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Oracle Net8 Configuration and Troubleshooting by Jonathan Gennick, Hugo Toledo

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Management Utilities

Oracle supplies several utilities to use in managing your Net8 environment. These include:

  • Listener Control utility (lsnrctl )

  • Oracle Names Control utility (namesctl )

  • Oracle Connection Manager Control utility (cmctl )

  • TNS Ping utility (tnsping)

  • Net8 Assistant

  • Net8 Easy Config

  • Net8 Configuration Assistant

The three control utilities are command-line utilities that run on the server and enable you to control the Net8 listener, Oracle Names, and Oracle Connection Manager. The tnsping utility is a debugging tool that does for Net8 what ping does for TCP/IP—it verifies Net8 connectivity between two machines. The final three utilities, two of which are termed assistants, are GUI tools that make the maintenance of the various Net8 configuration files (sqlnet.ora and tnsnames.ora) relatively painless.

Listener Control

The Listener Control utility (lsnrctl ) is your primary interface to the Net8 listener and is often referred to simply as Listener Control. You use Listener Control to start and stop Net8 listeners, report on their status, and change their operational settings. The following example shows Listener Control being used to check the current status of a listener:

C:\>lsnrctl

LSNRCTL for 32-bit Windows: Version 8.1.5.0.0 - Production on 17-JAN-00 15:15:57


(c) Copyright 1998 Oracle Corporation.  All rights reserved.

Welcome to LSNRCTL, type "help" for information.

LSNRCTL> status
Connecting to (DESCRIPTION=(ADDRESS=(PROTOCOL=IPC)(KEY=EXTPROC0)))
STATUS of the LISTENER
------------------------
Alias                     LISTENER
Version                   TNSLSNR for 32-bit Windows: Version 8.1.5.0.0 - 
                          Production
Start Date                17-JAN-00 10:24:05
Uptime                    0 days 4 hr. 51 min. 54 sec
Trace Level               off
Security                  ON
SNMP                      OFF
Listener Parameter File   E:\Oracle\Ora81\network\admin\listener.ora
Listener Log File         E:\Oracle\Ora81\network\log\listener.log
Services Summary...
  COIN                    has 1 service handler(s)
  PLSExtProc              has 1 service handler(s)
  JONATHAN                has 3 service handler(s)
The command completed successfully

You’ll see examples of Listener Control being used throughout this book.

Names Control

The Oracle Names Control utility (namesctl ) is used to manage Oracle Names servers. Like Listener Control, Names Control allows you to start, stop, and check the status of a Names server. Names Control also allows you to perform a number of other administrative tasks relative to managing an Oracle Names environment. The following example shows Names Control being used to check the status of an Oracle Names server:

[oracle@donna admin]$ namesctl status

Oracle Names Control for Linux: Version 8.1.6.0.0 - 
Production on 05-SEP-2000 11:17:33

(c) Copyright 1998, 1999, Oracle Corporation.  All rights reserved.

Currently managing name server "oranamesrvr1"
Version banner is "Oracle Names for Linux: Version 8.1.6.0.0 - Production"

Version banner is "Oracle Names for Linux: Version 8.1.6.0.0 - Production"

Server name:                              oranamesrvr1
Server has been running for:              10.14 seconds

Chapter 7, discusses Names Control in detail.

Connection Manager Control

The Oracle Connection Manager Control utility (cmctl ), is used to control the Oracle Connection Manager software. The following example shows Connection Manager Control being used to report the current status of Connection Manager:

CMCTL> status
CMAN Status:
(STATUS=(VERSION=8.1.6.0.0)(STARTED=05-SEP-2000 11:19:07)(STATE=running))
ADMIN Status:
(STATUS=(VERSION=8.1.6.0.0)(STARTED=05-SEP-2000 11:19:05)(STATE=RUNNING))

Chapter 9 talks about Connection Manager Control in more detail.

tnsping

Oracle’s tnsping utility is a very simple utility that verifies Net8 connectivity between two computers. You can read more about it in Chapter 10. While simple, the tnsping utility can be invaluable in troubleshooting Net8 connections.

Net8 Assistant

The Net8 Assistant is a GUI utility that facilitates the task of editing the various Net8 configuration files. Instead of using a text editor to edit the sqlnet.ora , tnsnames.ora , listener.ora , and names.ora files, you can use Net8 Assistant. Net8 Assistant provides an Explorer-style tabbed user interface that allows you to change Net8 settings using dropdown lists, checkboxes, radio buttons, and other GUI widgets. Figure 1.10 shows Net8 Assistant being used to edit the Net8 tracing parameters.

Net8 Assistant allows you to easily edit Net8 configuration files

Figure 1-10. Net8 Assistant allows you to easily edit Net8 configuration files

Net8 Assistant frees you from having to remember which .ora file contains the parameters that you want to edit, and from having to remember the sometimes complex syntax used to set those parameters.

Net8 Easy Config

Net8 Easy Config is a GUI utility that allows you to add net service names to your tnsnames.ora file. Net8 Easy Config also allows you to modify, delete, and test those service names. Net8 Easy Config functions much like a wizard in that it leads you step-by-step through whichever process you choose. For example, Figure 1.11 shows the first step in the process of adding a new net service name.

Net8 Easy Config allows you to easily edit tnsnames.ora entries

Figure 1-11. Net8 Easy Config allows you to easily edit tnsnames.ora entries

The syntax used to define net service names in the tnsnames.ora file is complex, and uses a large number of nested parentheses. The result is often a high error rate when modifications are made manually. Net8 Easy Config was Oracle’s response to this high rate of error.

Tip

Net8 Assistant provides the same functionality as Net8 Easy Config—it allows you to add service names and, in our opinion, it does so in a fashion that’s much easier to use.

Net8 Configuration Assistant

Net8 Configuration Assistant is a GUI wizard-like program that walks you through the process of configuring Net8. Figure 1.12 shows the initial screen where you choose the component of Net8 that you want to configure.

Net8 Configuration Assistant allows you to configure various aspects of Net8

Figure 1-12. Net8 Configuration Assistant allows you to configure various aspects of Net8

Net8 Configuration Assistant duplicates much of the functionality found in Net8 Assistant, but it seems more oriented towards generating an initial configuration than in maintaining that configuration over time.

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