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Donald K. Burleson

Oracle Tips


Querying the X$ structures

One of the most hidden areas of the Oracle database is the X$ structures. As we may know, the X$ structures are the innermost tables that are used to build the common v$ views that we use to query the data dictionary.

Here is an idea of the naming of these X$ structures. Of course, these internal structures change between Oracle releases, and this list is from Oracle 8.1.5.




X$ks – Kernel Services


x$ksmfs          kernel services, memory fixed SGA          

x$ksmfsv        kernel services, memory fixed SGA vectors         

x$ksmjs          kernel services, memory java_pool summary         

x$ksmlru         kernel services, memory LRU          

x$ksmls          kernel services, memory large_pool summary       

x$ksmmem    kernel services, memory     

x$ksmpp        kernel services, memory process pool      

x$ksmsd         kernel services, memory SGA definition     

x$ksmsp         kernel services, memory shared pool          

x$ksmspr       kernel services, memory shared pool reserved     

x$ksmss         kernel services, memory shared_pool summary    

x$ksmup         kernel services, memory user pool

x$ksqst           kernel services, enqueue status       

x$ksulop         kernel services, user long operation            

x$ksulv            kernel services, user locale value    

x$ksupr           kernel services, user process           



X$kc – kernel cache


x$kcbfwait      kernel cache, block file wait

x$kcbwait       kernel cache, block wait        

x$kcccp          kernel cache, controlfile checkpoint progress        

x$kcfio            kernel cache, file I/O  

x$kclfh            kernel cache, lock file header           

x$kclfi kernel cache, lock file index  

x$kcluh           kernel cache, lock undo header       

x$kclui            kernel cache, lock undo index          



X$kq – kernel query


x$kqfco           kernel query, fixed table columns     

x$kqfdt            kernel query, fixed table        

x$kqfp kernel query, fixed procedure         

x$kqfsz           kernel query, fixed size          

x$kqfta            kernel query, fixed table        

x$kqfvi            kernel query, fixed view         

x$kqfvt            kernel query, fixed view table            




X$kg – kernel generic


x$kghlu           kernel generic, heap LRUs   

x$kgllk            kernel generic, library cache lock   

x$kglob           kernel generic, library cache object             

x$kglpn           kernel generic, library cache pin    

x$kglst            kernel generic, library cache status             



X$kz – Kernel security



x$kzsro           kernel security, system role 


X$le – lock element


x$le                 lock element   

x$le_stat         lock element status  




The X$ views are completely undocumented, and Oracle does not provide any assistance for deriving the meaning of the contents of the X$ structures. 


However, there are some queries that you can run to see internal operations within Oracle. Let’s begin by describing the X$ksqst structure, the structure that show kernel enqueue status:


SQL> desc x$ksqst;
 Name                                      Null?    Type
 ----------------------------------------- -------- ------------------
 ADDR                                               RAW(8)
 INDX                                               NUMBER
 INST_ID                                            NUMBER
 KSQSTTYP                                           VARCHAR2(2)
 KSQSTGET                                           NUMBER
 KSQSTWAT                                           NUMBER


As can see, the X$ structures are quite cryptic, but there are hints about their contents.


We can also further explore the X$ structures by viewing the X$ksqst table. This table show the kernel status for all enqueues within your Oracle database:


-- See the gets and waits for different types of enqueues:
   ksqstget > 0;


Here is an actual listing from this script, showing the enqueue data from a real Oracle instance.


SQL> @x2
---------------- ---------- ---------- -- ---------- ----------
00000004269DBB10         49          1 BR       1045          0
00000004269DBBB0         69          1 CF     245954          0
00000004269DBBC8         72          1 CI       5780          0
00000004269DBC28         84          1 CU       1886          0
00000004269DBCE0        107          1 DL         34          0
00000004269DBD10        113          1 DR       3053          0
00000004269DBD30        117          1 DV        389          0
00000004269DBD40        119          1 DX    1255971          0
00000004269DC138        246          1 HW      11377          0
00000004269DC218        274          1 IS       2305          0
00000004269DC308        304          1 JQ       1514          0
00000004269DC610        401          1 MR       1083          0
00000004269DC8A8        484          1 PE     212238          0
00000004269DC8B0        485          1 PF          1          0
00000004269DCB20        563          1 RT          1          0
00000004269DCC08        592          1 SQ       1868          0
00000004269DCC20        595          1 ST      26909          0
00000004269DCC98        610          1 TC        220          0
00000004269DCCE8        620          1 TM     378751          0
00000004269DCD18        626          1 TS       6605          0
00000004269DCD20        627          1 TT      64173          0
00000004269DCD40        631          1 TX     392834          0
00000004269DCE18        658          1 US     134438          0
00000004269DCFE0        715          1 WL        192          0


It is great fun to attempt queries against the X$ structures and see if you can guess the contents of the structures. Below is a query that will display the largest number of blocks that can be written by DBWR at any time:


   kviival write_batch_size
   kviitag = 'kcbswc';


Here is the output from this query. This displays the write batch size for the Oracle database.


SQL> connect internal as sysdba;
SQL> @x1


In sum, there is a wealth of interesting information in the X$ structures, and those DBAs with a propensity to learn Oracle Internals, these queries can be both fun and informative.








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