January 2004 Blog Posts

  • Expansion Diary Part 4

    Work Queues No matter how efficient your TSQL, of course the application's method of using your data can make all the difference.  We're finding horrible inefficiencies in our application logic, and making some nice improvements along the way.  Our Work Queue system is a prime candidate for re-thinking. A Work Queue is a named set of data, such as "Leads Not Contacted In The Last 7 Days," or "Contracts Out," or "Waiting on Paperwork."  Things like that. On any given page, we might want to show a grid of Work Queues in a nice table showing each Queue's name, and...

  • Expansion Diary Part 3

    I think someone could make it their whole job to work with SQL Server.  Grin.  OK, I know many people actually do :)  But for my company, I do it when I'm not doing other stuff.  I guess that sort of tells you how much room for optimization we probably have. I've been pushing hard to get us focused on one simple fact: Doubling the user load and increasing the data being worked with by a staggering factor (from 200 new records per day to 10,000) within the next six months means that the system will probably DIE :)  We...

  • Expansion Diary Part 2

    So, here I am hip deep in the Performance Monitor....  Trying to get an idea of what a normal day looks like from the server's point of view.  This stuff is SO interesting.  Makes me wonder how it is that I do this job so well without ever having had to look at these numbers before.  Must be luck. I'm going through the book: SQL Server Query Performance Tuning Distilled, by Sajal Dam.  Pretty good so far.  I'm trying to use his guidance to know what numbers are "good" or "bad" when monitoring performance.  And to have clues about what...

  • Expansion Diary Part 1

    I just got news that our company will be nearly doubling in size over the next six months!  There's a lot to do in preparation for this, so I figured it would give me something to blog about :)  Let the madness begin! Basically, our company runs using our intranet application which we've developed in-house over the last few years.  It's all ASP based, with plenty of COM objects, ActiveX Controls, includes, and spaghetti code all over the place.  The back end is SQL Server (started with v7, now at 2000).  We're in the midst of a total re-write in...

  • does this make sense?

    Recently, I've come up with an idea for handing a vexing situation, and though it's working very nicely, I wonder what you, my fellow SQL Server developers, will think about it.  Here's an example situation: We have a business system we call "Work Queues."  It's for our ASP app, and it's pretty generic, in that if we feed it a sproc, it "builds the queue."  The queue simply allows a user to page through working a set of "accounts" or other such "items."  Part of the definition is that the sproc for a queue must return a few columns that...