SQL Clone
SQLServerCentral is supported by Redgate
Log in  ::  Register  ::  Not logged in

SQL Undercover

David Fowler and Adrian Buckman, two database nerds who love nothing more than to spend their time, reading about, researching and sharing all things SQL Server. David is a DBA with over 15 years production experience of SQL Server, from version 6.5 through to 2016. He has worked in a number of different settings and is currently the technical lead at one of the largest software companies in the UK. After working in the motor trade for over 11 years Adrian decided to give it all up to persue a dream of working in I.T. Adrian has over 3 years of experience working with SQL server and loves all things SQL, Adrian currently works as a Database Administrator for one of the UK’s Largest Software Companies.

T-SQL Tuesday – Non-SQL Server Technologies

So, this month’s T-SQL Tuesday topic is to think about a non-SQL Server technology that we want to learn.

For me, I’m going to pick machine learning.

As a DBA, I’ve always looked at machine learning as a thing for the BI guys.  I’m a DBA after all why do… Read more

0 comments, 1,754 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 6 November 2018

Signing Stored Procedures That Access Multiple Databases

A while back I wrote a post, Digitally Signing a Stored Procedure To Allow It To Run With Elevated Permissions

Recently Manish Kumar asked an interesting question, what do you do if your proc accesses multiple or even all the databases on the server?

So, instead of giving him a… Read more

1 comments, 2,167 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 30 October 2018

Identifying delays between SQL calls using SQL profiler

One of the common goto methods for query specific slowness which can be replicated via an application can be to start up a trace or extended events session whilst replicating the issue, we all know about the dangers of running these sessions without sufficient filtering so ensuring that correct filtering… Read more

0 comments, 1,878 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 24 October 2018

A Play Around With Table Variable Deferred Compilation in SQL 2019

Table variables, they’re nasty, dirty little things that perform about as well as a Robin Reliant in a crosswind, right?  Well you’re not going to have me argue with you there.

But how many of us have got these little beasts floating around in their production code with absolutely nothing… Read more

0 comments, 1,721 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 16 October 2018

Inspector V1.2 now available


It has been long overdue but finally V1.2 is now available on GitHub.

V1.2 brings a lot of changes, here is an overview of what has been added.



#9 Long running transactions module added – A new setting has been added to  [Inspector].[Settings].

This setting is… Read more

2 comments, 200 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 10 October 2018

Inspector V1.2 revised installation guide


There is a new setup process for the Inspector, below we have outlined the steps required to get you started.


  • Grab a copy of SQLUndercoverinspectorV1.sql from GitHub
  • Run the setup script in the context of your logging database



  • You have now created the Inspector schema and…

Read more

1 comments, 158 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 10 October 2018

The SQL Agents’ view of SQL Server

I recently came across a really odd issue with the SQL Agent, there were two agent jobs attached to one schedule one of the jobs was enabled and the other was not enabled – all pretty normal at this point but here is where it got weird.

The disabled job…

Read more

3 comments, 2,543 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 2 October 2018

sp_translate, A Universal Translator in SQL Server. Just One Example Of How Powerful the Python/SQL Partnership Can Be.

In my recent post, Installing External Modules into SQL Server’s Python I had a look at just how simple it is to import external modules into Python so that they can be used within SQL Server.

In this post I’d like to show you a little something to demonstrate how… Read more

1 comments, 208 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 18 September 2018

TSQL Tuesday #106: Triggers and the Spiral To Oblivion

It’s the second Tuesday of the month which must mean only one thing…

We’re all skint and payday feels like a long way off???

Not quite, well maybe… but it’s also T SQL Tuesday!

This month’s invitation comes from Steve Jones and he’s asking us to write about triggers and… Read more

6 comments, 144 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 11 September 2018

Podcast Audio Now On SoundCloud

For those of you who don’t have time to watch the videos, the audio stream of our webcasts are now available on SoundCloud.

Read more

0 comments, 164 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 5 September 2018

Installing External Modules into SQL Server’s Python

So Microsoft have integrated Python into SQL Server, from the moment I heard that I thought to myself, “wow, this is exciting stuff” and not just for the machine learning, BI guys that it was marketed at.  It’s exciting for us DBAs too, my head was in a buzz with… Read more

2 comments, 181 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 3 September 2018

Undercover TV- Episode 2

The latest webcast from SQLUndercover.com. In this episode David and Adrian take a look at a few blog posts that have caught their interest, review Minion Backup from Minionware and announce the release of the all new Undercover Catalogue v0.1.

Links featured in this webcast are,

Read more

0 comments, 199 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 29 August 2018

Undercover Catalogue 0.1 Released

Easily Keep Track of All Your SQL Servers

We know what it’s like when you’ve got 101 SQL Servers to manage, or even just a couple. It can be almost impossible to keep track of all these servers, their versions, the databases that they host, permissions, dependencies…  the list goes… Read more

1 comments, 162 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 28 August 2018

SQL Server Encryption, What’s The Key Hierarchy All About?


I’m sure that we all know that SQL Server includes all sorts of interesting functionality to allow us to encrypt our data and like with all encryption techniques, that data is encrypted using keys.

In SQL Server we’ve got a number of different keys, we’ve got the Service Master… Read more

1 comments, 1,667 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 9 August 2018

A Quick Look At The All New Undercover Catalogue, Preview Release Due Out Soon…

I thought I’d give you all a little preview of our latest offering, the Undercover Catalogue which should be available in Preview version very soon.

So what actually is it?

The Undercover Catalogue will help you to build up a picture of your entire SQL infrastructure.  It’ll go out, discover… Read more

0 comments, 163 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 6 August 2018

Are your backup files where they say they are?


I was having a cleanup of some old scripts the other day when I stumbled upon a script I wrote some time ago.


I remember writing the script because from time to time I would get asked if I can restore a copy of a specific database to… Read more

1 comments, 1,855 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 25 July 2018

Selecting a Random Row From a Table

A couple of times recently I’ve seen the question asked, ‘How can I select a single row at random from a table?’.

There are often a few ways of doing this suggested, most seem to rely using CTEs or temp tables.  I thought I’d share, in a quick post a… Read more

5 comments, 626 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 20 July 2018

T-SQL Tuesday #104 – My Undercover Toolbox favourites

This months T-SQL Tuesday is being hosted by Bert Wagner , you can find the invitation for this months topic here.

Bert has a great topic for this month, he wants us to write about code you’ve written that you would hate to live without.

I have found the SQL… Read more

2 comments, 2,573 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 10 July 2018

Backup Your On Premise SQL Server Directly to an AWS S3 Bucket

I’ve been having a little play around with AWS recently and was looking at S3 (AWS’ cloud storage) when I thought to myself, I wonder if it’s possible to backup up an on premise SQL Server database directly to S3?

When we want to backup directly to Azure, we can… Read more

0 comments, 457 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 18 June 2018

Resend an email sent from SQL Server using TSQL

Sometimes emails from SQL Server go missing, especially when you share an inbox with colleagues. On most occasions it doesn’t always matter as the job that generated the email can simply be re ran to produce the email once again, but what about those emails that contain time specific information?… Read more

3 comments, 2,054 reads

Posted in SQL Undercover on 5 June 2018

Older posts