Big Data – A Microsoft Tools Approach

(As with all of these types of posts, check the date of the latest update I’ve made here. Anything older than 6 months is probably out of date, given the speed with which we release new features into Windows and SQL Azure) I don’t normally like to discuss things in terms of tools. I find…

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Big Data and the Cloud – More Hype or a Real Workload?

Last week Microsoft announced several new offerings for “Big Data” – and since I’m a stickler for definitions, I wanted to make sure I understood what that really means. What is “Big Data”? What size hard drive is that? After all, my laptop has 1TB of storage – is my laptop “Big Data”? There are…

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You Probably Already Have a “Private Cloud”

I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a fan of the word “Cloud”. It’s too marketing-oriented, gimmicky and non-specific. A better definition (in many cases) is “Distributed Computing”. That means that some or all of the computing functions are handled somewhere other than under your specific control. But there is a current use of the word…

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Do you have a data roadmap?

I often visit companies where they asked me “What is SQL Server’s Roadmap?” What they mean is that they want to know where Microsoft is going with our database products. I explain that we’re expanding not only the capacities in SQL Server but the capabilities – we’re trying to make an “information platform”, rather than…

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Vendors: Partners or Salespeople?

I got a great e-mail from a friend that asked about how he could foster a better relationship with his vendors. So many times when you work with a vendor it’s more of a used-car sales experience than a partnership – but you can actually make your vendor more of a partner, as long as…

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SQL Server for the Oracle DBA Links

I do a presentation (and a class) called “SQL Server for the Oracle DBA”. It’s a non-marketing overview that gives you the basics of working with SQL Server if you’re already familiar wtih how Oracle works. This class and these links DO NOT help you with “Why should I use Oracle/SQL Server instead of Oracle/SQL…

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With Choice Comes Complexity

“Complex” may be defined as “Having many steps, details or parts.” Many of Microsoft’s products, including SQL Server, can be complex. I’m stating what most data professionals already know – there’s usually multiple ways to do things in SQL Server. For instance, to import some data into a table you can use graphical tools, SQLCMD, bcp,…

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How to get Microsoft to speak at your event

If you’re holding a special event, such as a SQL Saturday or a user group, one of the challenges is to get speakers for the event. Now, the best speakers come from the community – people who use the product day-in, day-out. They have a wealth of expertise, and many of them are really great…

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Can’t Travel for Training? No Problem

Right now it’s tough to get businesses to loosen the purse a little and get you out to some training. But you have features in the product that you’re not even able to use because you haven’t been trained. What’s a Data Professional to do? Why, go to free or low cost training over the…

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The SQL Server Health Check

My friend Brent Ozar, who is a top-notch SQL Server Professional, mentioned on his blog (http://www.brentozar.com/archive/2007/04/sql-server-health-check/comment-page-1/#comment-17520) that he brought in Microsoft Support to do a “Health Check”. There were some questions about what this actually entails – so I thought I would post that description here. A SQL Server Health Check from Microsoft is an…

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