recently upgraded from Oracle 8.1.7 to 9.2 on Solaris 9 and I'm having
some problems. One of our applications won't start if I start Oracle
as an oracle dba (gid is dba). There seems to be some issue there

If I start Oracle is a member of the dba group but has a different
active group the application will start but I get errors when trying
to stop the database as a dba. I start sqlplus with the /nolog switch
and connect as sysdba (sys). First of all sqlplus tells me I'm
connected to and idle instance and then...

shutdown immediate

gives me the following errors:
ORA-24324: service handle not initialized
ORA-24323: value not allowed
ORA-27140: attach to post/wait facility failed

If I try to force a startup it gives me the following error:
ORA-01031: insufficient privileges

It's the same way if I do it the other way around... that is if i
start oracle with a user that has gid=dba and try to shut it down with
a user that is just a member of the dba group i get the same errors.

Anyone have any ideas?