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Dbvisit Replicate: Back to Basics Part I

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When Dbvisit released Dbvisit Replicate 2.7 in 2014, I posted a series of blogs talking about getting back to the basics when starting basic replication with Dbvisit Replicate. With the release of Dbvisit Replicate 2.9, I have started updating the series of blogs and will use Dbvisit Replicate 2.9 in all of my examples.

We will start off assuming that you have done the install. The installation of Dbvisit Replicate is quite easy. Unzip and then untar. Full details can be found here.

In the installation directory, you will see a folder called "replicate". That folder will contain the executable and other files needed to start Dbvisit Replicate.

Example:

oracle@dbvlintest[/home/oracle/v29/replicate]: ls
Dbvisit-MIB-SNMP.txt  dbvrep  dbvrep.1  online_user_guide_reference_dbvrep.txt
oracle@dbvlintest[/home/oracle/v29/replicate]:

The install directory includes the Dbvisit Replicate MIB (Management Information Base). This MIB is used in conjunction where you are using SNMP to monitor the health of Dbvisit Replicate. A bit more about that when we get to the monitoring section in Part V of this series.

The dbvrep executable is aptly named dbvrep. This one executable contains MINE, APPLY, and FETCHER processes plus the console. It also contains an Oracle client.

Dbvrep.1 is actually our help file. Go ahead and open that file up and you will see the familiar help modules that people find useful when they are accessing the Dbvisit Replicate Console.

online_user_guide_reference_dbvrep.txt contains a direct link to our documentation for Dbvisit Replicate. Always a good link to bookmark!

And last in the directory is the README.txt file. While we all know that many people DON’T read README files, it is a really good idea to do so. Go on, do it. Because, in that file, you will find a heap of information. There will also be important information about any changes to the upgrade process, and you will also find a list of recent improvements and bug fixes.

Now that we have looked at the install directory, let’s dive in and look at starting Dbvisit Replicate.

oracle@dbvlintest[/home/oracle/v29/replicate]: ./dbvrep
Initializing......done
Dbvisit Replicate version 2.9.00
Copyright (C) Dbvisit Software Limited.  All rights reserved.
No DDC file loaded.
Run "setup wizard" to start the configuration wizard or try "help" to see all
commands available.
dbvrep>

The intuitive setup wizard is your guide to setting up replication. When most people see the setup wizard, they can’t believe it is that easy! In fact, the ease of use in setting up replication is part of the ‘secret sauce’ that makes Dbvisit Replicate so popular.

dbvrep> setup wizard

This wizard configures Dbvisit Replicate.

The setup wizard creates configuration scripts, which need to be run after the wizard ends. No changes to the databases are made before that.

The progress is saved every time a list of databases, replications, etc. is shown. It will be re-read if the wizard is restarted and the same DDC name and script path is selected.

Run the wizard now? [yes]

As it mentions, running the setup wizard will NOT make any changes on your database. It is simply creating the scripts that you will run afterwards. Each question in the setup wizard will have a prompt, and in most cases will have a default value. If you want to accept the default value just hit return (enter). Before the configuration starts, there are also a few basic configuration questions. Let’s review what questions will be asked and what that information is used for. The first question asks if you would like to run the setup wizard now? Why yes, we would.

Run the wizard now? [yes]
Accept end-user license agreement? (view/yes/no) [view] YES
Before starting the actual configuration, some basic information is needed. 
The DDC name and script path determines where all files created by the wizard go 
(and where to reread them if wizard is rerun) and the license key determines
which options are available for this configuration.
(DDC_NAME) - Please enter a name for this replication (suggestion: use the name
of the source database): [] DEMO
(LICENSE_KEY) - Please enter your license key: [(trial)] 
Which Replicate edition do you want to trial (LTD/XTD/MAX): [MAX]
(SETUP_SCRIPT_PATH) - Please enter a directory for location of configuration
scripts on this machine: [/home/oracle/DEMO]         
Network configuration files were detected on this system in these locations:
/u01/app/oracle/product/11.2.0/db_1/network/admin
/u01/app/oracle/product/12.1.0/db_1/network/admin
(TNS_ADMIN) - Please enter TNS configuration directory for this machine: 
[/u01/app/oracle/product/11.2.0/db_1/network/admin]
Step 1 - Describe databases

After the wizard starts you are asked to accept the end-user license. Take a moment and view that agreement before typing in YES. The replication will need a name. You can choose any name you want. I strongly suggest you make the name meaningful to the project you are working on. I am using DEMO for this example.

The next question is asking for your license key. If you are a Dbvisit customer then you can enter your license key.

Dbvisit Replicate comes in three editions. At Dbvisit we don’t want you to buy more than you need, so with this in mind we have Dbvisit Replicate in three different editions depending on what type of replication you are doing. You can learn more about the three different editions on our website.

The next question you will notice is pre-populated with the path (including the name of what you choose) as the DDC_NAME. You can change this if you don’t want to put the replication files here.

The Setup Wizard also looks for TNSNAMES.ORA files. Please review that path to make sure it contains the correct TNSNAMES.ORA file.  Oftentimes it is a ‘good’ TNSNAMES.ORA file but not the one that is used. At this point, it is always a good thing to check this. Checking up front can save you a headache now and later.

Those are the ‘pre install’ questions. At this stage, the wizard will begin with Step 1 Describe Databases. But we will save Step 1 for the next blog in this series!

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