How to Solve Resource Busy Error in Oracle Database with Code Examples

Table of content

  1. Introduction
  2. Understanding the Resource Busy Error
  3. Causes of the Resource Busy Error
  4. Quick Fixes for the Resource Busy Error
  5. Advanced Solutions for the Resource Busy Error
  6. Code Examples for the Resource Busy Error
  7. Tips for Preventing Resource Busy Error
  8. Conclusion


Programming is an essential aspect of modern technology, particularly in the field of database management. However, like any other technology, it is not without its challenges. One of these challenges is the Resource Busy error, which is a common problem encountered by Oracle database administrators. The error occurs when a resource, such as a table or index, is already in use by another user or session, making it inaccessible or unusable to others.

Resource Busy errors are frustrating and can be time-consuming to resolve. They can also lead to lost data or corrupted databases if not addressed promptly. Fortunately, there are ways to solve this issue. This article will delve into the different techniques and code examples that Oracle database administrators can use when encountering the Resource Busy error. By following the guidelines, DBAs can quickly resolve the error and ensure the smooth functioning of their databases.

Understanding the Resource Busy Error

The resource busy error in Oracle Database can arise due to various reasons. In simple terms, it occurs when a resource, such as a table, is locked and cannot be accessed by another user or process. This error message is triggered when a user tries to perform a query or operation on a resource that is already in use by another user or process.

One of the most common causes of the resource busy error is due to locking conflicts. When two or more users or processes try to access the same resource simultaneously, Oracle Database automatically locks the object to prevent data inconsistency issues. However, if one user keeps the lock for an extended period or for an unnecessary reason, it can lead to a deadlock scenario, resulting in the resource busy error.

Another potential cause of this error is due to network issues, such as slow or unresponsive connections that can cause delays in releasing locks from a resource. These types of issues can happen due to various reasons, including high network latency, low bandwidth, or high network usage, among others.

In conclusion, and its causes is crucial for any database administrator or developer working with Oracle Database. Knowing the common reasons for this error can help identify potential bottlenecks or performance issues in a database system and take proactive measures to prevent it from happening.

Causes of the Resource Busy Error

Resource busy error is a common error message you may encounter when working with an Oracle database. It indicates that the database is unable to execute a task because some resources are currently in use by another session or process. There are several reasons why you may encounter this error message, including:

  • Conflicts with other sessions or processes: If two or more sessions or processes are trying to access the same resource simultaneously, a resource busy error may occur. For example, if two users try to modify the same record in a table at the same time, one of them may encounter this error message.

  • Locking issues: Oracle uses locks to implement data concurrency control, which ensures that only one user can modify a given record at a time. If a user tries to modify a record that is currently locked by another user or process, a resource busy error may occur.

  • Long-running transactions: If a transaction takes too long to complete, it may cause resource contention issues with other sessions or processes. This can lead to a resource busy error message.

  • Deadlocks: Deadlocks occur when two or more transactions are waiting for each other to release resources that they both need to proceed. This can cause a resource busy error message, as the database is unable to execute any of the transactions.

To avoid encountering the resource busy error, it is important to design your database applications carefully and to implement proper concurrency control mechanisms. This can include using appropriate locking strategies, limiting the duration of transactions, and properly managing database connections. When you do encounter a resource busy error, you can use various techniques to resolve the issue, such as waiting for the resource to become available, killing the blocking session, or releasing the resource manually.

Quick Fixes for the Resource Busy Error


When you encounter the "ORA-00054: resource busy" error in Oracle Database, it means that Oracle has detected an attempt to modify a resource (such as a table, index, or lock) that is being used by another session. This error can occur in a variety of situations, including during data manipulation language (DML) operations, when attempting to drop a table or index, or when trying to acquire a lock.

Fortunately, there are several ways to resolve this error, depending on the underlying cause:

  1. Wait for the other session to release the lock: If the resource is locked by another session, you can simply wait for that session to release the lock before retrying the operation.

  2. Force the operation: If you are certain that the operation will not conflict with the other session, you can use the "FORCE" option with the DDL statement (such as "ALTER TABLE … ADD CONSTRAINT … ENABLE NOVALIDATE FORCE") to force the operation to proceed. However, this option should be used with caution, as it can potentially cause data corruption.

  3. Kill the other session: If you have the necessary privileges, you can use the "ALTER SYSTEM KILL SESSION" command to terminate the other session that is holding the resource. However, this should not be done in production environments without careful consideration.

  4. Use the "ALTER SESSION SET SKIP_LOCKED" command: This command allows you to bypass the locked resources and continue the operation on the available resources. However, this option should be used with caution as well, as it can result in inconsistent data.

Overall, the best approach to resolving the "resource busy" error depends on the specific situation and the potential risks involved. By understanding the common causes of the error and the available solutions, you can quickly solve the issue and keep your database running smoothly.

Advanced Solutions for the Resource Busy Error

The Resource Busy Error is a common headache for many Oracle Database users. This error occurs when there is a lock conflict between two or more sessions accessing a single resource simultaneously. In other words, an object in the database is locked by Session A, and Session B tries to access it before Session A releases the lock.

While the Resource Busy Error can be frustrating, there are several solutions that database administrators and developers can use to prevent it or solve the issue.


The SET TRANSACTION ISOLATION LEVEL READ ONLY statement sets the transaction isolation level to read-only. By doing so, it prevents other transactions from modifying the same data while your transaction is running.


2. Release locks immediately after use

It's important to release locks immediately after use to avoid holding onto a lock longer than necessary. This can be done using the COMMIT or ROLLBACK statement.


3. Use DBMS_LOCK.SLEEP procedure

The DBMS_LOCK.SLEEP procedure suspends the current session for a specified time. This can be useful to avoid lock conflicts between sessions.

DBMS_LOCK.SLEEP(5); -- wait for 5 seconds

4. Increase the size of the lock table

The lock table size determines the maximum number of resources that can be locked by Oracle at the same time. By default, the lock table size is small, but it can be increased to prevent the Resource Busy Error.


In conclusion, the Resource Busy Error can be frustrating, but with the right solutions, it can be avoided or resolved. Use the above four solutions to prevent the error from occurring and to keep your database running smoothly.

Code Examples for the Resource Busy Error


When working with Oracle databases, you may encounter a "resource busy" error message. This error occurs when a resource is already in use and cannot be accessed by another process. This can happen if another user or process is currently accessing the same resource or if there is faulty code causing a never-ending loop.

To solve this error, you can use the following code examples:

  • Use the "wait" command: This command allows you to wait for a specified number of seconds before retrying an operation. You can use this command to prevent multiple processes from accessing the same resource simultaneously. Here is an example:
  DBMS_LOCK.SLEEP(5); -- wait for 5 seconds
  -- your SQL statement here
  • Use the "FOR UPDATE" clause: This clause locks the selected rows for update, preventing them from being accessed by other processes. Here is an example:
UPDATE employees
SET salary = salary * 1.1
WHERE department_id = 10
  • Use the "NOWAIT" option: This option prevents the code from waiting for a resource to become available, and instead raises an error if the resource is already in use. Here is an example:
  SELECT * INTO emp_rec FROM employees
  WHERE last_name = 'Doe'
  -- your SQL statement here

In conclusion, the resource busy error can be frustrating, but there are several ways to solve it. By using the code examples above, you can ensure that your database operations are executed smoothly and without errors. Remember to always test your code thoroughly before deploying it to a production environment.

Tips for Preventing Resource Busy Error

Resource busy errors can be frustrating for database administrators and programmers alike. Fortunately, there are a few tips that can help prevent these errors from occurring in the first place.

One important step is to make sure that all transactions are properly committed or rolled back. Failure to do so can result in transactions remaining open and locking resources, leading to resource busy errors. Additionally, using a shorter transaction length can help prevent these errors by reducing the amount of time that resources are locked.

Another tip is to use appropriate isolation levels. When two transactions attempt to modify the same resource simultaneously, conflicts can occur. Using a higher isolation level can prevent this by ensuring that one transaction completes before the other is allowed to proceed.

It is also important to monitor and manage resources carefully. Running too many transactions or queries at once can cause resource busy errors. By monitoring resource usage and adjusting query and transaction volumes as needed, it is possible to prevent these errors before they occur.

With these tips in mind, it is possible to take proactive steps to prevent resource busy errors in Oracle databases. By prioritizing resource management and careful programming practices, it is possible to minimize downtime and improve database performance.


In , resource busy errors can be a frustrating obstacle to encounter when working with Oracle databases. However, there are a variety of solutions available, including checking for open transactions and sessions, increasing the size of the shared pool or redo log buffer, and limiting the number of parallel sessions. By understanding the causes and possible solutions to resource busy errors, programmers can minimize the chances of encountering them and ensure their database runs smoothly. Additionally, it is important to regularly monitor and optimize the database to prevent resource busy errors from occurring in the first place. With these best practices in mind, programmers can confidently develop and maintain complex Oracle databases with efficiency and reliability.

As an experienced software engineer, I have a strong background in the financial services industry. Throughout my career, I have honed my skills in a variety of areas, including public speaking, HTML, JavaScript, leadership, and React.js. My passion for software engineering stems from a desire to create innovative solutions that make a positive impact on the world. I hold a Bachelor of Technology in IT from Sri Ramakrishna Engineering College, which has provided me with a solid foundation in software engineering principles and practices. I am constantly seeking to expand my knowledge and stay up-to-date with the latest technologies in the field. In addition to my technical skills, I am a skilled public speaker and have a talent for presenting complex ideas in a clear and engaging manner. I believe that effective communication is essential to successful software engineering, and I strive to maintain open lines of communication with my team and clients.
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