Since a pipelined result set cannot be returned over a database link (see MOS note 560743.1), what workarounds/alternatives are there. I can think of a few, but I'd rather not lead the question. I am particularly interested in alternatives that work when the function would accept more than one parameter and return more than one row of data.
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Hoo boy - that's not going to be simple, as far as I know.
A few things I guess you could try:
Pipelining is such a useful feature that it is a shame it doesn't translate across the db-link, though. Maybe Oracle will, one day, see fit to fill that particular gap. Otherwise, though, I fear you've got your work cut out for you.
XML is one option but it doesn't scale well if you are bringing back lots of data.
I think Advanced Queueing/Streams uses ANYDATASET as a neutral transfer mechanism but it wouldn't be pretty