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Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY

I’m a forty-something Microsoft SQL Server DBA of 15+ years, a devoted husband, and a father of three young boys. I have been a DBA at a public university, at a major bank, at a healthcare system, and I now work as a remote DBA with customers across the United States. I write and speak primarily about the tips and tricks that I discover along my SQL Server journey.

Why Is your datetime saved as a bigint anyway?

Yet another issue I had never seen before - thankfully this time I was able to find a relatively quick answer.

On a client system their primary database had grown to throw disk alarms on the DATA drive, so I was alerted.  I signed onto the system and found that…

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0 comments, 343 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 26 June 2014

Handling Perfmon Logs with Relog

In a recent situation, I was tasked by a client to check one of their servers which they believed to be grossly over-provisioned.  As a VM they knew they could easily pull both CPU and RAM from the server if they could determine the true needs of the server.


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2 comments, 1,844 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 29 May 2014

Come to #SQLSAT307 in Iowa City!

June 6th & 7th in Iowa City - Friday precons & Saturday all day sessions!  I will be presenting on Maintaining your SQL Servers and my good friend David Klee will be presenting a Friday Virtualization precon (Only $99 if you register now!) and two Saturday sessions about Virtualization and… Read more

0 comments, 362 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 23 May 2014

Why Won't My Clustered Instance Start?

Last weekend I had a client page me in the middle of the night (because, of course, these things always happen in the middle of the night) with the complaint that their SQL Server Failover Cluster Instance (FCI) wouldn't come online on their B node after multiple attempts.  When they…

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0 comments, 856 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 21 May 2014

T-SQL Tuesday #54 - Interviews and Hiring

This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is hosted by Boris Hristov (blog/@BorisHristov) and his chosen topic is “Interviews and Hiring” – specifically interviewing and hiring of SQL Server Professionals.  This is an interesting topic to me since I have given dozens of interviews over the years and…

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0 comments, 1,718 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 13 May 2014

Help - I Need a List of my Maintenance Plan Jobs *and* Schedules!

UPDATE - Jason Brimhall (blog/@sqlrnnr) pointed out after reading this post that there is a more inline way to do a lot of this work as shown in his post here.  Jason's post relates to SSRS reports (very similar logic since they also are SQL…

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2 comments, 1,247 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 7 May 2014

Speaking at #SQLSat307 in Iowa City!

I just received confirmation I will be speaking at SQL Saturday 307 in Iowa City on June 7th!

I will be giving an updated version of my Ola Hallengren Maintenance Solution talk that I have given at a few previous SQL Saturdays, re-titled "Are You Maintaining Your SQL…

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0 comments, 322 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 2 May 2014

Why Can't I Reinitialize My Subscriber?

I recently had a colleague request help with a replication problem he was having with a client.  The client was running transactional replication from a SQL Server 2005 Publisher to multiple SQL Server 2005 Subscribers and was having issues after attempting to add several articles (tables) to an existing publication.

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1 comments, 749 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 28 April 2014

Where are my 32-bit Perfmon Counters?

I have run into this before, but not in this same way, so I decided it would be worth writing about.

On a client server they are running 32-bit SQL Server 2005 (I know, not supported - that's a different rant/post) on a 64-bit Windows 2008 installation.  When I logged…

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3 comments, 1,463 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 23 April 2014

Why does my Failover Cluster Instance Keep Failing Back and Forth?

A few months ago I was paged by a client because their SQL Server Failover Cluster Instance (FCI) was experiencing multiple failovers when they performed routine Windows patching.

The client's request which generated the work ticket was this:

At some point recently this clustered node failed over from the A…

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1 comments, 2,481 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 17 April 2014

I Know I Shouldn't Shrink My Log file, BUT...

As a managed services DBA, I frequently have to clean up after other people's mistakes. (Come to think of it, as *any* DBA you spend time cleaning up other people's mistakes...)

We all know you shouldn't shrink your log file (right?  We all know this, right?) The experts constantly preach…

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4 comments, 1,522 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 3 April 2014

We Are Hiring!

My employer Ntirety (a division of HOSTING) is currently looking for multiple SQL Server DBA's.  As you have probably seen from me on Twitter (or on this blog) previously, I joined Ntirety last November as a 100% work-from-home Senior SQL Server DBA.

Ntirety is based out of Boston, but…

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0 comments, 491 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 31 March 2014

Backup Checksums and Trace Flag 3023

One of the items I always flag when performing a health check on a server is whether backups are being run with CHECKSUM enabled.  As Paul Randal (@PaulRandal/blog) writes in his post "Example 2000/2005 corrupt databases and some more info on backup, restore, page checksums…

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4 comments, 1,917 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 25 March 2014

Error 701 - Insufficient System Memory - Now what?

This story begins, as so many often do, with a few key elements:
1) A client who experienced a problem on Thursday and waited until Friday evening to report it, even though the problem was "critical" enough to ask us to work on it all weekend if we couldn't solve…

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1 comments, 2,580 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 20 March 2014

A New Day at #Ntirety

We - the rank-and-file employees at Ntirety - received word yesterday that we had been acquired by Hosting, a cloud and network services provider based out of Denver, CO.  Apparently Hosting did not have a database services division and decided it made more sense to buy one than to…

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1 comments, 338 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 18 March 2014

Why Did My Job Fail Anyway?

One of my biggest pet peeves when I check a new SQL Server for a client is the fact that by default there is no method of telling why a job has failed.

My philosophy is that all job steps should have output files, no matter how mundane or simple…

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0 comments, 504 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 12 March 2014

Working From Home

I have been working 100% from home for almost four months now,  and one of my former coworkers recently hit me with "How's it going working from home - I expected to see a blog post about it by now."


He's right - I had…

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1 comments, 252 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 22 February 2014

T-SQL Tuesday #051: Always Hedge Your Bets

It's time for T-SQL Tuesday again and this month's host is my former co-worker, the @SQLRNNR himself, Jason Brimhall.  Jason's chosen theme is Poker Face, asking us to describe situations where someone took a bet that was just a little too risky for our liking.


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0 comments, 312 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 11 February 2014

The Next Phase of My Career

For anyone who hasn't seen an update somewhere else in the social media universe, I recently started a new job as a Senior SQL Server DBA for Ntirety on their remote DBA team.  Ntirety is a top Remote DBA services firm that works in MSSQL, Oracle, and mySQL support.


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0 comments, 292 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 18 November 2013

Hung SQL Server Restores from Tivoli Storage Manager/Tivoli Data Protection

I ran into this with a client last night when trying to restore their SQL Server data warehouse database from TSM.

We went through several iterations of the restore failing without any meaningful error other than a cryptic “TCP/IP Connection Refused” even though we could ping and telnet from the…

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1 comments, 1,064 reads

Posted in Nebraska SQL from @DBA_ANDY on 10 July 2013

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