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Recovering a Dropped Oracle User with Flashback

Expert Oracle Database Tips by Burleson Consulting

December 27, 2015

Question: I have accidentally dropped a schema owner and all of the table data has disappeared!  How can I recover an Oracle user ID and its tables?  I will get fired if they found out that I dropped a production user ID and lost the table data.

Answer:  In ordinary cases from dropped tables, the Oracle flashback utility makes easy to restore individual dropped tables:

flashback table
    persons to
    before drop
flashback table
    "BIN$ksisyyg0TxKnt18rqukpQA==$0"
to
    before drop
rename to
    new_persons;

If you use the command drop user … cascade, any objects in the recycle bin that belong to that user are automatically purged.  The problem is getting all of the table names, plus the indexes constraints and other related schema objects.

 Restoring a dropped user requires copying the production database into a sandbox, where you use flashback to recover the whole database to a point immediately before the schema owner user was dropped.  Then, you simply export the user, FTP the dmp file into production, re-create the user ID and re-import the objects.

However, fear not, because the drop flashback feature can get them back!

Follow these steps:

  1. Clone the whole production database into your test instance area.
  2.  Once you have fully cloned production you need to start Oracle in mount mode
  3.  Next, you use flashback database to rollback the database to a point in time immediately before the user ID was dropped.

    SQL> startup mount SQL> flashback database to timestamp to_date('23-DEC-2010 11.38.00','DD-MM-YYYY HH24:MI:SS');
      
  4. Now that you have flashed back,open the test database in read-only mode:

    SQL > alter database open read only;  
     
  5.  Use the export (expdp) utility to export the user and its objects.
  6.  FTP the export dmp file onto your production server  
  7.  Re-create the user ID that was dropped  

    SQL> create user fred identified by flintstone . . . ;
      
  8.  Run the data pump import utility (impdp) to restore all of the users tables, indexes, constraints, and table rows.  
  9.  Select counts from the tables to ensure that the import has been successful. 
 
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Note: This Oracle documentation was created as a support and Oracle training reference for use by our DBA performance tuning consulting professionals.  Feel free to ask questions on our Oracle forum.

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