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Workaround for ORA-04043: Can't describe object using db_link

We have successfully migrated from 7.3.4.0 to 8.1.6.3.0 using the migration utility provided by Oracle. But we have the problem ORA-04043: CANNOT DESCRIBE OBJECT USING DB_LINK. Now we cannot describe tables on remote database using db_link. I have raised the TAR (2468007.995) with Oracle, but Oracle says its a bug (bug no:763958 ). What can be the solution for this ?

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The fix would be to upgrade to 8.1.7. But, the workaround to stop getting the error message is simply to not try to use a synonym on a remote db when describing a table. Whenever you try to use DESCRIBE synonym@dblink, you get the error. So, in order to not get the error, you'll have to refer to the actual remote table instead (ex: DESCRIBE table@dblink). You obviously have to know the exact table name instead of just the synonym, but that's the only way to workaround the bug until you upgrade to 8.1.7.

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This was first published in September 2002

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