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Determining what patch level is needed

I am using Oracle 8.1.7 on Windows 2000. Oracle recommends that we have the Oracle patch (or hotfix) level up to date. How will I find out what patch level (hotfix) I need? For example, from 8.1.7.1 to 8.1.7.4.1, I was able to see when connecting to Oracle, but I had to install the latest hotfix for some functions to work from 8.1.7.4.1 to 8.1.7.4.10. But after applying the hotfix I could not see the effects. It is still showing 8.1.7.4.1. In Unix, we have the command called 'which' followed by file name, but in Windows, I do not know what it is. Can you help me find out?

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There is no exact what of determining which hotfixes were applied. You can't query a view or anything like that to make an accurate determination. You could issue queries like the following:

ORA9I SQL> select * from v$version;

BANNER
----------------------------------------------------------------
Oracle9i Enterprise Edition Release 9.2.0.4.0 -
Production
PL/SQL Release 9.2.0.4.0 - Production
CORE    9.2.0.3.0       Production
TNS for Solaris: Version 9.2.0.4.0 - Production
NLSRTL Version 9.2.0.4.0 - Production

ORA9I SQL> select comp_name,version from dba_registry;

COMP_NAME                      VERSION
------------------------------
------------------------------
Oracle9i Catalog Views         9.2.0.4.0
Oracle9i Packages and Types    9.2.0.4.0
JServer JAVA Virtual Machine   9.2.0.4.0
Oracle9i Java Packages         9.2.0.4.0
Oracle XDK for Java            9.2.0.6.0
Oracle Workspace Manager       9.0.1.0.0

6 rows selected.

However, if your patch or hotfix does not directly touch a particular component, then its version will not get updated. The best way to know for sure is to keep a log of all actions taken on the database. This type of log should be part of the DBA's documentation for all instances.

This was first published in September 2003

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