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Average Page Life Expectancy

By Tim Parker,

Page Life Expectancy

For those of you not familiar with Page Life Expectancy (PLE), this is the length of time that a database page will stay in the buffer cache without references. Microsoft recommends a minimum target of 300 seconds for PLE, which is roughly (5) minutes. I have to admit that even in my own environment, we rarely see PLE more than (3) to (4) minutes.

I wondered what would the average DBA do in a situation where they do not have the luxury of using a 3rd party monitoring tool to capture (PLE)? In this post I decided to share a useful script that I wrote that will sample the DMV sys.dm_os_performance_counters table to provide an average PLE captured in (1) minute intervals. I hope this query will prove useful for those DBA's that do not have a 3rd party monitoring tool, or find themselves in a situation where they can only rely on a query to give them the results.

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