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The Time to Patch

Microsoft has spent years working on building a reliable and dependable patch process for their software. While some products have had more sporadic updates, SQL Server has moved to a fairly regular schedule. Not quite a predictable "Patch Tuesday" schedule, but you can count on a CU arriving every month or two for SQL Server.

Most people don't patch every month, but slowly customers are getting used to regular patches for SQL Server. Microsoft would prefer you use one of their "evergreen" releases, where Microsoft is in control of patching. Azure SQL Database, and Managed Instances are handled this way, but with Azure Arc, you might deploy these inside of your data center and not worry about patching anymore.

Most of us won't get there anytime soon, and we will need to patch our instances. This week, I'm wondering about your patching process. Not whether you patch or not, but rather the extensiveness of your patching when you do decide to apply a CU.

If you decide to patch a particular version in your environment (2016, for example), how long does it take you to patch all your SQL Servers? Do you even get all systems patched, or are there always lingering systems that can't be updated because of some dependency?

Maybe one other question might be how long does it usually take you to decide to patch your systems to some level? Or do you just randomly patch instances as needed?

I am a big fan of leaving systems alone that are running well, but it seems the quality of patches from Microsoft has improved over the years. I'm not quite sure I'm at the point where I want to patch everything to month a CU is released, but I do think a regular process is a good idea, and hopefully it's one that completes all instances for a version in less than 30 days.

Steve Jones - SSC Editor

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

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  Featured Contents

SQL Server Unit Testing in Visual Studio

David Fundakowski from SQLServerCentral.com

Unit test stored procedures in Visual Studio using an existing database or new SQL scripts

SQL Server Best Practices for Data Quality

Additional Articles from MSSQLTips.com

Accurate data is imperative for an organization to conduct cost effective decision making. Like everything else, change is constant for your data. There is a need to cleanse and validate data when received and on a regular basis. Unfortunately, cleansing and validating data is difficult with the native SQL Server toolset. How do we leverage the SQL Server tool set to achieve these goals?

From the SQL Server Central Blogs - Checking SSIS Variable Values During Runtime

Tim Mitchell from Tim Mitchell

As anyone who reads my blog on a regular basis knows, I’m a big fan of using dynamic configurations, including SSIS parameters variables, to make my ETL architectures as...

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I want to wrap up the notes on SQLSaturday by writing about my approach to managing events that I’ve evolved at SQLSaturday but definitely applies to most events and...

 

  Question of the Day

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

 

Default Schemas

A developer is unsure of what schema a table will be created under if they execute this code:
CREATE TABLE SalesDetail
(SalesOrderID int not null,
SalesNotes varchar(max)
);
How can the developer check their default schema under T-SQL?

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)

Delaying the code

If I have this code, what is the amount of time that passes between two output times?

PRINT SYSDATETIME()
WAITFOR DELAY '00:02.5'
PRINT SYSDATETIME()

Answer: 2 minutes, 500 milliseconds

Explanation: This is essentially the same as the code:

PRINT SYSDATETIME()
WAITFOR DELAY '00:02:00.5'
PRINT SYSDATETIME()

Two minutes, and then half a second, or 500ms pass. Ref: Waitfor - https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sql/t-sql/language-elements/waitfor-transact-sql?view=sql-server-ver15

Discuss this question and answer on the forums

 

 

 

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