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Cleveland DBA

Colleen Morrow is a SQL Server Consultant at UpSearch, a provider of DBA resources in northeastern Ohio. She has worked in the IT industry for 20 years, doing everything from technical support to development to database administration on Informix, Oracle, and SQL Server platforms.

Backup script skipping databases – and the fix!

A real head-scratcher

I’ve been using my RYO Maintenance scripts for a little while now, and they’ve been working great. Almost. One day I noticed that the backup script hadn’t backed up all of the databases on my instance. I checked the job history, no errors. I checked the SQL… Read more

5 comments, 1,384 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 26 March 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – History Cleanup

The last step in our campaign to rid the world of maintenance plans deals with housekeeping: the history cleanup step. I know. Cleanup is never the sexiest of jobs, but just like the dishes or the laundry, it still needs to be done occasionally.

If you were to create an… Read more

0 comments, 527 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 22 March 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Integrity Checks

Happy Monday! Everyone fully recovered from St. Patrick’s Day? Hopefully the weather where you are was as perfect as it was here in Cleveland.

Today’s piece of RYO Maintenance Plan deals with database integrity checks; a critical component second only to backups in my book.  The procedure I’ve written is… Read more

0 comments, 455 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 19 March 2012

T-SQL Tuesday #028 – Jack of All Trades, Master of None?

Every month the folks of the SQL Server community get together for a virtual block party of sorts called T-SQL Tuesday.  This month’s party is being hosted by Argenis Fernandez (b|t).  The topic: specialization.  Some folks wear many hats within an organization, others wear only one… Read more

1 comments, 254 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 13 March 2012

March Madness – SQL Server style

Bodypaint not required

It seems that March is another great month for getting your geek on without having to leave the comforts of your desk. Here are some of the SQL Server events still coming up this month:

March 14

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0 comments, 309 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 8 March 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Index Maintenance

It’s been a couple of weeks since my last post, but I swear I have a good excuse. I’ve been busily working on a separate writing project, but I’m back now and ready to continue rolling my own maintenance plan. To recap, so far I’ve covered backups, backup cleanup Read more

0 comments, 819 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 5 March 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Update Statistics

Another key component of any good maintenance plan is updating statistics. Statistics are what help the SQL Server optimizer choose the best execution plan for your queries. Let your stats get too far out of date, and watch your query performance tank.

For me, the biggest shortcoming of the update… Read more

2 comments, 1,487 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 21 February 2012

Using Powershell to Deploy Performance Monitor

As good little DBAs, we should be gathering baseline statistics for our database servers. These stats can give us insight into what’s changed when performance is suddenly in the toilet. They can also provide a basis for determining what systems can be consolidated, downsized, or virtualized, which has become quite… Read more

3 comments, 1,409 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 13 February 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Enhancement Request

In response to my last post, I got a very interesting comment from Philip:

“I would love to see a way to add logic that will verify at least X backup files for a given DB remain. Specifically, in my organization, I would like to delete all but the most…

Read more

0 comments, 919 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 9 February 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Database Backups, Part 3

4 out of 5 DBAs agree

I’ve covered creating my backup directories and the actual backup of the database(s). The last thing I want to do in my process is clean up any old backup files. Once again, I want to allow for some flexibility in my procedure. Much… Read more

5 comments, 1,369 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 6 February 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Database Backups, Part 2

Last time I dealt with the creation of subdirectories, in one or more root locations, to house my database backups. Today we’ll get into the meat of the database backup procedure itself. If you’ll recall, this procedure has to meet some specific criteria:

  1. It will need a minimum of…

Read more

4 comments, 987 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 30 January 2012

RYO Maintenance Plan – Database Backups

Remember kids...

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m a big proponent of automating routine tasks. If I have to do something more than twice, it should be scripted (if not fully automated). I’ve also made it fairly clear that I’m no fan of SSIS. So with all that… Read more

5 comments, 2,054 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 23 January 2012

Goals – 6 month checkup

Last week’s resolutions post reminded me that it’s time for another status check on the goals I set for myself back in July.  Two introspective posts in a row is a bit tiresome, I know, but bear with me and this will be the last bit of navel-gazing for a… Read more

3 comments, 589 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 17 January 2012

TSQL Tuesday #026 – Second Chances

Welcome to the first TSQL Tuesday of 2012!  This month’s soiree is being hosted by Dave Howard (blog | twitter) and he’s feeling a bit nostalgic.  As a result, we get to pick from any of the previous TSQL Tuesday topics and write about that.  He’s even included… Read more

3 comments, 401 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 10 January 2012

Msg 7395: Unable to start a nested transaction

Happy new year, SQL peeps! I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. Last week was very quiet at work, but I did have a developer email me with a problem she was having. (I do believe she may have been the only one actually working, can you imagine??) But… Read more

3 comments, 894 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 5 January 2012

SQL Server A to Z – CPU-Z

How fitting that I should close out the A to Z series while I close out the year.  We’ve finally arrived at letter Z and that stands for the CPU-Z utility.  Yes, technically that isn’t a part of SQL Server, but if you hadn’t already noticed by Monday’s ‘Y’ post,… Read more

0 comments, 1,003 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 29 December 2011

SQL Server A to Z – YEAR

SELECT 'Happy '+ DATENAME(dw, GETDATE())

Welcome to the penultimate installment of SQL Server A to Z (it’s not often I get to use “penultimate”). Officially, Y stands for Year, but that would be kinda boring, and quite short, so let’s run with it and talk about all sorts of date-parts-related… Read more

0 comments, 1,740 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 26 December 2011

A SQL Server Christmas Card

Merry Christmas everyone!

DECLARE @hohoho char(100)
DECLARE @bells smallint
DECLARE @tiers smallint
DECLARE @maxtiers smallint

SELECT @hohoho = ' ', @tiers = 1, @bells = 1, @maxtiers = 6
PRINT @hohoho

WHILE @tiers < @maxtiers
BEGIN
	SELECT @bells = POWER(@tiers,2), @hohoho = ' '
	WHILE @bells < 12*@tiers
	BEGIN
		SET…

Read more

1 comments, 456 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 22 December 2011

Pitching Pebbles – Using Certificates to Grant Privileges

If you fill the jar with pebbles first, you'll never have room for the big rocks.

I’m sure you’ve heard the story by Stephen Covey about the professor that fills a jar with rocks, pebbles, and sand as a metaphor for time management and prioritization. I’d relate it here, but… Read more

2 comments, 663 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 19 December 2011

#meme15 – Why Do You Blog?

Jason Strate (blog|@StrateSQL) is starting a new blog meme: #meme15.  The overall topic of #meme15 will be social networking, obviously something that’s getting a lot of attention these days, so there should be plenty to write about.  For the inaugural #meme15 post, the subject is… Read more

0 comments, 267 reads

Posted in Cleveland DBA on 15 December 2011

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