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The Voice of the DBA


There's a debate over on Scott Hanselman's blog about the GUI v CLI in the comments for his Azure CLI post. It's a blend of people complaining about one or the other, mixed with a few (I think) rational people that recognize the GUI and CLI are both valuable. In fact, there's one person that mentions SQL Server and the SSMS GUI that can generate scripts for later use.

I like the command line, but sometimes it's hard. I don't remember the syntax for a variety of commands, especially PowerShell where I use tab completion constantly. I don't even remember options for many T-SQL functions, because I don't use them very often. I may find myself depending on Google or BOL for a quick refresher, but often I'll just use use SSMS if I can to pick some items in the GUI, click Script, and then examine the code before executing it.

I really don't mind someone wanting to use the GUI the vast majority of the time they're working, but someone should be comfortable with a CLI interface. If there is a task that need repeating multiple times, then I really want everyone using the CLI. It doesn't matter how you've written the code, executing something from a CLI is much more reliable than having to click around a GUI, trying to be consistent and quick, over and over. The CLI just works better.

I'd like to think that most computer professionals these days are able to use a CLI, even if they aren't too comfortable. The growth of PoSh as a wrapper around so many features and functions in the MS stack certainly contributes to this, as well as fact we seee so much code as code, not as images from a GUI. Github and collaboration, as well as lots of code samples in articles should mean that many people are comfortable working with code and executing it from some CLI.

I'm sure there are plenty of exceptions. Someone that works mostly with SQL Server might be happy running code in a query window and use SSMS for everything else. They might not even be aware that they can build things like SQL Agent Jobs from a CLI. I get it, the GUI is quick and easy. I use it for jobs, for Extended Events, and various other tasks where the code is complex and cumbersome. However, if something is easier from a command line, I like using it. Perhaps that's why my console of choice, ConEmu, is always just a CTRL+~ away.

Steve Jones from SQLServerCentral.com

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The Voice of the DBA Podcast

Listen to the MP3 Audio ( 3.7MB) podcast or subscribe to the feed at iTunes and Libsyn. feed

The Voice of the DBA podcast features music by Everyday Jones. No relation, but I stumbled on to them and really like the music.

SQL Clone

NEW product launch: SQL Clone - live stream this March!

Data Platform MVPs Grant Fritchey and Steve Jones show how to create database copies in seconds using MBs of disk space with Redgate’s NEW database provisioning tool SQL Clone! Tune in to this live stream session on March 29th 2017. Register now.

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Adding Years, Months and Days

Pete Revell from SQLServerCentral.com

Adding Years, Months and Days to Years, Months and Days, with Bonus UK Public Holiday calculation. More »


Managing Azure SQL Database Recovery

Additional Articles from Database Journal

Azure SQL Database offers several benefits, built into the underlying cloud infrastructure, that leverage resiliency and redundancy. You can take advantage of this functionality to facilitate failover and failback in response to events that affect availability of an Azure region. More »


From the SQLServerCentral Blogs - SQL Server 2016 SP1 – A significant change to licencing

matthew.mcgiffen 73574 from SQLServerCentral Blogs

Myself of all people am probably least likely to get excited by licencing changes in a product, but with the... More »


From the SQLServerCentral Blogs - Power BI Custom Visuals Class (Module 41 – Image Viewer)

Devin Knight from SQLServerCentral Blogs

In this module you will learn how to use the Image Viewer Power BI Custom Visual.  The Image Viewer visual... More »

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What is the U-SQL SQL.MAP datatype used for?

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Yesterday's Question of the Day

Yesterday's Question (by Steve Jones):

How do I start SQL Server with minimal configuration?

Answer: Use the -f startup parameter


The -f parameter will start SQL Server with a minimal configuration.

Ref: Start SQL Server with Minimal Configuration - click here

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