Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Newbie hints and tips

Following an anonymous post requesting an elaboration on the hints given by Jeff Hunter, I have decided to dedicate this post to just that.

Here are Jeff's comments in full, in an email response to my request for information...

"From the perspective of somebody who answers a lot of questions, I can give a newbie this advice:

1. State your problem clearly. On a forum I frequent you may get hit with a "Crystal ball broken today, please explain" if you don't state your problem clearly.

2. Explain what you want to do. Please include sample data and any errors you encounter.

3. Do not be offended when someone asks you what the business justification is. You may be trying to do something stupid, and we're just trying to figure out why.

4. Tell me what you've done already. Do you want me to assume you did a full backup before I tell you to drop a tablespace?

5. Please understand we do this for free. Sure, we learn how to solve problems in the process, but you get more out of this than we do.
Getting upset with me just puts you on my ignore list.

6. I don't care if your problem is URGENT!! to you. In fact, if you mark your message URGENT!!! I will probably ignore it. You DO have support, right?

7. No, I won't give you my CSI so you can create a metalink account. "

Pretty much common sense, right?

If you are a Newbie, you will do well to take note of this advice.

If you want people to help you, then you have to learn how to help yourself first.

I'm collating a list like this of all comments made by 'seasoned veterans' on how to be a good Newbie. It will appear in my presentation and I will continue to post comments here.


Blogger shrek said...

all good ideas. an try things first. you do have a snadbox right? [OK OK, neither do I, but I can find a test database to try things on.]

Tuesday, August 30, 2005 10:17:00 pm  
Blogger Thomas Kyte said...

I recognize that crystal ball quote, believe I've seen it myself.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005 4:50:00 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd be guessing that 95% or more of all problems with Oracle have already been found and solved. Newbies should learn to search Google, TechNet, Metalink, chatgroups and forums to find their question already answered.

I'm sure Tom has seen 100's of the same questions posed on AskTom over the years.

Also, a cutdown version of the problem situation is also handy to have. I'd rather not have to replicate your 50 column table containing clobs if I don't need to.

Thursday, September 01, 2005 4:17:00 am  
Blogger Thomas Kyte said...

Also, a cutdown version of the problem situation is also handy to have.

Hear Hear.

I use a slide that says:

test cases are:

o small
o concise
o complete
o short
o terse
o self contained
o did I say small?
o totally complete

I find my own mistake many times in the making of them. Take away the non-relevant pieces and the mistake is sitting right there (or you have a test case!)

Thursday, September 01, 2005 8:05:00 pm  
Anonymous Niramit Soonthawong said...

very good one...thanks for sharing

Friday, March 07, 2008 8:36:00 pm  

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