Aaron Leonard wrote,on my timestamp of 14/01/2011 7:12 AM:
On various schedules, we take snapshots (EMC storage), mount them r/w to different mountpoints and startup Oracle instances on those. The point is to have fast, point-in-time views of our data, which can be modified and reported on for an extended period of time. At any one time, we have up to 20 different snapshot databases running. Some are retained up to 3 months before we recreated them from a new snapshot.
Wouldn't be surprised if snapshots - or at least similar functionality - won't available soon. Oracle is starting to compete with traditional SANs and this is a very strong argument in favour of said hardware. I for one wouldn't be able to run our site without snapshots, nowadays: it'd be impossible to implement our DR strategy without them, for example.
The other thing I recommend you do is have a read through this: http://kevinclosson.wordpress.com/ and the "clone db without snapshots" series of articles.It is quite possible your solution is already there, depending on your Oracle release level and ability to run NFS.
Worth a read if nothing else to find out what is possible now. -- Cheers Nuno Souto in sunny Sydney, Australia dbvision@xxxxxxxxxxxx -- http://www.freelists.org/webpage/oracle-l