Why Don’t People Use Columnstore Indexes?

Professional Development, SQL Server
I saw this question on SQL Server Central the other day and had an immediate, visceral reaction. I know why. Now, before I explain my answer, please, let me reassure you. I get it. You're busy. What I'm about to suggest is not meant as a direct critique of you. It's just an observation of the human condition. Heck, maybe I'm wrong. So, before you write the angry screed about how busy you are and why you can't possibly do what I'm about to suggest, believe me, I already understand. I'm still going to suggest something that's going to make some of you angry. Common Knowledge If you'll permit me, I want to talk about Extended Events before we talk about Columnstore. SIDE NOTE: Standing invitation, any time I'm at…
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Rant: There Is No NoSQL Data Storage Engine

Misc
Do I need relational or NoSQL? How does NoSQL help me scale? Will I get paid better with NoSQL or relational? Does NoSQL make my butt look big? OK, maybe I made up that last one. However, the others are all variations of questions I've been seeing a lot of recently. I don't know if I'm just noticing them a lot more or there are more of them, but I'm sick of seeing NoSQL on my computer screen. I love the DB-Engines Ranking page. We can argue over their methods and whether or not Vertica should be ranked above Filemaker all we want. However, what we have is both a very thorough collection of all the different data management systems out there and a great set of definitions for the…
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Why I Use AdventureWorks for Demos

SQL Server, SQL Server 2016, SQL Server 2017
I know that when some people see AdventureWorks, their vision turns all red around the edges, their blood pressure spikes and they begin to foam at the mouth. I do understand. AdventureWorks, Microsoft's very old, near ubiquitous, sample database suffers from a lot off issues. What's The Matter With AdventureWorks? Let's start off with the general design of the schemas. It's broken up in odd ways. Production has a TransactionHistory and a TransactionHistoryArchive instead of Sales? That doesn't make any sense. What the heck is up with the general database design anyway? I mean, pick on one example. A person can have more than one phone number. Fine. But, what about people who share phone numbers like that ancient land line in my house that is only EVER used by…
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There Is a Magic Button, a Rant

SQL Server, SQL Server 2016, T-SQL
OK guys. I think it's way past time. A bunch of us have been keeping a secret from the rest of you. We know something that you don't. I don't think we should hide this secret from the world any more. Illuminati? Incompetents. Free Masons? I am one, so I already know all those secrets. Bilderbergers, Cthulhu Cultists, MKUltra, New World Order, Rotarians? All of these are nothing compared to the vast conspiracy that I'm about to reveal. We need to just unveil the magic "Run Really Fast" button. We've been keeping that sucker a secret forever. It's been tough. Every so often some unauthorized person almost finds it or a "query tuning expert" (as if that was a real thing) tries to reveal it. But we've kept it secret…
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The Curse of Relational Databases

Professional Development
Let's face it, none of Information Technology is easy. Oh yeah, there are those few geniuses that have an absolute grasp over some small aspect of the stack, or those other geniuses that have a very shallow knowledge level, but understand the entire stack. But the stack itself, it's vast, deep, wide, utterly unfathomable. So what do you do? You cheat. You take shortcuts. You ignore things you don't like/understand/appreciate. And then there's all the things you just don't know. Or, you cheat another way, you get experts that have drilled down on a particular technology so that they'll provide you with the knowledge you need. Ah, but then you have to listen to them and what happens when your local genius (deep or wide) doesn't agree with your hired…
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Approachable? Sometimes.

DevOps, Professional Development
Deservedly so, I got called out for a bit of attitude I displayed in a recent blog post: Time for a Quick Rant. Steve Hood took the general attitude of "Do this or I will beat you" to task in his blog post The Approachable DBA. Granted, my little rant was primarily done tongue wedged immovably in cheek. But I was reflecting an attitude that the gods know I'm guilty of and that I think way too many DBAs are guilty of. Actually, I think developers are just as guilty. And sysadmins, san admins, support desk people, QA, the report writing team, those people supporting the data warehouse certainly, the SharePoint team, and that poor lady who got stuck being the Deployment manager. That attitude? I don't think you heard…
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Time for a Quick Rant

Professional Development, SQL Server
This is an actual quote from what we can only assume is a functional human being: The database is very big so we stopped taking backup's. Eight lords a leaping are you kidding me? Seriously! Seriously? By the Great Gu and all the Valkyries in Valhalla, you stopped taking backups of your PRODUCTION database because it was "very big." And I'll put down Brobdingnagian stacks of cash that "very big" in this case is probably 200-500gb or at worst 1-2tb. People, assuming you have enough brain stem intact to regulate breathing, you must know, you must by all the sparkly vampires in Twighlight KNOW that you need to have backups. Right? I mean, nothing ever goes wrong on this shiny marble we call Dirt, does it? No one would EVER…
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Star Trek and the Death of IT

Misc
GAAAAAAAHHHHH!!!! I feel slightly better, but only slightly. I started watching Star Trek: The Next Generation on Netflix just to unwind my brain and relax a little. Instead of relaxation I found myself pacing back and forth in front of the television, gesticulating wildly, with a string expletives coming out of my mouth in a torrential flood (yeah, my kids loved it). What happened in the 24th century? Did the entire race of IT Pros die out in the 23rd? Because there sure as heck is no evidence that they are ANYWHERE to be found. Episode after episode there are computer problems. And episode after episode my blood pressure is rising. I can't believe what I'm seeing. For example, in one episode they get an alien computer virus (firewall, checksums,…
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It Is Your Fault

Professional Development
I earned my nickname. I'm proud of it. I am the Scary DBA. I don't really like to advertise my other nickname, Rant (get it, Grant shortened to another word). I earned that one too. I'm not proud of it at all. I got that one because I sometimes don't listen as much as I should and, because I tend to be more than a little passionate about my job and my databases, I would go off on a rant. And yeah, I stood in the way of some development processes and approaches that I shouldn't have. Instead of facilitating the development team and trying to understand their problems and issues, I just said "No." Usually at length. I just finished¬†reading this post from Martin Fowler, whose work I've ¬†enjoyed,…
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