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Backup command replaces 9i copy command

Oracle Tips by Burleson

Oracle 10g RMAN Simplified Backups to Disk

In previous releases of Oracle, RMAN had two separate commands to backup data files: BACKUP and COPY.  The BACKUP command backed up the data file only to backup set, which is a proprietary format recognized by RMAN only.  You must use RMAN to restore a data file from a backup set.  The COPY command generated image copies, which are bit-by-bit copies of data files.  You do not need RMAN to restore a database from an image copy. 

The BACKUP DATABASE command can backup a whole database to backup sets without specifying each individual data file.  However, there is no corresponding COPY DATABASE command.  Therefore, you must run the REPORT SCHEMA command to determine the file names of the data files, and then you need to specify each data files in your COPY command.

RMAN> copy current controlfile to ‘dba/backup/grid/ctlfile.cpy’,
datafile 1 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df1.cp’y,
datafile 2 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df2.cp’y,
datafile 3 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df3.cp’y,
datafile 4 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df4.cp’y,
datafile 5 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df5.cp’y,
datafile 6 to ‘dba/backup/grid/df6.cp’y;

In Oracle 10g, the COPY command is abandoned in favor of an enhanced BACKUP command that enables you to specify where RMAN should create copies or backup sets.  You can use the new BACKUP AS COPY command to copy an entire database or multiple tablespaces, data files, and archived logs.

Here is an example to backup an entire database as an image copy to the recovery area.

RMAN> backup as copy
      tag “weekly_backup” database;

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