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Server running, but Oracle's down?

Regarding your response to ORA-01034 and ORA-27101 on trying to log in to database on the following error: ORA-01034 ORACLE not available, ORACLE database is not started
ORA-27101: shared memory realm does not exist.

We have been seeing the same error on a daily basis. We are running Resin application server with a database connection to Oracle on the same machine. This is a common configuration that all of us use on our development boxes. We have a training server for outside access to groups around the country to use to learn our applications. Nearly every morning we come in to find this error has occurred. If we check the Windows services, Oracle is running. If we stop and restart the service, everything picks up fine. This is happens on this box, and yes the service is set to start automatically -- although this is not relevant as the error is occurring when we have a connection open. Do you have any idea what is wrong?

It is possible for the service to be running, but for the Oracle instance to be down. This commonly happens when the instance terminates abnormally for some reason. But if you want to verify this, with the instance started and the service started, fire up SQL*Plus and perform the following:

connect / as sysdba
shutdown immediate

The instance will be down, but if you look at the services, the service will still be running. Give the "startup" command to start the instance.

So the trick is to find out why your instance is not running. Look in the directory denoted by your BACKGROUND_DUMP_DEST parameter. Your Alert log is in this directory. The Alert Log should contain a clue as to why the instance was terminated. There might also be some trace files in that directory which can give clues. You'll have to look at the Alert log to narrow down the cause of your problem.

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