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Oracle: read the entries from alert log

Sometimes it’s necessary to read the information from the alert log together with the timestamp of the error.

The very simple Unix-shell script helps to do this:

echo 'Enter # of lines:'
read NUM
tail -$NUM alert_${ORACLE_SID}.log | awk '
 BEGIN {prev="" ; ret=1 }
 /^(...-|Error)/ { if ( prev !~ /^(...-|Error)/ ) { print "" ; print prev;} print $0;ret=0}
 END { exit ret } '

This code could be assigned to some hotkey in Your favorite telnet application, so You just need to press something like “Alt+A” to see the quick review of the recent Oracle errors.


Enter # of lines:

Sep 01 19:42:03 2009
Errors in fileARC0: Archiving not possible: error count exceeded

Sep 01 19:42:06 2009
Errors in file testsrv_arc0_23486.trc:
ORA-16038: log 1 sequence# 112 cannot be archived
ORA-19502: write error on file “”, blockno (blocksize=)
ORA-00312: online log 1 thread 1: ‘redo_g1_m1.log’

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