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Part 1: The Database Administrator's Primary Responsibility Expand / Collapse
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Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2009 3:44 AM
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Maybe it's the contrast with dreadful reality but I believe I detect a Dr. Seuss flavour? As in
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oh,_the_Places_You'll_Go!
(if that comes out as an actual link.)

Will you succeed?
Yes, you will indeed.
(98 3/4% guaranteed.)

Et cetera.
Post #788037
Posted Tuesday, September 15, 2009 4:38 AM


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Martin Bastable (9/15/2009)
I think something that is often missed is monitoring - people set up lots of lovely processes and systems, backup plans, etc.etc. - but then they (or management, or management don't allow them to...) fail to monitor if what they set up works, backs up ok, restores, monitor the data for quality and issues, etc. etc.

Case in point somewhere not so far from where I sit, where an entire years worth of work was lost for a couple of thousand people when a raid system failed. The official word was that they had `had a failure on all 3 levels of their backup systems`. The raid failed, its backup systems failed, and the daily backups being made failed.

The actual word was actually that the backups failed as no-one had made any backup's for over a year. No-one checked the backup's were being made, what was happening to them, if they worked, what the person responsible for making the backups was doing, etc.etc.etc.

I think management often like to fire and forget - i.e. buy in something, get it set up and installed and then assume that it will magically take care of itself. Resources can then be moved onto other things. (Even if those resources kick up a fuss about it :) ). Certainly in my experience anyway!

M.


So true. It sounds like you work at the same place as me.
Part of the problem is suppliers sell products to the management as a cure all. The cost of the software, application, hardware and OS etc are all taken into account but, the ongoing costs of management are not.
Post #788054
Posted Thursday, September 17, 2009 8:10 AM
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I had a SQL Server teacher who said the primary responsibility of a DBA is "to protect the data". I like that definition as opposed to just "data".

- "Data Mother" Michelle
Post #789668
Posted Thursday, September 17, 2009 9:15 AM
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They will give you a key
To a noisy large room
Full of stuff that you'll see
In a "Dilbert" cartoon.
Post #789726
Posted Friday, October 16, 2009 1:26 PM
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Very good . Am waiting for the part 2 .
Post #804489
Posted Friday, October 16, 2009 3:25 PM


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Thanks!

You can find Part 2 here:

http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQL+Server+Administration/67902/



John Sansom (@sqlBrit) | www.johnsansom.com
Post #804592
Posted Friday, April 22, 2011 8:40 AM


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Being an "accidental DBA," I'm working on becoming a "non-accidental DBA." While my employer put in SQL about 6-7 years ago, as the back-end for a time and attendance application, I've been mostly a "bad" DBA of the "it's working, it's out of mind."

While we / I set up backups in the Maintenance Plan (using wizards, still learning T-SQL,) they've never really been tested. My employer has since added in an accounting package, also SQL back end. While the (originally I think just a consultant, now an employee) was more of an SQL person then myself, I think he's fairly narrowly focused on the accounting package. So, again, I set up the backups (but still a lack of testing said backups.)

Fast forward a couple years.

The other day, I submitted a request to my boss to set up a VM with SQL to test our backups, and for future testing of backups of the application my employer writes, which is going to use SQL (used to be a Foxpro app.)

Haven't heard back, but I think even if he doesn't reply, I'm going to go forward with setting it up and testing. After all, I'm not only the unofficial / official office DBA, I'm also the server admin / network admin / virtualization admin / domain admin. It's not like I'll get stopped needing someone else to help...


Jason
Post #1097470
Posted Friday, April 22, 2011 9:34 AM
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Jason,

It's crucial to test those backups. Without that, there's no way to know whether or not they're actually good. We've been battling some drive issues where I work and some of the backups wouldn't restore even after pulling them off tape to a different location. If there's enough space you can just restore them along side the current DBs, just make sure you don't restore over the current one.

Chris
Post #1097487
Posted Friday, April 22, 2011 12:07 PM
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I am certainly looking forward to this series as I am about to take a course in SQL SERVER 2008 DATABASE ADMINISTRATION so this tutorial should be very informative.
Post #1097561
Posted Saturday, April 23, 2011 3:39 AM


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Hi Jason,

Thanks for your comments.

Great work on taking the initiative, it's one of the key character traits required to be successful as a Data Professional in my view. In your situation I would even go so far as to say that you should not waste any more time and immediately proceed ahead on your desired course of action unless you are told explicitly to do otherwise.

I use this manner of working all the time. Folks are often so distracted focusing on their own immediate priorities that it can be difficult sometimes to get things done. Rather than requiring your management to make the decision for you, I say go ahead and make it yourself by informing them of what you are doing. They will let you know quick enough if they don't agree with your decision, trust me. As a Data Professional it is you who is the expert on the subject and your managers look to you for guidance and insight. Take the initiative and lead the way.

Now go get those backups tested!





John Sansom (@sqlBrit) | www.johnsansom.com
Post #1097728
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