I am in the process of configuring an RMAN backup. I created a recovery catalog. I get the following error while trying to connect to the target database as shown:
RMAN> connect target sys/xxxxx@oratest;

Error message is ORA-01031.

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You are getting this error message because the account that you are trying to connect to does not have sufficient privileges. What you may not realize is that when RMAN connects to the target database, it connects as SYSDBA whether you indicate it or not. So right now, you are probably saying that there still shouldn't be a problem because SYS and sign on as SYSDBA. But your CONNECT command includes "@oratest". This means that you are not connecting locally. Even if the target database is on the same server, it is not considered a local connection this way. Since it is not a local connection, you must have configured your database to allow SYSDBA connections remotely. This is done by creating a password file with the ORAPWD utility. Then set REMOTE_LOGIN_PASSWORDFILE to EXCLUSIVE in your parameter file and bounce the database. You should now be able to connect SYS AS SYSDBA remotely and the above will not receive the ORA-1031 error message.

This was first published in March 2004

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