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Lesson 1

Introduction to Oracle SQL*Plus Environment

This module covers the techniques you can use to create, edit, and test SQL scripts within Oracle's SQL*Plus environment.
You have already seen the SQL*Plus environment in previous modules whenever you worked with a simulation. Here you get to try out the features built into SQL*Plus that warrant the "Plus" in its name.

Module Objectives
By the end of this module, you will know how to:
  1. Describe SQL*Plus and identify when to use it
  2. Change text by using the SQL*Plus text editor and run a query
  3. Change a query by using a text editor
  4. Save a query to a file, replace a file, edit a file
  5. Modify column headings and display width in a column
  6. Define the environment settings for SQL*Plus reports
  7. Describe what gets saved in a file when using SPOOL
The next lesson is an overview of the background and future development of the SQL*Plus programming environment.
SQL*Plus is an interactive and batch query tool that is installed with every Oracle Database installation. It has a command-line user interface, a Windows Graphical User Interface (GUI) and the iSQL*Plus web-based user interface. There is also the SQL*Plus Instant Client which is a stand-alone command-line interface available on platforms that support the OCI Instant Client. SQL*Plus Instant Client connects to any available Oracle database, but does not require its own Oracle database installation. See the Oracle Call Interface Programmer's Guide for more information on the OCI Instant Client. SQL*Plus has its own commands and environment, and it provides access to the Oracle Database. It enables you to enter and execute SQL, PL/SQL, SQL*Plus and operating system commands to perform the following:
  1. Format, perform calculations on, store, and print from query results
  2. Examine table and object definitions
  3. Develop and run batch scripts
  4. Perform database administration
You can use SQL*Plus to generate reports interactively, to generate reports as batch processes, and to output the results to text file, to screen, or to HTML file for browsing on the Internet. You can generate reports dynamically using the HTML output facility of SQL*Plus, or using the dynamic reporting capability of iSQL*Plus to run a script from a web page.