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Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence Administrator's Guide
Release 2 (9.0.2)

Part Number A90500-02
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This glossary defines terms and concepts used in the Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence Administrator's Guide.  

ad hoc

Intermittent, spontaneous access to the database.

ad-hoc analysis

A type of analysis in which questions are answered by manipulating the dimensions, dimension values, and layout of data in a database.


The browser or other application that makes a request (typically to a Web server).

In a log file entry, the identification string and number that identifies each Web browser request. The agent string typically identifies the browser, its version number, and the operating system upon which it is running.


Widely used open-source Web server software available from the Apache Group.


The process of verifying the identity of a registered user, often as a prerequisite for allowing access to system resources. A visitor to a Web site, for example, may be required to supply a valid username and password as part of the authentication process.

See also: user.

bitmap index

A specialized form of index that indicates the existence or non-existence of a record with a series of ones and zeros.

business intelligence

Any computerized process used to extract or analyze business data for the purpose of indicating the historical performance, current status, and possible forecast for a company. Business intelligence may be used to increase a company's competitive advantage, develop innovative business solutions, or create solutions that focus company efforts on projects with the highest return on investment.


A temporary storage area in computer memory where frequently-accessed data is be stored for fast access.


A value at the level below a particular value in a hierarchy. This value can be a child for more than one parent if the child value belongs to multiple hierarchies.

See also: dimension, hierarchy, level.


The series of clicks, or page transitions, that mark an individual's navigational path through the Internet or a particular Web site.

Clickstream Analytics

The analytical reports created from data that Clickstream Intelligence acquires from your Web site(s). The reports (called worksheets) that comprise Clickstream Analytics can be viewed with Oracle9iAS Discoverer.

Clickstream Loader

The component of Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence that parses, filters, and transforms Web server log files before loading them in to Oracle9i database. The Clickstream Loader resides on the same machine as the Collector Server, the component from which uncompressed Web log files are obtained.

Clickstream site

A Web site for which Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence provides analytics. For each Clickstream site, you define the parameters that control the way clickstream data is acquired and processed.


A user, software application (such as a browser), or computer that requests and relies upon the services, data, or processing of another application or computer (the server). The client is usually the machine that runs your Internet browser.

In a client-server architecture, the client is the front-end portion that sends a request to the back-end, or server, portion. The server processes the request and sends a response to the client.

See also: server.


The architecture in which several personal computers or workstations (clients) are linked to one or more large processors (servers).

Collector Agent

The component of Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence that gathers and compresses Web server log files into units of manageable size, called data packets. The Collector Agent is installed on the Web server machine.

See also: Collector Server.

Collector Server

The component of Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence that retrieves data packets from the Web server and uncompresses the log files for subsequent transfer to the Clickstream Loader. The Collector Server resides on the same machine as the Clickstream Loader.


The text string stored onto the client browser by the server during an HTTP request. Cookies enable an application Web server to retrieve information about a client, such as the domain, path, and other session variables. When a Web browser is requested to send cookie information to the server, individual Web site users can be recognized again by the unique cookie that was originally assigned to them.


See spider.


A collection of data that is treated as a unit. The purpose of a database is to store and retrieve related information.

data filter

A conditional or rule-based routine for restricting data; a method of selecting or qualifying data, typically from a larger data set. A Clickstream data filter enables you to exclude specific Web log records from those which are loaded into the database. All filtered records appear as "Lines Discarded" on the Data Packets Details page.

data format

The structure of the fields and field names in a Web log. Apache, W3C Extended, and Microsoft IIS Extended are standard data formats supported by Clickstream Intelligence.

data packet

A grouping of Web server log files. The Clickstream Collector Agent compresses log files into data packets to facilitate transfer from the Web server to the Collector Server. The data packets are then uncompressed by the Collector Server.

See also: Collector Agent, Collector Server.

data source

A database, file, or repository that provides information to the database. The data source specified for a Clickstream site, for example, indicates the location of log files that are loaded into the Clickstream database.

data type

A category of data, such as a character, string, integer, or date. In a relational database, data has only one data type assigned to it.


A relational database that is designed for query and analysis. This central repository typically contains historical (static) data, and may contain data from diverse sources. Storage of data in a database enables you to consolidate and integrate data from disparate sources, and analyze trends or changes in data over time.


A separator in a sequence of values in a Web log file.

See also: enclosure, terminator.


A structure, often composed of one or more hierarchies, that categorizes data in a database. Dimension data (described by dimensional attributes) is typically collected at the lowest level of detail and then aggregated, or "rolled up," into higher levels that comprise hierarchies.

See also: hierarchy.


See: Domain Name System (DNS).

DNS alias

The numeric IP address that directly corresponds to a Web site's domain name.

DNS lookup

Domain Name Server lookup. The process by which a domain name is translated into the form of an IP address, or DNS alias.

A DNS lookup performed on the domain name, for example, reveals as the corresponding the IP address.

See also: reverse DNS lookup.

domain name

A unique name that identifies a location, or site, on the Internet. It is comprised of a suffix (such as .com or .gov), attached to a hostname.

A domain name is the resolved, or user-friendly, version of an IP address.

Domain Name System (DNS)

The system for naming computers and network services that organizes the Internet into a hierarchy of domains. DNS identifies each computer within a domain by a unique hostname. For example, a computer named "dms" in the domain would be uniquely identified on the Internet as

A system for naming computers and network services that is organized into a hierarchy of domains. DNS is used in TCP/IP networks to locate computers through user-friendly names. DNS resolves a friendly name into an IP address, which is understood by computers.

dwell time

The amount of time (in seconds) that a user or visitor remains on a Web page during a given session.


Also called "electronic business." A company that integrates Web technology with company dealings, such as the distribution of goods and services to clients, or collaboration with business partners.

e-business management tools

A set of applications (such as Oracle e-Business Management Tools) that enable centralized management of a complete e-business infrastructure, including the client, middle-tier HTTP servers, and database.


Characters that enclose a field in a Web log file. An enclosure is a specific type of delimiter.

See also: delimiter.


Alphanumeric data items obtained from a Web log or computed from Web log data. Facts, stored in fact tables, are the products of measures and dimensions - every column in a fact table is either a numeric measure or a foreign key to a dimension. Dimensions, therefore, describe and establish a context for the facts.

Also called a measure. Data, usually numeric and additive, that is described by several database dimensions. Values for facts are usually not known a priori- they are observed and stored.

Certain facts, such as averages, totals, or percentages, are generated from existing data through a mathematical operation or data transformation. Examples of facts include Sales, Cost, and Profit.

fact table

A table in a star schema that contains two types of columns: those that contain measures (facts) and those that are foreign keys to dimension tables. The primary key of a fact table is usually a composite key that is made up of all of its foreign keys.

A fact table might contain either detail-level facts or facts that have been aggregated (fact tables that contain aggregated facts are often called summary tables). A fact table usually contains facts with the same level of aggregation.

See also: facts, foreign key, primary key.

foreign key

An integrity constraint that requires each value in a column or set of columns (such as a fact table) to match a value in a related table's primary key.

See also: fact table, primary key.

guest user

An individual that is not an anonymous user, yet does not have a specific user entry to a Web site.


A logical structure that uses ordered levels as a means of organizing data and which may be used to define data aggregation. A hierarchy can also be used to define a navigational drill path, regardless of whether the levels in the hierarchy represent aggregated totals.

For example: In the Time dimension, a hierarchy might be used to aggregate data from the Month level to the Quarter level to the Year level.

See also: dimension, level.


A single file that is requested from the Web server and transferred to the Web browser. Each item on a page (such as inline images), as well as the page itself, counts as a hit.


The character string that identifies a computer within the DNS domain; the name or IP address of the computer making a request.


A single page view.

See also: session.

internal domain

A specific domain that belongs to a company or organization.

internal site

A site that typically belongs to or pertains to your company or organization.

IP address

A unique numeric code that identifies hosts and networks; a numeric identifier that represents the location of a computer on the Internet. Each computer on a network is assigned one unique IP address.

An IP address is written as four numbers separated by periods. The IP address, for example, corresponds to the Web site. The numerical IP address can be translated into a user-friendly domain name via a reverse DNS lookup.


A position in a hierarchy. For example, a Time dimension might contain a hierarchy that represents data at the Month, Week, and Day levels.

log file

A file that lists certain actions or events that have taken place. For example, a log file on a Web server may contain information about all requests that have been made to the server.

materialized view

Summarized data from a fact table in your Clickstream database. A materialized view provides access to table data by storing the results of a query in a separate schema object.


Information (data) that describes data and other structures in a database, such as objects, business rules, and processes.

Metadata may indicate how the data is formatted, how a specific set of data was collected, or when the data was acquired. A repository may contain metadata.

natural key

A unique identifier for an interface table or level table; a group of columns in an interface or level table that uniquely identifies rows in that table.

Natural keys can be conceptualized as "user-defined" primary keys among dimension interface tables.


A thing of significance within which information is stored. In a relational database, Tables and Views are the two of the most common objects.

Oracle9i Application Server

A comprehensive, integrated application server that provides all of the infrastructure and functionality needed to assemble and run a successful e-business.

Oracle9i Warehouse Builder

The Oracle product used to build and manage a database.

See also: database.

Oracle architecture

Memory and process structures used by an Oracle server to manage a database.

Oracle Enterprise Manager

A separate Oracle product that combines a graphical console, agents, common services, and tools to provide an integrated and comprehensive systems management platform for managing Oracle products.


A block of information sent over the network each time a connection or data transfer is requested. The information contained in packets depends on their type- Clickstream data packets, for example, contain Web log data.

See also: data packet.


The specific underlying computer hardware or software for a system. A platform may refer to the combination of computer hardware (such as a specific processor) with a particular operating system.


An endpoint to a logical (as opposed to physical) connection; a logical channel by which a client program specifies a particular server program on a computer in a network. Several ports may exist on the same computer.

On the Internet, the type of port is often identified by a port number -- the number in a URL that appears after the colon ( : ), written in the format hostname:port. HTTP protocol, for example, uses port 80 by default.

See also: hostname, protocol.

primary key

The column or set of columns included in the definition of a table's primary key constraint, which disallows duplicate values and nulls in a column or set of columns.

Primary key values uniquely identify the rows in a table; therefore, only one primary key can be defined for each table.


A sequence or series of jobs/actions performed on a database. Clickstream processes include loading the warehouse, loading dimensions, refreshing summaries, resolving IP addresses, and restoring the warehouse to a previous version.

process definition

Specifies and characterizes the parameters and values for a process.

See also: process.


The "language" or set of formal rules used by computers or other devices to send data across a network. Use of protocols ensures communication between different programs or computers on a network.


The question or specific criteria sent to a database for the purpose of retrieving information. When you query the Clickstream warehouse, data is retrieved that fits the specific set of conditions that you submitted.

query string

The dynamic portion of a URL that passes state information or user input from the browser to the server. Typically, the query string portion of a URL immediately follows the question mark (?) symbol.


Redundant Array of Independent Disks. A particular category of disk drives typically used on servers for fault tolerance and performance.


A Web server or Web page that directs users or visitors to a specific place within a Web site. Referrers may be internal or external.


A central location where aggregated data is stored and maintained in an organized fashion. The Clickstream repository for Web data is part of your database.

See also: metadata.


A file object hosted by the Web server. Examples of resources include static HTML files, CGI programs, and image files.

resource type

The type of physical or logical component that is generated by a resource. Resource types may include HTML (files) or GIF (images).

reverse DNS lookup

The process by which an IP address is resolved into its associated user-friendly hostname.

See also: DNS lookup.

roll back

To undo any changes to data that have been performed since a given point in time. Oracle9iAS Clickstream Intelligence enables you to roll back to a previous version of data stored in the database by clicking the Undo button (typically performed when a process has an error or has been temporarily stopped.)


A structure or set of rules that defines the organization of a database. In a relational database, objects - such as the tables, the fields within each table, and their relationship to each other - are defined by a schema.

See also: object.


In a client/server architecture, the computer that receives, stores, and processes requests that originate from client applications. A server handles the functions required for concurrent, shared data access over a network through the use of a specific protocol.

See also: client.

server farm

Several interconnected Web servers used to port content to the Internet.


The length of time that measures a single user's activity during a particular visit to a Web site. A collection of impressions; the sequence of requests made by one user to a Web site.

A session lasts from the time the user connects until the time the user disconnects or exits the Web site.

A See also: session threshold, session timeout.

session threshold

The period of time after which a given session expires.

session timeout

The point at which a session is terminated due to inactivity for a given period of time.


Also called a crawler or "bot" (robot). A program that automatically fetches some or all of the Web pages that are referenced from a Web site. Spiders are often used by search engines.

For example, when you register your Web site's URL with a particular search engine, one or more spiders automatically index page keywords, as well as all links to pages both within and external to your Web site. When the search engine displays the URL for your site in its query results page, it may also list many of the sites referenced from your Web page if they are relevant to the search criteria.


A database, application, file, or other storage facility from which the data in your Clickstream warehouse is derived.


The acronym for Structured Query Language, the standard query language that is used to update and request information from a database.

staging area

An intermediate database component in which incoming clickstream data is cleaned and prepared for loading into the fact tables.


A database object that contains and stores data. Tables are comprised of many columns, each with an associated data type.


A character that separates fields in a Web log file. A terminator is a specific type of delimiter.


Universal Resource Indicator.

See also: URL.

URI Stem

The portion of a URL that appears after the host and port, but precedes the query string. The URI stem typically refers to a directory that is accessed, relative to the Web server's root directory.

For example, in the URL the URI stem is /test.jsp


Uniform Resource Locator. The global addressing standard that is used to locate pages on the World Wide Web.

URLs are used by browsers to navigate the World Wide Web and consist of a protocol prefix, port number, domain name, (sub)directory name, and file name.

For example- specifies the location and path a browser will travel to find Oracle Technology Network's XML site on the World Wide Web.


An individual who has registered with and been authenticated by a Web site. An individual who successfully logs on and is granted access to a Web site.

user agent

Software to access Web content, including desktop graphical browsers, text browsers, voice browsers, mobile phones, multimedia players, plug-ins, and some software assistive technologies used in conjunction with browsers such as screen readers, screen magnifiers, and voice recognition software.

user Interface (UI)

The combination of menus, screens, keyboard commands, mouse clicks, and command language that defines how a user interacts with a software application.

The means with which a user interacts and uses a computer or computer program.

For example: Upon accessing Clickstream Analytics, a user may use buttons, links, drop-down menus and other UI components to produce reports, set up a site, or access other functionality provided by Clickstream Intelligence.


A customized presentation of data from one or more tables. A view can be conceptualized as a "stored query." Views do not actually contain or store data; they derive their data from the tables on which they are based.

Like tables, views can be queried, updated, inserted into, and deleted from - with some restrictions. All operations performed on a view affect the base tables of the view.


An unauthenticated user. Visitors are often first-time users of a Web site.

See also: authentication.


A collection of worksheets in Oracle9iAS Discoverer. A workbook contains related data that is organized to show different perspectives. Each organized subdivision of data, or perspective, is represented by a worksheet.


A worksheet contains specific data that you'd like to analyze or share. Each worksheet is created by its own query - each time you query the Clickstream database, a worksheet is created that contains query results. Whenever you open the worksheet, the original query is sent to the database and the most current data is displayed.

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