Author Archive: Martin Berger

OCI Database Backup Service Configuration – Avoid 401 Unauthorized Error

While I a preparing new exercises for an Oracle Cloud Infrastructure training, I ran into an issue while configuring the Oracle Database Backup Service for the Object Storage. The OCI backup module installer returns an error 401.

My Environment

  • Oracle Linux 7 Virtual Box Machine
  • Oracle 19c RDBMS

Backup Service Module Installation Error

The installation was done according the documenation https://docs.oracle.com/en/cloud/paas/db-backup-cloud/csdbb/oracle-database-cloud-backup-module-oci.html

Error Message – java.io.IOException: testConnection: 401 Unauthorized

What I have verified:

  • Private key format and permissions
  • OCIDs
  • FingerPrint

But all of them were correct. There is no My Oracle Support note available about this error together with Oracle Database Backup Service. But after some more investigation, I found this note here: EBSCloudBackup.pl Failed When Performing Database Tier Upload Task (Doc ID 2588278.1) – bingo! This note described exactly my case with the cloud backup. The machine time is wrong!

My actual Machine Time and Date

The timezone CEST is correct. But wait, here in Kestenholz at the famous Jurasüdfuss / Switzerland, we have 14:38 local time. The virtual machine was 2 hours “in the future”. Let’s install the NTP service deamon.

NTP Installation and Configuration

Now the time is right:

OCI Backup Configuration – 2nd Try

Now the oci_installer.jar runs fine and the configuration will be created. Et voilà.

Lesson learned

Take care about time and date settings when you build virtual machines for testing purposes. And aways install a time service like NTP or chrony.

Monitor your Oracle Cloud Free Tier with Grafana on Oracle Linux 8

In a previous blog post I wrote about monitoring Oracle Cloud Infrastructure components by Grafana. In the meantime, we got the Oracle Cloud Free Tier. Here is an updated version.

This blog post shows you how to install and configure the Grafana plugin based on the Oracle blog entry https://blogs.oracle.com/cloudnative/data-source-grafana on an Oracle Enterprise Linux 8 server.

Steps to monitor the Oracle Cloud Free Tier by the OCI Grafana Plugin

  1. Install and configure the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure CLI – by download or by YUM install
  2. Configure Group, User and Policy in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Console
  3. Install Grafana and the OCI Plugin
  4. Configure the Grafana DataSource
  5. Create a new Dashboard with OCI Metrics

Machine Requirements

The server needs access to the internet.

Install and configure the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure CLI

Link: https://docs.cloud.oracle.com/iaas/Content/API/SDKDocs/cliinstall.htm

In this step, the software will be installed an configured. The new created SSH public key has to be added in the OCI console for further actions.

As OS user root we create a new user for OCI actions. 

Login as user oci, execute the CLI download and installation script. Answer questions with Y / Enter to get the default installation.

Default values:

install directory /home/oci/lib/oracle-cli
executable directory /home/oci/bin
OCI scripts /home/oci/bin/oci-cli-scripts
optional CLI packages db
shell/tab completion Y
path to rc file /home/oci/.bashrc

 

After the successful CLI installation, you have to configure it.

Based on your OCI account, these information are required – let the config and key location on default values.

config location /home/oci/.oci/config
user OCID OCI > Identity > Users > [YOUR_USER] > OCID
tenancy OCID OCI > Administration > Tenancy Details > [YOUR_TENANCY] > OCID
region choose your region, e.g. eu-zurich-1
generate a new key pair Y -> only if you don’t have already created a key pair
key directory /home/oci/.oci
key name oci_api_key

 

Add the content of the public key file in the OCI console to your user which you want to work with.

Attention: Be sure that you add the public key to the user which you have used for the CLI configuration!

Test the CLI configuration – example to list all compartments in your tenant.

Alternative Method Oracle Linux 7 – YUM Repository

Thanks to Sergio Leunissen from Oracle for his input, the Python SDK and oci utilities are is available in the YUM repository too and ready to install. Take a look at his blog post to see how to work with the Python SDK and OCI metadata:

Configure Group, modify User and add a Policy in Oracle Cloud Infrastructure Web Interface

Group

Create a new OCI group called Grafana. OCI > Identity > Groups.

Modify User

Add the selected user to the group – for example this is my user.

Add a Policy

Create a new policy called GrafanaPolicy. OCI > Identity > Policies.

allow group grafana to read metrics in tenancy
allow group grafana to read compartments in tenancy

Install Grafana and the OCI Plugin

Link: https://grafana.com/grafana/download?platform=linux

Login as user root and install Grafana.

Enable auto start and start the Grafana server manually.

Enable port 3000 (Grafana default port in firewall – the port can be changed in /etc/grafana/grafana.ini) to provide web access to Grafana.

Install the Grafana Oracle Cloud Infrastructure oci-datasource plugin.

Verify the Grafana plugin directory with the installed plugin.

Grafana needs the configuration file and the SSH Key from the user oci. As user root, copy the files and set the ownership to OS user grafana.

Change the path to the key file in /usr/share/grafana/.oci/config.

# vi /usr/share/grafana/.oci/config

From:

To:

Create a new Dashboard based on OCI Metrics

Open your browser and log in into Grafana with [SERVERNAME]:3000. Username and password are admin/admin. You have to change your initial password imme diately.

Add data source

Select Oracle Cloud Infrastructure

Configure the Data Source

Fill in your tenancy OCI, region and set Environment = Local. Test the connection. For troubleshooting see Grafana logfile in directory /var/log/grafana. If your default region like ZRH / EU-ZURICH-1 is not listed, then you have to edit the a plugin file as described below. Otherweise no metrics are shown.

Example to use Grafana for the Datacenter eu-zurich-1:

Edit the file /var/lib/grafana/plugins/oci-datasource/dist/constants.js and add your missed region – restart Grafana.

Error message in the grafana.log when your region is not added in file content.js but you select the region as data source:

Create a new Dashboard and Add Query

Create a Query to visualize Data

In this dashboard example I used the region eu-zurich-1, my compartment, the namespace oci_autonomous_database and the metric CpuUtilization.

There are a lot of other metrics available like:

  • CurrentLogons
  • ExecutionCount
  • Sessions
  • StorageUtilization (in %)
  • etc.

Available Metrics

 Learn more about metrics and monitoring in the OCI documentation here:

Summary

The OCI Grafana plugin is a nice solution to visualize your Oracle Cloud Free Tier environment based on Open Source software. Take care, Grafana needs access to the OCI CLI SSH information for the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure connection.

Oracle Database Appliance X6-L Memory Expansion – Overwritten HugePage Settings after Reboot

A Customer has extended his Oracle Database Appliance X6-L with Oracle Database Appliance Memory Expansion Kit from 192GB to 384GB. After the first startup, the odacli tool has recognized the additional available memory and gave us the suggested value for the new HugePage settings.

The ODA has the newest available patchset applied, OS is Oracle Enterprise Linux 6.10.

Update the OS Configuration

Oracle suggested the new values for the HugePage settings to 135350MB. 

According the Oracle documentation Oracle® Database Appliance X6-2S/X6-2M/X6-2L Deployment and User’s Guide – Section 13.14 – we updated the OS configuration by odacli. The job was finished after some seconds.

odacli update-osconfigurations (page 13-70)
Use the command odacli update-osconfigurations to update the HugePage and memlock values.

Verfication

The HugePage Settings were updated now.

Time for a hardware restart.

Old HugePage Values after ODA Restart

But, after the machine has started, the old HugePage values were back again. But who has overwritten the settings?

An SR has solved the problem, the are two files in the OS which are responsible for that behavior:

  • /etc/sysctl.d/99-initial-sysctl.conf
  • /etc/sysctl.d/99-oracle-rdbms-server-12cR1-preinstall-sysctl.conf

We take a look at the values:

Solution: Remove these two Files

First, we updated the OS Configuration again.

Second, we removed the files.

Third, we restarted the Oracle Database Appliance.

Finally

HugePage settings are persistent now. By the way, there is an My Oracle Support note for the OS Level 6.10 which describes such a case too:

Changes in sysctl.conf File are not Persistent after Reboot (Doc ID 2477376.1)