Introducing the SQL Server Database Experimentation Assistant

INTRODUCING THE SQL SERVER DATABASE EXPERIMENTATION ASSISTANT There's a very handy new tool from Microsoft called the Database Experimentation Assistant (DEA). The DEA makes it very easy to conduct A/B testing for SQL Server upgrades, providing quantitative insight into the performance differences across two versions of a database workload on SQL Server. Learn more! READ MORE... Posted February 08, 2017 … [Read more...]

Wait Statistics in SQL Server

When it comes to troubleshooting in relational databases, there's no better place to start than wait statistics.  In a nutshell, a wait statistic is an internal counter that tells you how long the database spent waiting for a particular resource, activity, or process.  Since wait statistics are categorized by type, one look will quickly tell the variety of problem that needs your attention, assuming you know meaning for Microsoft's lingo for each wait type. (As an aside, wait stats were implemented in the earliest days of relational database computing because the early RDBMSes ran on … [Read more...]

New on DBTA.com: Database Benchmarking Tools, the final article in the database benchmarking series

In the last several articles on Database Trends & Applications, I've been describing the benefits of reading and analyzing the benchmarking case studies released by the Transaction Processing Council. I've given you from a broad overview of the TPC benchmarks and shown ways that the vendor-published TPC benchmarks can help you save money and how the vendor-published TPC benchmarks must explain in disclaimers how they tweak their workloads. I have described how to run your own benchmarks and explained how to properly prepare your environment for a benchmark test. Pictured (L-R): Scott … [Read more...]

SQL Server Data Tools – Business Intelligence for Visual Studio 2012 Released!

SSDTBI for Visual Studio 2012 enables customers to use the Analysis Services, Integration Services, and Reporting Services project templates within the Visual Studio 2012 shell.  The components are delivered as a web download on the Microsoft Download center and will be available through Web Platform Installer.   This release is the equivalent functionality to SSDTBI (BIDS) for Visual Studio 2010 that shipped in the SQL Server 2012 box.  The team adapted the UI to meet the new Visual Studio 2012 UI design.   This release delivers on the SQL commitment to provide BI Project Templates supporting … [Read more...]

New Toad for SQL Server Beta

A new beta build of Toad for SQL Server (v5.7.0.527) is available at: http://toadforsqlserver.com/beta.jspa It's free and, afaik, doesn't have a short expiration date.  It contains popular features such as compare & sync (for database schemas, servers, and data), a full transaction log reader and DML undo feature, debugger, intellisense, auto-complete, code formatter, and a lot more.  Check it out!  (There's also a version of Toad for Cloud Databases, which gives you SQL-like capabilities against a bunch of NoSQL databases). This drop contains a couple of fixes in the areas: Database … [Read more...]

New on SQLMag Tool Time Blog – Update to FineBuild

Recall back in January 2011 that I profiled the cool tool, FineBuild for SQL Server, which helps you configure and quickly deploy installations of SQL Server.  Not only does FineBuild help you install a new SQL Server using the settings and configuration options you desire, it goes a few steps further by ensuring that any additional programs, tools, and utilities are also installed. Ed Vassie, the creator of FineBuild, has revised and improved the tools since I last wrote about it.  Ed has naturally added a number of bug fixes and documentation improvements. Several new features... [READ … [Read more...]

Microsoft Document Watch for Operational Excellence

Back when my day-to-day duties included database administration work and enterprise architecture, I became rather obsessed with the idea of operational excellence.  I read everything I could on the topic.  I made a list of favorites, which became somewhat shabby over time, as I dog-eared important pages and scribbled notes in the margins.  (Perhaps that list of favorites might, in and of itself, make a good blog post).  Fast-forward a decade and I'm still mightily interested in operational excellence for IT organizations.  It's just that so much good material is available for free on the … [Read more...]

Microsoft Windows Platforms Blog Watch

Remote Desktop Services Component Architecture Poster Grab your own poster! A visual guide to key Remote Desktop Services technologies in Windows Server 2008R2   Virtually Free Get the latest update rollup package for the Hyper-V role in Windows Server 2008 R2 and be sure to bookmark the Windows Virtualization Team Blog.  Be sure to check out blog World Simplified is a Virtual World. And doncha evah neglect application virtualization, such as the goodness at the App-V Product Team Blog.   Let's Optimize Some Desktops (Assuming You Have Gone Full Cloud … [Read more...]

Is There Such a Thing as Easy ETL?

E.T.L. That's Extract - Transform - Load.  That doesn't sound like a lot of work when all you need to get loaded is a simple Access database or an Excel spreadsheet.  In a situation like that, the process is so simple, all you really need to focus on is the L in ETL.  There's not a whole lot of E.T. to process, despite how wonderful that movie is. [pun intended]  But as soon as your data loading process involves some difficult or sophisticated cleansing or transformations, it gets really, really hard. The other cross-thread that had really caught my interest lately is the USA federal … [Read more...]

Wednesday Quest: Plenty O’Betas and Product Releases

Spotlight on SQL Server That's right! An all new version 8.0 of Spotlight on SQL Server Enterprise is now GA and updated trials are live on the website. Some cool stuff therein: • Support for SQL Server 2011 (Denali) - Spotlight can now be used to monitor SQL Server 2011 databases (Denali CTP1 and CTP2 releases). • Project Lucy integration - Use Project Lucy to analyze the performance of your database and compare your experience with everyone else who uses the service. • VMware memory diagnostics - Analyze virtual memory using charts similar to that used to analyze virtual CPU. We also … [Read more...]