Method R Trace

Method R Trace is a Method R extension for the Oracle SQL Developer version 3 interactive development environment. It is a zero-click Oracle trace file collector. Every time you execute SQL or PL/SQL from your SQL Developer worksheet, Method R Trace automatically copies a carefully scoped extended SQL trace file to your SQL Developer workstation, where you can tag it for easy lookup later. The main panel lets you manipulate all the trace files you’ve collected. You can click to open a trace file with any application you choose, like the Method R Profiler or your favorite text editor. Now, version 2 allows you to retrieve any trace file on your system, in an easy-to-use, natural interface to your trace file directory.

Interested? See Cary Millsap’s story of Method R Trace, or watch our 3-minute video demonstration.

I just finally got ’round to installing Method R Trace in SQLDev, and I can say, “Wow... Just wow.” Absolutely blown away by how simple yet effective it is.
John Scott
Apex Evangelists Ltd
Halifax, United Kingdom

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New Features and Bug Fixes

Method R Trace Change Log

Buying Method R Trace

You can purchase Method R Trace right now in our online store. You can try before you buy with our 14-day free trial.

Method R Software Information Library

Check out our library for more information about Method R software:

Installing Method R Trace

If you have web access from your SQL Developer workstation, you can add the Method R Trace Update Center URL in Help > Check For Updates or in Tools > Preferences > Extensions. The URL is:

If you don’t have web access from SQL Developer, you can install directly from our zip file, using Help > Check For Updates > Install From Local File.

Server Side Components and Privileges

Method R Trace requires a few privileges to do the dirty work of tracing and fetching files for you. When Method R Trace needs privileges for a database connection, it will pop up a dialog box showing you what it needs. If you are your own DBA, then all you need to do is enter a password, and you’re on your way. If your DBA is someone else, we’ve tried to make it easy for you both by providing a complete, documented script to do the job. You can see this script any time you want, in Tools > Preferences > MR Trace > Installation Script.


The Method R Trace extension is initially downloaded as trial software. A license must be purchased in order for the extension to operate after the trial expiration date. You can purchase a license at any time by clicking the “Buy License” button found here Tools > Preferences > MR Trace or here Help > About > MR Trace.


You can prevent extensions from loading into SQL Developer from the Tools > Preferences > Extensions menu. However to delete the file extension from your computer you'll need to follow these steps:

  1. Browse to the SQL Developer installation directory
  2. Change directory to /sqldeveloper/sqldeveloper/extensions
  3. Delete the file com.methodr.trace.sqldevext.jar
  4. Delete the folder com.methodr.trace.sqldevext

Server side components will need to be uninstalled manually. SQL statements are provided at the bottom of the installation script. The installation script can be found here: Tools > Preferences > MR Trace > Installation Script.

Getting Your Trace Files

Method R Trace makes it easy to get your trace files, whether you’ve generated them from a SQL Developer worksheet, or even if you want to fetch files created by someone else.

Run Script Button

Method R Trace works when you use the Run Script button in Oracle SQL Developer. Note that the Run Statement button doesn’t trigger the trace file creation. ...Well, sometimes actually it does, but the reasons are somewhat subtle, so it’s easier to remember the general rule: You trace by using Run Script, not Run Statement.

Files that have been downloaded are visible in the “Local Trace Files” panel. From there you can filter the results, open files with external applications, jump to the folder structure or edit the tags. You can move this panel or even hide it; just use View > MR Trace to enable it if you can’t see it.

Enable and Disable

If you ever want to run scripts without tracing them, just click the MR Trace Enabled button in the lower right-hand corner of the Method R Trace panel. To enable automatic tracing again, click the MR Trace Disabled button.

Navigation Node

In the Connections navigation panel there is a Trace Files node for each connection. Expand the MR Trace node, then click the Trace Files node. This node will display a panel containing a filtered list of files of the UDUMP directory. From this panel you can select and download files. If the server side components have not been installed, then you’ll be presented with a panel to launch the installer.

You can download selected trace files by highlighting the files you want, then clicking the Get button in the upper left corner of the Trace Files panel. You can also select the files then right-click and select Get from the context menu. After the download completes, the file will be visible in the Local Trace Files panel.

Managing Your Trace Files

Now that you have your trace files on your workstation, you need to organize them. The Method R Trace tagging and filtering features make it easy.


By default, Method R Trace will ask you to tag your trace file. You can edit these tags later if you want to. They’re stored in the trace file to make it easy for you to find your files when you need them. You can control the tags dialog and many other options in Tools > Preferences > MR Trace.

External Tools

You can configure Method R Trace to open your trace files in an external tool. To create a new external tool, right-click on a trace file, and select Open With > Other... from the Method R Trace context menu. This will open a file dialog where you can select an application to open the trace file. Once you have added this application, it will appear in the Open With context menu.


There are two ways to filter the list of files displayed in the Trace Files panel. Entering text in the Filter... text field will quickly reduce the list of rows to ones that match the input. You can also filter the rows before they are brought to your workstation. This will improve the response time as well as assist you in searching for files. You can control these settings by clicking the Filter icon, or in Preferences > Default Filter.

Product Support

For product support, please visit our Support page.

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