I want to know how to back up a SYSTEM tablespace using a user-managed backup, which is not recommended. Also, I don't want to use RMAN for this. Please let me know the solution.

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Backing up a SYSTEM tablespace with user-managed backups is no different than backing up any other tablespace. If performing a cold backup, copy the tablespace's datafile(s) after the instance has been shut down. If performing a hot backup, issue the following:
ALTER TABLESPACE system BEGIN BACKUP;
Then copy the datafiles.

This was first published in April 2007

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