Resolving ORA-01194 Error in Oracle Databases

Error Overview

  • ORA-01194: “file %s needs more recovery to be consistent.”
  • Commonly Accompanied By: ORA-01547 and ORA-01110 errors.
  • Indicates: A data file requires additional recovery to ensure consistency.

Typical Scenarios

  1. Current Controlfile Available:
    • If using the current controlfile, running RECOVER DATABASE applies all necessary archivelogs and online redologs, allowing the database to open.
  2. Using Backup Controlfile:
    • When using a backup controlfile, additional steps are required as the online ‘current’ redolog is not applied automatically.

Recovery Steps

  1. Ensure Datafiles Are Online: Verify all datafiles are online and in good condition.
  2. Run Recovery: Use RECOVER DATABASE and apply archivelogs as suggested by Oracle.
  3. Manual Application of Online Redologs: If using a backup controlfile, manually apply the online ‘current’ redolog. This may require identifying the correct log file through various means like checking the Alert.log file or using SQL queries.
  4. Open Database with Resetlogs: After applying all necessary logs, attempt to open the database using ALTER DATABASE OPEN RESETLOGS.


  • If the database fails to open after applying all logs, additional diagnostics may be required. Oracle provides several scripts and queries to assist in identifying the issue, such as checking datafile headers for consistency and identifying the required SCN for recovery.


  • Controlfile Type: The type of controlfile (current or backup) used in recovery impacts the steps and logs required.
  • SCN Identification: Identifying the correct SCN for recovery is crucial. This might involve analyzing datafile headers and log files.
  • Oracle Support: In complex scenarios, engaging Oracle Support may be necessary.


The ORA-01194 error occurs when an Oracle data file requires more recovery to achieve consistency. Addressing this issue involves a series of steps, including ensuring all datafiles are online, performing database recovery, and manually applying online redologs if necessary. Accurate identification of the required SCN and understanding the role of the controlfile type are key factors in resolving this error. In more complex cases, Oracle Support can provide additional guidance and assistance.


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