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We are planning to backup database using RMAN, but since I'm a newbie in DB administration, I don't have much knowledge in this.

I've a few queries though.
Currently we are using Oracle 11g database in noarchivelog mode. As far as I know, running a database in archivelog mode, backup is taken at short intervals, which I don't prefer. I need the backup to be taken only once in a day, that too without shutting down my database. Is that possible?

Which is better option, database to be run in archive mode or noarchive mode? Also, if I'm going for noarchive mode, do I need to delete the backups manually or, does it happen automatically?

  • What is your working Environment ? Windows or Linux with Oracle. – Md Haidar Ali Khan Feb 6 '17 at 7:44
  • We are using Windows platform. – SHS Feb 6 '17 at 9:58
  • As you said you have windows environment. Just open cmd command prompt and type there "RMAN Target\;" Your environment RMAN target will be set. – Md Haidar Ali Khan Feb 6 '17 at 10:09
  • After setting the RMAN target . type in RMAN command prompt like that "show all;". Which i have already mention in my answer. AS per your environment you can take 'Archive log ' backup or 'NOArchive' backup. with respective their RMAN Command. – Md Haidar Ali Khan Feb 6 '17 at 10:15
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Currently we are using Oracle 11g database in noarchivelog mode. As far as I know, running a database in archivelog mode, backup is taken at short intervals, which I don't prefer. I need the backup to be taken only once in a day, that too without shutting down my database. Is that possible.

First of all i would like to say that without shutting down the database. There is possible to take backup through RMAN.

What is RMAN?

Recovery Manager (RMAN) is an Oracle Database client that performs backup and recovery tasks on your databases and automates administration of your backup strategies. It greatly simplifies backing up, restoring, and recovering database files.

How Many components Required for RMAN Environment?

The RMAN environment consists of the utilities and databases that play a role in backing up your data. At a minimum, the environment for RMAN must include the following components:

  1. A target database

  2. The RMAN client

  3. A flash recovery area

  4. A media manager

  5. A recovery catalog

When you are taking the database through RMAN without shutting down your database that process is called 'Hot Backup'.

A hot backup can be done even as users access the database, but if the data is altered during the backup, it can be inconsistent. A hot backup can also impact database performance because it uses compute resources. Hot backup servers generally receive ongoing updates from the production server and are ready to take over as soon as a failover event takes down the production server.

In a warm backup, the server is powered on, but not performing any work, or it is turned on from time to time to get updates from the server being backed up. Warm backups are usually used for mirroring or replication.

And when you taking the database backup with shut down the database through RMAN that process is called 'Cold Backup'.

A cold backup, also called an offline backup, is a database backup during which the database is offline and not accessible to update. This is the safest way to back up because it avoids the risk of copying data that may be in the process of being updated. However, a cold backup involves downtime because users cannot access the database during the backup.

A cold backup ensures a consistent backup, but cannot but used for any systems that require continuous, 24/7 operation. No users should be logged in and no activity should take place to ensure that files are not changed in any way during the backup. If you back up data to an off-site facility, cold backups can be performed from a copy of the data. Data files do not change during a cold backup process, ensuring the database is in a consistent state when it returns to normal operation.

Which is better option, database to be run in archive mode or noarchive mode?

Preparing to Use the Oracle Suggested Backup Strategy that is ARCHIVELOG mode.

Backing Up an ARCHIVELOG Database

If you run your database in ARCHIVELOG mode, then the archiver archives groups of online redo log files. Therefore, the archived redo log coupled with the online redo log and datafile backups can protect the database from a disk failure, providing for complete recovery from a disk failure to the instant that the failure occurred (or, to the desired noncurrent time).

Common backup strategies for a database operating in ARCHIVELOG mode

  1. Back up the entire database after you create it. This initial whole database backup is the foundation of your backups because it provides backups of all datafiles and the control file of the associated database.

    Note: When you perform this initial whole database backup, make sure that the database is in ARCHIVELOG mode first. Otherwise, the backup control files will contain the NOARCHIVELOG mode setting.

  2. Make backups of tablespaces when the database is open or closed to keep the database backups up-to-date. So long as you have the necessary archived logs to recover the backup, you never have to shut down the database to make a backup.

  3. In particular, back up the datafiles of extensively used tablespaces frequently to reduce database recovery time. If a more recent datafile backup restores a damaged datafile, then you need to apply less redo (or incremental backups) to the restored datafile to roll it forward to the time of the failure.

  4. You can also use a datafile copy taken while the database is open and the tablespace is online to restore datafiles. You must apply the appropriate redo log files to these restored datafiles to make the data consistent and bring it forward to the specified point in time.

  5. Back up the control file every time you make a structural change to the database. If you run in ARCHIVELOG mode and the database is open, then use either RMAN or the SQL statement ALTER DATABASE BACKUP CONTROLFILE. Back up archived logs frequently. It is strongly recommended that you keep at least two copies of archived logs: one on disk and another on off-line storage (tape, optical disks, and so forth). Keep the logs on disk as long as possible but back them up as soon as possible.

Backing Up a NOARCHIVELOG Database

If you run the database in NOARCHIVELOG mode, Oracle does not archive filled groups of online redo log files. Therefore, the only protection against a disk failure is the most recent whole backup of the database.

Following are common backup strategies for a database operating in NOARCHIVELOG mode:

  1. Make whole database backups regularly, according to the amount of work that you can afford to lose. For example, if you can afford to lose the amount of work accomplished in one week, then make a consistent whole database backup once every week. If you can afford to lose only a day's work, then make a consistent whole database backup every day. For large databases with a high amount of activity, you usually cannot afford to lose work. In this case, you should operate the database in ARCHIVELOG mode.

  2. Whenever you alter the physical structure of a database operating in NOARCHIVELOG mode, immediately take a consistent whole database backup. A whole database backup fully reflects the new structure of the database.

Also, if I'm going for noarchive mode, do I need to delete the backups manually or, does it happen automatically?

I would like to say that first you check the retention policy of the RMAN Backup.

How you shall check the retention policy?

You can see the retention policy through this RMAN command

show all;

For Example, so many options comes like that

RMAN configuration parameters for database with db_unique_name PROD1 are:
CONFIGURE RETENTION POLICY TO RECOVERY WINDOW OF 3 DAYS;
CONFIGURE BACKUP OPTIMIZATION ON;
CONFIGURE DEFAULT DEVICE TYPE TO DISK; # default
CONFIGURE CONTROLFILE AUTOBACKUP ON;
CONFIGURE CONTROLFILE AUTOBACKUP FORMAT FOR DEVICE TYPE SBT_TAPE TO '%F'; # default
CONFIGURE CONTROLFILE AUTOBACKUP FORMAT FOR DEVICE TYPE DISK TO '%F'; # default
CONFIGURE DEVICE TYPE 'SBT_TAPE' PARALLELISM 2 BACKUP TYPE TO COMPRESSED BACKUPSET;
CONFIGURE DEVICE TYPE DISK PARALLELISM 1 BACKUP TYPE TO BACKUPSET; # default
CONFIGURE DATAFILE BACKUP COPIES FOR DEVICE TYPE SBT_TAPE TO 1; # default
CONFIGURE DATAFILE BACKUP COPIES FOR DEVICE TYPE DISK TO 1; # default
CONFIGURE ARCHIVELOG BACKUP COPIES FOR DEVICE TYPE SBT_TAPE TO 1; # default
CONFIGURE ARCHIVELOG BACKUP COPIES FOR DEVICE TYPE DISK TO 1; # default
CONFIGURE CHANNEL DEVICE TYPE 'SBT_TAPE' PARMS 'ENV=(OB_DEVICE=tape1)';
CONFIGURE MAXSETSIZE TO UNLIMITED; # default
CONFIGURE ENCRYPTION FOR DATABASE OFF; # default
CONFIGURE ENCRYPTION ALGORITHM 'AES128'; # default
CONFIGURE ARCHIVELOG DELETION POLICY TO NONE; # default
CONFIGURE SNAPSHOT CONTROLFILE NAME TO '/disk1/oracle/dbs/snapcf_ev.f'; # default

Or you can also see any of the above options through 'Show' command.

suppose that you want to see your retention policy of database through RMAN command then you just type

SHOW RETENTION POLICY;

it will show your retention policy of database, such as like that

CONFIGURE RETENTION POLICY TO RECOVERY WINDOW OF 3 DAYS;

As above shows your retention policy to recovery windows is 3 days. So, here you backup will only remain upto 3 days. You can also increase the Retention day value through RMAN command more than 3 days.

what is retention Policy?

A user-defined policy for determining how long backups and archived logs need to be retained for media recovery. You can define a retention policy in terms of backup redundancy or a recovery window. RMAN retains the datafile backups required to satisfy the current retention policy, and any archived redo logs required for complete recovery of those datafile backups.

For Your Further Ref : Getting Started with RMAN , Configuring the RMAN Environment & Here

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As far as I know, running a database in archivelog mode, backup is taken at short intervals, which I don't prefer.

No, archivelog mode and backup frequency has nothing to do with each other. Its you who defines the backup intervals.

I need the backup to be taken only once in a day, that too without shutting down my database. Is that possible?

No, it's not possible to take hot backup in noarchivelog mode.

You can only backup a database in NOARCHIVELOG mode when the database is closed and in a consistent state.

-Oracle Documentation.

Which is better option, database to be run in archive mode or noarchive mode?

Oracle recommends to put your database in archivelog mode. There are chances that you may lose data in case of media or disk failure.

Also, if I'm going for noarchive mode, do I need to delete the backups manually or, does it happen automatically?

You need to take care of it, no matter whether you are operating on archivelog mode or noarchivelog mode. However, you can define backup retention policy

Documentation:

  • Configuring the RMAN Environment
  • Introduction to Backup and Recovery

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