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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: October 2010

Get Out The Vote

It’s actually kind of cool that SQL Rally voting for the pre-conference seminars and voting in the real(ish) world in the USA are coinciding. I’m in the running for the pre-con AND I’m volunteering for an actual election campaign for the first time ever.

Volunteering for the campaign is hard… Read more

0 comments, 597 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 31 October 2010

Scary DBA Halloween Special

Not so much my special as SQL Saturday #59′s Special. These guys in NYC are pulling out all the stops. This blog post proves it. If you can make it to only one SQL Saturday in the next 5 months (I’m hosting one in 6), you should go to this. Read more

0 comments, 510 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 29 October 2010

PASS Summit Blogging

During the PASS Summit I have again been given the opportunity to keep my laptop plugged in… as long as I blog about the Key Notes. So, I’m going to do it, power is hard to come by in that place. Once again I can regale you, near real time,… Read more

0 comments, 372 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 28 October 2010

Writing Opportunities

Are you looking for opportunities to show off your elite writing skills and consumate SQL Server knowledge? Want a chance to build up the resume a bit? Are you like me and you have a hard time thinking of ideas to write about? I’ve got a solution for you. There’s… Read more

0 comments, 207 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 28 October 2010

SQL Rally: Performance Tuning Abstract

I get the call, you get the call, everyone gets the call. “Hey, my app/procedure/query/report is running slow.” Now what do you do? You go to my full day session at SQL Rally, that’s what. Assuming you vote for it.

I didn’t post the abstract I submitted for the SQL… Read more

0 comments, 242 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 28 October 2010

Virtual Presentation Tomorrow

I’ll be presenting a practice run at one of my PASS Summit presentations, Identifying Common Performance Problems using Execution Plans, for Pragmatic Works tomorrow, October 28th. If you can’t make the Summit, please stop by.


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0 comments, 230 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 27 October 2010

SQL Rally: One Day on Query Performance Tuning

The SQLRally, a new PASS initiative taking place in the spring, is going to be a community driven event. This includes selection of the pre-convention (precon) paid presentations through a voting process. I have a session called Query Performance Tuning, Start to Finish. It’s a one day session… Read more

4 comments, 545 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 26 October 2010

New Book on Query Optimizer

Benjamin Nevarez (blog) has been working really hard on a book on the Query Optimizer. It just got finished in time so that there will be copies available at the PASS Summit. I strongly recommend you track it down. There’s a lot to learn between the… Read more

1 comments, 197 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 26 October 2010

Another Must See Session

I can’t believe I missed this one in all the posts and recommendations I’ve been making about great sessions coming up at the PASS Summit. I’m not sure where my head was. However, I’d be completely remiss if I didn’t mention Jennifer McCown’s (blog|twitter) session… Read more

1 comments, 180 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 25 October 2010

SQL Rally Voting

I received word over the weekend that my precon application had made it past committee and was now subject to the community vote. They haven’t posted it yet, but please watch this space. I’ll be doing an all day session on how to tune sql queries, from monitoring to… Read more

0 comments, 215 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 25 October 2010

Who You Learn From

Less than two weeks to go until the PASS Summit. I’m excited. I’ve managed to cram a ton of activities into this Summit, more than ever before. But, I’m still going to try to go to a few sessions. The question asked, which sessions are you going to? Who… Read more

1 comments, 208 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 25 October 2010

Kilt Day at the PASS Summit

Last year, with the infinite power at my disposal (read, zero), I declared Wednesday, Kilt Wednesday at the PASS Summit. It took off… a little ways. Three people wore kilts. Now, you’d think that three out of 3000 would almost not get noticed, but the three people wearing them… well,… Read more

1 comments, 550 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 20 October 2010

Upcoming Speaking Engagements

I’ve got a couple of more sessions before the big two at the PASS Summit. Tomorrow night, October 20th, I’ll be speaking at the Southern New England Network Users Group on SQL Server Best Practices. It’s the first time I’ve talked on this topic, so it might be fun… Read more

0 comments, 235 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 19 October 2010

Powershell is Really Easy… If you know what you’re doing

Sigh… I just spent almost a full work day trying to come up with, what turned out to be a single line script. The requirements were simple. After patching of servers is completed, and everything is rebooted, sometimes, not often, but sometimes, SQL Server Agent doesn’t restart correctly. I was… Read more

20 comments, 1,351 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 18 October 2010

Scary DBA Takes Over the World

Or, at least gets translated into Russian.

I realize I’m effectively a 10 year old, but, come on, HOW COOL IS THAT?

My thanks to Artem Bikshanov for his exceedingly kind offer to do the translation.


Read more

0 comments, 200 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 15 October 2010

Working the Door

You know those guys that work the door at clubs, seperating the wheat from the chaff, culling the herd, Choosing the Slain, sifting the gold from the dross, telling the difference between the sheep and the goats, winnowing out the weak, tipping the scales of justice… you know, the guys… Read more

1 comments, 350 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 14 October 2010

Speaking at SNESSUG

I’ll be presenting tonight at the Southern New England SQL Server Users Group (SNESSUG). The topic is “Using DMVs as a Shortcut to Query Tuning.” It’s a practice run for my spotlight session at the PASS Summit, so if you can’t make it to the Summit, you… Read more

0 comments, 227 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 13 October 2010

PASS Summit Birds of a Feather Lunch

The absolute biggest part of the PASS Summit is the one thing that most people don’t take advantage of, networking. And no, I don’t mean glad-handing everyone you meet, remembering all their names (although that is a good skill to have) and saying over & over again “Rush Chairman, damn… Read more

0 comments, 203 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 13 October 2010

SQL Saturday New England: The New Date

The real world can get in the way of important things like SQL Saturday. In the case of SQL Saturday New England, the original date was the same time as the Boston Marathon. Unfortunately, that means that Boston’s somewhat limited hotel space will be tweaked. Rather than try to compete… Read more

0 comments, 242 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 12 October 2010

SQL Saturday New England: The Date

Mark your calendars. Make your travel arrangements. Plan on being in the Boston area on April 16th, 2011. Three of the local SQL Server users groups will be hosting a SQL Saturday event on that date. I’ll be blogging (a lot) with more details as they become available.


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0 comments, 214 reads

Posted in The Scary DBA on 5 October 2010

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