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The Voice of the DBA

Live and Learn

I love this quote from Randolph West: " Listen to people. Have strong opinions, but loosely held. If you are wrong, admit it and move on. Learn from those around you."

This is from his blog on diversity, which I support and agree with. He has some great thoughts and the post is worth reading. Maybe you appreciate diversity, maybe you don't, maybe advocate for or against it, but in all those cases, I think his message is worth reading.

I am not going to talk about minorities or ethnic groups here, but rather diversity of thought. That first quote could apply to software development in general, and certainly the idea of a DevOps process for building applications. It's good to have strong opinions, and good to be able to debate and argue them, but it's also good to keep those strong opinions loose. Many of us find as we get older and more experienced that we often have a huge gap in the things we don't know that we don't know.

These are the unknown unknowns, as opposed to the known unknowns, which are things I know I don't really understand. I've remarked to a few people that learn new things every week, and I feel stupider every week. Why? I learn things I never knew existed, so I constantly expand the knowledge of my own ignorance. It feels like I learn two things and then realize there are nine more new things I don't know anything about.

Today's software requires a team. Maybe more importantly, today's software requires a team of both application and database developers, as well as infrastructure staff, that can help put together an entire system. We need to work together, not independently with hopes of efficient integration of our ideas later. We want to shift left, and coordinate and communicate earlier. That needs strong opinions on how to best do a job, but a loose grasp on those as we might need to adapt to work with others.

Read Randolph's blog twice. Once thinking about the topic of human rights, and then once more thinking about teams and our opinions on building software. It's thought provoking and worth a few minutes of your time.

Steve Jones - SSC Editor

Join the debate, and respond to today's editorial on the forums

  Featured Contents

Getting a List of the Striped Backup Files

Steve Jones - SSC Editor from SQLServerCentral

If you have a list of striped backup files, how can you find the latest backup set? Steve Jones uses dbatools and PowerShell to automate this process.

You just Build It don’t you? 12 Common Database Build Blockers

Additional Articles from Redgate

Database deployments, like the sheep of exasperated hill-farmers, often find strange and unexpected ways to self-destruct. Phil Factor describes the most common things that can go wrong, and how a reliable automated database build process can prevent messy accidents.

SQL Server 2019 Graph Database and SHORTEST_PATH

Additional Articles from SimpleTalk

With SQL Server 2019 on the way, it’s time to begin learning about all the new features. In this article, Dennes Torres demonstrates how to use the new SHORTEST_PATH function that is part of the Graph Database feature.

From the SQL Server Central Blogs - HammerDB for Azure SQL DB

John Morehouse from John Morehouse |

Bench marking your environment is an important step when introducing new hardware, which is accomplished by running a test workload against the hardware.    There are multiple ways to...

From the SQL Server Central Blogs - Database Fundamentals #22: Using the Join Operator, CROSS JOIN

Grant Fritchey from The Scary DBA

While the CROSS JOIN is not used much, and, depending on the size of your data it can be dangerous, there are some uses for it. For example, you...


  Question of the Day

Today's question (by Steve Jones - SSC Editor):


MAX() and MAXX()

What's the difference between the MAX() and MAXX() functions in DAX?

Think you know the answer? Click here, and find out if you are right.



  Yesterday's Question of the Day (by Steve Jones - SSC Editor)

An Empty Data Frame

How do you create an empty data frame in R? (Set this to the variable df)

Answer: df <- data.frame()

Explanation: The data.frame() method called without any parameters returns an empty data frame. Ref: Create an empty data frame -

Discuss this question and answer on the forums




Database Pros Who Need Your Help

Here's a few of the new posts today on the forums. To see more, visit the forums.

SQL Server 2017 - Administration
Auditing selective users - Hi, I am putting together sql server auditing for a certain project. I create a sql server audit object (which writes audits to file). Then I create a database audit specification. First I used public as principal CREATE DATABASE AUDIT specification [DBAuditSpec] FOR SERVER AUDIT [DBAudit] ADD (SELECT, INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE, EXECUTE, RECEIVE, REFERENCES ON […]
Create index ... online=ON - Why is this INDEX setting not persistent ?  I'm testing this on SQL2019, but I've seen the same thing on SQL2016. I run this CREATE NONCLUSTERED INDEX [ImageActID] ON [dbo].[Image]( [ImgID] ASC )WITH (SORT_IN_TEMPDB=OFF, DROP_EXISTING=ON, ONLINE=ON, ALLOW_ROW_LOCKS=ON, ALLOW_PAGE_LOCKS=ON) ON [PRIMARY] GO Then I refresh and right click on the index and select "Script index as […]
SQL Server 2017 - Development
simple insert statement issues - Hello, create table #temp2(datename datetime, lastprocessed datetime DEFAULT'getdate()' NULL) insert into #temp2(datename) select distinct convert(date, c.ActualDate, 101) AS [DateName] from dim.calendar c select * from #temp2 I get below error when I run above Msg 241, Level 16, State 1, Line 20 Conversion failed when converting date and/or time from character string.
ssas tabular model view - Hello, I have a SQL DB where we have created some views based on dim and fact tables. I need to build SSAS tabular model based on my tables and views. But one of the view runs for 1.5 hour inside SQL query (SSMS). Now I need to use this same view to build my […]
SQL Server 2016 - Administration
Adding 3 rd node in Alwayson - Hi, We have 2 node Alwayson setup. Planning to add 3rd node. To add 3rd node, do we need to remove databases from AG and re-configure them from scratch after adding 3rd node?
SQL Server 2016 - Development and T-SQL
Deduplicating records from monthly table backups? -   I have a database that has monthly backups of a table for the past five years... i.e., they copied the table at the end of the month to a table called theHugeTable_mm_yyyy.  Now as you can imagine, tables are huge... and the majority of the table data didn't change from one month to the […]
@@TRANCOUNT - The question is:  What is @@trancount after this SP is executed?  I don't understand why the answer is 1. My understanding is for every BEGIN TRAN, @@TRANCOUNT is incremented by 1 and for every COMMIT, @@TRANCOUNT is decremented by 1, so why is the answer not 0? I know it has to do with the […]
Help on excluding dates - I have a simple table where I need to exclude any dates that weren't within 3 days of the max date.  I can't use aggregates in WHERE or HAVING clauses, so looking for an easy to way to exclude a date when it's more than 3 days diff from max date.  Here's some sample data: […]
Administration - SQL Server 2014
Upgrading from SQL 2008R2 SP1 to SQL 2014. - Hi guys, I'm planning to perform an upgrade on my current SQL server 2008R2 SP 1 to SQL Server 2014. Based on my current license limitation 2014 is the max I can go. I read KB by Microsoft, I need to be on at least SP2 for the upgrade to be successful ( if this […]
Development - SQL Server 2014
Guaranteed Varchar to Date conversion - I regularly load in multiple files using SSIS into a staging table and then onto another table (I call them trans as they are never fixed).   The data goes into stage as it comes out of the file or other source. This way I can always prove I took in what I was supplied. Stage_policy […]
SQL Server Newbies
* to 1 - Can I replace the * with 1 here in the below code. Will it impact the result. IF EXISTS (SELECT * FROM dbo.tbTest where Test_ID = @Test_ID)  -- Like change to SELECT 1
Azure Machine Learning
Why no posts? - I've heard Microsoft promote their concept of the "modern data warehouse" and their tools to support machine learning.  In my mind, there are at least 2 big components embedded in what they say: marketing to promote adoption of their cloud services and genuine opportunities to add value to the community. When I hear the word […]
Integration Services
Automate the SSIS package to take Start and enddate - I have a master/parent package, that calls the child packages in SSIS. The Master package takes the startdate and enddate and get all the dates from the given Startdate and enddate and run the child packages in loop. Example: Startdate = 1/1/2019' and Enddate ='1/10/2019'. SO the Master loops through 9 times meaning 1-9th january […]
Power BI Data Gateway - Azure VM v On-Premises - When you have a SQL Server instance running in an Azure VM and you want to connect Power Bi Data Gateway to it, do you install the Data Gateway or is there another way for Power BI to get the data, considering it isn't technically "On Premises"?
APP - Hi, Just a thought and sharing. Forum is great and it helps. However how about an app like an Iphone or Android app... which lets you post quick questions? I am not sure if there is already one. It will let the user post questions when there is no access to a laptop or on the […]


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