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Simple SQL Server

I started out working with Microsoft Access and SQL Server back in 2000 as the only employee doing IT full-time, and worked most of my career where “big fish in a little pond” was an overstatement. Learning is scarce when you do everything and don’t work with anyone who knows more than you. In 2010 I was plunged into the Ocean and grabbed onto anything I could find to stay afloat. I wasn’t going to simply run scripts I didn’t understand, so I learned the DMVs and system tables in the scripts I found and rewrote them all. Now, I know enough where I can start giving back to a community that saved me from drowning.

Powershell, when were my servers rebooted?

One of my servers wasn’t rebooted when it should have been and I never realized it until after the outage was over.  The big deal wasn’t that it didn’t reboot, it was that I never realized it.  These are the things that bug me, so I used it as an… Read more

2 comments, 425 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 1 June 2016

File Growths

I hinted at file growths in my previous posts about shrinking data and log files.  Then I talked about growing log files in my post Database Log VLFs.  However, there are still some unanswered questions about growing data files.

Should I use autogrowth?  What should I set it to grow… Read more

0 comments, 1,721 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 29 March 2016

Database Growth Trends – Idera Diagnostic Manager

How fast are your databases growing?  Should I panic about a 1 TB database that has 100 GB free on disk?  Am I safe with a 100 GB database that also has 100 GB free?  Based on those sizes…I have no idea.

It’s possible that the 1 TB database is… Read more

1 comments, 529 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 21 March 2016

Multiserver Queries

You can run queries against multiple servers at once, and it’s quite useful for a number of reasons.  I use it to check settings, verify backups and DBCC ran recently on unmonitored servers, make sure all servers rebooted during the maintenance window, and many other reasons.

This is all done… Read more

5 comments, 582 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 14 March 2016

Recompile Monitoring using XEvents

Recompiles can be a hidden bottleneck on your server, and it may not be too obvious.  I should know, it happened to me.  Unfortunately for me, that was before I was a proponent of tracing or using XEvents to watch for recompiles.  Fortunately for you, the experience changed me, and… Read more

0 comments, 1,556 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 7 March 2016

I/O Baseline Comparison – Idera Diagnostic Manager

What servers need the most attention when it comes to I/O?  When I increase the memory on a server what effect does it have on I/O?  What was it before the change and what was it afterwards?

These are tough questions, and I have a script that I hope will… Read more

0 comments, 736 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 29 February 2016

Wait Stats Baseline Comparison – Idera Diagnostic Manager

Database servers have to wait on different resources, and these waits are huge to the performance of SQL Server.  Sometimes something changes without our knowledge and is running differently than normal, this is the first place you look to see what’s going on.  On the other side, you may have… Read more

1 comments, 582 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 22 February 2016

Shrinking Database Log Files

Files in SQL Server need to grow as the database grows, and in very specific circumstances need to be shrunk as well with additional maintenance.  There is quite a bit different between log files and data files, so I created a separate post for Shrinking Database Data Files.


Read more

2 comments, 1,160 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 15 February 2016

Database Log VLFs

Virtual Log Files (VLFs) split a physical database log file into smaller segments, which are required for how log files work in the background.  These are created automatically, but automatically doesn’t always mean perfect.  Here’s a practical view of what you need to know and how you can set them… Read more

4 comments, 627 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 8 February 2016

TempDB Excessive Memory Usage Example

I see TempDB using more memory than I feel it should and found a way to resolve it.  Previously I dove into technical details and questioning what I saw in my post TempDB Memory Leak? which is great for proving and debugging an issue.  Now I want to step back… Read more

0 comments, 2,551 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 1 February 2016

Tim Ford’s Entry-Level Content Challenge

All bloggers started as beginners.  We picked things up, learned them, and got to the point where we wanted to start sharing our knowledge.  The problem is that most of us moved on to talking about advanced topics and left people to fend for themselves on the difficult entry-level learning… Read more

0 comments, 511 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 26 January 2016

Querying Deadlocks From System_Health XEvent

It’s easy to query XEvents to see some of the basic info in deadlocks, including the system_health session which is already capturing this information by default.

This script will, by default, read from system_health.  However, change the name of one parameter at the start to have it read from any… Read more

3 comments, 2,628 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 25 January 2016

Shrinking Database Data Files

Normal DBAs will sum up shrinking a database data file in one word: NO!

I’ll talk to you about this subject because I’m not normal.  Still, my goal is that you’ll go from “why can’t I shrink my files” to “I don’t want to shrink my files.”

Truth be told,… Read more

2 comments, 1,515 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 19 January 2016

SQL Saturday Cleveland #SQLSat473

On February 6, 2016, Cleveland is hosting a free training event for SQL Server.  This has a lot of the great stuff from the big, paid events, and skips some of the negatives.

There’s a great team from the North Ohio SQL Server Users Group that took on a… Read more

0 comments, 450 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 11 January 2016

TempDB memory leak?

I found a bug where I’m seeing TempDB use more memory than it should on multiple versions of SQL Server, especially on servers set up with common best practices. There’s a workaround that has a profound affect on server performance, adding to my belief that this is a legitimate bug… Read more

17 comments, 3,018 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 5 January 2016

Query the Buffer Pool

DBAs are known for asking for more memory, but often can’t say what’s in memory.  While I agree that many database servers can use more memory, I’m a firm believer in knowing how you’re using your resources before asking for more.  The script below allows me to do just that. Read more

11 comments, 2,414 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 4 January 2016

Thank You for More Than You Realize

Blogging and presenting have changed me for the better, and in ways I didn’t see coming.  However, I know I wouldn’t have had them if it wasn’t for three things.  Getting it all started, having help getting established, and having an audience for my work were supported by several groups… Read more

2 comments, 636 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 28 December 2015

Advent of Code – Day 4

Day 4 of the Advent of Code has us mining for data in MD5 hashes, which is out of the comfort zone for a SQL DBA to say the least.

Some would say it’s a poor use for SQL Server, and I’d have to agree.  However, sometimes things just need… Read more

1 comments, 489 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 24 December 2015

Advent of Code – Day 3

Continuing with the language-independent code challenge on Advent of Code – Day 3, I’m tasked with figuring out how well a drunken elf can guide Santa to houses.  Since his instructions had Santa stumbling into the same house multiple times they then added in a robot to help Santa… Read more

2 comments, 441 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 24 December 2015

Advent of Code

If you want your skills to be sharp, you practice.  If you want to get yourself to actually do practice, you call it a “challenge”.  This is what the Advent of Code is.

Now let me be perfectly clear about how I feel about practice.  I saw Jeremiah’s (b Read more

8 comments, 1,458 reads

Posted in Simple SQL Server on 23 December 2015

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