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Should I become a DBA?!?


Should I become a DBA?!?

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bugg
bugg
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Hi All,

I've been offered a job as the sole MSQL DBA at an up and coming online retailer. I'm from a development background, started out in asp.net, c#, html,css but have a load of experience in SQL developer based projects. Ranging from reporting services to SSIS work and other scripting for migrations etc.
I'm pretty comfortable with T-SQL. However i'm a newbie when it comes to other DBA skills. I can do backups / restores, setup mirroring but things like performance monitoring, security and working on a DB that has 100% HA is new to me.

Is this very challenging work? Will i be stressed to my core? Does anyone on here regret becoming a DBA? As you can tell i'm rather nervous about taking the plunge!

Thanks
Jeff Moden
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bugg (10/15/2012)
Hi All,

I've been offered a job as the sole MSQL DBA at an up and coming online retailer. I'm from a development background, started out in asp.net, c#, html,css but have a load of experience in SQL developer based projects. Ranging from reporting services to SSIS work and other scripting for migrations etc.
I'm pretty comfortable with T-SQL. However i'm a newbie when it comes to other DBA skills. I can do backups / restores, setup mirroring but things like performance monitoring, security and working on a DB that has 100% HA is new to me.

Is this very challenging work? Will i be stressed to my core? Does anyone on here regret becoming a DBA? As you can tell i'm rather nervous about taking the plunge!

Thanks


All the things you mentioned are kind of easy. Find out what will be required of you insofar as security goes.

--Jeff Moden

RBAR is pronounced ree-bar and is a Modenism for Row-By-Agonizing-Row.
First step towards the paradigm shift of writing Set Based code:
Stop thinking about what you want to do to a row... think, instead, of what you want to do to a column.
Although they tell us that they want it real bad, our primary goal is to ensure that we dont actually give it to them that way.
Although change is inevitable, change for the better is not.
Just because you can do something in PowerShell, doesnt mean you should. Wink

Helpful Links:
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Jack Vamvas
Jack Vamvas
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It depends on how large is the environment . How motivated you are to learn new skills. Focus on fundamentals , such as availability - incluing backup strategy , error managemenmt etc.
It might be worth finding out if they allow external help - in case of emergency.
Where is everything hosted?

Jack Vamvas
sqlserver-dba.com
bugg
bugg
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Well that's it i'm not entirely sure, they are willing to train me in these areas. I am used to active directory accounts and using those as secure logins but when it come to stored user accounts in tablse what should i be looking out for security wise? Besides SQL injection what other threats does a DBA have to watch out for?
Jack Vamvas
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Do they have a Security Policy? If not , maybe that is an opportunity for you to implement. You can also develop reports which audit the security .

Jack Vamvas
sqlserver-dba.com
bugg
bugg
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The current setup is one database that is mirrored for fail over. I can get external help if required. I am always keen to learn, i think being in IT this is a prerequisite.
I just want to know how stressful this job can be, i do have a life outside of work and would like to keep it this way. Ive been reading up on DBA roles and a lot people mention the stress! this scares the cr@p out of me.

The company said i would be on call 24/7 but told me last year they only had 3 instances when the server went down. I can live with 3 call outs in a year. Just wanted to know if going down the DBA career route is worth it. If DBAs on this forum love the job.
bugg
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I guess they must have some sort of security policy. If not , like you said my first job could be implementing one Smile
Do you have any links showing what different types of security polices one can implement in an online web application?
bugg
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The servers are hosted off site.
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bugg (10/15/2012)
The company said i would be on call 24/7


On call 24/7 on your own? That pretty much means no vacations, never out of touch, laptop with you anywhere, any time just in case.
When I worked for the bank it took a team of 8 DBAs to do a 24x7x365 rotation.

I'd question them on that point, carefully. What exactly do they expect, how quickly are you required to respond, how available are you required to be (and what are they paying for you being on call all the time)?


Gail Shaw
Microsoft Certified Master: SQL Server, MVP, M.Sc (Comp Sci)
SQL In The Wild: Discussions on DB performance with occasional diversions into recoverability

We walk in the dark places no others will enter
We stand on the bridge and no one may pass


bugg
bugg
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GilaMonster (10/15/2012)
bugg (10/15/2012)
The company said i would be on call 24/7


On call 24/7 on your own? That pretty much means no vacations, never out of touch, laptop with you anywhere, any time just in case.
When I worked for the bank it took a team of 8 DBAs to do a 24x7x365 rotation.

I'd question them on that point, carefully. What exactly do they expect, how quickly are you required to respond, how available are you required to be (and what are they paying for you being on call all the time)?


Well not exactly on my own, there is one guy who currently tends to the DB but he isn't a DBA. When I mentioned the 24/7 on call to them they said the team get each others back but I can see this falling on my back quite a bit.

Another thing is they don't pay extra for being on call. Its a small IT office , there is 1 database to look after currently. The company is expanding at a rate of knots and now they need a full time DBA rather then the developers tending to the DB occasionally. For me its an opportunity to join a fast growing Company with prospects and rather then dabble in loads of different technologies focus on one. I suppose i'm scared, i'm a developer who has in the past pushed my code to DBAs to release to production and now i'm going to be on the other side.
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