Hmm... Oracle Database Cloud Vendors Want Efficient Systems

Posted on 20-Jun-2013 by Craig Shallahamer,

Of course they do. Right?

Oracle Database performance tuning and analysis has come a long way in the last 20 years. First there was the "just add more resources" approach and tuning the blatantly poor SQL. Then there was ratio analysis, followed by wait event analysis, time based analysis, and unit of work time based analysis. In addition to the performance diagnosis and analysis evolution, the Oracle Database as a product has changed, and architectures are more diverse. Yet with all this change, some things are in many ways timeless. They relate to complexity, basic mathematical statistics, efficiency, and doctrinal purity. Over the next few weeks, I'll post four different "myths." I have recently posted about complexity (better tools) and basic mathematical statistics (average SQL elapsed times). This posting centers on a cloud vendor's desire for efficiency.

Myth #3

The third myth is Infrastructure-as-a-Service (think: cloud) vendors want efficient systems. Fact: A cloud vendor generates revenue when they charge you for CPU cycles, I/O operations, IO space or network activity. Therefore, cloud vendors who charge you for computing resources want you to consume more CPU cycles, perform more I/O operations, consume more disk space, and send/receive more network packets. If that doesn't convince you, think about the marketing messages promising that all the computing resources you will ever need will be easily available.

The solution to "buy more hardware" has become very, very easy. There are no additional contracts; no one to call to install more hardware; no approvals, purchase orders, or approval chain of command; and on and on. This is a vendor's dream!

The message here is "Eat more and be happy, for tomorrow we die," not "Eat healthy and prosper" (or something like that).

But there is good news! Now performance specialists can more easily quantify their work monetarily. Instead of saying the business process dropped from 2 hours to 2 minutes, we can also say we have saved the company $2 million each year!

How can we make such an outlandish statement? It's because the quantitative performance analyst knows how much less CPU time will be consumed and how many fewer I/O operations and network transfers are required. And the analyst knows how much CPU, I/O, and network resources cost! (If you don't know how much they cost, then ask.)

This is yet another reason to get good-very good-at quantitative Oracle performance analysis! We need to understand that it's now very easy to acquire more computing capacity, so the pressure and priority to optimize can be allowed to decrease ... but tomorrow we die. Focus on the ability to quantify our performance work monetarily, and the priorities will more likely align properly.

Now for the commercial: Where can you get the best quantitative Oracle database performance analysis training in the world? OraPub of course and here is the link to get started: (Not just Oracle database performance tuning training, but quantitative Oracle database performance analysis training.)

Thanks for reading!


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Craig Shallahamer is a long time Oracle DBA who specializes in predictive analytics, machine learning and Oracle performance tuning. Craig is a performance researcher and blogger, consultant, author of two books, an enthusiastic conference speaker a passionate teacher and an Oracle ACE Director. More about Craig Shallahamer...

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to email me directly at craig at

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