O'Reilly logo

Oracle Internals: An Introduction by Steve Adams

Stay ahead with the world's most comprehensive technology and business learning platform.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required

Row Cache Enqueues

A cache of rows from the data dictionary is kept in the shared pool. This cache serves not only to reduce physical access to the data dictionary tables in the SYSTEM tablespace, but also enables fine-grained locking of individual data dictionary rows. The need for data dictionary locking was introduced at the start of this chapter (see Section 4.1.3).

The locks on the data dictionary rows themselves are called row cache enqueue locks. These locks are implemented in much the same way as general enqueue locks. The cached data dictionary row acts as the resource structure, and enqueue lock structures are dynamically allocated from the shared pool as required. Locks can be requested, converted, and released, and requests can wait and time out, just like the general enqueue locks. However, row cache enqueue locks are not included in V$LOCK. In fact, they are not visible anywhere except in system and process state dumps.

Depending on the operation, some row cache enqueue locks are requested in no-wait mode and an ORA-54 error is returned if the lock is not immediately available. Otherwise, row cache lock requests are enqueued if necessary, and the process waits on a row cache lock wait. The parameters for this wait are shown in Table 4.4.

Table 4-4. Wait Parameters (row cache lock waits)

Parameter

Description

p1

A number corresponding to the CACHE# column of V$ROWCACHE representing the data dictionary table for which a row lock is needed

p2

The mode in which the lock is already held

p3

The mode in which the lock is needed

The numeric codes used for the lock modes in the parameters for this wait are those for instance locks, rather than local locks, even when running single-instance Oracle. However, this wait is relatively rare in single-instance Oracle, resulting only from resource conflicts, whereas it is routine in parallel server because new lock requests must be socialized via the distributed lock manager.

Oracle does not expect row cache enqueue lock acquisitions and conversions to block for more than a few seconds. Therefore, row cache lock waits time out every 3 seconds, and if the lock has still not been acquired after 100 timeouts (5 minutes), an internal deadlock is assumed, and the operation is aborted. A message is written to the alert log saying that a process “WAITED TOO LONG FOR A ROW CACHE ENQUEUE LOCK,” and a process state dump is written to a trace file. Except for DDL against a long-running, in-use function, procedure, or package, this error should be treated as an Oracle bug and reported to Oracle Support.

With Safari, you learn the way you learn best. Get unlimited access to videos, live online training, learning paths, books, interactive tutorials, and more.

Start Free Trial

No credit card required