My Best Blog Posts from 2015

ALWAYS LEARNING About mid-way into August of 2015, I learned some important new factors in Search Engine Optimization (SEO) that caused me to make some big changes to the way in which I blogged. Namely - simply reposting a slight variant of a given blog post could hurt your overall SEO rankings for any of the given posts. Now you might be saying to me "Kevin, those aren't new factors. They've been around for a long time, you idgit". And I would say in response "Ok then. But I had other things on my mind". (Of course, if you have other recommendations for improving one's blog performance, … [Read more...]

DBTA – StretchDB, a Cool New Feature in vNext SQL Server

Originally appearing in my monthly column at Database Trends & Applications magazine. When it comes to cloud-based database management, there are really only two players: Amazon, the value leader, and Microsoft, the innovation leader. Amazon has carved out a niche as the value leader in cloud-based database management, supporting not only its own implementations of various database platforms such as MySQL and Hadoop, but also supporting premier commercial DBMSs such as Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle. Meanwhile, Microsoft has, in my mind, carved out a very strong niche as the innovation … [Read more...]

ICYMI – Predicate Logic, Four Things I Wish I’d Known Sooner, Transact-SQL Bad Habits, Rewriting Queries to Improve Performance

A digest of great articles originally appearing at SQLPerformance.com. Why Not Seek Predicate Paul White ( b | t ) proves, once again, why he is the best in the business when it comes to debugging a SQL Server query. In this post, Paul gives you a step-by-step breakdown of a query that goes astray due to implied predicate logic. Got a tough query of your own? Post it atanswers.sqlperformance.com! Four Things I Wish I Knew Sooner as a SQL Server DBA Lori Edwards ( b | t ) tells four things she wished she knew before she started her many year career as a SQL Server database … [Read more...]

DBTA – IT Employers Must Adapt to the Looming DBA Shortage

Originally appearing in my monthly column at Database Trends & Applications magazine. In the first of this three-part series, I described some of the findings contained in an intriguing new survey published by Unisphere Research, a division of Information Today, Inc. In that article, I covered the macroeconomic and general trends that pointed to a looming shortage of DBA talent. In part 2 of the series, I described some of the issues and opportunities these trends offer to current and up-and-coming DBAs. Today, let’s talk about what this trend means from perspective of IT … [Read more...]

ICYMI – Recommended Intel Processors For SQL ’14, Should Indexes Be In The Key Or Included, Comparing Windows Azure VM Performance

A digest of great articles originally appearing at SQLPerformance.com. Grouped Concatenation in SQL Server and Grouped Concatenation: Ordering and Removing Duplicates In these two related blog posts, Aaron Bertrand ( b | t ) of SQL Sentry takes on the safest and most efficient ways to perform grouped concatenation in SQL Server. Then he follows up with a closer look at some additional requirements for typical grouped concatenation queries in SQL Server.Recommended Intel Processors for SQL Server 2014 Workloads Glenn Berry ( b | t ) of SQLskills continues his series on hardware … [Read more...]

DBTA – Does the Looming Shortage in DBAs Spell Opportunity?

Originally appearing in my monthly column at Database Trends & Applications magazine. In my last column, available HERE, I described some of the findings contained in an intriguing new survey sponsored by Ntirety, a remote database administration service provider, and published by Unisphere Research. You can read the full survey with analysis at HERE. One of the most startling and significant responses in the survey showed that 41% of data professionals intend to leave the field within the next 10 years. In that article, I also covered some of the broader industry growth and hiring … [Read more...]

ICYMI – Adding Filtered Indexes, Wait Statistics, Comparing Windows Azure Performance

A digest of great articles originally appearing at SQLPerformance.com. Dirty Secrets of the CASE Expression Aaron Bertrand ( b | t ) of SQL Sentry takes a look at some unexpected behavior with the CASE expression and some of its derivatives. Did you know that Aaron is both an uber-genius and a curling fanatic? Improbable, I know. An Unexpected Side-Effect of Adding a Filtered Index Paul White’s ( b | t ) deep dive post explains some of the limitations in the special use and usefully special kind of index, the filtered index. When applied in the appropriate scenarios, filtered indexes … [Read more...]

DBTA – Delayed Durability—The SQL Server 2014 Transaction Log Hack!

Originally appearing in my monthly column at Database Trends & Applications magazine. Delayed durability was announced late in the SQL Server 2014 development cycle, but offers something that many SQL Server professionals have wanted for years—the ability to disable transaction logging. Why turn off the transaction log? It is the main guarantor of transactional consistency in SQL Server and is critical for highly recoverable applications, after all. That answer, in itself, tells you about situations where you might like to turn off the transaction log. That is, you can accelerate … [Read more...]

ICYMI – Read Committed Snapshot Isolation, How Automatic Updates to Statistics Can Affect Query Performance, #temp table

A digest of great articles originally appearing at SQLPerformance.com. Read Committed Snapshot Isolation Paul White ( b | t ) has been doing a phenomenal series on SQL Server behavior under each of the major isolation levels. This particular post details the inner workings of READ COMMITTED SNAPSHOT, but there are more articles on this specific isolation level as well. I recommend Paul’s content generally, but this is an especially good series of articles, if you’re not up to speed on isolation levels and how they can alter SQL Server’s default performance. How Automatic Updates to … [Read more...]

DBTA – For #SQLFamily, a Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Originally appearing in my monthly column at Database Trends & Applications magazine. It’s the holiday season, a time for cheer and goodwill towards men. That got me thinking about the whole “most wonderful time of the year” tune playing in the background and how that has some special implications for the SQL Server world. Here’s a bit of context: I'm writing this article for you in the midst of the biggest gathering of SQL Server professions in any given year, the PASS Summit. One of the most visible activities when attendees get together for the very first time at the registration … [Read more...]