-->
SQL Clone
SQLServerCentral is supported by Redgate
 
Log in  ::  Register  ::  Not logged in
 
 
 

James Serra's Blog

James is a big data and data warehousing technology specialist at Microsoft. He is a thought leader in the use and application of Big Data technologies, including MPP solutions involving hybrid technologies of relational data, Hadoop, and private and public cloud. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 30 years of IT experience. James is a popular blogger (JamesSerra.com) and speaker, having presented at dozens of PASS events including the PASS Business Analytics conference and the PASS Summit. He is the author of the book “Reporting with Microsoft SQL Server 2012”. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Microsoft Ignite Big Data Presentations

There were so many good presentations at Microsoft Ignite, all of which can be viewed on-demand.  I wanted to list the big data related presentations that I found the most useful.  It’s a lot of stuff to watch and with our busy schedules can be quite challenging to view… Read more

0 comments, 344 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 17 October 2017

Use cases of various products for a big data cloud solution

There are a tremendous amount of Microsoft products that are cloud-based for building big data solutions.  It’s great that there are so many products to choose from, but it does lead to confusion on what are the best products to use for particular use cases and how do all the… Read more

3 comments, 298 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 11 October 2017

What’s new in SQL Server 2017 presentation

I just uploaded a new presentation called “What’s new in SQL Server 2017”.  It covers all the new features in SQL Server 2017 (which went GA this past Monday), as well as details on upgrading and migrating to SQL Server 2017 or to Azure SQL Database.  Check out the… Read more

0 comments, 295 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 6 October 2017

Microsoft Ignite Announcements

Many product announcements were made this week at Microsoft Ignite, and I wanted to give a quick overview of all the data platform related announcements:

  • SQL Server 2017 on Linux, Windows, and Docker, generally available on October 2nd.  SQL Server 2017 is being released simultaneously for Windows and various…

Read more

2 comments, 334 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 28 September 2017

Distributed Writes

In SQL Server, scaling out reads (i.e. using Active secondary replicas via AlwaysOn Availability Groups) is a lot easier than scaling out writes.  So what are your options when you have a tremendous amount of writes that scaling up will not handle, no matter how big your server is?… Read more

9 comments, 339 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 21 September 2017

Azure Archive Blob Storage

Last week Microsoft released a public preview of a new service called Azure Archive Blob Storage, offering customers a lower-cost cloud storage solution for rarely accessed data.  This allows for storage tiering, where organizations can place their critical data on expensive, high-performance storage and then move it down the line… Read more

2 comments, 510 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 31 August 2017

Data Virtualization vs Data Warehouse

Data virtualization goes by a lot of different names: logical data warehouse, data federation, virtual database, and decentralized data warehouse.  Data virtualization allows you to integrate data from various sources, keeping the data in-place, so that you can generate reports and dashboards to create business value from the data.  It… Read more

0 comments, 354 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 24 August 2017

Microsoft Big Data Certification Exams

I previously blogged about Microsoft certification changes, and since then there have been some new Microsoft Big Data certifications exams released:

Already live:

70-773: Analyzing Big Data with Microsoft R Server

70-774: Perform Cloud Data Science with Azure Machine Learning

70-775: Perform Data Engineering on Microsoft Azure HDInsight

Now… Read more

3 comments, 238 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 8 August 2017

Azure Analysis Services web designer

Microsoft has released a preview of the Azure Analysis Services web designer.  This is a browser-based experience that will allow developers to start creating and managing Azure Analysis Services (AAS) semantic models quickly and easily.  SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) and SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) will still be the… Read more

1 comments, 259 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 2 August 2017

Azure SQL Data Sync 2.0

Azure SQL Data Sync has been ignored for quite some time, but has finally gotten an update (it’s in public preview).  This release includes several major improvements to the service including new Azure portal support, PowerShell and REST API support, and enhancements to security and privacy.

SQL Azure Data Sync… Read more

0 comments, 226 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 20 July 2017

4TB disk sizes for Azure IaaS VMs available

Microsoft has introduced two new disk sizes for Azure IaaS VMs in P40 (2TB) and P50 (4TB) for both managed and unmanaged Premium Disks and S40 (2TB) and S50 (4TB) for both managed and unmanaged Standard Disks.  This enables customers to add 4x more disk storage capacity per VM.… Read more

2 comments, 418 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 7 July 2017

Data lake details

I have blogged before about data lakes (see What is a data lake? and Why use a data lake?), and wanted to provide more details on this popular technology, some of which I cover in my presentation “Big data architectures and the data lake“.  In short, the… Read more

3 comments, 343 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 29 June 2017

Azure DevTest Labs

I have been working at Microsoft now for 3 years and 4 months (side note: it’s by far the best company I have ever worked for).  You would think by now I know about every Azure product, but we release new products and services at such a tremendously fast pace… Read more

2 comments, 380 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 21 June 2017

Data Science Virtual Machine

The Data Science Virtual Machine (DSVM) is a customized VM image on Microsoft’s Azure cloud built specifically for doing data science.  It has many popular data science and other tools pre-installed and pre-configured to jump-start building intelligent applications for advanced analytics.  So instead of you having to create a VM… Read more

3 comments, 2,029 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 14 June 2017

Data Warehouse Fast Track Reference Guide for SQL Server 2016

I had previously blogged about the Data Warehouse Fast Track for SQL Server 2016, a joint effort between Microsoft and its hardware partners to deliver validated, pre-configured solutions that reduce the complexity of implementing a data warehouse on SQL Server Enterprise Edition.

Now available are two new excellent white… Read more

2 comments, 536 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 7 June 2017

SSAS high availability

If you are looking at providing high availability (HA) for SSAS, here are 3 options:

  1. Install SSAS on a Windows Server Failover Cluster (WSFC)
    Here’s a good article. The main issue with this option is that SSAS isn’t cluster-aware, so if windows is “OK” but SSAS (the service)…

Read more

5 comments, 334 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 24 May 2017

SQL Data Warehouse reference architectures

With so many product options to choose from for building a big data solution in the cloud, such as SQL Data Warehouse (SQL DW), Azure Analysis Services (AAS), SQL Database (SQL DB), and Azure Data Lake (ADL), there are various combinations of using the products, each with pros/cons along with… Read more

6 comments, 378 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 17 May 2017

Microsoft Build event announcements

Another Microsoft event and another bunch of exciting announcements.  At the Microsoft Build event this week, the major announcements in the data platform space were:

Azure Cosmos DB

Azure Cosmos DB is the next big leap in the evolution of DocumentDB.  Cosmos DB is Microsoft’s globally-distributed, horizontally scalable, multi-model database… Read more

2 comments, 429 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 12 May 2017

Power BI Premium, Report Server, Apps and API

Announced today are some really cool new Power BI features:

Power BI Premium

Previously available were two tiers, Power BI Free and Power BI Pro ($10/user/month).  The problem with Power BI Pro is that for large organizations, this can add up.  In addition, their performance needs might not be met.… Read more

15 comments, 1,257 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 3 May 2017

Microsoft Data Amp event announcements

Yesterday was the Microsoft Data Amp event where a bunch of very exciting announcements were made:

  • SQL Server vNext CTP 2.0 is now available and the product will be officially called SQL Server 2017:
    • Runs on Linux and Docker
    • Support for Graph queries.  More info
    • Support for R and now…

Read more

1 comments, 560 reads

Posted in James Serra's Blog on 20 April 2017

Older posts