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The 9.2.0.2 patchset: Migration or upgrade?

I am currently testing the patchset for Oracle 9.2.0.1 to 9.2.0.2. Why is this Oracle patchset an upgrade/migration? It isn't being sold or advertised as an upgrade.

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This patchset is not really an upgrade or a migration, in the truest senses of the words. An upgrade would be going from Oracle 9.2.0 to 9.2.1. A migration would be going from Oracle 7 to Oracle 8. Beginning in Oracle 9i, the official documentation now refers to all of this as a migration. But many Oracle DBAs still make the distinction between an upgrade and a migration.

There is a difference in this patchset which blurs the lines. Previous patchsets, like going from Oracle 8.0.4 to 8.0.5, just required shutting down the database and installing software. Then the databases were restarted. With this patchset, from 9.2.0.1 to 9.2.0.2, you shut down the database and install the software. Then, things get blurred towards the upgrade/migrate steps. You have to STARTUP MIGRATE the database and run the $ORACLE_HOME/rdbms/admin/catpatch.sql script.

In the end, for old school DBAs, this is still a patchset. But the lines are getting blurred to make it look more and more like an upgrade.

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This was first published in February 2003

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