RE: databases per dba

  • From: "Parker, Matthew" <matthewp@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <zimsbait@xxxxxxxxx>, "Oracle List" <oracle-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Jun 2005 11:46:30 -0700

It depends a lot on what you have your dba's perform as tasks and what =
portion of the job your team spends on automating tasks.

I have been in companies where it is 500+ production databases per dba =
and other companies where it is 3 dba's per production database. Note =
those same dba's covered the equivalent dev, test and qa databases that =
goes with their production dbs.

3rd party application databases are only more work if the dba has to =
performa application level tasks. Databases in general are more work if =
you have a weak development/operational maintenance team or if your =
company doesn't plan well or operates in a less expensive manner to =
solve problems.

Large scale management of systems requires automating, planning and =
execution. Performing poorly in any of those areas will cause your =
numbers to approach 1 to 1. In other words it is not the database that =
requires the work force, it is the company and it's policies that =
mandate the work force.

-----Original Message-----
From: oracle-l-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx =
[mailto:oracle-l-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of z b
Sent: Thursday, June 09, 2005 10:57 AM
To: Oracle List
Subject: databases per dba

I would be willing to bet this type of question is poorly regarded in
this group, so
I apologize in advance for any distress it brings. ;-)=3D20
Also, since this may be frowned upon, please respond directly to this
email rather than the list to cut down list clutter.

Please read the disclaimer above before proceeding.

My team has been asked to gather averages of databases dba's manage.
We have looked at Garter and the like, and have some reasonable
numbers to present to the bean counters.

We have several hundred db's in house. Some are pre-packaged (People
Soft, Ora Apps etc) and most are home grown apps and support db's. We
support dev, qc (some systems have multiple qc systems), customer test
db's and of course, production. Systems vary from small OLTP's to
Enterprise level DSS's. A single application has typically 6
environments and instances.

We used the Gartner approach which has you weight db's on homegrown vs
packaged and on the combination of complexity and volatility (this
also includes dba skill levels, growth patterns, schema changes, tools
available to exploit etc). I think there were some things were absent
from the formula (and no formula will be perfect when looking at this)
but it is a good "rough outline". Of course, to get true TCO, you need
to balance this per market rates and take other external factors into

However, above and beyond this formula, we're also looking at
real-world situations and shops. All the dba's on the team have
related past job experiences (what we've seen in shops we've been at
in past lives). If anyone is interested, what we've come up with so
far is ~15 instances/dba as a typical threshold.

I wanted to just get some rough numbers on how many db's others
support. I'd appreciate any feedback.
Thanks in advance.


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