Data Guard - Oracle Data Guard
Data Guard standby databases provide high return on investment by also supporting ad-hoc queries, reporting, backups, or test activity, while providing disaster protection. Specifically:
• The Active Data Guard option, first available with Oracle Database 11g, enables a physical standby database to be used for read-only applications while simultaneously receiving updates from the primary database. Queries executed on an active standby database receive up-to-date results.
• Snapshot Standby enables a physical standby database to be open read-write for testing or any activity that requires a read-write replica of production data. A Snapshot Standby continues to receive, but not apply, updates generated by the primary. These updates are applied to the standby database automatically when the Snapshot Standby is converted back to a physical standby database. Primary data is protected at all times.
• A logical standby database has the additional flexibility of being open read-write. While data that is being maintained by SQL Apply cannot be modified, additional local tables can be added to the database, and local index structures can be created to optimize reporting, or to utilize the standby database as a data warehouse, or to transform information used to load data marts.
• Standby databases can be used to perform planned maintenance in a rolling fashion. Maintenance is first performed on a standby database. Production is switched over to the standby database when the maintenance tasks are completed. The only downtime is the time needed to effect a switchover operation. This increases availability and reduces risk when performing hardware or O.S. maintenance, site maintenance, or when upgrading to new database patchsets, full database releases, or implementing other significant database changes.
• A physical standby database, because it is an exact replica of the primary database, can also be used to offload the primary database of the overhead of performing backups.
Data Guard offers these benefits:
Disaster recovery, data protection, and high availability
Data Guard provides an efficient and comprehensive disaster recovery and high availability solution. Easy-to-manage switchover and failover capabilities allow role reversals between primary and standby databases, minimizing the downtime of the primary database for planned and unplanned outages.
Complete data protection
Data Guard can ensure no data loss, even in the face of unforeseen disasters. A standby database provides a safeguard against data corruption and user errors. Storage level physical corruptions on the primary database do not propagate to the standby database. Similarly, logical corruptions or user errors that cause the primary database to be permanently damaged can be resolved. Finally, the redo data is validated when it is applied to the standby database.
Efficient use of system resources
The standby database tables that are updated with redo data received from the primary database can be used for other tasks such as backups, reporting, summations, and queries, thereby reducing the primary database workload necessary to perform these tasks, saving valuable CPU and I/O cycles. With a logical standby database, users can perform normal data manipulation on tables in schemas that are not updated from the primary database. A logical standby database can remain open while the tables are updated from the primary database, and the tables are simultaneously available for read-only access. Finally, additional indexes and materialized views can be created on the maintained tables for better query performance and to suit specific business requirements.
Flexibility in data protection to balance availability against performance requirements
Oracle Data Guard offers maximum protection, maximum availability, and maximum performance modes to help enterprises balance data availability against system performance requirements.
Automatic gap detection and resolution
If connectivity is lost between the primary and one or more standby databases (for example, due to network problems), redo data being generated on the primary database cannot be sent to those standby databases. Once a connection is reestablished, the missing archived redo log files (referred to as a gap) are automatically detected by Data Guard, which then automatically transmits the missing archived redo log files to the standby databases. The standby databases are synchronized with the primary database, without manual intervention by the DBA.
Centralized and simple management
The Data Guard broker provides a graphical user interface and a command-line interface to automate management and operational tasks across multiple databases in a Data Guard configuration. The broker also monitors all of the systems within a single Data Guard configuration.
Integration with Oracle Database
Data Guard is a feature of Oracle Database Enterprise Edition and does not require separate installation.
Automatic role transitions
When fast-start failover is enabled, the Data Guard broker automatically fails over to a synchronized standby site in the event of a disaster at the primary site, requiring no intervention by the DBA. In addition, applications are automatically notified of the role transition.
A Data Guard configuration consists of one production database and one or more standby databases. The databases in a Data Guard configuration are connected by Oracle Net and may be dispersed geographically. There are no restrictions on where the databases are located, provided they can communicate with each other. For example, you can have a standby database on the same system as the production database, along with two standby databases on other systems at remote locations.
You can manage primary and standby databases using the SQL command-line interfaces or the Data Guard broker interfaces, including a command-line interface (DGMGRL) and a graphical user interface that is integrated in Oracle Enterprise Manager.
A Data Guard configuration contains one production database, also referred to as the primary database, that functions in the primary role. This is the database that is accessed by most of your applications.
The primary database can be either a single-instance Oracle database or an Oracle Real Application Clusters database.
A standby database is a transactionally consistent copy of the primary database. Using a backup copy of the primary database, you can create up to nine standby databases and incorporate them in a Data Guard configuration. Once created, Data Guard automatically maintains each standby database by transmitting redo data from the primary database and then applying the redo to the standby database.
Similar to a primary database, a standby database can be either a single-instance Oracle database or an Oracle Real Application Clusters database.
A standby database can be either a physical standby database or a logical standby database:
Physical standby database: Provides a physically identical copy of the primary database, with on disk database structures that are identical to the primary database on a block-for-block basis. The database schema, including indexes, are the same. A physical standby database is kept synchronized with the primary database, though Redo Apply, which recovers the redo data received from the primary database and applies the redo to the physical standby database.
A physical standby database can be used for business purposes other than disaster recovery on a limited basis.
Logical standby database: Contains the same logical information as the production database, although the physical organization and structure of the data can be different. The logical standby database is kept synchronized with the primary database though SQL Apply, which transforms the data in the redo received from the primary database into SQL statements and then executing the SQL statements on the standby database.
A logical standby database can be used for other business purposes in addition to disaster recovery requirements. This allows users to access a logical standby database for queries and reporting purposes at any time. Also, using a logical standby database, you can upgrade Oracle Database software and patch sets with almost no downtime. Thus, a logical standby database can be used concurrently for data protection, reporting, and database upgrades.
The following sections explain how Data Guard manages the transmission of redo data, the application of redo data, and changes to the database roles:
1.Redo Transport Services: Control the automated transfer of redo data from the production database to one or more archival destinations.
2.Log Apply Services: Apply redo data on the standby database to maintain transactional synchronization with the primary database. Redo data can be applied either from archived redo log files, or, if real-time apply is enabled, directly from the standby redo log files as they are being filled, without requiring the redo data to be archived first at the standby database.
3.Role Transitions: Change the role of a database from a standby database to a primary database, or from a primary database to a standby database using either a switchover or a failover operation.
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