FAQ - Oracle Agent

Table of Contents


When does a non-full backup automatically get converted to a full backup?

  • When you select the backup type as Full in the CommCell Console and enter the backup type as Incremental in the customize script, the job will run as Full.
  • When you select backup type as Incremental in CommCell Console and enter the backup type as Full in the customize script, the job will run as Full. The Job Manager will treat this job as Incremental (on the job controller and the job history and the job report). This job is pruned when it reaches the data retention date.
  • When a storage policy is changed and the backup type is switched to full from the job manager, the increment level is changed to 0.
  • If you do not enter the backup type in the customize script, then the system picks up the backup type selected in CommCell Console.
  • If a table level job fails in the archive index phase, SnapProtect marks the job as Completed With Errors (CWE), and the next job will be converted to a full backup.

Can we edit the RMAN script with required functionality?

Yes, see Customizing Oracle RMAN Scripts from the CommCell Console for Backups or Customizing Oracle Restore RMAN Scripts for restores.

How is the data retrieved during browse and restore operations?

When you browse or restore data, the browse function returns the requested data based on the latest backups available. The browse function does this by using the current date and time as the effective date.

Can we perform a control file restore from an autobackup with a customized format?

Yes. You can change the default control file autobackup format from Oracle server.

By default, the customized control file autobackup formats are saved in Oracle server in the format shown in the following example:


c =“control file”

4193674049—----------is the Database id(DBID)

20111121-------------is the current date (in the form of “YYYYMMDD”)

03-------------------is hexadecimal number (starts with 00 and ends with FF)

  1. Connect to target database and configure control file autobackup format for device type.


[oracle@oracleg ~]$ rman target sys/orab52@orab52
Recovery Manager: Release - Production on Mon Nov 21 15:21:31 2011
Copyright (c) 1982, 2009, Oracle and/or its affiliates. All rights reserved.
connected to target database: ORAB52 (DBID=4193674049)
RMAN> configure controlfile autobackup format for device type sbt_tape to 'cf_%d_%F';

  • Configure the RMAN configuration parameters using target database control file


using target database control file instead of recovery catalog

new RMAN configuration parameters:

new RMAN configuration parameters are successfully stored

How do we delete archive logs from a flash recovery area that is protected?

When the Oracle database is configured to save archive logs in the Flash recovery area, backup jobs will fail if the Oracle subclients have both the Backup Recovery Area and the Archive Delete options enabled at the same time.

To avoid such backup failures you need to configure two different subclients, one for Backup Recovery Area and the other for enabling Archive Deletion option for deleting Archive logs.

What is the behavior of archive files if you restart an offline backup job?

By default, the offline full backup jobs restart from the beginning. The archive files that are created in the earlier attempt are still marked valid. The size of the application in the restarted job will increase from the earlier attempt of this backup job.

If we submit restore from the latest offline restarted jobs, the data from the archive files that are created after the job is restarted will also be restored.

How do we configure backups on Oracle Exadata Database machines?

In order to backup Oracle Exadata Machines:
  1. Install the Oracle Agent on all the Exadata nodes.
  2. Create a RAC pseudo client that includes all the Exadata nodes.
  3. Run the backups on the pseudo client. The backups are performed using RMAN scripts.

    MediaAgents cannot be installed on Exadata database machines, they communicate with the Exadata nodes using infiniband network during the backup.

For more information, go to the Oracle Technology Network website, Protecting Oracle Database Appliance – Tape Backup with CommVault Simpana.

Can we switch the current log file when the archive log destination is 100% full and a data backup is scheduled?

While configuring a subclient to perform data backups in subclient properties section, Disable Switch Current Log will remain grayed out. as we do not allow disabling log switch while taking a backup to complete a clean data backup.

If the archive destination is 100% full, Oracle cannot switch log file and include new client connections.

Perform any of the following, if the archive destination is 100% full:

  • Perform a backup from a log only subclient, if it is available, so that you can backup only the logs. If a log only backup subclient is not available, create a log only subclient and perform a backup.
  • Change the archive log destination to a new location and then perform a backup.

    Use the following commands to change the archive log destination to a new location:

    alter system set log_archive_dest_1='LOCATION=/newlocation/newlocation’;

Can we view the RMAN script of the merge incremental backup job?

View the RMAN script of the merge incremental backup job using the RMAN script preview.


run {
allocate channel MI1 type disk PARMS="SBT_LIBRARY=/store1/axxxxx4/<company name>/Base/libobk.so,BLKSIZE=1048576,ENV=(CV_mmsApiVsn=2,CV_channelPar=MI1 )" TRACE 0;
backup incremental level 1 for recover of copy with tag 'ORA_MERGE_mic' cumulative database include current controlfile;
backup incremental level 1 for recover of tag 'ORA_MERGE_mic' archivelog all not backed up 1 times;
release channel MI1 ;
run {
allocate channel MI1 type disk
PARMS="SBT_LIBRARY=/store1/axxxxx4/<company name>/Base/libobk.so,BLKSIZE=1048576,ENV=(CV_mmsApiVsn=2,CV_channelPar=MI1 )" TRACE 0;
allocate channel ch1 type 'sbt_tape'
PARMS="SBT_LIBRARY=/store1/axxxxx4/<company name>/Base/libobk.so,BLKSIZE=1048576,ENV=(CV_mmsApiVsn=2,CV_channelPar=ch1 )" TRACE 0;
recover copy of database with tag 'ORA_MERGE_mic';
release channel MI1 ;
release channel ch1 ;

When do we configure a static listener?

If the Oracle connect string uses a dynamic listener, you must configure a static listener to perform:

  • Offline backups with lights out script when the Oracle database is in open mode
  • Database restores with the switch database mode when the Oracle database is in open mode

Can I use a deduplicated storage policy for log backups?

Yes. You can assign deduplicated storage policy for log backups. However, the Oracle Agent will consider the storage policy as a non-deduplicated storage policy and does not deduplicate the logs.

How do I restore multiplexed data if the number of drives is less than the allocated channels?

If the number of drives is less than the allocated channels, enable multiplexing and restore the multiplexed data to disk (application free restore).

For detailed instructions, see Application Free Restores.

On Windows clients, can we run multiple RMAN jobs simultaneously for the same instance from the CommCell Console?

No. You should always limit the RMAN jobs for the same instance to run one at a time in the CommCell Console and Scheduler.

Can I delete the FRA content using the Archive Delete option when the backup does not include archive logs?

No. The flash recovery area (FRA) content is deleted based on the RMAN retention rules for FRA content, therefore it is not required to delete the FRA content manually.

Set the retention rules for the FRA content using the following command from the RMAN prompt with "n" representing the number of days


Why is an auxiliary instance being created on the source client when the destination client is using a table level restore?

If a destination client is selected without a user defined auxiliary instance, then an auxiliary instance is automatically created on the source client.

What do I do when I select a database client not on the source for a table restore?

You must select the Auxiliary Instance and provide a user defined Auxiliary Database name.

Is User Impersonation required on Windows?

If the Oracle service on Windows is running as a local system, then User Impersonation is not required. Oracle jobs can be run without specifying user credentials in the Oracle instance properties on the CommCell.

Does the SnapProtect software work with Oracle Fail Safe?

The SnapProtect software supports Oracle Fail Safe in Microsoft cluster environments which provides an easy way to configure and manage the Microsoft Windows clusters.

Can I have Oracle full backups honor the extended retention rules?

Only Oracle offline backups and Oracle selective online full jobs are supported for extended retention rules.

Does selective copy apply to Oracle full backups?

Only Oracle offline backups and Oracle selective online full jobs are eligible for the selective copy during the auxiliary copy operations. All other jobs, including regular online full jobs are not copied.

How does SnapProtect protect Oracle archived logs?

The storage policy that you defined for the Oracle instance protects the Oracle archived logs. The Oracle archived logs are common across the instance, so you can manage them by using a common storage policy at the instance level.

When do I use an application-free restore for a multiplexed backup?

When you perform a multi-stream backup for Oracle, the number of stream that the backup uses is equal to the number of RMAN channels. When the backup is copied to a secondary copy, the streams are combined.

When you perform restore from the secondary copy, the performance may be slow due to the fact that the backup pieces are interleaved.

You can use an application-free restore to have a faster restore to the disk and then you can perform a command line restore from the disk. For more information on application restores, see Restoring an Oracle Database to Disk (Application-Free Restore).

Are there additional steps to take when the Oracle Agent is installed on an existing client?

If you install the agent on on an existing client, you must run the cvpkgchg command to update the group permission after you install the agent. You can use this command to set the group and permission to the correct level which prevents the backup job from failing. For information on how to change the group permissions, see Changing UNIX Groups and Permissions on UNIX Clients.

Why is an Oracle backup sometimes not restarted from point of failure?

 If there were parallel Oracle backup jobs running on the same database from different subclients the jobs are not restarted from the point of failure, because the backup might not be self-contained. The SnapProtect software restarts the  job from the beginning.

When should I use the Oracle SEND command?

 If you have ENV lines in the RMAN script that have more characters than Oracle recommends, use the SEND command. You can configure the SnapProtect software to automatically use the SEND command. For more information, see Setting the Rules for Using the Oracle Send Command.

CommCell Console Operation

Why should I schedule Oracle backups using the SnapProtect scheduler?

When you use the SnapProtect job scheduler for backup, you have the following advantages:

  • You minimize your reliance on scripting
  • You can restart jobs from the point-of-failure
  • You can suspend jobs
  • You can schedule jobs with different priorities
  • You can identify the status of your data protection environment, through the SnapProtect reporting software, including:
    • where hot spots may be developing
    • where resources are consumed
  • You have data security through the built-in role-based access operation

Command Line

Can we perform command line backups of Oracle instances with different Oracle SID and database names?

Different SID and database names for Oracle instances are supported for Oracle command line backups. However to get single job id CvOraSID Environmental variable should be used otherwise multiple jobs are generated.

Example for UNIX:


Can we perform command line backups if the Oracle database name and instance name (as defined in the CommCell Console) are different?

No. Prior to running backups from the RMAN command line, ensure that the Oracle database name and the Instance Name as defined in the CommCell Console are the same, otherwise you will need to pass the name of the instance in the RMAN script as follows:

allocate channel ch1 type 'sbt_tape'

where <client_name> and <instance_name> are the names of the Client and Instance (e.g., Instance001) on which the Agent is installed.

Example for Linux:

Consider the Oracle instance name as RMAN and database name as RMANDB.

allocate channel ch1 type 'sbt_tape'

Can we perform RMAN cross check on On-Demand instances?

No. We cannot perform RMAN Cross check on On-Demand Instances.

Can we run multiple instance scripts using the same input file for an On-Demand instance?

No. We cannot run multiple instance scripts using the same input file for an On-Demand Instance.

Why does the data size increase when you restart an On-Demand backup job?

If you restart an On-Demand backup job with multiple scripts for the same instance, the backup is resumed from the beginning of the script. During this process, the archive files that were backed up before the restart will again be included in the backup after the restart. This increases the data size of the restarted backup job.

You can prevent this behavior by updating the scripts before the restart.

Can we run third-party command line backup operations when a selective online backup job is running?

No. Third-party command line backup operations cannot be run when a selective online full backup job is running.

Can we move Oracle instances using the command line?

Move Oracle instances from one client or cluster node to another client or node within a CommCell using the qoperation move command. However, On-Demand instances cannot be moved using this command.

Can we include multiple run blocks in the same RMAN script for an On-Demand instance?

No. We cannot include multiple Run Blocks in the same RMAN script.

What happens If one of the streams fail when running third-party command line operations with multiple streams?

Oracle third-party command line operations running on multiple streams will share the same Job ID in the Job Manager. If all the streams return failure, then the job is marked as failed. However, if one of the streams fail, it is submitted to the other stream for completion.

How are third party command line jobs handled when Oracle services use a different service account instead of the local system?

When Oracle Services use a different service account other than Local System, third party command line jobs are run with multiple job IDs. In such cases, use the following steps to enable third party command line jobs to run with a single job ID:

  1. From the Start menu, point to Administrative Tools, and then click Local Security Policy.
  2. Double-click Local Policies and then double-click User Rights Assignment.
  3. In the details pane, double-click Adjust memory quotas for a process.
  4. Click Add User or Group.
  5. In the Enter the object names to select box, type the user or group name to which you want to assign the user right and then click OK.
  6. In the details pane, double-click Replace a process level token.
  7. Click Add User or Group.
  8. In the Enter the object names to select box, type the user or group name to which you want to assign the user right and then click OK.

Can we perform a command line duplicate database restore without connect to the target database from the restore to disk backup pieces?

No, duplication without a target is not supported from restore to disk backup pieces (SBT backups). You must connect to a catalog schema.

Can the time format be changed for RMAN logs for Oracle Backups performed on the Oracle Agent?

Yes, see Changing the Time Format In RMAN Logs for Oracle Backups.

How do I prevent command line data backups from being considered as log backups and using the log storage policy?

When you have a command line script that has a line that includes the archive log ('backup database plus archive log'), the data backup is treated as a log backup and uses the log storage policy. Control file backups always use the data storage policy. You can set the following additional setting to have the data component use the data storage policy.

  1. From the CommCell Browser, right-click the client and then click Properties:
  2. In the Client Properties dialog box, click the Additional Settings tab and then click Add.
    1. In the Name box, type sORASKIPSTREAMOPT.
    2. In the Category box, select OracleAgent.
    3. In the Type box, select String.
    4. In the Value box, type Y.
    5. Click OK to close the Add Additional Settings dialog box.
  3. Click OK to close the Client Properties dialog box.

Database Table Restore

How can we successfully restore a table?

You must select all the tablespaces on which this table resides to successfully restore a table.

What are the tables that can be restored in Oracle 11g2?

You can restore tables under non-system tablespaces in Oracle 11g2.

How are table indexes handled during restore?

When you include the indexes during a table restore, note that only the index definition is restored and not the indexed data.

Can we manually import tables from the auxiliary instance?

Once the tables are restored to the auxiliary instance, use the CommCell Console to export the data from the auxiliary instance and import it to a destination that you choose, or leave the data in the staging path and import the data manually by using Oracle import utilities.

How are stored procedures restored?

Stored procedures are restored from the Schema level. The schema is the collection of data objects created by the user to contain or reference their data. If one of the table within the schema is selected for restore, all the stored procedures for that schema will also get restored.

Can we restore tables when there is a schema change in the database?

No. Table restores are not supported when there are schema changes in the database.

Can we perform table restore from one schema to another schema?

No. Currently, we do not support restoring the tables to a different schema. However, you can select “ Do not import “ while running table restore, which will save the dump file. Later, run your import script against this dump file.

Why is the cleanup not occurring for staging area during table level restores?

This happens as the data files from staging area and auxiliary instance are not cleaned up when table level restore fails in export/import phase. This will allow you to run the export and import jobs manually without restoring the database again.

Container and Pluggable Databases

What Data Protection Methods are available for Container and Pluggable Databases?

The following table lists the backup and restore support for Oracle 12c Container Databases (CDB) and Pluggable Databases (PDB) for traditional and SnapProtect.

Data Protection Method Container Database Pluggable Database
Traditional Backup/Restore Yes Yes (customize the RMAN script to backup and restore a selected Pluggable Database. See Customizing Oracle Backup RMAN Scripts)
SnapProtect Backup/Restore Yes No

Can I perform a backup of container and pluggable databases?