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Full copy or export?

I'm not an Oracle techie; you'll gather this from my question.

We run the Oracle payroll application on a 8.1.7 database. We are upgrading the application to enable a patch install and will also upgrade the database to 9i. The database runs off AIX 4.3.3 but will move to 5L. The work is being done by Oracle and involves two trials: trial 1 is a system test and trial 2 is UAT.

My question regards the database upgrade. As the database data is sensitive we will not share this with Oracle, hence should our DBA do a full copy or an export? When you do a full copy or export are things like schema objects copied across and the tablespace allocated to these schemas? Is there a Web resource which lists all the elements that are copied across under a full copy and an export?

One final point -- data currently resides on a storage area network but will move to network attached storage.


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If you have contracted with Oracle Corp. to perform your upgrade, then you will have to have some level of trust with them. To do the upgrade, the individual performing the task needs SYSDBA access, which means they will be able to see any and all data in the database. So that individual has access to the data whether you perform an export or not. No matter who does the upgrade, they should be made aware that the data in the database is sensitive and/or confidential for your company. This should be put in writing in the contract along with any penalties for breach of contract.

When you perform a full export of the database, all objects in the database will be in the created dump file. This includes tables, indexes, procedures, triggers, sequences, etc. The best resource for understanding the export/import utilities is the documentation. Look for the Utilities Guide for your version for information on export and import.

This was first published in December 2006

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