I am a new DBA and my friend told me the best way to learn about becoming a DBA is to setup your own server (virtually or physically).

I don't have a spare machine laying around so I will need to set one up virtually.

My job uses RHEL 7.2 so I downloaded the same version of the OS.

My work uses Oracle 10, 11 and 12. Should I use one of these versions or should I install the latest?

Here's where my question

  1. What size should I create the disk drive for this environment? (I plan on using it to practice RMAN, ASM, DataGaurd and RAC).

  2. What should the size of the partitions be? (for education and will not be used for production)

  3. What should my RAM, CPU config be (if it really matters). I know this stuff can be adjusted later on the fly. I am more concerned with the first one since changing partition sizes is an involved process.

If I am missing anything, please feel free to leave a comment or "answer the question".


This is a very broad question as the list you gave of what you want to practice would need multiple databases to learn dataguard and RAC. Why do't you try Oracle's free trial of the cloud based databases? You can make mistakes there and it will be easy to learn on the newest versions and when you have some more knowledge you can deploy Oracle Virtual Box at home for a test that will last longer.

Running an Oracle database on Virtual Box on a home PC could easily use four to six GB of memory if you are doing any thing intensive. Storage is cheap these days so allocating at least 100Gb for the database files gets you started.

A typical enterprise disk setup is to mount separate drives

  • /u01 for the oracle product ~100 Gb
  • /u02 for datafiles ~100 Gb (but if you import data you could need up to 500 Gb)
  • /u03 for indexes ~100 Gb
  • /u04 for archive logs ~100 Gb and so on

This is probably overkill for a learning situation but, at the least, separate the oracle install from the data for easier management. Suggested disk allocations get you started but if you actually use it to store data you should ensure that you can extend the virtual disks. In other words allocate 1 Tb of storage to the virtual machine and then you can extend the storage as needed.

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  • My employer has forbid us from using Oracle cloud based services from our work computer. We can do it at home. – software is fun Jul 17 '19 at 17:52
  • How much space should be allocated to each mount point /u01..../u10 ? – software is fun Jul 17 '19 at 17:54
  • @softwareisfun I added some rough and ready estimates – kevinsky Jul 17 '19 at 17:59

Oracle provides various pre-configured learning VMs using their Virtual Box VM software.

Within that article, there are various VMs and a link to their GitHub Vagrant-Boxes repository including RAC and Data Guard. Since they are pre-configured, you don't have to worry about configurations things like RAM.


README.md for Oracle Data Guard (DG):

This directory contains Vagrant build files to provision automatically two Oracle RDBMS (12.2, 18c, 19c) nodes configured with Oracle Data Guard, using Vagrant/VirtualBox, Oracle Linux 7 and shell scripts.

README.md for Oracle Real Application Cluster (RAC)

This directory contains Vagrant build files to provision automatically two Oracle RAC nodes (12.2, 18c, 19c), using Vagrant/VirtualBox, Oracle Linux 7 and shell scripts.

There is also a Virtual Box VM for general learning.

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