Slick New Tool from RedGate

Tools
I have no intention of this becoming "tool of the day" or anything, but I can't help tooting the horn for a tool that I've been using a lot from RedGate. It's new and in beta right now, but it's going to be pretty good. It's a data generation tool called, are you ready, Sql Data Generator. Who saw that coming? Ok. I know. I'm not funny. Anyway, this is a great little tool. I've been using it to quickly slap large amounts of data into small sets of tables to test queries that I'm writing or for checking answers that I'm posting over at SQL Server Central. The tool lets you pick which tables and the columns inside those tables that you want filled with data. It has a…
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SCOM Troubles

Tools
I inherited the SCOM project when one of our Admin people left the company. This person had done a ton of work setting things up but ran into some problems. One of the problems was identified as databases missing from particular instances. I investigated further and found that the database list was "distinct" across instances. Meaning, if two instances shared the same database name, only one of the databases was listed. After getting an email from PSS, I did more investigation today. Now it's getting weirder. Some servers aren't showing up in Explorer, some aren't in both Explorer and the console. Not good. I've documented it all and shipped it off to the PSS guys to see what they think.
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SQL Inspect

Tools
I was asked if I would look at a new tool from a company I hadn't heard of. It's SQL Inspect from Yohz Software. Nominally this is a SQL query editor. However, strictly as a query editor, especially when compared to what's available in SQL 2008 or what tools like Red Gate's SQLPrompt or SQLRefactor can do for you, it's not so hot. Luckily, that's not where its strengths lie. Instead, it's all about performance tuning your queries and it does this very well indeed. It takes a query and returns a tree structured execution plan, looking a bit like the old text plans, but much more sophisticated with roll-ups, etc. It shows you all the details of the operations, just like an execution plan, but immediately accessible on the screen,…
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Unit Testing Database Code

Tools
Steve Jones, in his daily email from SQL Server Central, supplied a link to a terrific article in the MSDN magazine. Apply Test-Driven Development to your Database Projects. It was written by Jamie Laflen who is a Tech Lead on the DBPro team.  I've written a couple of articles on database unit testing, but none of them touch this. It's the new gold standard for introducing the topic to beginners (and lending a helping hand to experienced users). It's worth a read, or even two. I'm going to go back and review it a couple of times with Visual Studio open and a project running. No word yet on new virtuals. I'm going to work on another set of tests that I have to run. More on that later.
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