Blog Post

My First Ever SQL Saturday Pre-Con


F1RSTLike most people I have a bucket list of things to do before I depart for other things. However I chose to have two bucket lists, one personal and one professional. I’m now one step closer to ticking another one off of my professional bucket list, the title should give you a big clue.

A few years ago before I started presenting I created a plan of what I wanted to do, this was my five year plan. Now is not the time to divulge that plan, I simply raised it because if you don’t have one then you should make the time to draw up a list of things that you want to achieve in your personal and professional lives and then try and plan a route that takes you down that path.

In my bucket list there were a few tasks related to presenting, so far I have:

  • Presented my first ever session at a user group, this was a lightening talk and wasn’t about SQL Server but I still counted it.
  • Did my first ever 1 hour slot at a user group, this time it was about SQL Server!
  • Presented a webcast.
  • Spoken at SQL Saturdays
  • Spoken at community days at SQLBits
  • Presented at an event where people paid to attend – SQL Rally.
  • Presented at the PASS Summit.

So the one thing missing (other than to present at SQLBits at a time that Grant Fritchey or Brent Ozar weren’t presenting) was to do a pre-con. Someone came up to me at an event and asked if I would do one, I’ve also presented some internal courses for Dell so it has been on the cards for a while. Then my good friend Mark Pryce–Maher asked if I wanted to do a joint pre-con so we mulled over a few ideas and came up with….

Performance Troubleshooting for the (Accidental) DBA

The marketing bit:

We spend a lot of time every day working on SQL Server tracking down performance related issues, in this day long session we will run through different approaches to troubleshooting these issues.

We will be looking into how to diagnose high disk I/O , high CPU, memory issues, missing indexes, locking, blocking and deadlocking – everything every SQL Server DBA needs to know about.

We will examine how to gather the essential information to identify performance issues and how to mitigate them.

This training day is perfect for every experienced and accidental DBA.

In this day long session we will cover the following topics.

  • SQL Server architecture.
  • Hardware considerations.
  • Database design considerations
  • Important Perfmon counters
  • Wait statistics.
  • Useful DMV’s
  • Workload analysis with Profiler / XEvents
  • TempDB
  • Plan cache
  • Execution plans
  • Indexes and Maintenance
  • SQL Profiler
  • SQL Nexus
  • Generating and testing load


If this sounds like something you would be interested in then we will be delivering it at SQL Saturday Exeter on 24th April 2015. If it goes well we may be delivering it at other SQL Server events near you!

You can register for the pre-con here.


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