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Steps for setting up archive log mode

I set the database to archive log mode, but no archive logs are created. When I try to take RMAN backups I get the following error:

$ cat 1
RMAN-03022:

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compiling command: send
RMAN-06421: sent command to channel: ch00

RMAN-03022: compiling command: backup
RMAN-03023: executing command: backup
RMAN-08008: channel ch00: starting incremental level 0 datafile backupset
RMAN-08502: set_count=34 set_stamp=514656620 creation_time=05-JAN-04
RMAN-08010: channel ch00: specifying datafile(s) in backupset
RMAN-00571:
===========================================================
RMAN-00569: =============== ERROR MESSAGE STACK FOLLOWS
===============
RMAN-00571:
===========================================================
RMAN-03007: retryable error occurred during execution of command:
backup
RMAN-07004: unhandled exception during command execution on channel ch00
RMAN-10035: exception raised in RPC: ORA-19602: cannot backup or copy active file in NOARCHIVELOG mode
RMAN-10031: ORA-19624 occurred during call to
DBMS_BACKUP_RESTORE.BACKUPDATAFILE

Recovery Manager complete.

$
There is more to placing the database in archive mode than just setting some INIT.ORA parameters. You have to explicitly tell the database to start archiving after you've set those parameters. To do that, you'll have to follow these steps:

1. Shut down the database.
2. STARTUP MOUNT
3. ARCHIVE LOG START (this actually starts archiving)
4. ALTER DATABASE OPEN
5. ARCHIVE LOG LIST (this will let you know if archiving is turned on or not)

This was first published in January 2004

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