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Oracle Security by Marlene Theriault, William Heney

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Chapter 2. Oracle System Files

When we say the word “refrigerator,” what do you think of? Do you picture a large, rectangular box with one door or two? Or do you picture the objects inside—fresh vegetables, dairy products, ripe fruit? What does a refrigerator have to do with Oracle and security? Well, nothing, really, except that you can see the exterior of a refrigerator and not have any idea what the box contains. You see the structure—its shape and features—but the contents are a mystery to you until you open the door and look inside.

Just as the refrigerator has an outside structure, an Oracle database is comprised of a number of complex pieces of software that enable you to create data storage areas (databases) and to develop applications that interact with the databases. Once a database is created, you can see the “objects” inside. Unlike a refrigerator, which is a physical entity containing only physical objects, an Oracle database is comprised of both physical files and logical representations (the objects inside).

To determine what actions you need to take to protect your system, you first need to understand the composition of that system. You need to understand what part each component plays within the system and how the pieces interact. Once you have a basic grasp of the Oracle components, you’ll be better able to create your security policies and implement a sound security plan for your organization.

This chapter provides an overview of the Oracle components that comprise ...

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