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The Scary DBA

I have twenty+ years experience in IT. That time was spent in technical support, development and database administration. I work forRed Gate Software as a Product Evangelist. I write articles for publication at SQL Server Central, Simple-Talk, PASS Book Reviews and SQL Server Standard. I have published two books, ”Understanding SQL Server Execution Plans” and “SQL Server 2008 Query Performance Tuning Distilled.” I’m one of the founding officers of the Southern New England SQL Server Users Group and its current president. I also work on part-time, short-term, off-site consulting contracts. In 2009 and 2010 I was awarded as a Microsoft SQL Server MVP. In the past I’ve been called rough, intimidating and scary. To which I usually reply, “Good.” You can contact me through grant -at- scarydba dot kom (unobfuscate as necessary).

Archives: April 2010

PASS Summit, Kilt Wednesday

Last year at the PASS Summit we held a silly little event called Kilt Wednesday. Only three people took part, but it was very popular nonetheless. Here’s a sample of what it looked like. This year is looking to be a lot bigger. Keep an eye on Twitter for… Read more

6 comments, 1,391 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 27 April 2010

PASS Summit Content Survey Results

The results of a survey conducted by the PASS organization have been posted (thanks to the Board for all their work, again). Since getting to speak at PASS is a competition, I really shouldn’t be pointing this out, because I’d like to speak again. However, if you’re trying to decide… Read more

2 comments, 621 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 22 April 2010

SQL Server Standard: Volume 7, Issue 3


It’s not like Don Gabor had the article done in January or anything…oh wait. He did have the article done in January. However, it looks like we might be breaking the log jam and we’ll be publishing a number of SQL Server Standard issues.

Anyway, do you want to… Read more

1 comments, 673 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 21 April 2010

SQL Saturday #39, New York, New York

A town so big they named it twice.

If you’re not excited about SQL Saturday in NYC this weekend… why not? Take a look at the schedule. There are some excellent speakers presenting there. This is going to be a great opportunity to learn a lot of stuff, network… Read more

0 comments, 507 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 20 April 2010

Powershell Script for Verifying Space

First let me say, I know my Powershell skills are sub-par. I’m working on it. Slowly but surely. That said, I had a problem to solve. It’s one that I could have done with TSQL, but it would be very ugly TSQL, probably involving dynamic queries, and even for admin… Read more

1 comments, 1,151 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 19 April 2010

Powershell SMO Problem

We’ve been running the Enterprise Policy Management tools available from Codeplex for a few months now (Thanks to Buck Woody’s (blog | twitter) session at the PASS Summit). They’re honestly great. It’s a fantastic way to use Policy Based Management on 2000 and 2005 servers. We did hit… Read more

0 comments, 672 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 16 April 2010

Confio Ignite: Part II

I’m continuing to evaluate Confio’s Ignite database monitoring tool. I’ve had it collecting data on a couple of production servers for about a week now. Based on what I’ve seen so far, it’s looking like a pretty good piece of software.

Breaking with the usual tradition, I’m going to talk… Read more

1 comments, 1,694 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 16 April 2010

SNESSUG 4/14/2010

Tonight’s Southern New England SQL Server Users group is sponsored by Idera. Our presenter is Scott Abrants of Iron Mountain. He’s talking about deploying databases using Visual Studio Team System:Database Edition. We have a good turnout with 12 people (yeah, we’re small).

Scott’s presentation was a lot of fun and… Read more

0 comments, 605 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 14 April 2010

The SQL Server Community

I attended, and spoke at, the inaugural meeting of the Seacoast SQL Server User’s group last night. There were about 60 people in attendance. An excellent turn-out and congratulations go out to Mike Walsh (blog | twitter) and the other organizers.

I was curious about something after watching… Read more

8 comments, 900 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 14 April 2010

Southern New England SQL Server Users Group

Tomorrow, Wednesday April 14th, is the next SNESSUG meeting. We’re going to get a great presentation from Scott Abrants on using Visual Studio Team System for database deployments. I saw Scott presenting this at SQL Saturday:Boston to a packed room. If you didn’t get to see it then, come on… Read more

0 comments, 716 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 13 April 2010

Seacoast SQL Users Group

Tomorrow is the Seacost SQL Server User’s Group inaugural meeting. I’ll be presenting a session called “Understanding Execution Plans.” It’s my introductory session on execution plans and I love giving it. Please come by and support this new user group. Mike Walsh (blog | twitter), the new user… Read more

2 comments, 723 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 12 April 2010

Thoughts on ORM

I’ve posted before about issues I’m having either with behaviors of nHibernate, or behaviors of teams using nHibernate, but I don’t think I’ve made my thoughts on ORM too clear. Let me do that now. 

 I think some form of ORM is here to stay. There are lots of different… Read more

2 comments, 947 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 9 April 2010

24 Hours of PASS v2.0

The kids over at the Professional Association of SQL Server Users have done it again. They’re hosting 24 Hours of PASS: Celebrating SQL Server 2008 R2. That’s 24 hours of free training by top names in the business, providing you with the information you want and need. I’m not… Read more

4 comments, 703 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 6 April 2010

Confio Ignite: First Impressions

One of the national sponsors for SQL Satuday is Confio Software. Just because they sponsor SQL Saturday, it’s worth checking out their product, but they also host the speaker’s dinner at these events. So, having eaten off their dime, I felt obligated to take a look. I’m glad I… Read more

3 comments, 2,710 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 6 April 2010

nHibernate, First Look at TSQL

I’ve blogged in the past about the nHibernate project that has been going on at my company for the last eighteen months. Prior to today, I have only seen the database generated by nHibernate. But today I finally started seeing some TSQL code. My first impressions… oy!

There are two… Read more

2 comments, 999 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 5 April 2010

Renewed as an MVP

I received my renewal notice and, after checking the message header, it is April 1st, I got very happy. I’d try to wax poetic about this, but I just read Paul Randal’s (blog | twitter) comments on the fact that he and Kimberly Tripp (blog) were… Read more

9 comments, 502 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 1 April 2010