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DBA Tips Archive for Oracle
Building an Inexpensive Oracle RAC 11g R2 on Linux - (RHEL5.5)
by Jeff Hunter, Sr. Database Administrator 
IntroductionOracle RAC 11g OverviewShared-Storage OverviewiSCSI TechnologyHardware and CostsInstall the Linux Operating SystemInstall Required Linux Packages for Oracle RACInstall Openfiler Network ConfigurationCluster Time Synchronization ServiceConfigure iSCSI Volumes using Openfiler Configure iSCSI Volumes on Oracle RAC NodesCreate Job Role Separation Operating System Privileges Groups, Users, and DirectoriesLogging In to a Remote System Using X TerminalConfigure the Linux Servers for OracleConfigure RAC Nodes for Remote Access using SSH - (Optional)Install and Configure ASMLib 2.0Download Oracle RAC 11g release 2 SoftwarePre-installation Tasks for Oracle Grid Infrastructure for a Cluster Install Oracle Grid Infrastructure for a Cluster Post-installation Tasks for Oracle Grid Infrastructure for a Cluster Create ASM Disk Groups for Data and Fast Recovery AreaInstall Oracle Database 11g with Oracle Real Application ClustersInstall Oracle Database 11g Examples (formerly Companion)Create the Oracle Cluster DatabasePost Database Creation Tasks - (Optional)Create / Alter TablespacesVerify Oracle Grid Infrastructure and Database ConfigurationStarting / Stopping the Cluster TroubleshootingConclusion Acknowledgements About the Author 
Oracle RAC 11
release 2 allows DBA's to configure a clustered database solution with superior fault tolerance, loadbalancing, and scalability. However, DBA's who want to become more familiar with the features and benefits of databaseclustering, will find the costs of configuring even a small RAC cluster costing in the range of US$10,000 to US$20,000. Thiscost would not even include the heart of a production RAC configuration, the shared storage. In most cases, this would be a
Applreplisoftthefor y
DBA Tips Archive for Oraclefile:///D:/rac11gr2/CLUSTER_12.shtml1 of 1364/18/2011 10:17 PM
Storage Area Network (SAN), which generally start at US$10,000.Unfortunately, for many shops, the price of the hardware required for a typical RAC configuration exceeds most trainingbudgets. For those who want to become familiar with Oracle RAC 11
without a major cash outlay, this guide provides alow-cost alternative to configuring an Oracle RAC 11
release 2 system using commercial off-the-shelf components anddownloadable software at an estimated cost of US$2,800.The system will consist of a two node cluster, both running Linux (CentOS 5.5 for x86_64), Oracle RAC 11
release 2 for Linux x86_64, and ASMLib 2.0. All shared disk storage for Oracle RAC will be based oniSCSIusing Openfiler release 2.3x86_64 running on a third node (known in this article as the
Network Storage Server 
).This guide is provided for 
educational purposes only
, so the setup is kept simple to demonstrate ideas and concepts. For example, the shared Oracle Clusterware files (OCR and voting files) and all physical database files in this article will be setup on only one physical disk, while in practice that should be stored on multiple physical drives configured for increasedperformance and redundancy (i.e. RAID). In addition, each Linux node will only be configured with two network interfaces —one for the public network (
) and one that will be used for both the Oracle RAC private interconnect "and" the networkstorage server for shared iSCSI access (
). For a production RAC implementation, the private interconnect should be atleast Gigabit (or more) with redundant paths and "only" be used by Oracle to transfer Cluster Manager and Cache Fusionrelated data. A third dedicated network interface (
, for example) should be configured on another redundant Gigabitnetwork for access to the network storage server (Openfiler).
Oracle Documentation
While this guide provides detailed instructions for successfully installing a complete Oracle RAC 11
system, it is
by nomeans a substitute for the official Oracle documentation
(see list below). In addition to this guide, users should alsoconsult the following Oracle documents to gain a full understanding of alternative configuration options, installation, andadministration with Oracle RAC 11
. Oracle's official documentation site isdocs.oracle.com.Grid Infrastructure Installation Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2) for Linux 
Clusterware Administration and Deployment Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2)
Oracle Real Application Clusters Installation Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2) for Linux and UNIX 
Real Application Clusters Administration and Deployment Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2)
Oracle Database 2 Day + Real Application Clusters Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2)
Oracle Database Storage Administrator's Guide-
11g Release 2 (11.2)
Network Storage Server 
Powered byrPath Linux,Openfiler is a free browser-based network storage management utility that delivers file-based Network Attached Storage (NAS) and block-based Storage Area Networking (SAN) in a single framework. The entiresoftware stack interfaces with open source applications such as Apache, Samba, LVM2, ext3, Linux NFS and iSCSIEnterprise Target. Openfiler combines these ubiquitous technologies into a small, easy to manage solution fronted by apowerful web-based management interface.Openfiler supports CIFS, NFS, HTTP/DAV, FTP, however, we will only be making use of its iSCSI capabilities to implementan inexpensive SAN for the shared storage components required by Oracle RAC 11
. The operating system (rPath Linux)and the Openfiler application will be installed on one internal SATA disk. A second internal 73GB 15K SCSI hard disk will beconfigured as a singlevolume groupthat will be used for all shared disk storage requirements. The Openfiler server will beconfigured to use this volume group for iSCSI based storage and will be used in our Oracle RAC 11
configuration to storethe shared files required by Oracle grid infrastructure and the Oracle RAC database.
Oracle Grid Infrastructure 11
Release 2 (11.2)
With Oracle grid infrastructure 11
release 2 (11.2), the Automatic Storage Management (ASM) and Oracle Clusterwaresoftware is packaged together in a single binary distribution and installed into a single home directory, which is referred toas the Grid Infrastructure home. You must install the grid infrastructure in order to use Oracle RAC 11
release 2.Configuration assistants start after the installer interview process that will be responsible for configuring ASM and OracleClusterware. While the installation of the combined products is called Oracle grid infrastructure, Oracle Clusterware and Automatic Storage Manager remain separate products.
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 After Oracle grid infrastructure is installed and configured on both nodes in the cluster, the next step will be to install theOracle Real Application Clusters (Oracle RAC) software on both Oracle RAC nodes.In this article, the Oracle grid infrastructure and Oracle RAC software will be installed on both nodes using the optional
JobRole Separation
configuration. One OS user will be created to own each Oracle software product — "
" for the Oraclegrid infrastructure owner and "
" for the Oracle RAC software. Throughout this article, a user created to own theOracle grid infrastructure binaries is called the
user. This user will own both the Oracle Clusterware and Oracle Automatic Storage Management binaries. The user created to own the Oracle database binaries (Oracle RAC) will becalled the
user. Both Oracle software owners must have the Oracle Inventory group (
) as their primarygroup, so that each Oracle software installation owner can write to the central inventory (oraInventory), and so that OCRand Oracle Clusterware resource permissions are set correctly. The Oracle RAC software owner must also have theOSDBA group and the optional OSOPER group as secondary groups.
Assigning IP Address
Prior to Oracle Clusterware 11
release 2, the only method available for assigning IP addresses to each of the Oracle RACnodes was to have the network administrator manually assign static IP addresses in DNS — never to use DHCP. This wouldinclude the public IP address for the node, the RAC interconnect, virtual IP address (VIP), and new to 11g release 2, theSingle Client Access Name(SCAN) virtual IP address(s).Oracle Clusterware 11
release 2 now provides two methods for assigning IP addresses to all Oracle RAC nodes: Assigning IP addresses dynamically usingGrid Naming Service(GNS) which makes use of DHCP1. The traditional method of manually assigning static IP addresses inDomain Name Service(DNS)2.
Assigning IP Addresses Dynamically using Grid Naming Service (GNS)
 A new method for assigning IP addresses was introduced in Oracle Clusterware 11
release 2 named
Grid Naming Service
(GNS) which allows all private interconnect addresses, as well as most of the VIP addresses to be dynamicallyassigned using DHCP. GNS and DHCP are key elements to Oracle's new Grid Plug and Play (GPnP) feature that, asOracle states, eliminates per-node configuration data and the need for explicit add and delete nodes steps. GNS enables a
grid infrastructure through the self-management of the network requirements for the cluster.While assigning IP addresses using GNS certainly has its benefits and offers more flexibility over manually defining static IPaddresses, it does come at the cost of complexity and requires components not defined in this guide. For example,activating GNS in a cluster requires a DHCP server on the public network which falls outside the scope of building aninexpensive Oracle RAC.The example Oracle RAC configuration described in this guide will use the traditional method of manually assigning static IPaddresses inDNS.To learn more about the benefits and how to configure GNS, please seeOracle Grid Infrastructure Installation Guide 11
Release 2 (11.2) for Linux.
Assigning IP Addresses Manually using Static IP Address - (The DNS Method)
If you choose not to use GNS, manually defining static IP addresses is still available with Oracle Clusterware 11
release 2and will be the method used in this article to assign all required Oracle Clusterware networking components (public IPaddress for the node, RAC interconnect, virtual IP address, andSCANvirtual IP).It should be pointed out that previous to Oracle 11
release 2, the need for DNS in order to successfully configure OracleRAC was not a strict requirement. It was technically possible (although not recommended for a production system) to defineall IP addresses only in the hosts file on all nodes in the cluster (i.e.
). This actually worked to my advantagewith any of my previous articles on building an inexpensive RAC because it was one less component to document andconfigure.So, why is the use of DNS now a requirement when manually assigning static IP addresses? The answer isSCAN. OracleClusterware 11g release 2 requires the use of DNS in order to store the SCAN virtual IP address(s). In addition to therequirement of configuring the SCAN virtual IP address in DNS, we will also configure the public and virtual IP address for all
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