Click here to monitor SSC
SQLServerCentral is supported by Red Gate Software Ltd.
 
Log in  ::  Register  ::  Not logged in
 
 
 

The Art of Performance

By Steve Jones,

This past week Erin Stellato, of SQLskills, shared with the world her first steps when starting to assess performance issues with a new client. Erin presents a series of 5 steps that she uses to confront a new environment, assessing the system and gathering data about what is wrong. As you read the piece, you may start to wonder why you've found performance tuning to be difficult in the past.

Tuning is a system is a bit of an art. The complex interactions of code at the platform and application levels, the hardware reactions to our instructions and more can be hard to understand. If you haven't seen similar problems in the past, you are relying on extrapolating your knowledge to fit this new situation. That's why the more experience you have, on a wide variety of systems and applications, the better you react in new environments. It's why it's worth paying experts like SQLskills lots of money for their time when poor performance in your environment is costing you money.

However there's a lot of science to performance tuning as well. As Erin shows, a good portion of starting to work with an environment is gathering data about the system. Having a methodical approach, a set of pre-written scripts, can help you to organize the data you can gather into a form that helps you. Glenn Berry's diagnostic scripts can easily give you a serie of data points that may clue you in to potential problems.

Most of the time you'll likely find that poorly written code or a lack of indexes are your main problems. These might be easy or hard to fix, but in either case, this is where your experience and skill come into play. You'll have to use the data you gather to make decisions about what to change, which is part of the art of tuning. 

You can get better, but it takes practice. I'd suggest you try tuning queries in your own environment, even if they are running well. Find the most costly, or slowest, queries on your system and tune them, even if no one is complaining. You never know when they might start, and you want to be prepared.

Total article views: 299 | Views in the last 30 days: 4
 
Related Articles
BLOG

Performance Data Gathering

As a DBA, one of the things I struggled with was gathering all my important system information in on...

BLOG

Gathering Business Intelligence Requirements

Questions to Ask when Gathering Business Intelligence Requirements When starting any project requ...

BLOG

Tools to Monitor Performance of SQL Server

To gather statistical information on how a server is performing requires, you need to use operating ...

ARTICLE

Using Server Side Traces for Dynamic Performance Evaluation

This article describes a method of gathering and analyzing performance data using SQL Trace.

ARTICLE

Sneak Preview: Start to Finish Guide to SQL Server Performance Monitor

Get a sneak peak of some of the sections from Start to Finish Guide to SQL Server Performance Monito...

Tags
database weekly    
editorial    
performance    
 
Contribute

Join the most active online SQL Server Community

SQL knowledge, delivered daily, free:

Email address:  

You make SSC a better place

As a member of SQLServerCentral, you get free access to loads of fresh content: thousands of articles and SQL scripts, a library of free eBooks, a weekly database news roundup, a great Q & A platform… And it’s our huge, buzzing community of SQL Server Professionals that makes it such a success.

Join us!

Steve Jones
Editor, SQLServerCentral.com

Already a member? Jump in:

Email address:   Password:   Remember me: Forgotten your password?
Steve Jones