If you have been working in IT corporate world for at least a few years, you know damn well that your IT job forces you to LEARN all the time.
One of my friends, who has been a SQL Server DBA all his life, was asked to learn Oracle Database Administration by his manager because his company had only a few SQL Server databases and many Oracle databases.
Because he is a smart guy, his company wanted to try having him do some non-critical Oracle DBA tasks first as a test, rather than hire a totally new person. If he succeeded, his company would obviously put him on more Oracle projects. This way his job would like become more secure because now he has more work to do. The company would not have to hire another resource. If even they did, how that resource is going to perform is a totally different story. It’s a WIN-WIN scenario for both my friend and his company.
If you’re like my friend and you’re reading this article, you must have your own reasons for becoming interested in Oracle Database Administration. Let us look into these reasons and see if they are really valid.
As a SQL Server DBA, why would YOU care to learn Oracle Database Administration?
- Your job requirements may change anytime forcing you to learn Oracle. This reason definitely valid. My friend is a living proof for this.
- Once you gain a decent amount of knowledge and experience in Oracle, you could eventually have more job opportunities. But we are not making any assumptions here. Let’s do a simple test.
On Dice.com, as of January 23rd, 2016, 448 jobs just in California, which require both Oracle and SQL Server skills, were listed.
Here’s the proof.
- You’re more likely to get a 11% pay raise. According to payscale.com, these are the skills that affect Database Administrator salaries.
- Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server are similar in many aspects. This post is a nice write-up on their similarities and differences.
What gets in the way of SQL Server DBAs when they try to learn Oracle Database Administration?
Going back to my friend’s example, after he was asked to learn Oracle by his manager, he has been trying to pick up Oracle. But he hasn’t progressed much.
So I went and asked him, “What is your single most challenging thing when it comes to learning Oracle?”
His exact words were “I am a Windows guy. I don’t know UNIX.”
If you are in the same situation and have a different challenge, please let me know by commenting below or take this survey.
But that makes sense. Right?
As SQL Server DBAs, you must have spent all your career life working on Windows platforms because Microsoft SQL Server is only available for Windows. No wonder why you get stuck when you need to work with Unix.
But I didn’t stop there. I kept digging my friend for other challenges he has been facing.
This time he said he is just BUSY due to personal issues.
Well, I am not the one to judge. Sometime people are truly busy. But what I have learnt is that once we consider something as priority, we will manage to find time for it somehow.
Basically all I am saying is if you want to learn something and that is going to help you significantly in your life. Then you must make it a priority.
While I cannot help my friend or you much with managing your time, I can definitely help you breakthrough with your UNIX challenges.
Here’s a free tutorial video I made on Basic Unix Commands. Please make sure you have a Unix/Linux environment so you can practice the commands in the video as you learn them. Feel free to check out my blog post on How to Install Oracle Virtualbox. That should get you started.
It’s a very long video. Once you learn this much, you know you CANNOT use the excuse – “But I don’t know Unix to learn Oracle” – anymore.
If you would like me to create more Oracle tutorials like this especially for SQL Server DBAs, please let me know what’s the single most challenging thing you face in learning Oracle Database Administration by commenting below or taking this short survey.