I am currently researching various solutions which may provide replication for both disaster recovery and reporting scenarios. We are running Oracle8, but I have never set up Oracle replication before. If you have used the Oracle8 replication solution, how would you rate it? i.e. Ease of setup and use? robustness? reliability? I ask because I seem to remember reading somewhere that the Oracle8 replication feature wasn't too hot and that the standby server option in 8i was created as an alternative. Any advice on Oracle replication or any other third party tools such as Veritas would be greatly appreciated.
Replication is a broad subject. How ever, following points may help you:
If you want a 2nd database for both disaster recovery and reporting, then probably Multi-Master (Advanced) is the right choice.
My concern with Standby Database is when it is opened for reporting, you may end up with a huge backlog of archived file from the primary DB. Then during the night time you need to apply the redo logs created in the day time.
The best option is to have 3 databases in 3 different machines.
1 Primary DB
2 Reporting DB (Configure Multi-Master Replication)
3 Standby DB (Disaster Recovery)
Also remeber that when the Primary DB goes down, you may lose some transactions data. To avoid that data loss, you may consider hardware level mirroring the disk array.
I hope your firm has enough money to have 3 machines.