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ORA-16433: The database must be opened in read/write mode

ORA-16433 Open Database in Read Write Mode

You’re here because you’re getting the ORA-16433: The database must be opened in read/write mode error message.

Below you will find the solution…

But first, here is how I got the error. The reason I’m writing this is so that it will help you understand the ORA 16433 error message a little better as it could be different for your specific situation.

The Cause

While planning my Oracle database 11g upgrade from 10g to 11g, I decided to test out creating a guaranteed restore point before starting the upgrade so that I could flashback very easily if there were any issues.

I created the guaranteed flashback restore point in version 10.2.0.4, completed the upgrade to 11.2.0.3 and then attempted to flashback the DB then I received the following errors:

SQL> FLASHBACK DATABASE TO RESTORE POINT PRE_11G_UPGRADE;
FLASHBACK DATABASE TO RESTORE POINT PRE_11G_UPGRADE
*
ERROR at line 1:
ORA-16433: The database must be opened in read/write mode.

So I decided to do as the error said and open the database in read/write mode:

SQL> ALTER DATABASE OPEN READ WRITE;
Database altered.

This looked promising, I thought, so now maybe I can flashback the database to the guaranteed restore point?

SQL> FLASHBACK DATABASE TO RESTORE POINT PRE_11G_UPGRADE;
FLASHBACK DATABASE TO RESTORE POINT PRE_11G_UPGRADE
*
ERROR at line 1:
ORA-38757: Database must be mounted and not open to FLASHBACK.

Not so promising after all. In addition to this, when trying to backup the control file to trace, I received the following error:

SQL> alter database backup controlfile to trace;
alter database backup controlfile to trace
*
ERROR at line 1:
ORA-16433: The database must be opened in read/write mode.

Oracle Bug Confirmation

Oracle support confirmed that this looked to be the same as another bug:

bug 8422605: BACKUP CONTROLFILE TO TRACE GENERATES ORA-16433 AFTER 11.1.0.7 UPGRADE

So, it would seem that during the upgrade process from 10.2.0.4 to 11.2.0.3 the part of the control file which should be updated is not which means that when the 11.2.0.3 DB attempts to read it the mismatched information is there and causes a problem.

After raising this issue with support a new bug was raised, 11713495, as they were able to re-produce in house with my control file. I haven’t heard back from them about the status of this bug.

You may also be getting the ORA-38785: Media recovery must be enabled for guaranteed restore point error, which I have also written about.

Just quick before you go…

Must Read Oracle DBA BooksHopefully that helped you out and resolved your Oracle error. While you’re here, what steps are you taking to improve your Oracle knowledge?

Check out my latest post about which Oracle books are a must read for any serious Oracle DBA. Learn from the best…

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Category: Flashback


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Comments (3)

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  1. Jorge Machado says:

    I have the same problem.

    Recreate the control files with :
    CREATE CONTROLFILE REUSE DATABASE “DB_NAME” NORESETLOGS FORCE LOGGING ARCHIVELOG

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