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The SQL Elephant in my room


Are people familiar with the saying “If there’s an elphant in the room, introduce it“? – if not, then to sum up here goes – “An important and obvious topic, which everyone present is aware of, but which isn’t discussed, as such discussion is considered to… Read more

0 comments, 5,371 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 19 March 2014

THE IIF statement – SQL has it at last.

G’day All,

While I was writing my last blog post about the new SQL SERVER 2012 CHOOSE statement, it also came to my notice that we additionally have the IIF statement.

Again, this was added in 2012.

I’d assume that most people would be familiar with this… Read more

0 comments, 13,643 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 18 February 2014

The CHOOSE keyword


I love coming across features of SQL that I’ve not used before and one happened today – the CHOOSE statement – introduced in SQL SERVER 2012.
So what does it do?
Well basically a label can be applied at a specific index in a list.
Here’s a demonstration script… Read more

0 comments, 1,524 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 17 February 2014

TSQL-Tuesday#050 – Automation


Well, it’s the first TSQL-Tuesday of 2014 and one of my New Years resolutions for 2014 is to contribute to each TSQL-Tuesday of the year – lets see how we go!

Well, the subject of this months TSQL-Tuesday is Automation – which is quite obviously something that any… Read more

0 comments, 1,272 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 14 January 2014

Do you clean up after yourself?

G’day folks,

I remember a fair few years ago when I was relativly new to TSQL creating a stored procedure that used several temporary tables and had faily complex logic.

Occasionally during development the stored procedure would fail with errors – aside from the fact that the stored procedure… Read more

0 comments, 1,240 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 13 January 2014

Installed SQL SERVER 2012? maybe you’d like to re-set your shortcuts!


Just a quick post on a seemingly trivial matter that others may find useful.

The post was prompted by the Simple-Talk article on SQL SERVER 2012 keyboard shortcuts

Anyway, I installed SQL SERVER 2012  sometime ago on my laptop and ever since the CTRL-R keyboard shortcut key has… Read more

0 comments, 1,307 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 30 December 2013

SQL Saturday #252, Christchurch New Zealand

SQL Saturday #252 Christchurch, New Zealand


Well, these are exciting times for the Christchurch SQL SERVER User Group.

After a period of fragmentation where our meetings seemed to be at random intervals – mainly due to certain major events outside our control – such as earthquakes, the city… Read more

0 comments, 1,134 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 28 July 2013

Dedicated Admin Connections (DAC) and SQL SERVER 2012 SSMS


As part of any SQL SERVER install that I do, I turn on Remote admin connections (using sp_configure) and open the relevant firewall port – normally 1433 for a default instance – Although this can be altered

As we know, you can open a dedicated administrated connection using… Read more

0 comments, 5,044 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 7 April 2013

Multiple ALTER DATABASE SET options


Did you know that you can actually combine multiple SET operations into a single ALTER DATABASE statement.

It’s true, you can!

Mostly I never see this done.

Maybe it doesn’t make sense! maybe it’s just more readable if a single ALTER DATABASE statement contains a single SET operation!… Read more

0 comments, 3,308 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 6 April 2013

SSPI error and Incorrect timing.


Recently, quite out of the blue I started seeing this error when I tried to log into my SQL instance using SQL SERVER Management Studio (SSMS)

Now, I could RDP to the server and connect to the local instance using SSMS, however any attempt to connect to the… Read more

0 comments, 1,599 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 28 March 2013

Following good practice saves wasted time down the line.


Sometimes I come across what I call unusual coding practices. Developers usually have pressure on them to deliver and this often results in simply delivering code that works – with very little attention to best practice , performance or security.

Sometimes this lack of attention to best practice… Read more

0 comments, 2,360 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 10 September 2012

The first record on data page.


I had a recent conversation about data pages. There was some debate about the location of the first record on that page and whether or not it’s location is always after the page header.

As we know the page header is 96 bytes long – so does it… Read more

0 comments, 1,175 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 6 August 2012

2012 DDL for Roles


I’m extremely pleased that Microsoft are continuing their commitment to provide full DDL to preform TSQL operations that have previously been preformed using stored procedures.

The particular case that I came across today was regarding roles and the ALTER ROLE syntax.

Prior to SQL SERVER 2012, it has… Read more

0 comments, 1,310 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 22 April 2012

Listing SQL Instances on a machine (or list of machines)


Recently I was updating some of my Powershell scripts for managing SQL SERVER instances.

Generally, when writing a Powershell script to do something SQL related, the script takes the form of the following,

Author : Martin Catherall
Get status of sql instances (must have sql 10 libraries… Read more

0 comments, 5,510 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 17 April 2012

SQL Saturday 136 – Wellington. Speakers review.


On Saturday 16th April 2012, I attended SQL Saturday #136 in Wellington, New Zealand.

The day was run by Dave Curlewis [Blog | Twitter] and his excellent team –  a big hats off to them, the sponsors and the team at Whitireia Community Polytechnic (Porirua… Read more

0 comments, 1,083 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 16 April 2012

Speaking at SQL Saturday #136 – Wellington, New Zealand


On Saturday 14th April I’ll be speaking at SQL Saturday 136 in Wellington, New Zealand.

My presentation is titled “Extended Events – A whirlwind tour”  - I first gave the presentation at SQL Saturday 76 in Auckland back in January and again at Christchurch code camp  a… Read more

0 comments, 967 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 12 April 2012

Database ownership


One of the features that I most like about management studio is the ability to generate a script of the actions that have been taken in one of the (many) dialog boxes.

This has tremendous value for both learning and for creating scripts to pass to another DBA. Read more

0 comments, 936 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 4 April 2012

Remote DAC connections


I wrote a post recently about setting the DAC port for an SQL instance.

I now do this as a matter of course on all of my SQL instance as I manage most of them remotly.

However, from time to time I discover instances that have had… Read more

0 comments, 1,841 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 31 March 2012

Setting the DAC port….


I had a situation today where I needed to ensure that the dedicated Administrator connection (DAC) ran on a specific port.

The main reason that I wanted it on a specific port was so I could use the connection remotely (if needed) and because the connection was on… Read more

0 comments, 9,623 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 31 January 2012

Watch those VARCHAR(MAX) columns, and ONLINE index rebuilds


I’ve noted a few instances lately of cases where VARCHAR(MAX) columns have been used unnecessarily, when a small value (for a VARCHAR) would have been fine.

Apart from the storage implications of a VARCHAR(MAX) column there is also the issue that in SQL SERVER 2008, having a column of… Read more

2 comments, 13,192 reads

Posted in measure twice, cut once. on 26 October 2011

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