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SQL Server thoughts, observations, and comments
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SQL General

SQL Stuff that doesn't fit in another category
Virtual Lab part 2–Templates, Patterns, Baselines

Once you have a good virtualization platform chosen, whether it is a desktop, server or laptop environment, the temptation is to build “X”.  “X” may be a SharePoint lab, a Virtual Cluster, an AD test environment or some other cool project that you really need RIGHT NOW.  That would be doing it wrong. My grandfather taught woodworking and cabinetmaking for twenty-seven years at a trade school in Alabama.  He was the first instructor hired at that school and the only teacher for the first two years.  His students built tables, chairs, and workbenches so the school could start its HVAC courses.  ...

posted @ Tuesday, November 08, 2011 6:43 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ SQL General ]

SQL 2012 Licensing Thoughts

The only thing more controversial than new Federal Tax plans is new Licensing plans from Microsoft.  In both cases, everyone calculates several numbers.  First, will I pay more or less under this plan?  Second, will my competition pay more or less than now?  Third, will <insert interesting person/company here> pay more or less?  Not that items 2 and 3 are meaningful, that is just how people think. Much like tax plans, the devil is in the details, so lets see how this looks.  Microsoft shows it here: http://www.microsoft.com/sqlserver/en/us/future-editions/sql2012-licensing.aspx First up...

posted @ Thursday, November 03, 2011 12:34 PM | Feedback (6) | Filed Under [ SQL General Microsoft Denali ]

The first thing you will hate about SQL Denali…

OK, this is really the first thing “I” hate about SQL Denali, but I bet a fair number of you will hate this too. Once again, Microsoft has enforced the dictum that everyone must be either a Developer or an IT Pro. As Data Professionals, many of us have suffered as our employers can’t figure out where to hang us in the company Organization Chart, usually sticking us between Dev and Ops and letting the managers (and us) sort it out. This time, Microsoft has decided we are “Developers” and we shall get our help via the Web. Admittedly, Google...

posted @ Tuesday, July 12, 2011 4:29 PM | Feedback (6) | Filed Under [ SQL General Microsoft Denali ]

PASS Summit Location

Both Tom LaRock and Andy Warren recently posted blogs on PASS Summit 2013 locations. As was announced at the 2010 Summit, we have a contract that keeps the Summit in Seattle for 2011 and 2012. 2013 is the next "unhomed" Summit. One of the largest areas of contention during the recent PASS Board of Directors elections was the location of the Summit. I am surprised the keynote sessions didn't erupt into a Lite-beer-esque "More Locations" vs. "Seattle is Great" chant this year. We had a similar issue in the Atlanta user group a few years back. We started moving the location...

posted @ Wednesday, February 02, 2011 10:52 AM | Feedback (1) | Filed Under [ SQL General PASS ]


By now those that are interested have noticed the latest PASS board changes.  Two members resigned for professional reasons.  Myself and Mark Ginnebaugh were asked to serve the remainder of their terms.  As per the usual practice, the board reached out to non-winning candidates from the prior slate. Since we have already been vetted and have demonstrated willingness to serve, it is a good place to find interim board members.  I say “interim” mainly because my appointment (and Mark’s) are only until the next election late this year.  I am looking forward to serving the community in a new and...

posted @ Tuesday, January 11, 2011 3:35 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ SQL General ]

Why DBA skills are important (T-SQL Tuesday)

    DBA skills are important only if your company’s data is important. Basic skills like backup and restore are the minimum but sometimes you have to understand the technology involved to make decent business decisions. Recently, I was at a client with a blown cluster. They weren’t too worried since they had a replicated copy of the database at another location they could use. Replicated as in SQL Replication. When I pointed out that this did not include and foreign key references or unique constraints, they didn’t completely freak out. They did lose it when I showed that not one single trigger made it across. You see, SQL...

posted @ Tuesday, November 02, 2010 2:36 PM | Feedback (1) | Filed Under [ SQL General Low Availability ]

How Low Can You Go

I was recently called in to what has to be the most interesting low-availability environment I have ever seen. There was not any single thing that I had not seen before, but to see all of them together in one place was truly amazing. I try very hard not to say bad things about systems or in-house DBAs. It is bad practice to call a baby ugly, you might be standing next to its momma. This time I lost it on about my fourth WTF moment.   The platform was a Windows 2003 and SQL 2005 cluster. And this cluster was more if a US Marine Cluster...

posted @ Friday, October 01, 2010 11:33 AM | Feedback (3) | Filed Under [ SQL General Low Availability ]


Why?   No technical content on this one, sorry.   A couple of weeks ago, I signed up as a candidate for the Board of Directors for SQLPASS.  Many of the other candidates have posted on why they chose to run.  I suppose I should do likewise so here I am.   First a little background so you know where I come from and why the SQL community is important to me.   Back in 1992 I was living in Tuscaloosa, AL.  I started my SQL career by implementing a project using SQL 4.2.  (before that it was Dbase and Clipper).  BOL was just Book (singular and...

posted @ Monday, August 02, 2010 3:57 PM | Feedback (3) | Filed Under [ SQL General ]

Clustering for Mere Mortals (Pt 3)

The Controller Now we get to the meat of the matter.  You want a virtual cluster, the first thing you have to do is create your own portable domain.  Start with a plain vanilla install of Windows 2003 R2 Standard on a semi-default VM. (1 GB RAM, 2 cores, 2 NICs, 128GB dynamically expanding VHD file).  I chose this because it had the smallest disk and memory footprint of any current supported Microsoft Server product.  I created the VM with a single dynamically expanding VHD, one fixed 16 GB VHD, and two NICs.  One NIC is connected to the outside world...

posted @ Wednesday, March 24, 2010 10:42 PM | Feedback (1) | Filed Under [ SQL General Hardware Microsoft High Availability ]

Clustering for Mere Mortals (Pt2)

Part 2 - Where I plan my Cluster.

posted @ Thursday, February 18, 2010 4:27 PM | Feedback (0) | Filed Under [ SQL General Microsoft High Availability ]

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