Lab128. New Features History.

Version 1.8.13.   May 26, 2017 - current

Version 1.8.12.   May 10, 2017

  • Adjustments for Oracle 12cR2 - handling of new Oracle events.

Version 1.8.11.   March 27, 2017

  • Fixes in saving of the user-defined queries.

Version 1.8.10.   February 20, 2017

  • Minor bug fixes and cosmetic fixes. See the bug list .

Version 1.8.9.   January 5, 2017

  • Fix of the bug, quite serious one, preventing reading of the alert and trace files. The bug was introduced in 1.8.8, when parsing of the SFTP version and supported options was changed.

Version 1.8.8.   December 26, 2016

  • Option to stop running query without killing session, available through the popup menu in Sessions window.
  • This is mainly a maintenance release with non-critical bugs fixed and minor improvements added. This probably will be the last release before some Agent (GUI-less daemon or service) functionality is added.

Version 1.8.7.   July 20, 2016

  • New experimental Spike Load analysis and report. This feature helps to locate SQL statement(s) responsible for sudden bursts in the load. For more details, please see description of Spike Load Report.
  • Export of ASH (Active Session History) data into Oracle database. You can export data for your own analysis. This can be the only option to collect ASH data for the Oracle server Standard edition because native ASH functionality is absent in this edition.
  • Lab128 Freeware 64-bit version has been released.

Version 1.8.6.   April 7, 2016

  • This version fixes installation problems on Windows 10. Windows 10 requires that software code signed after January 1, 2016 must use 256-bit signature, therefore Windows 10 can refuse to install Lab128 v.1.8.4 which was signed with SHA1 (128-bit). Now we obtained a new code signing certificate with SHA256 signature to comply with Windows 10. This release is signed with a new certificate and the installation problem is fixed.
  • Dynamic Daylight Saving Time is now used when presenting time as local time. Internally Lab128 tracks all events in GMT. This can be converted and shown as local time using your workstation Windows settings (Windows 7+). Showing time on the day when time is switched is handled correctly in Lab128.
  • A workaround for oradebug dumps on Oracle on Solaris and HP-UX has been added.

Version 1.8.5.   April 1, 2016

  • This version (32-bit) had problems starting on Window 7 and newer. This is replaced by v.1.8.6. If you are already using this version, there is no need to upgrade.

Version 1.8.4.   March 10, 2016

  • Need to know bind variables of the long running query? In Sessions window Oradebug Dump added to the popup menu. Then trace file is downloaded using SSH connection and shown in the new Oradebug Dump Viewer. All steps are automated. More on this feature: Oradebug Dump Viewer;
  • User Interface minor fixes.

Version 1.8.2.   November 06, 2015

  • This is a maintenance release with fixes of non-critical problems:
    - Default positioning of windows was skewed to the right and lower corner;
    - In Activity Explorer window, ASH section, Tree view, Object dimension had empty value;
    - Alert File viewer incorrectly obtained path for the CDB database;
    - Empty Autotrace report in SQL Central;

Version 1.8.0.   September 24, 2015

  • Multitenant Container Databases are fully supported. If connected to the Root container, Lab128 automatically switches to CDB_ views. It provides a global picture across all plugin databases. Top consumers of resources can be identified down to PDB / User / SQL statements. All these powerful features from the single monitor! Even though there are some rough spots in CDB, they can become mainstream one day. If you work extensively with CDB, we are interested in your feedback and new ideas to implement in this tool.
  • Improved support and fixes for the older Oracle versions. SQL plans are stored for Oracle as early as 9i. Lab128 supports 5 major Oracle releases from 8i to 12c. Extensive testing was completed to ensure most of advanced features of Lab128 are available for older versions.
  • Option to kill sessions executing same SQL. Once in a while there is a runaway query with dozens of sessions stuck on it. In Sessions window, select one of them, and in popup menu chose this new option.

Version 1.7.2.   April 2, 2015

  • This version collects execution plans automatically for the most expensive SQL statements (Oracle 10g and newer). When examining execution plan and the plan is not accessible in Oracle views, it can be presented from Lab128 cache. Also plans are stored .lab performance files, so the plan can be examined later in Viewer mode (no connection to Oracle needed in viewer mode).
  • Lab128 for Linux is available!

Version 1.7.1.   March 2, 2015

  • Minor functional changes and bug fixes;
  • The MSI installation package (64-bit) now has OCI (Oracle Call Interface) as an optional feature. By default this feature is not selected and not installed. OCI can be added later by running MSI file again, or in Control Panel | Programs | Programs and Features - right click on Lab128 and select Change item, then follow prompts;

Version 1.7.0.   October 23, 2014

  • There was a significant refactoring of the code. Now both 64-bit and 32-bit versions use almost entirely same code. Having the code portable between two platforms increases its reliability, and the reliability has been one of our highest priorities. These changes provide a solid foundation for future development of this project.
  • There were minor functional improvements: new ciphers added to the SSH client; User Interface fixes;
  • Improved support of older Oracle versions;

Version 1.6.7.   August 25, 2014

  • This version fixes bugs in 64-bit version (see Known bugs). If you use 32-bit version and already upgraded to 1.6.6 released in August 2014, you can can skip this version.

Version 1.6.6.   August 2, 2014

  • 64-bit version added with .MSI type of installation. The portable .ZIP installation is also available for 64-bit version. This version has look and feel of its 32-bit counterpart. Both versions are compatible with working files, so they are interchangeable.
  • Starting with this version, Lab128 is distributed with OCI (Oracle Call Interface) libraries. Users don't have to care anymore about Oracle Client presence and compatibility. This will work even if Oracle Client is already installed, Lab128 will ignore it. If for some reason you prefer to use the Oracle Client already installed on your system, the Portable distribution has an option without OCI.
  • There are improvements and minor fixes based on feedback from the users.

Version   June 9, 2014

  • A new tool is introduced allowing to change execution plan of SQL statement without changing SQL text. This feature is called "Stage and Fix", more details are here;
  • New behavior on lost connection: there is no limit on number of reconnect attempts, and there is a new option to notify personal if the connection is not restored in specified time interval;
  • Previously, in Login screen in Direct Connect mode, the TNS Ping used to check if the listener was available without checking Service/SID validity. This was exactly same behavior as with Oracle's tnsping utility. Now "TNS Ping" in Lab128 also checks if specified Service or SID is registered on listener side;
  • In Reports, the "Describe Object" feature is now avaialable through the pop-up menu. First, select some name, then "describe". In adition to ordinary object names, like table name, Lab128 can also automatically recognize SQL ID, SQL Handle, SQL Signature, and call corresponding report;
  • PL/SQL unwrapper added. To use it simply browse to the package from Main menu | Reports | Schema | All schemas, the source code of the package is unwrapped automatically. Or, in SQL Central type the package name, for example DBMS_SPM, then "describe" it by F11 or using pop-up menu. This provides a great learning opportunity to see how Oracle internals work;

Version   February 4, 2014

  • In Explain Plan window "XPLAN" tab added to show execution plan obtained from DBMS_XPLAN package
  • Clusterware Commander can automatically detect Oracle HAS (High Availability Services) and present status in the same format as for Oracle clusterware. HAS is an infrastructure similar to Oracle Clusterware for non-RAC database. If you running non-RAC Oracle 11g+ on Linux/Unix, it uses HAS. Now you can use Clusterware Commander to see status, start/stop database and listener;
  • SQL Execution Statistics (similar to Autotrace in SQLPlus) in SQL Central has been enhanced to better integrate with Oracle Exadata. SQL Central is built-in SQL editor where SQL statement can be executed with Oracle execution statistics along with plan statistics automatically gathered and presented. For Exadata, for example, statistics will indicate if processing was off-loaded to cell servers. Most of statistics has links to their description in the help file.

Version   October 14, 2013

  • Reference Loads can be created and used for comparison of current or past performance. The Reference Load can include several thousand of statistics, including top SQL statistics averaged on any selected time interval. Statspack now has additional "Diff" option. SQL Explorer can show "Diff" columns.
  • Support of Oracle 12c (regular DB type) has been added. Pluggable DBs are not supported yet.
  • Many small improvements and fixes based on user feedbacks;

Version   August 2, 2013

  • High DPI (Dots Per Inch) support added. Advances in hardware resulted in high-resolution displays. Previous versions of Lab128 used same number of pixels without regards to DPI setting. Because typically pixel size decreases, Lab128 looked very small and hard to see. This latest version scales-up natively producing very nice looking user interface! If previous behavior is preferred, this feature can be disabled in options: Main menu | Options | Lab128 Options | Autoscale for DPI>96.
  • For users of Oracle 11gR2 (11.2.*) or later, new v$session_blockers view is now used providing info on more blocking situations where v$lock didn't help. For example, sessions blocked by "library cache pin" event now show up in the Blocking and Waiting Sessions tree of the Sessions window;
  • Statistics Editor has been streamlined. Lab128 allows user to create their own new ratios or combined statistics using expressions;
  • Unicode is better supported and Unicode-related bugs fixed;
  • Many small improvements and fixes based on user feedbacks;

Version   June 19, 2013

  • Lab128 becomes Unicode-enabled application. Although all titles and messages in Lab128 are still in English, the Oracle database object names can be in any national character sets, and Lab128 will correctly display them. See screenshots taken for different languages. The introduction of Unicode support means that all data internally is encoded in UTF-8 in Lab128. This provides a framework for truly global compatibility and support;
  • SQL Plan Step ID added to Sessions, and it is passed to ExplanPlan;
  • Activity Explorer (ASH) window can be customized by hiding sections, and the event colors have been adjusted to match OEM colors. The CPU line added to the wait event charts. ASH data export into .csv file; ;
  • Changes in the Login window: Better support of RAC One Node databases by adding "RAC One" option in the Login window; Support for oracle-wallet based passwords, by using EXTERNAL user; Connect as SYSASM option;
  • Fixes in Clusterware Commander and partial support of older 10g clusterware framework;

Version   December 3, 2012

  • Introduction of Clusterware Commander. You can monitor the status of Oracle clusterware in the Clusterware Commander. While monitoring the status, you can invoke maintenance commands such as: database / instance / service startup or shutdown; the relocation of the services between instances. Additionally, you can start Lab128 monitor for a specific instance with many connection details filled up automatically. To run this new feature, use Main menu | Clusterware. For a screenshot use this link Clusterware Commander;
  • Customization for Oracle RAC One databases, the RAC One option added to Login Screen;
  • Last Call Elapsed Time (LC_ET) column added to Sessions tabular view;
  • Bug fixes and corrections;

Version   June 5, 2012

  • Optimization for 11g v$ queries;
  • Integrated 10053 trace viewer. Get Oracle SQL Optimizer trace pressing just one button;
  • Oradebug mode support in SQL Central, including preliminary connection;
  • Global Search in SQL Central;
  • Dedicated server option added to Login Screen;
  • Miscellaneous small corrections and improvements;

Version   March 12, 2012

  • Support for 11g has been improved. The performance bugs in 11g for some v$ views has been worked around;
  • Login form in Direct Connect mode now has "Ping" and "TNS Ping" features to troubleshoot connection problems. A new "UD=A" check box added to allow connection to the instance in restricted mode;
  • Overwiew window can have user-selected statistics;
  • SSH connection - extended support for other authorization methods; The SSH connection is used in "Top Processes" and "Alert Log Viewer" windows;
  • New reports added;

Version   April 28, 2011

  • The Explain Plan has been changed to run faster and now optionally can provide query block names, outlines data, captured binds;
  • The SQL formatter has been added, so SQL text looks better in the Explain Plan and in the reports. It can be invoked Ctrl-Q in editor controls or through popup menu;
  • The reporting engine has been improved. New reports added. Object dependencies links added to some reports;
  • The AIX Unix is now supported in the Top Processes;
  • Better positioning of forms on next reopen after they were positioned outside the main window before closing;
  • All known bugs have been fixed.

Version   November 9, 2010

  • Secure Shell (SSH) connection added. This enables collection of performance data at operating system level;
  • A new Top Processes window added (HP-UX, Linux, Solaris) which shows top processes data collected from OS and Oracle sessions;
  • A new Alert File Viewer window added. The Alert log file can be viewed real-time. The incoming information is preprocessed identifying important events and placing them into the navigation list;
  • When several monitors are opened and connected to instances of same RAC database, there is a new option of not using GV$ views. GV$ views are more expensive to the monitored instances and sometimes have performance bugs. This setting is recommended for very busy databases. The information from different instances is combined internally in Lab128;
  • When several monitors are opened and connected to instances of same RAC database, common data sets (objects, segments, extents etc.) are shared between monitors to conserve memory used by Lab128;
  • The Lab128 Reference Guide / online Help has been reworked into .CHM format. Also it is available online;
  • Date and time format in Lab128 now can be changed;
  • Explain Plan window was enhanced with better SQL plan statistics presenetation. A new alternative "pipelined" option to show the plan has been added;

Version   December 14, 2009

  • Reports have been enhanced and new reports added. Some users have been asking to add a database object browser. Now this can be done in Reports. To see how it works, connect to Oracle, then from the Main menu: Reports | Schema | All Schemes;
  • Better compression used for performance history *.lab files making them about 30% smaller;
  • Auto delete of performance history files added;
  • 11g wait events have been corrected;
  • There was a user's feedback that in some installations, dba_extents view is not performing well. Lab128 collects extents data using this view. If that is the case in your database, now there is an alternative by granting access to the x$ktfbue fixed table (this table is used by dba_extents). Lab128 then will automatically use this table, which has better performance. In order to enable access (not necessary if you run Lab128 as SYS) run this as SYS: create view sys.x_$ktfbue as select * from x$ktfbue; grant select on sys.x_$ktfbue to PUBLIC; create public synonym x$ktfbue for sys.x_$ktfbue;
  • SQL Central (SQL editor) has been enhanced and now shows last execution statistics (similar to Autotrace in SQLPlus). For the first time ever (as far as we know), a framework for SQL Plan Statistics has been developed, providing a very powerful tool for diagnosing SQL problems. We plan on posting a dedicated article about using SQL Plan Statistics because this is a very efficient way of tuning SQL and has high significance.

Version   March 9, 2009

  • Reports added. There are dozens of built-in reports. We are going to capitalize on a new report engine and expand the list of reports. If you want to share ideas for useful reports, please send them and they will be considered for inclusion in future versions;
  • Statspack-style report added, which provides an instant report on any user-selected time interval. Here are brief instructions on how to invoke it: 1. Click in Main window on any graph; 2. In the detailed graph window, select a time interval; 3. Press Ctrl-S to view the report. Help is provided on different sections;
  • The Oracle AWR, ASH reports (10g+) provided by the dbms_workload_repository package are also available using same simple interface as described above;
  • ASH section has an improved tree view showing waits using graphical bars. A list of common dimensions used to explore ASH data has been added;
  • Explain Plan window now uses multiline tree components. As a result, it presents data more clearly;
  • Blockers/Waiters tree has more data now;
  • Lab128 is more efficient in caching data, using less memory and fewer Oracle resources.

Version   April 22, 2008

This has been mostly a maintenance release. It includes few new features:
  • Filters added to the Sessions Window. Using regular expressions, you can customize the filter.
  • A tree of blocking and waiting sessions has been added to severeal windows.
  • Windows XP themes enabled. The application now can look more XP-like. If you prefer the classic look, themes can be disabled with the '-classic' switch in the command line, example: lab128.exe -classic
  • There are other smaller improvements and enhancements in this version.

Version   Jan 10, 2008

  • The Active Session History (ASH) collection has been enhanced with another 8 columns being recorded. The Activity Explorer has a new graph and new column for ASH data showing percentage of wait events in colors. This simplifies interpretation of top wait events for particular SQL statements or top wait events for any time period;
  • The new Session History window shows snapshot of active sessions at any moment in the past. A wealth of information is available for each session, including SQL, wait events, wait objects, info on blockers etc;
  • The individual session history can be seen in the new Single Session History window, which can be opened for a selected session;
  • The individual SQL statement and its history can be shown in the new Statement Details window. The history of all SQL statistics is presented graphically and in tabular view. ASH data is also available in this window;
  • The performance data recorded into .lab files includes object names, making analysis of recoded data more convenient;
  • The SQL Area window now allows search (Oracle 9i and later) of SQL statements by the type of access in the SQL plan (full scan, merge join cartesian etc), allowing easy search of potentially troubling queries;
  • There is real-time support for Oracle clusters (RAC) in this version. A number of Lab128 windows show data combined across all instances. These include Sessions, Locks, Longops, Transactions, Temporary usage, and Explain Plan windows. For collection and analysis of historical data, you still need to start a new monitor for each instance. We are rapidly moving towards the full support of RAC in future versions;
  • Setting up Lab128 is easier in this version. A number of settings have been simplified into Data History Length. Lab128 dynamically resizes its internal structure based on the specified history length.

Version   Mar 15, 2007

  • The snapshots of v$sql are collected, providing top SQL statements for any choosen time period. It also provides a basis for individual SQL statement tracking and graphing. The new SQL Explorer uses collected SQL statistics, allowing for SQL statistics-based tuning. This is a revolutionary new technique which complements ASH-based tuning;
  • Activity Explorer is enhanced with the dimensional analysis of Active Session History (ASH) data. User-defined dimensions and aggregated waits data are presented as a tree view;
  • Explain Plan is enhanced to include predicates, projections, sql statistics data;
  • SQL Area viewer has been expanded to include the latest SQL statistics;
  • Toolbar and Taskbar added to simplify navigation in the application.

Version   May 25, 2006

  • Improved login, the connections can be stored for later use;
  • Streamlined interface;
  • Data from tabular views can be copied into clipboard in tab-delimited format. Copied data can be inserted in Excel for custom processing and integration with other reports;
  • Elapsed Time column and 'SQL Text like' box added to the SQL Area explorer;
  • Improved support for LOB columns in SQL Central;
  • Minor bugs fixed in saving performance data and data mirroring;
  • Segment statistics shows now correctly in Oracle 10g Release 2;
  • The most polished version, streamlined internals, resulting in smaller, reliable and faster code;

Version   March 2, 2006

  • Functionally this version is very close to the There were adjustments made to better support Oracle 10g Release2;
  • Saving performance data to the file is enhanced with the options to choose the default directory, customize file names and Auto Save option;
  • The option "10046 trace, level 12 for the selected session" was added to the pop up menu in the Session Details screen;
  • Additions and corrections to the Help file;

Version   December 30, 2005

  • Option to mirror Lab's in-memory data to the disk. Lab128 can exit and restart with performance data restored from the disk;
  • Collected performance data can be saved in the file and later opened for the performance analysis;
  • Support for large fonts (96+ DPI);
  • Active Session History (ASH): another 7 columns (OS User, Machine, Terminal, Program, Module, Action, ClientID) can be optionally recorded;
  • Activity Explorer, Active Session History (ASH) view: the Filters page has been added to enhance exploration of ASH data;
  • Tracking of Space Usage in tablespaces has been added. The usage of Temp and Undo spaces is also covered. Three new charts added to the list of predefined charts (View | Predefined Charts);
  • Login enhancements: the host name (or IP address), port, and service name (or SID) can be supplied during Login. Therefore the connection can be made even if there is no entry in tnsnames.ora or tnsnames.ora itself is missing;

Version 1.5.5   September 15, 2005

  • Active Session History (ASH) support added. This feature works in all Oracle versions 8 to 10g and is independent of Oracle 10g ASH. For version 10g, this feature optionally can use Oracle's ASH support, although Lab's own feature exceeds Oracle's built-in and there is no need to license Oracle ASH (which is a part of Oracle Diagnostic Pack);
  • The amount of memory used for performance data can be changed dynamically without need to restart Lab128;
  • Data from charts can be exported into the clipboard or comma-separated file for the analysis in third party tools;

Version 1.5.0   May 5, 2005

    The very first release of Lab128 published on the Internet.

To download a free trial version:  Lab128 Download.

Copyright © 128 Consulting LLC