Testing times

  • Comments posted to this topic are about the item Testing times

  • You pointed out one of the single most frustrating things in this industry. People need a starting point. If "experts" are unwilling to give simple advice as something to start with, newbies end up making much worse decisions than if they followed advice that may not be the best for everyone. Whether this is in regards to a backup strategy, memory tuning, or any other advice, authors are doing a disservice by not being willing to give something to start with.

    If as the reader, I decide to use your "starting point" without doing any investigation, and I just leave it there and never review it, that is not your fault.

    When I first started off, I could not find a single bit of advice on backups that I could use. I spent probably a few hundred hours reading advice, all of which said the same thing, none of which was helpful unless I wanted a PHD in SQL Server backup strategy! I now manage more than 30 servers with various versions and flavors of SQL Server installed, everything from MSDB through SQL Server 2008 R2 Enterprise 64-bit! In every case, the backups are done very similarly. Our strategy is to complete a full back up every night, and then back that up to tape. We do hourly transaction logs on most of the systems but not all. At this point all of our backups complete in less than 45 minutes, most in under 10 minutes. At some point I will need to review the strategy for some of the larger ones, but what we do works and works fine. I could have saved countless hours if someone had been willing to say that a small database under 1GB is not going to have issues if you do a full backup each day. Instead, every article talked about how to use fulls with differentials and log backups, spread over a 30 day period, blah blah blah...

    OK, maybe I am exagerating a bit, but the point is valid: Authors need to be willing to offer advice for specific instances, and then offer advice on how that might change based on certain factors. When you went to school, the teachers started with the basics, and didn't try to teach you calculus and physics in first grade. Computer Science authors would do well to think along similar lines. If you are doing an advanced bit, say so. If not, stop hiding behind the fear that someone might not be smart enough to read your warning, because your advice will be far more useful if you give it than if you refuse to.


  • I think there is a lot of room for an In The Trenches or Real World Examples book for SQL. I love the ones they have for SharePoint.

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