ORA-00704: bootstrap process failure

Bootstarp error indicates version mismatch between datafile headers and oracle binaries, which are being used to start the database.

I’m starting the database using Oracle 12.1.0.2 binaries, where as datafiles are from 11.2.0.4.

$ sqlplus / as sysdba
SQL*Plus: Release 12.1.0.2.0 Production on Thu Oct 27 07:18:50 2016
Copyright (c) 1982, 2014, Oracle. All rights reserved.
SQL> startup
ORACLE instance started.
Total System Global Area 1.8388E+10 bytes
Fixed Size 5366360 bytes
Variable Size 4898950568 bytes
Database Buffers 1.3422E+10 bytes
Redo Buffers 61739008 bytes
Database mounted.
ORA-01092: ORACLE instance terminated. Disconnection forced
ORA-00704: bootstrap process failure
ORA-00604: error occurred at recursive SQL level 2
ORA-00904: “I”.”UNUSABLEBEGINNING#”: invalid identifier
Process ID: 5177412
Session ID: 1704 Serial number: 59059

Now how to check if there is really a mismatch? First we create a trace file with datafile header dump.

SQL> alter session set tracefile_identifier=’datafile_hdr’;
SQL> alter session set events ‘immediate trace name file_hdrs level 10’;

From trace file, extract section “V10 STYLE FILE HEADER” & check the value “Compatibility Vsn”.

V10 STYLE FILE HEADER:
Compatibility Vsn = 123456789=0xb200400

Current value b200400 <———> b 2 0 0 4 0 0 (Hex) – 11 2 0 4 0 0 (Decimal). Expected value was c100200.

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