The Beauty/Danger of Checklists

I love checklists. They give you a set of steps to take and when to take them for your systems, and help you standardize processes and procedures. They help you stay consistent, and let you know when you should do something, even when you might not be aware that a particular step is required. They…


Measure Statement Performance with PowerShell

When you monitor for performance, you might start in the database server itself. But a true test really has more to do with the “round trip” of a data request from a client to a server and then the return of data back to the client. So I wired up this little test to simulate…


SQL Server Chargeback Strategies

It seems the more things change the more they stay the same. One of the things I used to create on the mainframe system when I started years ago was a “charge-back” system.  It tracked the time and resources used by the employees so that we could charge their department money for the time they…


Data is Just Data – Information – that’s another thing!

Many data professionals deal in the storage, retrieval and display of data from a central set of systems. But there is another side to our craft, and I think it’s the most rewarding part of the job for both the professional and the organization they serve. Data, in and of itself, isn’t very interesting. It’s…


Quote of the Day: On Christmas

“Christmas, my child, is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it’s Christmas.” – Dale Evans Rogers


PowerShell Demo Prompt

When I teach I have to set my fonts really big so that folks in the back can see. I show PowerShell from time to time, and people keep asking me about my latest prompt.  Here’s what my prompt looks like:   { univac\Buck on UNIVAC using AMD64 } —    12/23/2009 7:54:10 PM    — C:\Users\Buck…


It’s Data Tier Application and Data Application Component

OK – In SQL Server 2008 R2 we did “re-use” an acronym or two (DAC and DTA), but it’s important to remember there are actually two parts to this new feature. One is the Data Application Component (DAC) and the other is the Data Tier Application (DTA). The DAC is the file created for a…


Monitoring SQL Azure For Performance

In SQL Server Azure, there are no Dynamic Management Views (DMVs) or Performance Monitor Objects and Counters that you can access, so you can’t run your standard performance monitoring that way. I suspect that as time goes on, SQL Azure will have some instrumentation, but for the time being, you’ll have to go with a…


More than One Platform

Many Data Professionals I deal with work with more than just SQL Server. I came from a background of COBOL flat-file databases, worked with Oracle, DB/2, Ingres, and lots of other databases as well. While I find that the SQL Server professionals I know are fine with learning a new platform, many times I’ve run…


Quote of the Day: Let Go

“The important thing is this: To be able at any moment to sacrifice what we are for what we could become.” – Charles DuBois