Well, I was quite busy before the holidays, but here is another post I just keep for my reference.
For each database, I believe it is important to automate database shutdown and database startup. This way, in case of an emergency, a systems administrator can start and stop database services without the need for a database administator. Oracle provides an excellent article on this topic, but the Oracle documentation is quite generic. So I hereby provide a step-by-step guide for Red Hat Linux.