk failure occurs it automatically switchover to place of failed disk.

Improved performance because most OS support volume shadowing can direct file I/O
request to use the shadow set of files instead of the main set of files. This reduces I/O load
on the main set of disks.

42. What is use of Rollback Segments In Database ?

They allow the database to maintain read consistency between multiple transactions.

43. What is a Rollback segment entry ?

It is the set of before image data blocks that contain rows that are modified by a
Each Rollback Segment entry must be completed within one rollback segment.

A single rollback segment can have multiple rollback segment entries.

44. What is hit ratio ?

It is a measure of well the data cache buffer is handling requests for data.

Hit Ratio = (Logical Reads – Physical Reads – Hits Misses)/ Logical Reads.

45. When will be a segment released ?

When Segment is dropped.
When Shrink (RBS only)
When truncated (TRUNCATE used with drop storage option)

46. What are disadvanteges of having raw devices ?

We should depend on export/import utility for backup/recovery (fully reliable)

The tar command cannot be used for physical file backup, instead we can use dd command
which is less flexible and has limited recoveries.

47. List the factors that can affect the accuracy of the estimations ?

The space used transaction entries and deleted records does not become free immediately
after completion due to delayed cleanout.

Trailling nulls and length bytes are not stored.

Inserts of, updates to and deletes of rows as well as columns larger than a single datablock,
can cause fragmentation an chained row pieces.


48. What is user Account in Oracle database ?

An user account is not a physical structure in Database but it is having important relationship
to the objects in the database and will be having certain privileges.

49. How will you enforce security using stored procedures ?

Don’t grant user access directly to tables within the application.

Instead grant the ability to access the procedures that access the tables.

When procedure executed it will execute the privilege of procedures owner. Users cannot
access tables except via the procedure.

50. What are the dictionary tables used to monitor a database spaces ?


51. What are the responsibilities of a Database Administrator ?

.Installing and upgrading the Oracle Server and application tools.
.Allocating system storage and planning future storage requirements for the database
.Managing primary database structures (tablespaces)
.Managing primary objects (table,views,indexes)
.Enrolling users and maintaining system security.
.Ensuring compliance with Oralce license agreement
.Controlling and monitoring user access to the database.
.Monitoring and optimising the performance of the database.
.Planning for backup and recovery of database information.
.Maintain archived data on tape
.Backing up and restoring the database.
.Contacting Oracle Corporation for technical support.

52. What are the roles and user accounts created automatically with the database ?

DBA – role Contains all database system privileges.

SYS user account – The DBA role will be assigned to this account. All of the basetables
and views for the database’s dictionary are store in this schema and are manipulated only by

SYSTEM user account – It has all the system privileges for the database and additional
tables and views that display administrative information and internal tables and views used
by oracle tools are created using this username.

54. What are the database administrators utilities avaliable ?

SQL * DBA – This allows DBA to monitor and control an ORACLE database.

SQL * Loader – It loads data from standard operating system files (Flat files) into
ORACLE database tables.

Export (EXP) and Import (imp) utilities allow you to move existing data in ORACLE format
to and from ORACLE database.

55. What are the minimum parameters should exist in the parameter file (init.ora) ?

DB NAME – Must set to a text string of no more than 8 characters and it will be stored
inside the datafiles, redo log files and control files and control file while database creation.

DB_DOMAIN – It is string that specifies the network domain where the database is
created. The global database name is identified by setting these parameters (DB_NAME &

CONTORL FILES – List of control filenames of the database. If name is not mentioned
then default name will be used.

DB_BLOCK_BUFFERS – To determine the no of buffers in the buffer cache in SGA.

PROCESSES – To determine number of operating system processes that can be connected
to ORACLE concurrently. The value should be 5 (background process) and additional 1
for each user.

ROLLBACK_SEGMENTS – List of rollback segments an ORACLE instance acquires at
database startup.


56. What is a trace file and how is it created ?

Each server and background process can write an associated trace file. When an internal
error is detected by a process or user process, it dumps information about the error to its
trace. This can be used for tuning the database.

57. What are roles ? How can we implement roles ?

Roles are the easiest way to grant and manage common privileges needed by different
groups of database users.

Creating roles and assigning provies to roles.

Assign each role to group of users. This will simplify the job of assigning privileges to
individual users.

58. What are the steps to switch a database’s archiving mode between NO

1. Shutdown the database instance.
2. Backup the databse
3. Perform any operating system specific steps (optional)
4. Start up a new instance and mount but do not open the databse.
5. Switch the databse’s archiving mode.

59. How can you enable automatic archiving ?

Shut the database
Backup the database
Modify/Include LOG_ARCHIVE_START_TRUE in init.ora file.
Start up the databse.

60. How can we specify the Archived log file name format and destination ?

By setting the following values in init.ora file.

LOG_ARCHIVE_FORMAT = arch %S/s/T/tarc (%S – Log sequence number and is zero
left paded, %s – Log sequence number not padded. %T – Thread number lef-zero-paded
and %t – Thread number not padded). The file name created is arch 0001 are if %S is

61. What is the use of ANALYZE command ?

To perform one of these function on an index,table, or cluster:

– to collect statisties about object used by the optimizer and store them in the data
– to delete statistics about the object used by object from the data dictionary.
– to validate the structure of the object.
– to identify migrated and chained rows of the table or cluster.


62. How can we reduce the network traffic ?

– Replictaion of data in distributed environment.
– Using snapshots to replicate data.
– Using remote procedure calls.

63. What is snapshots ?

Snapshot is an object used to dynamically replicate data between distribute database at
specified time intervals. In ver 7.0 they are read only.

64. What are the various type of snapshots ?

Simple and Complex.

65. Differentiate simple and complex, snapshots ?

– A simple snapshot is based on a query that does not contains GROUP BY clauses,
CONNECT BY clauses, JOINs, sub-query or snashot of operations.
– A complex snapshots contain atleast any one of the above.

66. What dynamic data replication ?

Updating or Inserting records in remote database through database triggers. It may fail if
remote database is having any problem.

67. How can you Enforce Refrencial Integrity in snapshots ?

Time the references to occur when master tables are not in use.
Peform the reference the manually immdiately locking the master tables.
We can join tables in snopshots by creating a complex snapshots that will based on the
master tables.

68. What are the options available to refresh snapshots ?

COMPLETE – Tables are completly regenerated using the snapshot’s query and the
master tables every time the snapshot referenced.
FAST – If simple snapshot used then a snapshot log can be used to send the changes to the
snapshot tables.
FORCE – Default value. If possible it performs a FAST refresh; Otherwise it will perform
a complete refresh.

69. what is snapshot log ?

It is a table that maintains a record of modifications to the master table in a snapshot. It is
stored in the same database as master table and is only available for simple snapshots. It
should be created before creating snapshots.

70. When will the data in the snapshot log be used ?

We must be able to create a after row trigger on table (i.e., it should be not be already
available )

After giving table privileges.

We cannot specify snapshot log name because oracle uses the name of the master table in
the name of the database objects that support its snapshot log.

The master table name should be less than or equal to 23 characters.

(The table name created will be MLOGS_tablename, and trigger name will be TLOGS

72. What are the benefits of distributed options in databases ?

Database on other servers can be updated and those transactions can be grouped together
with others in a logical unit.
Database uses a two phase commit.


73. What are the different methods of backing up oracle database ?

– Logical Backups
– Cold Backups
– Hot Backups (Archive log)

74. What is a logical backup ?

Logical backup involves reading a set of databse records and writing them into a file.
Export utility is used for taking backup and Import utility is used to recover from backup.

75. What is cold backup ? What are the elements of it ?

Cold backup is taking backup of all physical files after normal shutdown of database. We
need to take.

– All Data files.
– All Control files.
– All on-line redo log files.
– The init.ora file (Optional)

76. What are the different kind of export backups ?

Full back – Complete database
Incremental – Only affected tables from last incremental date/full backup date.
Cumulative backup – Only affected table from the last cumulative date/full backup date.

77. What is hot backup and how it can be taken ?

Taking backup of archive log files when database is open. For this the ARCHIVELOG
mode should be enabled. The following files need to be backed up.

All data files.
All Archive log, redo log files.
On conrol file.

78. What is the use of FILE option in EXP command ?

To give the export file name.

79. What is the use of COMPRESS option in EXP command ?

Flag to indicate whether export should compress fragmented segments into single extents.

80. What is the use of GRANT option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether grants on databse objects will be exported or not. Value is ‘Y’ or

81. What is the use of INDEXES option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether indexes on tables will be exported.

82. What is the use of ROWS option in EXP command ?

Flag to indicate whether table rows should be exported. If ‘N’ only DDL statements for the
databse objects will be created.

83. What is the use of CONSTRAINTS option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether constraints on table need to be exported.

84. What is the use of FULL option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether full databse export should be performed.

85. What is the use of OWNER option in EXP command ?

List of table accounts should be exported.

86. What is the use of TABLES option in EXP command ?

List of tables should be exported.

87. What is the use of RECORD LENGTH option in EXP command ?

Record length in bytes.

88. What is the use of INCTYPE option in EXP command ?

Type export should be performed COMPLETE,CUMULATIVE,INCREMENTAL.

89. What is the use of RECORD option in EXP command ?

For Incremental exports, the flag indirects whether a record will be stores data dictionary
tables recording the export.

90. What is the use of PARFILE option in EXP command ?

Name of the parameter file to be passed for export.

91. What is the use of PARFILE option in EXP command ?

Name of the parameter file to be passed for export.

92. What is the use of ANALYSE ( Ver 7) option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether statistical information about the exported objects should be
written to export dump file.

93. What is the use of CONSISTENT (Ver 7) option in EXP command ?

A flag to indicate whether a read consistent version of all the exported objects should be

94. What is use of LOG (Ver 7) option in EXP command ?

The name of the file which log of the export will be written.

95.What is the use of FILE option in IMP command ?

The name of the file from which import should be performed.

96. What is the use of SHOW option in IMP command ?

A flag to indicate whether file content should be displayed or not.

97. What is the use of IGNORE option in IMP command ?

A flag to indicate whether the import should ignore errors encounter when issuing CREATE

98. What is the use of GRANT option in IMP command ?

A flag to indicate whether grants on database objects will be imported.

99. What is the use of INDEXES option in IMP command ?

A flag to indicate whether import should import index on tables or not.

100. What is the use of ROWS option in IMP command ?

A flag to indicate whether rows should be imported. If this is set to ‘N’ then only DDL for
database objects will be exectued.


1. What are the types of SQL Statement ?

Transactional Control : COMMIT & ROLLBACK
System Control : ALTER SYSTEM.

2. What is a transaction ?

Transaction is logical unit between two commits and commit and rollback.

3. What is difference between TRUNCATE & DELETE ?

TRUNCATE commits after deleting entire table i.e., can not be rolled back.
Database triggers do not fire on TRUNCATE

DELETE allows the filtered deletion. Deleted records can be rolled back or committed.
Database triggers fire on DELETE.

4. What is a join ? Explain the different types of joins ?

Join is a query which retrieves related columns or rows from multiple tables.

Self Join – Joining the table with itself.
Equi Join – Joining two tables by equating two common columns.
Non-Equi Join – Joining two tables by equating two common columns.
Outer Join – Joining two tables in such a way that query can also retrive rows that do not have corresponding join value in the other table.

5. What is the Subquery ?

Subquery is a query whose return values are used in filtering conditions of the main query.

6. What is correlated sub-query ?

Correlated sub_query is a sub_query which has reference to the main query.

7. Explain Connect by Prior ?

Retrives rows in hierarchical order.
e.g. select empno, ename from emp where.

8. Difference between SUBSTR and INSTR ?

INSTR (String1,String2(n,(m)),
INSTR returns the position of the mth occurrence of the string 2 in string1. The search begins from nth position of string1.

SUBSTR (String1 n,m)
SUBSTR returns a character string of size m in string1, starting from nth postion of string1.


INTERSECT returns all distinct rows selected by both queries.
MINUS – returns all distinct rows selected by the first query but not by the second.
UNION – returns all distinct rows selected by either query
UNION ALL – returns all rows selected by either query,including all duplicates.

10. What is ROWID ?

ROWID is a pseudo column attached to each row of a table. It is 18 character long, blockno, rownumber are the components of ROWID.

11. What is the fastest way of accessing a row in a table ?

Using ROWID.


12. What is an Integrity Constraint ?

Integrity constraint is a rule that restricts values to a column in a table.

13. What is Referential Integrity ?

Maintaining data integrity through a set of rules that restrict the values of one or more columns of the tables based on the values of primary key or unique key of the referenced table.

14. What are the usage of SAVEPOINTS ?

SAVEPOINTS are used to subdivide a transaction into smaller parts. It enables rolling back part of a transaction. Maximum of five save points are allowed.


When ON DELETE CASCADE is specified ORACLE maintains referential integrity by automatically removing dependent foreign key values if a referenced primary or unique key value is removed.

16. What are the data types allowed in a table ?


17. What is difference between CHAR and VARCHAR2 ? What is the maximum SIZE allowed for each type ?

CHAR pads blank spaces to the maximum length. VARCHAR2 does not pad blank spaces. For CHAR it is 255 and 2000 for VARCHAR2.

18. How many LONG columns are allowed in a table ? Is it possible to use LONG columns in WHERE clause or ORDER BY ?

Only one LONG columns is allowed. It is not possible to use LONG column in WHERE or ORDER BY clause.

19. What are the pre requisites ?
I. to modify datatype of a column ?
ii. to add a column with NOT NULL constraint ?

To Modify the datatype of a column the column must be empty.
To add a column with NOT NULL constrain, the table must be empty.

20. Where the integrity constrints are stored in Data Dictionary ?

The integrity constraints are stored in USER_CONSTRAINTS.

21. How will you a activate/deactivate integrity constraints ?

The integrity constraints can be enabled or disabled by ALTER TABLE ENABLE constraint/DISABLE constraint.

22. If an unique key constraint on DATE column is created, will it validate the rows that are inserted with SYSDATE ?

It won’t, Because SYSDATE format contains time attached with it.

23. What is a database link ?

Database Link is a named path through which a remote database can be accessed.

24. How to access the current value and next value from a sequence ? Is it possible to access the current value in a session before accessing next value ?

Sequence name CURRVAL, Sequence name NEXTVAL.

It is not possible. Only if you access next value in the session, current value can be accessed.

25. What is CYCLE/NO CYCLE in a Sequence ?

CYCLE specifies that the sequence continues to generate values after reaching either maximum or minimum value. After pan ascending sequence reaches its maximum value, it generates its minimum value. After a descending sequence reaches its minimum, it generates its maximum.

NO CYCLE specifies that the sequence cannot generate more values after reaching its maximum or minimum value.

26. What are the advantages of VIEW ?

To protect some of the columns of a table from other users.
To hide complexity of a query.
To hide complexity of calculations.

27. Can a view be updated/inserted/deleted? If Yes under what conditions ?

A View can be updated/deleted/inserted if it has only one base table if the view is based on columns from one or more tables then insert, update and delete is not possible.

28. If a View on a single base table is manipulated will the changes be reflected on the base table ?

If changes are made to the tables which are base tables of a view will the changes be reference on the view.


Basiscs of PL/SQL

1. What is PL/SQL ?

PL/SQL is a procedural language that has both interactive SQL and procedural
programming language constructs such as iteration, conditional branching.

2. What is the basic structure of PL/SQL ?

PL/SQL uses block structure as its basic structure. Anonymous blocks or nested blocks
can be used in PL/SQL.

3. What are the components of a PL/SQL block ?

A set of related declarations and procedural statements is called block.

4. What are the components of a PL/SQL Block ?

Declarative part, Executable part and Execption part.

Datatypes PL/SQL

5. What are the datatypes a available in PL/SQL ?

Some scalar data types such as
Some composite data types such as RECORD & TABLE.

6. What are % TYPE and % ROWTYPE ? What are the advantages of using these
over datatypes?

% TYPE provides the data type of a variable or a database column to that variable.

% ROWTYPE provides the record type that represents a entire row of a table or view or
columns selected in the cursor.

The advantages are : I. Need not know about variable’s data type
ii. If the database definition of a column in a table changes, the data type of a variable
changes accordingly.

7. What is difference between % ROWTYPE and TYPE RECORD ?

% ROWTYPE is to be used whenever query returns a entire row of a table or view.

TYPE rec RECORD is to be used whenever query returns columns of different table or
views and variables.

E.g. TYPE r_emp is RECORD (eno emp.empno% type,ename emp ename %type );
e_rec emp% ROWTYPE
cursor c1 is select empno,deptno from emp;
e_rec c1 %ROWTYPE.

8. What is PL/SQL table ?

Objects of type TABLE are called “PL/SQL tables”, which are modelled as (but not the
same as) database tables, PL/SQL tables use a primary PL/SQL tables can have one
column and a primary key.


9. What is a cursor ? Why Cursor is required ?

Cursor is a named private SQL area from where information can be accessed.
Cursors are required to process rows individually for queries returning multiple rows.

10. Explain the two type of Cursors ?

There are two types of cursors, Implict Cursor and Explicit Cursor.
PL/SQL uses Implict Cursors for queries.
User defined cursors are called Explicit Cursors. They can be declared and used.

11. What are the PL/SQL Statements used in cursor processing ?

DECLARE CURSOR cursor name, OPEN cursor name, FETCH cursor name INTO
<variable list> or Record types, CLOSE cursor name.

12. What are the cursor attributes used in PL/SQL ?

%ISOPEN – to check whether cursor is open or not
% ROWCOUNT – number of rows featched/updated/deleted.
% FOUND – to check whether cursor has fetched any row. True if rows are featched.
% NOT FOUND – to check whether cursor has featched any row. True if no rows are
These attributes are proceded with SQL for Implict Cursors and with Cursor name for
Explict Cursors.

13. What is a cursor for loop ?

Cursor for loop implicitly declares %ROWTYPE as loop index,opens a cursor, fetches
rows of values from active set into fields in the record and closes when all the records have
been processed.

eg. FOR emp_rec IN C1 LOOP
salary_total := salary_total +emp_rec sal;

14. What will happen after commit statement ?
Cursor C1 is
Select empno,
ename from emp;
open C1;
Fetch C1 into
Exit When
C1 %notfound;—–
end loop;

The cursor having query as SELECT …. FOR UPDATE gets closed after

The cursor having query as SELECT…. does not get closed even after

15. Explain the usage of WHERE CURRENT OF clause in cursors ?

WHERE CURRENT OF clause in an UPDATE,DELETE statement refers to the latest
row fetched from a cursor.

Database Triggers

16. What is a database trigger ? Name some usages of database trigger ?

Database trigger is stored PL/SQL program unit associated with a specific database table.
Usages are Audit data modificateions, Log events transparently, Enforce complex business
rules Derive column values automatically, Implement complex security authorizations.
Maintain replicate tables.

17. How many types of database triggers can be specified on a table ? What are they

Insert Update Delete

Before Row o.k. o.k. o.k.

After Row o.k. o.k. o.k.

Before Statement o.k. o.k. o.k.

After Statement o.k. o.k. o.k.

If FOR EACH ROW clause is specified, then the trigger for each Row affected by the

If WHEN clause is specified, the trigger fires according to the retruned boolean value.

18. Is it possible to use Transaction control Statements such a ROLLBACK or
COMMIT in Database Trigger ? Why ?

It is not possible. As triggers are defined for each table, if you use COMMIT of
ROLLBACK in a trigger, it affects logical transaction processing.

19. What are two virtual tables available during database trigger execution ?

The table columns are referred as OLD.column_name and NEW.column_name.
For triggers related to INSERT only NEW.column_name values only available.
For triggers related to UPDATE only OLD.column_name NEW.column_name values only
For triggers related to DELETE only OLD.column_name values only available.

20. What happens if a procedure that updates a column of table X is called in a
database trigger of the same table ?

Mutation of table occurs.

21. Write the order of precedence for validation of a column in a table ?

I. done using Database triggers.
ii. done using Integarity Constraints.

I & ii.

Exception :

22. What is an Exception ? What are types of Exception ?

Exception is the error handling part of PL/SQL block. The types are Predefined and
user_defined. Some of Predefined execptions are.


23. What is Pragma EXECPTION_INIT ? Explain the usage ?

The PRAGMA EXECPTION_INIT tells the complier to associate an exception with an
oracle error. To get an error message of a specific oracle error.

e.g. PRAGMA EXCEPTION_INIT (exception name, oracle error number)

24. What is Raise_application_error ?

Raise_application_error is a procedure of package DBMS_STANDARD which allows to
issue an user_defined error messages from stored sub-program or database trigger.

25. What are the return values of functions SQLCODE and SQLERRM ?

SQLCODE returns the latest code of the error that has occured.
SQLERRM returns the relevant error message of the SQLCODE.

26. Where the Pre_defined_exceptions are stored ?

In the standard package.

Procedures, Functions & Packages ;

27. What is a stored procedure ?

A stored procedure is a sequence of statements that perform specific function.

28. What is difference between a PROCEDURE & FUNCTION ?

A FUNCTION is always returns a value using the return statement.
A PROCEDURE may return one or more values through parameters or may not
Return at all.

29. What are advantages of Stored Procedures /

Extensibility, Modularity, Reusability, Maintainability and one time compilation.

30. What are the modes of parameters that can be passed to a procedure ?

IN,OUT,IN-OUT parameters.

31. What are the two parts of a procedure ?

Procedure Specification and Procedure Body.

32. Give the structure of the procedure ?

PROCEDURE name (parameter list…..)
local variable declarations

Executable statements.
exception handlers


33. Give the structure of the function ?

FUNCTION name (argument list …..) Return datatype is
local variable declarations
executable statements
execution handlers

34. Explain how procedures and functions are called in a PL/SQL block ?

Function is called as part of an expression.
sal := calculate_sal (‘a822’);
procedure is called as a PL/SQL statement
calculate_bonus (‘A822′);

35. What is Overloading of procedures ?

The Same procedure name is repeated with parameters of different datatypes and
parameters in different positions, varying number of parameters is called overloading of

e.g. DBMS_OUTPUT put_line

36. What is a package ? What are the advantages of packages ?

Package is a database object that groups logically related procedures.
The advantages of packages are Modularity, Easier Applicaton Design, Information.
Hiding,. reusability and Better Performance.

37.What are two parts of package ?

The two parts of package are PACKAGE SPECIFICATION & PACKAGE BODY.

Package Specification contains declarations that are global to the packages and local to the
Package Body contains actual procedures and local declaration of the procedures and
cursor declarations.

38. What is difference between a Cursor declared in a procedure and Cursor
declared in a package specification ?

A cursor declared in a package specification is global and can be accessed by other
procedures or procedures in a package.
A cursor declared in a procedure is local to the procedure that can not be accessed by
other procedures.

39. How packaged procedures and functions are called from the following ?
a. Stored procedure or anonymous block
b. an application program such a PRC *C, PRO* COBOL

variable := PACKAGE NAME.FUNCTION NAME (arguments);
variable := PACKAGE NAME.FUNCTION NAME (arguments);
c. EXECUTE PACKAGE NAME.PROCEDURE if the procedures does not have any
out/in-out parameters. A function can not be called.

40. Name the tables where characteristics of Package, procedure and functions are
stored ?

User_objects, User_Source and User_error.

1. To see current user name
Sql> show user;
2. Change SQL prompt name
SQL> set sqlprompt ?Manimara > ?
Manimara >
Manimara >
3. Switch to DOS prompt
SQL> host
4. How do I eliminate the duplicate rows ?
SQL> delete from table_name where rowid not in (select max(rowid) from table group by duplicate_values_field_name);
SQL> delete duplicate_values_field_name dv from table_name ta where rowid <(select min(rowid) from table_name tb where ta.dv=tb.dv);
Table Emp
Empno Ename
101 Scott
102 Jiyo
103 Millor
104 Jiyo
105 Smith
delete ename from emp a where rowid < ( select min(rowid) from emp b where a.ename = b.ename);
The output like,
Empno Ename
101 Scott
102 Millor
103 Jiyo
104 Smith
5. How do I display row number with records?
To achive this use rownum pseudocolumn with query, like SQL> SQL> select rownum, ename from emp;
1 Scott
2 Millor
3 Jiyo
4 Smith
6. Display the records between two range
select rownum, empno, ename from emp where rowid in
(select rowid from emp where rownum <=&upto
select rowid from emp where rownum<&Start);
Enter value for upto: 10
Enter value for Start: 7
——— ——— ———-
1 7782 CLARK
2 7788 SCOTT
3 7839 KING
4 7844 TURNER
7. I know the nvl function only allows the same data type(ie. number or char or date Nvl(comm, 0)), if commission is null then the text ?Not Applicable? want to display, instead of blank space. How do I write the query?
SQL> select nvl(to_char(comm.),’NA’) from emp;
Output :
8. Oracle cursor : Implicit & Explicit cursors
Oracle uses work areas called private SQL areas to create SQL statements.
PL/SQL construct to identify each and every work are used, is called as Cursor.
For SQL queries returning a single row, PL/SQL declares all implicit cursors.
For queries that returning more than one row, the cursor needs to be explicitly declared.
9. Explicit Cursor attributes
There are four cursor attributes used in Oracle
cursor_name%Found, cursor_name%NOTFOUND, cursor_name%ROWCOUNT, cursor_name%ISOPEN
10. Implicit Cursor attributes
Same as explicit cursor but prefixed by the word SQL
Tips : 1. Here SQL%ISOPEN is false, because oracle automatically closed the implicit cursor after executing SQL statements.
: 2. All are Boolean attributes.
11. Find out nth highest salary from emp table
Enter value for n: 2
12. To view installed Oracle version information
SQL> select banner from v$version;
13. Display the number value in Words
SQL> select sal, (to_char(to_date(sal,’j’), ‘jsp’))
from emp;
the output like,
——— —————————————————–
800 eight hundred
1600 one thousand six hundred
1250 one thousand two hundred fifty
If you want to add some text like,
Rs. Three Thousand only.
SQL> select sal “Salary “,
(‘ Rs. ‘|| (to_char(to_date(sal,’j’), ‘Jsp’))|| ‘ only.’))
“Sal in Words” from emp
Salary Sal in Words
——- ——————————————————
800 Rs. Eight Hundred only.
1600 Rs. One Thousand Six Hundred only.
1250 Rs. One Thousand Two Hundred Fifty only.
14. Display Odd/ Even number of records
Odd number of records:
select * from emp where (rowid,1) in (select rowid, mod(rownum,2) from emp);
Even number of records:
select * from emp where (rowid,0) in (select rowid, mod(rownum,2) from emp)
15. Which date function returns number value?
16. Any three PL/SQL Exceptions?
Too_many_rows, No_Data_Found, Value_Error, Zero_Error, Others
17. What are PL/SQL Cursor Exceptions?
Cursor_Already_Open, Invalid_Cursor
18. Other way to replace query result null value with a text
to reset SQL> Set NULL ??
19. What are the more common pseudo-columns?
20. What is the output of SIGN function?
1 for positive value,
0 for Zero,
-1 for Negative value.
21. What is the maximum number of triggers, can apply to a single table?
12 triggers

Leave a Reply