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Term: USER

In Oracle, a user is someone that can connect to a database, and optionally (depending on the assigned privileges) can own objects (such as tables) in the database.

Users can also be program code, scripts, or automated processes.

The objects that a user owns are referred to as the users's "schema". A schema is always owned by a single user, but a user may own multiple schemas. Because of the direct 1-to-1 relationship between a user and a schema, the two terms are often used interchangeably.

Types of users
There are three types of users. A user is always either:

  • a LOCAL user,
  • an EXTERNAL user, or
  • a GLOBAL user
Local users
A local user needs a password to log on to the database. This is the simplest, most common user type.

External users
An external user doesn't need an explicit password to log on to the database. External users receive their authentication through an external service (most typically by the operating system).

Global users
Similar to an external user, a global user doesn't need a password to log on to the database. Global users are normally authenticated by a directory service (software that stores, organizes and provides access to information in a given system).

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