SQL Saturday #34/New England Data Camp v2.0

SNESSUG, SQLServerPedia Syndication
It's official sports fans. Well, it's been official since last week since Adam Machanic set up the web site. The New England SQL Server Users Group and the Southern New England SQL Server Users Group are again jointly hosting a full day of SQL Server goodness on January 30th. The call for sponsors and speakers is open. We already have several local luminaries lined up to present including Aaron Bertrand on Management Studio Tips & Tricks and Scott Abrants on Automating Database Deployments with Visual Studio. Please register to spend a day with your peers, learning and networking. It's being held at the Microsoft Waltham office, a great facility. We should have a full day with lots to do and learn.
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SQL Server XQuery For Idiots

SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008, SQLServerPedia Syndication, TSQL
I'm still struggling with learning XQuery. My latest little revelation was small, but vital. The difference between: @inXML.nodes('/rss/channel/item') and @inXML.nodes('/rss[1]/channel[1]/item') Is the difference between a 10 minute query and a 4 second query. Kind of shocking really. My understanding is that XQuery assumes there are multiple possible paths that look like "/rss/channel" so it searches over and over again through the XML to see if it can find them. But by identifying it as a root, showing that only one possible path is available, it stops stumbling around in the dark and simply reads the data. It's a little thing, but it made an enormous difference. I've still got a long way to go in learning how to use XPath within XQuery. UPDATED: I modified the title so that it's…
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Slow Blogging

Misc
Sorry, I've been travelling for three weeks and, except for the posts around the PASS Summit, I've been blogging very intermittently. I'm back in town, all travel done. The posts will pick up from this point forward.
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Record of a PSS Call

SQL Server 2008, SQLServerPedia Syndication
Not everyone has the opportunity to call Microsoft Premier Support. For those who have not yet had this experience, I'll document my most recent, non-critical, call. Critical calls are a different critter entirely. We were experiencing a very odd error on one server in our system. When a particular procedure was run with a particularly large set of data, it would produce an error, but only when called from the application. The exact same error with exactly the same data called from SSMS did not produce an error. We went through a very extensive set of tests and were unable to fix the problem on the server. After moving the production system that was experiencing the issue to a different server, we decided to contact PSS. 8:48 Am, Tuesday: I made the…
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Proof

Misc
SQL Rockstar tells me that unless there are photo's, it didn't happen. Brad McGehee published some pictures from DevConnections. See, I really do try to get people to buy my book... uh, I mean present technical sessions at conferences. Note the laptop with the styling stickers from: SQL PASS SQL Batman (defunct) SQL Serverpedia SQL Server Central Thrive SQL Server Bible SQL AgentMan SQL Rockstar One of these things is not like the others...
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I have a Tag

Misc
That's a Microsoft Tag. I'm not quite sure what exactly to do with it, but here it is. Evidently you're supposed to take pictures of it with your phone or something and it will lead you back here. I'll have try making a sticker out of it or something. Scary_DBA_Blog_200911172047
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Dev Connections Recap

Misc, SQLServerPedia Syndication
Last week I attended the Dev Connections conference for the first time. It was held in the Mandalay Bay resort in Las Vegas. The conference is different because it doesn't concentrate on any one technology, but combines a bunch of them; ASP, Sharepoint, SQL Server, Visual Studio & Architects. That makes it a bit more like Tech-Ed than the PASS Summit. I showed up on Tuesday night and was there through Friday. I attended a few sessions and presented three of my own on the SQL Server Central track of SQL Server Connection. Overall it was a very good experience. I enjoyed meeting a lot of different people that don't go to the PASS Summit. My sessions went well (except for an odd interruption half way through my morning session…
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SQL Connections

SQLServerPedia Syndication
I'm flying off to the SQL Server Magazine Connections part of DevConnections in Las Vegas later this afternoon. I'm presenting three sessions while I'm there, Wednesday & Thursday. I'm hanging around on Friday. Please track me down if you want to chat. Wednesday I'll be putting on "Scouting Out Execution Plans" in the morning, 9:30-10:45AM. Thursday I've got two sessions, "MUQT: More Unnecessary Query Tuning" from 8:00-9:15AM (which should be a lot of fun at a developers conference), and "DMV's for Performance Tuning" from 11:45-1:00PM. I've brought bribery material (signed books) to encourage interaction, so please stop by, ask questions, make comments, just don't throw things (except for money). I'll blog a recap of each day from my point of view. I won't be live-blogging the key notes because I'm not registered…
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PASS Summit 2009 Day 3

PASS, SQLServerPedia Syndication
The day started off with a mixed bag. First we had an honestly tearful farewell with Wayne Snyder saying goodbye to Kevin Kline, leaving the board for the first time since PASS was founded. This was followed by a painfully dull session with Dell all about their commitment to bread & butter DBA concerns. That was followed by Dr. DeWitt doing a deep dive into the history and the future of computing, showing and teaching in ways that only the very best can achieve. It was a fantastic performance, entertaining, enlightening, amazing... Just flat out incredible. It's the kind of understanding that you wish you could get about most things, most of the time. Unfortunately, it came to an end. Today I finally got to hit a lot of sessions. First…
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