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Oracle 12c introduces the new Pluggable Database (PDB) functionality into the Oracle database. What’s the advantage of PDBs? PDBs eliminate the heavy memory overhead of starting up a full Oracle instance requiring a new SGA and full set of background processes. Instead, we startup one container database (CDB) and then PDBs all share resources of the CDB. With a CDB & PDBs, there is one instance, one set of background processes, one SGA and these are shared among the PDBs. Starting a PDB only requires about 100MB of memory as opposed to half a GB normally required to start an Oracle instance. Because of this reduced memory cost one can go from running 50 instances of Oracle on 20GB of memory to running 250 PDBs in that same 20GB of memory. (numbers given by Oracle benchmarks)
One of the main use cases for PDBs is cloning a database for use in development and QA. With PDBs, one can easily give every developer in a development team their own copy of a database, except for one thing. Each of those PDBs, even though they take up hardly any memory, still require a full set of datafiles. Creation of these datafiles is slow and costly. That’s where Delphix comes in.
With Delphix, having 10 copies of the same database takes up less than the size of the original database! How is that done? It’s done by compressing the original copy and then sharing all the duplicate blocks in that copy among all the clones.
Thus where PDBs give you database for free at the memory level, Delphix gives you free databases at the disk footprint level and the combination of the two gives you practically free databases!
Oracle marketing slide showing 50 separate databases can run in 20 GB of RAM and 250 PDBs can run in 20 GB of RAM. “5x more scalable”
Video example of how easy it is with Delphix to link to a PDB in one CDB and the provision it, thin clone, to another CDB on a different machine: