How you use OS-level commands to backup your database depends on your environment. Since you are using AIX, you might be able to use tar for this operation. However, RAC can make things more complex. Is your RAC file system a RAW file system? An ASM file system? Or a clustered file system? If you're using a clustered file system, then you can use tar. If you're using a RAW file system, you can use the dd command. In all cases, using RMAN will back up your RAC database regardless of the file system.
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