To borrow a well-known saying, One-Day International Cricket is a game played by two sides for 100 overs…and then the Aussies win the World Cup.
Something else that doesn’t seem to change much over time is SQL*Plus. The command line interface to Oracle Databases has been around, in it’s current guise, since 1985.
Whilst there have been some changes here and there, it’s basic functionality has remained largely unchanged over the intervening 30 years.
Now, however, it looks like things are about to change as Oracle lavish some attention on the noble CLI.
You may be wondering how this is in any way relevant in the modern world of GUI development.
Well, there are still some things that you need the command line for.
Interactive connection to a database from a server that’s not running a desktop environment would be one.
More common though, are those jobs that need to run unattended. These will include batch jobs managed by a scheduling tool external to the Oracle RDBMS, such as Autosys, or even good old CRON.
Increasingly, it will also include jobs that are initiated as part of Continuous Integration or Release Management testing.
SQL*Plus for the 21st Century is currently going by the name of SQLCL (SQL Command Line). It has also been known as SDSQL (SQLDeveloper SQL) and even SQL*Plus++ (my personal favourite).
Whilst the currently available versions of SQLCL are very much in the Early Adopter stage, there is enough there to show the direction in which things are moving.
Whilst the decision has been taken to ensure that SQLCL is fully backward-compatible with the current SQL*Plus, some of the new features may well have significant implications in the way that the Oracle CLI is used in the future.
What I’m going to cover here is :
- How SQLCL differs “structurally” from SQL*Plus
- Improvements in command-line interaction incorporating Linux-like and IDE features, including glorious technicolour!
All of which leaves the ageing geek in me unashamedly excited.