If you've got two days and $1,000, Oracle University promises that you can get Oracle's newest database release, 10g, up and running without a hitch. That's right, two days. Your level of experience doesn't matter, Oracle says.
Tell experienced database administrators that rookies can master 10g in two days, and you're likely to hear comments like Jared Still's. "I do not believe that, in two days, a newbie can acquire the deeper knowledge of Oracle that is sometimes needed to fix problems that arise -- and cannot be rectified by finding the correct button on a Control Panel," said Still, who works at Hillsboro, Ore.-based RadiSys Corp.
Still is among those DBAs who are tired of hearing Oracle pledge to automate low-level administrative tasks, since he has already automated those tasks himself. As for the two-day workshop, Still said, he couldn't envision it providing more than the basics.
"In two days, I believe, it is possible for a newbie to learn to push the buttons necessary to install Oracle on a server and run the GUI to set up a basic Oracle Net installation," Still said.
Oracle University is pitching the course as part of a "new, efficient curriculum based on a new, efficient product." The idea is to attract DBAs and companies using systems they are convinced are simpler and less expensive than Oracle, and introduce them to the newly automated -- and recently discounted -- 10g.
According to John L. Hall, senior vice president of Oracle University, the new 10g introductory course and two advanced administrator classes are going to bring many DBAs up to speed on 10g by putting them in real-world database environments.
Students in the class will spend 70% of their time in a laboratory, working on databases, according to Hall. In the past, students spent about 70% of their time in classrooms, listening to lectures.
This sort of hands-on training, and Oracle's newly automated features, sound good to people like Glen Stromquist, a DBA for Boyle, Alberta-based Alberta Pacific Forest Industries Inc.
Stromquist said that "being a relatively junior DBA, I am still very much on the steep part of the learning curve. I feel that being able to automate many tasks allows me to learn more of the never-ending features of Oracle, and learn this information even faster."