• Carpe Datum

    Sustained Engineering Process

    • 1 Comments
    In an earlier post I mentioned how we create the initial ideas for our software features. This may be a different process than you've seen at other software shops. Another big difference in the way the SQL Server organization does things is how we implement...
  • Carpe Datum

    Change it! No wait, Leave it Alone!

    • 6 Comments
    We've used two major system management paradigms for SQL Server: The Microsoft Management Console (MMC) and the Visual Studio shared components. In early versions of SQL Server, we had Enterprise Manager for most management tasks from a graphical standpoint...
  • Carpe Datum

    Marketing Drivel versus Technical Information

    • 1 Comments
    One of the most frustrating things to deal with is trying to find technical information on a product, and running into marketing documents instead. Actually, I've run into the other situation as well - I want marketing information to back up some buying...
  • Carpe Datum

    How do we create software at Microsoft?

    • 2 Comments
    Back when I worked in the User Education group as a content developer, I wrote an entry in this blog that described how we put documentation and other information together for SQL Server. I thought I would follow that up now that I’m in a new group and...
  • Carpe Datum

    OK - My SQL Server Management Studio environment is *really* messed up now

    • 0 Comments
    One of the advantages with placing the Management Studio for SQL Server in the Visual Studio shell is the ability to float the windows, pin them, and generally move them around. But sometimes you can get yourself into a situation where everything is pretty...
  • Carpe Datum

    SQL Server 2008 CTP4 Virtual Machine Available

    • 1 Comments
    You can find the latest release of SQL Server 2008 in a convenient Microsoft Virtual Machine format here: · Microsoft Connect SQL Server · Microsoft Download Center Enjoy!
  • Carpe Datum

    Script of the Day: Find UTC from Current Offset

    • 1 Comments
    I don't remember where I got this function, but I needed it for a distributed system where I needed a standard time unit. I'm sure there are other ways to do this, but this worked out for me: /* fn_ConvertToUTC.SQL Convert local time to UTC Author...
  • Carpe Datum

    DR 101 Reminder

    • 2 Comments
    It's that time again - with all the storms brewing in the various tropics and fall approaching here in the Northwest of the US, we should all check our Disaster Recovery (DR) plans. I used to live in Florida, and during my many years there I faced several...
  • Carpe Datum

    Why does a light switch move up to turn on the light? (And why do we say "turn on" the light?)

    • 4 Comments
    I read a great book last night called "The Psychology of Everyday Things" by Donald Norman. It's actually an older book that explores what works and what doesn't from a usability perspective. That's interesting to my group since we are in charge of the...
  • Carpe Datum

    Creating features nobody wants

    • 2 Comments
    You hear all the time that your code (not just Microsoft's; everybody in a software development firm hears this) has features in it that "nobody wants". But is this true? Well, sometimes it is. But sometimes there are solid business (not necessarily...
  • Carpe Datum

    SQL Server and Green Computing

    • 0 Comments
    As I was working through the list of customer requests for the next feature set in SQL Server 2008, one item that kept floating to the top was "multiple monitor support". More and more of us are using two flat-screen monitors to do our work each day....
  • Carpe Datum

    Using the Tools

    • 1 Comments
    A lot of the comments I get at conferences and over e-mail ask for various features within the management tools. To be sure, there are many things we can do to make the tools better, but many times (over half, actually) I end up saying "You know you can...
  • Carpe Datum

    Speeding up encryption

    • 2 Comments
    A friend of mine from Tampa, Florida wrote me the other day with an interesting observation: "I have a small finding and don't know where to publish it. Maybe you can help get the word out via your blog? OPEN SYMMETRIC KEY is somewhat costly...
  • Carpe Datum

    Script of the day - Remove White Space from a String

    • 12 Comments
    OK - this might be stretching the "Is this Useful" question a bit, but hey, I needed it today and thought I would share it with you - it's free! This construct takes the whitespace out of a string. /* usc_DBA_Remove_White_Space.sql Removes extra...
  • Carpe Datum

    Connection Security Confusion

    • 1 Comments
    You know, more than just about any other question I get the most common is around connection security for SQL Server Management Studio. Let's take a couple of scenarios and walk through the basics. Windows Accounts on SQL Server (Windows Authentication...
  • Carpe Datum

    Index Overlaps

    • 0 Comments
    There are a lot of tools in SQL Server 2005 that will help you with indexes, from enhanced plan diagrams to the Database Tuning Advisor. But I was scouting around this morning for a script that would find places where I had indexes that included duplicate...
  • Carpe Datum

    Don't Negelct Yourself

    • 0 Comments
    Wow - I have a new job where I'm trying to drink from a firehose of knowledge, my mother was up for the week from Florida (see here for more on that: http://carpedatum.spaces.live.com/ ), I had to write a complete tutorial on locking, get a project plan...
  • Carpe Datum

    Longhorn (Windows Server) and SQL Server

    • 2 Comments
    Feeling a bit adventurous, I've installed the latest Longhorn Beta and then SQL Server 2005 Developer Edition on top of it. Other than the inevitable video driver issues, it's been pretty stable. One feature I do like is the "Server Manager" that pops...
  • Carpe Datum

    Powershell Plus - Very Nice!

    • 2 Comments
    Our group (the Management Platform Team) is heavily involved in the PowerShell-as-it-applies-to-SQL area. We're working on a new provider for SQL Server 2008, as I'm sure you've seen in some of the demos we've been giving at various user groups. Well...
  • Carpe Datum

    Script of the day - Locking Information

    • 2 Comments
    This one is an oldie but a goodie. I don't remember who originally gave me this, but I've edited it over the years. Works on SQL Server 2000 and 2005. /* usc_DBA_Show_Lock_Types.sql Author: Unknown Purpose: Shows the various locks taken on...
  • Carpe Datum

    Web 2.0 or whatever they're calling it these days...

    • 2 Comments
    Everyone is trying to figure out where technology is these days. We seem to be somewhere between alchemy and a mature industry like construction or telecommunications. we've come from single-seat cowboy shops where just a few IT people could understand...
  • Carpe Datum

    Script of the Day - Find the Cores on a System

    • 4 Comments
    Sure, you can get the number of processors fairly easily ffrom SQL Server. But did you know you can also get the number of actual cores as well? This little gem works with SQL Server 2005: SELECT cpu_count/hyperthread_ratio AS sockets FROM sys.dm_os_sys_info;...
  • Carpe Datum

    What's really important?

    • 2 Comments
    First it was "cyber-". Everything had to start with "cyber". Then it was "e-", and then "i-". Now it seems to be "My". While buzzwords are great marketing tools, what is really important? First, it matters that things work. I'm on the Management Platform...
  • Carpe Datum

    The Biggest Problem We Face

    • 1 Comments
    Last night I gave a presentation to the Pacific Northwest SQL User Group. I mentioned that we often think our biggest problems are lack of time, too much work, people we have to deal with or technical issues. But all of us get done only what we can, we...
  • Carpe Datum

    Table Diffs

    • 2 Comments
    I think one of the most asked and answered questions in SQL (not just SQL Server, but SQL engines in general) is "How do I find/get the data from table A to table B?" In fact, you've probably seen multiple variations of the question and the answer. I...
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