Title: What is ASM and how does Netvault Interract with it?
NV Version: 7.4.x
OS Version: Any
Application version:Oracle 10g
Plugin version:RMAN 4.5+
Description: What is Oracle ASM and how does NetVault work with it?
Oracle ASM (Automated Storage Management) was introduced in Oracle 10g. ASM is the logical extension of the power of Oracle-managed files (OMF). ASM was designed to simplify database administration by eliminating the need for the DBA to directly manage the thousands of Oracle database files that could be present in a modern Oracle instance. ASM does this by enabling ASM disk groups, which are logical units comprised of disks and the files that reside on them. These disk groups and files are only accessable to the Oracle Software and cannot be treated as normal filesystems.
The result of using ASM is generally much more efficient filehandling and disk access in Oracle, but the NetVault can only interract with these files by using the Oracle RMAN program, the individual files are not visible to the NetVault Filesystem plugin.
This means that the Netvault Oracle Online Plugin will not work with an Oracle database over ASM, you must make use of the RMAN plugin. The Oracle RMAN plugin makes direct use of the Oracle RMAN progam and can communicate correctly with the ASM Disk groups.
The one caveat to this in a Netvault Oracle RMAN GUI backup is that the ini file (SPFILE or PFILE) is not backed up using RMAN - it is backed up using the Netvault Filesystem functionality within the RMan plugin, therefore this ini file must reside on a regular filesystem and not on an ASM diskgroup if it to be backed up. It is possible to perform an RMAN controlled backup which performs a backup SPFILE, but this cannot currently be driven through the GUI.