• Carpe Datum

    More than One Platform

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    Many Data Professionals I deal with work with more than just SQL Server. I came from a background of COBOL flat-file databases, worked with Oracle, DB/2, Ingres, and lots of other databases as well. While I find that the SQL Server professionals I know...
  • Carpe Datum

    Monitoring SQL Azure For Performance

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    In SQL Server Azure, there are no Dynamic Management Views (DMVs) or Performance Monitor Objects and Counters that you can access, so you can’t run your standard performance monitoring that way. I suspect that as time goes on, SQL Azure will have some...
  • Carpe Datum

    Plan and Prepare or Just Do It? How about Both!

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    I'm kind of a type "A" person. OK, I'm a VERY type "A" person. I even cook by setting things up ahead of time. I'm definitely more in the "Plan and Prepare" camp than the "Just Do It" camp. But I do realize that there are times when you just can't...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day: The man who needs a vacation

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    “No man needs a vacation so much as the man who has just had one.” - Elbert Hubbard
  • Carpe Datum

    What is the more excellent way?

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    I’m going to issue you a technical and professional challenge this morning. Yesterday I heard a great sermon based on a simple question: “What is the more excellent way?” The challenge I’ll issue to you (and to myself) is to pick three decision points...
  • Carpe Datum

    The “More Excellent Way” Experiment

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    Yesterday I challenged you to ask the question “What is the more excellent way?” at three decision points. I mentioned that I would take the challenge as well, and report back here on the results. I actually asked myself the question more than three times...
  • Carpe Datum

    Know Your Product Specifications

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    As the Data Professional in your organization, the rest of the org looks to you to ensure that the system can handle what the business requires. To do that, you need to know two things: what the business requires, and what SQL Server can do. But of course...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day – On Having a Purpose

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    I try to live by this every day: “No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of another.” – Charles Dickens
  • Carpe Datum

    Changing the Primary Key Before You Have Data

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    In my class this week, the students went through the inserts, updates and deletes that they had created for their database design, and then the moment of truth – creating the queries that answer the questions from the requirements. It’s often at this...
  • Carpe Datum

    Changing the Primary Key After You Have Data

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    Yesterday I blogged about changing a Primary Key (PK) during the design phase, and before you have data in the database. Even then, it’s not trivial to change the data type or column(s) that make(s) up the PK. When you have data in that Primary Key and...
  • Carpe Datum

    Code that Writes Code

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    I have scripts that re-create my databases for testing and development purposes. But sometimes I want to take the data from a set of tables and move it as well – I could use SSIS, or a SELECT INTO statement, but what if I want to “re-set” the data to...
  • Carpe Datum

    The Magical World of SQL Server Licensing

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    Licensing. Sometimes it feels like to you need a specialized degree, a black robe and a secret handshake to really understand it – but it’s not quite that bad. There are several licensing “models”, from just buying SQL Server off the shelf to Software...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day – On Thankfulness

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    Yesterday was Thanksgiving here in the U.S. – a time not just for family, rest and food, but most supremely of giving thanks. We give thanks to God and to each other for the infinite blessings we share. No matter what we think we have need of, that which...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day: on Curiosity

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    "The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity." - Dorothy Parker
  • Carpe Datum

    Channeling Bruce Lee: Tuning without Tuning

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    I’m leading a Performance Tuning workshop here in Portland, Oregon today, and I normally start this kind of workshop with a segment on “pre-tuning” – or, the steps you take so that you don’t have to tune as much later. When we set up a system is the greatest...
  • Carpe Datum

    Using Perfmon with SQL Server – Part One

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    I held a workshop on performance tuning in Portland, Oregon yesterday, and as part of that I mentioned a process I follow for automatically collecting Performance Monitor Counters for a system. I use this data to store a baseline and then subsequently...
  • Carpe Datum

    PowerShell Demo Prompt

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    When I teach I have to set my fonts really big so that folks in the back can see. I show PowerShell from time to time, and people keep asking me about my latest prompt.   Here’s what my prompt looks like:   { univac\Buck on UNIVAC using AMD64...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day: On Christmas

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    “Christmas, my child, is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it's Christmas.” - Dale Evans Rogers
  • Carpe Datum

    Data is Just Data – Information – that’s another thing!

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    Many data professionals deal in the storage, retrieval and display of data from a central set of systems. But there is another side to our craft, and I think it’s the most rewarding part of the job for both the professional and the organization they serve...
  • Carpe Datum

    SQL Server Chargeback Strategies

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    It seems the more things change the more they stay the same. One of the things I used to create on the mainframe system when I started years ago was a “charge-back” system.   It tracked the time and resources used by the employees so that we could...
  • Carpe Datum

    Measure Statement Performance with PowerShell

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    When you monitor for performance, you might start in the database server itself. But a true test really has more to do with the “round trip” of a data request from a client to a server and then the return of data back to the client. So I wired up this...
  • Carpe Datum

    The Beauty/Danger of Checklists

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    I love checklists. They give you a set of steps to take and when to take them for your systems, and help you standardize processes and procedures. They help you stay consistent, and let you know when you should do something, even when you might not be...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day: On writing the new year

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    "We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day." Edith Lovejoy Pierce
  • Carpe Datum

    New Year’s Goals, not New Year’s Resolutions

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    Many people use the New Year as a time when they promise themselves to behave differently. They plan to be healthier, eat less, workout more and so on. My family and I have for several years had a similar tradition. We find a restaurant that is open early...
  • Carpe Datum

    Quote of the Day: On Predestination

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    I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road. - Stephen Hawking
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