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My name is Kenneth Fisher and I am Senior DBA for a large (multi-national) insurance company. I have been working with databases for over 20 years starting with Clarion and Foxpro. I’ve been working with SQL Server for 12 years but have only really started “studying” the subject for the last 3. I don’t have any real "specialities" but I enjoy trouble shooting and teaching. Thus far I’ve earned by MCITP Database Administrator 2008, MCTS Database Administrator 2005, and MCTS Database Developer 2008. I’m currently studying for my MCITP Database Developer 2008 and should start in on the 2012 exams next year. My blog is at www.sqlstudies.com.

An interview with me

The other day I received an email asking for some help with a school project. Would I please answer some questions about my career and industry. Well after some due diligence I answered the questions. But the questions were rather interesting and the answers turned out pretty well (IMHO) so… Read more

6 comments, 196 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 15 December 2016

DBA Myths: You can only restore one differential backup

Ok, I know I’m hosting T-SQL Tuesday this month but I still had post I wanted to share.

The basic steps when restoring backups are

Full Recovery

  1. The most recent full backup.
  2. The most recent differential backup.
  3. All log backups after the most recent differential.

Simple Recovery

  1. The…

Read more

1 comments, 175 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 13 December 2016

Fixing Data Migration Assistant timeouts

I’ve been really excited about the new Data Migration Assistant (DMA) since I first heard about it. One of the things I like best about it is that unlike the old Upgrade Advisor it doesn’t have to be run on the server being upgraded. You can run it against… Read more

0 comments, 200 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 8 December 2016

TSQL Tuesday #85 Invite – Backup and Recovery

Come on down! You’re the next contestant on T-SQL Tuesday! I’m your host Kenneth Fisher and this month I’d thought we might talk about security.

No. Wait. Sorry, that was last time. This time I want to hear about backup and recovery.

Backups are one of the most common… Read more

10 comments, 232 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 6 December 2016

Using OUTPUT with a field list.

I recently wrote an article for SQL Server Central about using OUTPUT. In case you aren’t aware OUTPUT is a clause that lets you output the changed data from an INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, or MERGE statement. One of the comments on the article was a question… Read more

2 comments, 188 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 30 November 2016

Easy to read CHECKDB

If you ask a senior DBA what are the top 5 most important commands in T-SQL you’ll probably see DBCC CHECKDB in most if not all of those lists. Unfortunately, the output can be long, overwhelming and a more than a bit difficult to read. So here are a few… Read more

9 comments, 1,758 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 28 November 2016

It greatly pleases me to announce, HAL0003!

I while back as part of a T-SQL Tuesday post I created HAL0001, then later HAL0002 with a long-term goal of building up a database version of HAL9000. Well, at the rate I’m going I may have to pass this on to my kids (or even grandkids). But in… Read more

10 comments, 223 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 23 November 2016

Reload a table quickly.

Sometimes loading new data or even changes into a table just isn’t going to work. You need a complete reload. A summary table of data from the previous month, for example. It just doesn’t make sense to do an update. You delete/truncate and you re-load. Unfortunately, this leaves the table… Read more

4 comments, 2,039 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 21 November 2016

SQLSkills waits and latches library

SQLSkills is an amazing resource for the SQL Server community. Between their blogs, white papers, and the SQLSkills Insider emails you should make a point of taking a look. But earlier this year they announced an absolutely astounding new offering. A library of wait types and latches. So now… Read more

2 comments, 309 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 16 November 2016

When was my index created or at least last updated?

SQL Server stores a create date and a change date for each object in the sys.objects system view.

Unfortunately while tables, views and even constraints are objects, indexes are not. Or at least they aren’t stored in the sys.objects system view. And the sys.indexes system view doesn’t have any dates… Read more

1 comments, 1,560 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 14 November 2016

Is it safe to grant Administer Bulk Operations?

First I guess we had best start with definitions right? The permission Administer Bulk Operations and the role bulkadmin are required (one or the other) to perform bulk imports. Nothing more, nothing less. There is a really nice comparison of the two here.

So as with all permissions we… Read more

4 comments, 1,378 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 10 November 2016

TSQL Tuesday #84: Zip to Speaker

Well, it’s that time of the month again. It’s T-SQL Tuesday yet again, and this time round it’s Andy Yun (b/t) hosting with a subject of Growing New Speakers. Well, I’ll admit I’m a fairly new speaker myself. In fact, I’ve spoken a grand total… Read more

0 comments, 213 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 8 November 2016

New indexes, hypothetically

I saw something like this the other day. My first thought was “Hu, never seen that before.” My second thought was “Wow, that’s really cool. I wonder what a hypothetical index is?” A quick search later and I discovered that the DTA (database tuning adviser) uses them to test out… Read more

1 comments, 179 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 2 November 2016

The Halloween Problem

DBA: Help me! Help me! It’s Halloween! I have a problem! Oh won’t you please help me!

Ok, so that’s really got nothing to do with the Halloween problem. But it is Halloween today so it seemed like a good time to bring the subject up. Of course if… Read more

7 comments, 1,777 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 31 October 2016

It’s a small world

As I write this we are packing to leave for Disney World, where my family and I will spend close to a week hanging out with hundreds of thousands of the happiest people, not just from the US, but from all over the world. Then while I’m traveling home thousands… Read more

2 comments, 157 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 26 October 2016

Synchronous vs Asynchronous

You’ll hear these terms thrown around in programming all the time, but what do they mean and why do we care? Starting with simple definitions first:


  1. occurring at the same time; coinciding in time; contemporaneous; simultaneous.
  2. going on at the same rate and exactly together; recurring together.
  3. Physics, Electricity.…

Read more

2 comments, 199 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 24 October 2016

Installing SQLCMD

For anyone who wasn’t aware SQLCMD is a command line tool for running T-SQL statements and scripts. Before anyone says anything I want to point out that yes, I realize that you can use Powershell instead. Of course not all of us know Powershell all that well and most of… Read more

0 comments, 236 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 19 October 2016

Using Snippets

A while ago I talked about Templates. This is an easy way to get a, well, template of a piece of code. But a much faster way to get a simple template is to use a snippet. With a simple key command (ctrl-K, ctrl-X) you can… Read more

0 comments, 162 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 17 October 2016

Too many indexes!

Indexes are great. They speed up our queries. In fact, without them relational database systems wouldn’t work.

Different indexes work best for different queries. In a system with a lot of queries that means we could need a lot of indexes. Fortunately we can have up to 999 non-clustered indexes… Read more

0 comments, 238 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 13 October 2016

If backups are taken in silence can a recovery still take place?

My friend Andy Mallon (b/t) is hosting T-SQL Tuesday this month. In case you aren’t aware T-SQL Tuesday is a blog party started by Adam Machanic (b/t) almost 7 years ago. Each month someone selects a topic and hosts the “party”. Then… Read more

3 comments, 156 reads

Posted in SQLStudies on 11 October 2016

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