Chapter 10. Miscellaneous Packages

You can’t find a neat category for everything, can you? This chapter brings together a variety of useful packages you are sure to dip into on a regular basis:


The actual “miscellaneous” package. It offers programs to free unused user memory, parse comma-delimited lists, calculate the elapsed time of PL/SQL programs, and much more. You never know what you’ll find popping up next in DBMS_UTILITY!


Contains a single procedure, DESCRIBE_PROCEDURE, which you can use to get information about the parameters of a stored program.


Contains programs to recompile stored code, analyze objects in your schema, and modify the referenceability of object identifiers in Oracle8.


New to Oracle8, supplies PL/SQL developers with a random number generator.

DBMS_UTILITY: Performing Miscellaneous Operations

The DBMS_UTILITY package is the “miscellaneous package” for PL/SQL. It contains programs that perform a wide variety of operations (listed in Table 10.1).


I recommend that whenever you install a new version of the Oracle database, you scan the contents of the dbmsutil.sql file. Check to see if Oracle has added any new programs or changed the functionality of existing programs.

Getting Started with DBMS_UTILITY

The DBMS_UTILITY package is created when the Oracle database is installed. The dbmsutil.sql script (found in the built-in packages source code directory, as described in Chapter 1) contains the source code for this package’s ...

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