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Automatically Selecting the Correct Oracle ASMLib Driver

ASMLib is a support library for the Automatic Storage Management feature of the Oracle Database. Oracle provides a Linux specific implementation of this library. This document describes the oracleasm update-driver utility for installing and upgrading the kernel driver portion of ASMLib. The full installation guide is part of the Oracle Database Documentation .

Oracle ASMLib Requires a Matching Kernel Driver

The Linux ASMLib library provided by Oracle has a driver component for the Linux kernel. This is an essential piece of the functionality provided by this ASMLib implementation. Oracle provides a specific driver for each version of the Linux kernel, whether from Enterprise Linux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux, or SuSE Linux Enterprise Server. The driver must match the running kernel in order to ensure stable operation.

Before the 2.1.0 release of oracleasm-support, a system administrator had to determine exactly which driver to download and install. While this only had to be learned once, it has caused some difficulty for administrators new to ASMLib.

Oracle ASMLib in the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel

The Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel already contains the ASMLib kernel driver. If you are using the Unbreakable Enterprise Kernel, you do not need to update the driver separately.

Installing the ASMLib Kernel Driver with oracleasm update-driver

oracleasm-support version 2.1.0 and later now have the oracleasm update-driver command. This command will automatically determine the latest driver for a given kernel and install it. Thus, the system administrator no longer has to match version numbers by hand.

The oracleasm update-driver command works both with the Unbreakable Linux Network (ULN) and the Oracle Technology Network (OTN). Systems registered with ULN will use it as the source of new drivers, while other systems will use OTN.

To install the latest driver for the currently running kernel, log in as root and run:

# oracleasm update-driver

This will detect the current kernel, query ULN or OTN for the latest driver, download, and install it. If the latest driver is installed, it won't do anyhting.

To install the latest driver for an installed kernel that is not currently the running one, specify the version on the command line:

# oracleasm update-driver 2.6.18-53.el5

This will query ULN or OTN for the latest driver for kernel 2.6.18-53.el5, installing it if necessary. You can specify more than one version at a time, as long as each kernel is already installed on the system.

See the oracleasm-update-driver(8) for more information about this command.