Thursday, August 16, 2007

Oracle Support and 11g

There were some initial reports that Oracle Support had pushed back on providing SR support for Oracle Database 11g after it's initial release last week. I've not heard any reports in the last couple of days, so I hope this problem has been resolved.

However, this does bring up a good topic, dealing with Oracle support.

First and foremost, one has to realize that while Oracle support is a service organization, it is a big organization. As a result Oracle support sometimes lumbers slower than one would like, and sometimes you get a support analyst that is less than steller. All this is to be expected with a large organization. Because of this it's important to know how to move around such a beast.

First of all, when you open an SR and you need some form of response, make sure the SR is a priority 2 or better. Obviously if you don't want to work the thing 24/7 then you don't need it to be a priority 1, but I've seen priority 4's lag into forever before you get help. I've never seen a priority 3 I don't think (not that I've noticed), so I don't know if those even exist. How do you ensure that your SR is a priority 2? I've noticed that when you enter the SR, if you mark the last 3 questions as NO. These questions are:

Can you easily recover from, bypass or work around the problem?
Does your system or application continue normally after the problem occurs?
Are the standard features of the system or application still available; is the loss of service minor?

These will make you a priority 2. You can also always ask the person working your SR to escalate to a 2.

The next key is escalation. There was a very good post on ORACLE-L which references Chris Warticki's Blog with information about this very topic, so rather than rehash it, I'll just post a blog link here:

The bottom line with Oracle support seems to be the squeaky SR gets the oil. You pay a lot for that support, so squeak my friends!

[Edit: added some clarity to a sentence]


Joel Garry said...

I just asked them an RMAN question (about 9iR2 nocatalog getting archived logs out of RMAN, requiring use of that internal note 60545.1) and received excellent service without playing prioritization games. There was a glitch in them sending me something in email, though, so I did have to phone and ask someone to send elsewhere.

I think it just depends which group you get, what you are asking about, and your expectations. Sometimes it just works fine by following the directions, we can but hope that is the mode.

Robert Freeman said...

I agree with you, it just depends. Sometimes it's incredible, and sometimes it's.... well, not incredible. :-)

OraTek said...

Six years with Oracle Support (Server Technologies), and I can guarantee that it is the squeaky SR that gets the oil. Analysts can have 30-50 SRs in various states, and if you have a bunch of severity 2's, the sev 3s will get neglected unless you keep updating the SR or call.

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