Tech on Tap v1.1 Wrap-up

SQLServerPedia Syndication, Virtualization
The first ever Tech on Tap event was held on Saturday, January 27th, 2012 at the Stone Cellar Brewpub in Appleton, WI. If you weren’t there, well, you missed it. Notice that keyword in that earlier sentence, Brewpub. Yes, the Tech on Tap events (and there will be more) are specifically designed to mix Technology and Beer in a learning and networking event with a single focus. This first event was all about virtualization. The space where the event was held was the back bar of the Brewpub in a private room. The layout of the tables wasn’t perfect for presenting, but they were very conducive to networking. Other than that, the space was just excellent. The first presenter was Brian Lewis (blog) from Microsoft. He spoke about virtualization in…
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Execution Plans, What Do I Look At?

SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008, SQLServerPedia Syndication, TSQL
The question came up, what are the top 3-5 things that you look at in a query. I realized then that I hadn’t really written them down. There are some areas that let me know pretty much immediately where problems lie within a plan. You don’t necessarily know the answer from looking at these things, but you know you have a problem. Being me, I couldn’t stick to 5, so here are 6: Immediately check the properties on the first operator (SELECT/DELETE/INSERT). There’s tons of information in here and people frequently just ignore it. You can see if the plan is based on full optimization or not. That immediately tells me if I’m working on the optimizer’s best estimate at a plan or I’m looking at a timeout. If it’s…
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Deadlock Monitoring

SQL Server 2008, SQL Server 2012, SQLServerPedia Syndication, TSQL
There are four different ways you can get information about deadlocks in your system. These are: traceflag 1204 traceflag 1222 trace events extended events For years I’ve been pushing traceflag 1222 as the best of the lot. Well, that’s over. I’ve been learning more and more about extended events and I’m currently in love with xml_deadlock_report event. Why? Simple, it has everything that traceflag 1222 has, but there are two glorious things about it. First, it’s not going to be filling up my error log with, for the error log, noise. Seriously. As much as I liked the information displayed from traceflag 1222, I didn’t like what it did to the log, but I saw it as a necessary evil. Second, it’s XML baby! That means you can set up…
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I’m not going to black out my blog, because, let’s face it, who’s going to notice? But for all six of you who read this (and, of course, you Mom), I do want to point out that these are horrific bad bills. They are sponsored by Democrats and Republicans, so party affiliation shouldn’t enter into this. In this case, they’re all bad guys. And why? Greed, pure & simple. Hollywood donates millions & millions to politicians and they expect these people to stay bought and deliver on their “anit-piracy” legislation. Don’t know anything about this? Here’s an article. Just don’t focus on SOPA. It’s the bill sponsored by the Republicans (which for some reason is the only one called out as evil…grrr). There’s also PIPA, which is the Senate equivalent…
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Friday SQL Nugget #1

Professional Development
Gee thanks Jes (blog|twitter). Just what I wanted, a little extra work on a Friday afternoon. I used to like you. We have a tagging theme started by Ted Krueger (blog|twitter) who I also used to like. The theme is: Deciding that I need to delete and start all over Lordy I hate this one. See, I find it easy to decide that I need to delete and start all over. My challenging task is persevering. But… here’s the rub. Because my challenge is persevering, I have a tendency to try to persevere when I really should be throwing in the towel. I don’t have a technical example of this ready at hand (I did mention it was the afternoon on a Friday, right?), but I do have a presentation…
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Database Backups: Things You Need To Do Now

SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008, SQL Server 2012, TSQL
I want to say a few things about database backups that you need to know. Wait a minute, haven’t you written about backups before? Why, yes. Yes I have. Aaand… you’re doing it again because? Have you noticed the shocking number of questions that come up on SQL Server Central and #sqlhelp regarding backups? Have you noticed the incredibly huge number of people who don’t have backups at all? That’s why. To get the word out. Oh, good point. Carry on. Because backups are so easy, people tend to discount them. That is, until they need them. Then, suddenly, they become extremely important. Here’s a suggestion: Make databases important now. Learn how SQL Server backup works. Make sure you have backups on your systems. Make sure you have the appropriate…
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