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Pie in the Sky

I have been working with SQL Server for 15 years and have done everything from reporting to database design to ETL to architecture to administration. The way I see it, the cloud is the future, and SQL Azure is a great platform. Here are my musing on the subject.

Top 10 Enhancements to Azure SQL Database in 2015

Top 10 Enhancements to Azure SQL Database in 2015
DECEMBER 27, 2015

Introduction
2015 has been a massive year for Azure SQL Database. This year has seen the product mature from "an interesting idea" and "something that we should have a look at" to a genuine piece of enterprise software…

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0 comments, 751 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 27 December 2015

Getting Started with Azure Data Factory - Part 1

Getting Started with Azure Data Factory - Part 1
DECEMBER 9, 2015

Introduction
The Azure Data Factory is a means of moving data around in the cloud. In a similar way that SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) can be used to transform and load data in on premise versions of…

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0 comments, 2,724 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 9 December 2015

Using AzCopy in a SQL Job to Upload Files to Azure Blob Storage

Using AzCopy in a SQL Job to Upload Files to Azure Blob Storage
NOVEMBER 11, 2015

Introduction
In my next series of posts, I am going to look into processing files in Azure using the Azure Data Factory. Before processing the files, though, the files first have to get to…

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0 comments, 2,189 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 10 November 2015

5 Enhancements to SQL Runbooks in the Azure Preview Portal

5 Enhancements to SQL Runbooks in the Azure Preview Portal
SEPTEMBER 18, 2015

Introduction
Runbooks are your SQL Server Agent for Azure SQL Database. Lately, Microsoft have been making quite a few changes to how to create and manage Runbooks in the Azure Preview Portal. In this article, I'll have…

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0 comments, 760 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 18 September 2015

Setting Up Alerts in Azure SQL Database

Setting Up Alerts in Azure SQL Database
SEPTEMBER 8, 2015

Introduction
If I've learned one thing with my on premise versions of SQL Server, it is to automate as much as possible. I have automatic alerts set up for Error Severity Levels 16 through 25 and 823, 824 and 825…

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0 comments, 2,581 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 8 September 2015

Transparent Data Encryption in Azure SQL Database

Transparent Data Encryption in Azure SQL Database
JULY 26, 2015

Introduction
Transparent Data Encryption (TDE) is a security feature of SQL Server that has been around since SQL Server 2008. With TDE, the entire database is encrypted (also called "at-rest" encryption). With a non-TDE database, if someone were to steal…

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0 comments, 1,236 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 26 July 2015

SQL Azure has T-SQL Jobs - Well Almost

SQL Azure has T-SQL Jobs - Well Almost
JUNE 25, 2015

Introduction
One thing that has been lacking in Azure SQL Database is the ability to write database jobs in Transact-SQL. Recently, Microsoft has introduced T-SQL database jobs this functionality in Elastic Database Jobs. This article will talk about the…

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0 comments, 2,351 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 25 June 2015

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 3 - Setting up and Querying the Shards

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 3 - Setting up and Querying the Shards
MAY 28, 2015

For those of you who have been following along with this series of posts, I have been looking at how Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale can be used to Horizontally Scale a Payroll…

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0 comments, 2,754 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 28 May 2015

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 2 - The Shard Map Manager Database

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 2 - The Shard Map Manager Database
MAY 1, 2015

In my last post, I discussed some of the concepts around Sharding and how we could use Sharding and Azure Database Elastic Scale in a real world application to implement Horizontal Scaling. In…

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0 comments, 2,759 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 30 April 2015

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 1 - What is Sharding?

Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Part 1 - What is Sharding?
MARCH 19, 2015

This week, Microsoft introduced an update to Azure SQL Database Elastic Scale Preview. This update is good news because it positions Azure SQL Database to be able to do what other cloud databases (such as…

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0 comments, 11,123 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 19 March 2015

Dynamic Data Masking

Dynamic Data Masking
FEBRUARY 26, 2015

Have you ever wanted to only show parts of a field to certain sets of users such as credit card numbers, telephone numbers or last names? This functionality is now possible in Azure SQL Database with Dynamic Data Masking. This month, Microsoft has continued…

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0 comments, 8,089 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 26 February 2015

Index Fragmentation in Azure SQL Database

Index Fragmentation in Azure SQL Database
FEBRUARY 4, 2015

Recently, I read the articles Stop Worrying About SQL Server Fragmentation and When Does Index Fragmentation Matter?, and that got me starting to think about how index fragmentation in Azure SQL Database compares to index fragmentation in on-premise versions of…

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0 comments, 8,548 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 3 February 2015

Monitoring Geo-Replication in SQL Azure using DMV's

Monitoring Geo-Replication in SQL Azure using DMV's
DECEMBER 26, 2014

Azure SQL Database comes with a host of disaster recovery options. The most robust of these options involves replicating the database across different geographic regions using Geo-Replication. In this article, I'll discuss how you can monitor the state of Geo-Replication…

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0 comments, 2,862 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 25 December 2014

Runbooks in SQL Azure

Runbooks in SQL Azure
DECEMBER 2, 2014

SQL Azure Runbooks promise to be your “SQL Server Agent in the cloud”. They enable you to use PowerShell Scripts inside of SQL Azure in order to automate time consuming, repetitive tasks. In this article, I’ll explore how we used SQL Azure Runbooks…

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0 comments, 1,009 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 10 December 2014

SQL Azure Point-in-Time Restore

SQL Azure Point-in-Time Restore
OCTOBER 26, 2014

As a strategic direction, many companies have decided to start moving their SQL Server databases into the cloud using SQL Azure. This change in direction allows companies to outsource their hardware while moving to a “Database as a Service” model. One lesser known…

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0 comments, 764 reads

Posted in Pie in the Sky on 6 December 2014