Multi-Monitor Support in SQl Server Management Studio 2008

Did you notice that there are a lot of “little” things that were improved in SQL Server 2008? One of those was done by one of my favorite developers and deals with multi-monitor support. In previous versions of SQL Server Management Studio you could open the tool in multi-monitor and arrange the panes onto mulitple monitors. But…


Data as Strategy

I’ve created a presentation called “Data as Strategy”, and in it I cover multiple solutions for various issues that organizations face in dealing with the “new world” of data management. No longer are we just DBA’s or Developers, now we’re part of the broader business strategy of using data in strategic decisions. That presentation covers…


Hovering Over the Titles in Activity Monitor

I show this little-known feature in just about every perf tuning class I give, and it’s often a surprise to most of the folks there. It’s not earth-shattering or anything, but I do find it helpful. In SQL Server Management Studio 2008, start the new Activity Monitor. Open one of the “Bands”, such as “Processes”….


Tools and Processes for “Fitting it all in”

Most data professionals I’ve met work in two modes: we plan for our day, and we react to the situations around us. I’m staring at my list of things that I need to do today right now, which is my planned work. Of course, I have no idea how much of that will really get…


My Perfect SQL Server Management Tool

As many of you know, I used to work on the product team on SQL Server Management Studio. I think it does a good job of balancing the needs of a data developer and a data administrator, even though there are things I would like to have done to make it even better. But if…


Wizards are evil – wait, no they aren’t!

SQL Server contains many “Wizards. Wizards are simply programs that collect information based on user choices. The Wizard’s screens explain each step and the choices on that screen. Based on those answers collected from the user, the Wizard performs some task. What could possibly be wrong with helping a user this way? Well, plenty. Wizards…


SQL Server 2008 does not always script out all tables

I teach my college students to periodically script out their databases so that they can run the script to create the entire project on any system. I use this to check their homework, and to teach them about source-code control. We use the scripting wizard in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) and select most of…


Code that Writes Code

I have scripts that re-create my databases for testing and development purposes. But sometimes I want to take the data from a set of tables and move it as well – I could use SSIS, or a SELECT INTO statement, but what if I want to “re-set” the data to a point in time? In…


Changing the Primary Key After You Have Data

Yesterday I blogged about changing a Primary Key (PK) during the design phase, and before you have data in the database. Even then, it’s not trivial to change the data type or column(s) that make(s) up the PK. When you have data in that Primary Key and/or you have Foreign Keys (FK) that point to…


Win7 – Install SQL Server Native or go Virtual PC?

I have Windows 7 on my laptop, and I also teach, demo and use SQL Server 2005 and SQL server 2008. Should I install this “native” on my outside operating system or use the Virtual PC (VPC) software that comes with Windows 7? Well, there are arguments for each. It’s far simpler to start up…