The following are definitions of terms used for ADRCI and the Oracle Database fault diagnosability infrastructure:

Automatic Diagnostic Repository (ADR)

The Automatic Diagnostic Repository (ADR) is a file-based repository for database diagnostic data such as traces, dumps, the alert log, health monitor reports, and more. It has a unified directory structure across multiple instances and multiple products. Beginning with release 11g, the database, Oracle Automatic Storage Management (Oracle ASM), and other Oracle products or components store all diagnostic data in the ADR. Each instance of each product stores diagnostic data underneath its own ADR home directory (see "ADR Home"). For example, in an Oracle Real Application Clusters (Oracle RAC) environment with shared storage and Oracle ASM, each database instance and each Oracle ASM instance has a home directory within the ADR. The ADR's unified directory structure enables customers and Oracle Support to correlate and analyze diagnostic data across multiple instances and multiple products.


A problem is a critical error in the database. Critical errors include internal errors such as ORA-00600 and other severe errors such as ORA-07445 (operating system exception) or ORA-04031 (out of memory in the shared pool). Problems are tracked in the ADR. Each problem has a problem key and a unique problem ID. (See "Problem Key".)


An incident is a single occurrence of a problem. When a problem occurs multiple times, an incident is created for each occurrence. Incidents are tracked in the ADR. Each incident is identified by a numeric incident ID, which is unique within the ADR. When an incident occurs, the database makes an entry in the alert log, sends an incident alert to Oracle Enterprise Manager, gathers diagnostic data about the incident in the form of dump files (incident dumps), tags the incident dumps with the incident ID, and stores the incident dumps in an ADR subdirectory created for that incident.

Diagnosis and resolution of a critical error usually starts with an incident alert. You can obtain a list of all incidents in the ADR with an ADRCI command. Each incident is mapped to a single problem only.

Incidents are flood-controlled so that a single problem does not generate too many incidents and incident dumps. See Oracle Database Administrator's Guide for more information about incident flood control.

Problem Key

Every problem has a problem key, which is a text string that includes an error code (such as ORA 600) and in some cases, one or more error parameters. Two incidents are considered to have the same root cause if their problem keys match.

Incident Package

An incident package (package) is a collection of data about incidents for one or more problems. Before sending incident data to Oracle Support it must be collected into a package using the Incident Packaging Service (IPS). After a package is created, you can add external files to the package, remove selected files from the package, or scrub (edit) selected files in the package to remove sensitive data.

A package is a logical construct only, until you create a physical file from the package contents. That is, an incident package starts out as a collection of metadata in the ADR. As you add and remove package contents, only the metadata is modified. When you are ready to upload the data to Oracle Support, you create a physical package using ADRCI, which saves the data into a zip file. You can then upload the zip file to Oracle Support.


Before ADRCI can generate a physical package from a logical package, the package must be finalized. This means that other components are called to add any correlated diagnostic data files to the incidents already in this package. Finalizing also adds recent trace files, alert log entries, Health Monitor reports, SQL test cases, and configuration information. This step is run automatically when a physical package is generated, and can also be run manually using the ADRCI utility. After manually finalizing a package, you can review the files that were added and then remove or edit any that contain sensitive information.

See Also:

Oracle Database Administrator's Guide for more information about correlated diagnostic data

ADR Home

An ADR home is the root directory for all diagnostic data—traces, dumps, alert log, and so on—for a particular instance of a particular Oracle product or component. For example, in an Oracle RAC environment with Oracle ASM, each database instance and each Oracle ASM instance has an ADR home. All ADR homes share the same hierarchical directory structure. Some of the standard subdirectories in each ADR home include alert (for the alert log), trace (for trace files), and incident (for incident information). All ADR homes are located within the ADR base directory. (See "ADR Base".)

Some ADRCI commands can work with multiple ADR homes simultaneously. The current ADRCI homepath determines the ADR homes that are searched for diagnostic data when an ADRCI command is issued. See "Homepath" for more information.

ADR Base

To permit correlation of diagnostic data across multiple ADR homes, ADR homes are grouped together under the same root directory called the ADR base. For example, in an Oracle RAC environment, the ADR base could be on a shared disk, and the ADR home for each Oracle RAC instance could be located under this ADR base.

The location of the ADR base for a database instance is set by the DIAGNOSTIC_DEST initialization parameter. If this parameter is omitted or is null, the database sets it to a default value. See Oracle Database Administrator's Guide for details.

When multiple database instances share an Oracle home, whether they are multiple single instances or the instances of an Oracle RAC database, and when one or more of these instances set ADR base in different locations, the last instance to start up determines the default ADR base for ADRCI.


All ADRCI commands operate on diagnostic data in the current ADR homes. More than one ADR home can be current at any one time. Some ADRCI commands (such as SHOW INCIDENT) search for and display diagnostic data from all current ADR homes, while other commands require that only one ADR home be current, and display an error message if more than one are current.

The ADRCI homepath determines the ADR homes that are current. It does so by pointing to a directory within the ADR base hierarchy. If it points to a single ADR home directory, that ADR home is the only current ADR home. If the homepath points to a directory that is above the ADR home directory level in the hierarchy, all ADR homes that are below the directory that is pointed to become current.

The homepath is null by default when ADRCI starts. This means that all ADR homes under ADR base are current.

The SHOW HOME and SHOW HOMEPATH commands display a list of the ADR homes that are current, and the SET HOMEPATH command sets the homepath.

See Also: