I just wrapped up my 24 Hours of PASS session on consolidation. A big THANK YOU again to everyone in attendance, who kindly put up with my horrendous rapping “skills”! As promised, below is the link to the slide deck. In the presenter’s notes you’ll find some good links and resources for consolidation.
Just wanted to send out a quick note that I’ll be presenting via LiveMeeting for the New Jersey SQL User Group next Tuesday, February 16th at 6:40 PM EST. I’ll be doing my Policy-Based Management talk. I will post the link to the presentation here when I get it.
Well last night I presented my Policy Based Management presentation for the Orlando SQL PASS User Group aka OPASS. The meeting was held at the End-to-End Training (now called SQLShare.com) offices which is a nice facility ran by Andy Warren (Blog | LinkedIn). The meeting started off with a short bit of networking where Andy has everyone introduce themselves to their neighbors and get some discussion going. I thought this was a nice little touch and lets people work on their networking skills.
First up for the night was a mini presentation on Backup Basics with Todd Holmes (LinkedIn), a DBA for Channel Intelligence in Celebration. The mini presentation is a 15-minute presentation slot that Andy came up with to encourage new speakers to cut their teeth on public speaking and technical presentations. Todd did a great job with such a broad topic and even went the extra mile in showing examples via T-SQL code. Todd will also be doing this mini presentation at the upcoming SQL Saturday #21 in Orlando.
After Todd’s presentation there was a short dinner break and I got setup for my PBM presentation. Andy said he was curious to see an hour-long presentation went on Policy Based Management since he thought it was a topic that could be covered rather quickly. Funnily enough my presentation ran just a tad over an hour and I could have kept going! There were some hiccups here and there with my VM taking a little longer than I would have liked to open certain things but demos didn’t blow up like they did at the last SQL Saturday. I also got a chance to show the audience EPMF in action (sort of). I showed the script run that used PowerShell to apply existing policies and dump results into a database repository. The example failed because I tried to open Reporting Services page on VM which had the hardened IE settings enabled that didn’t allow scripts to run so I wound up just showing a screenshot of the dashboard view. Hopefully this demo helps people take SQL 2008 and PBM back to their jobs and look like rock stars for virtually no money (except for cost of SQL 2008 Standard license after they see how awesome this is).
After the meeting I stuck around and talked shop with Andy, Jack Corbett (Blog | Twitter) and Kendal Van Dyke (Blog | Twitter) which was pretty awesome as we talked about all things SQL. Always a good time when you get quality geek time in. Overall it was a great time and a big thank you to the group for having me out there. If you’re in the Orlando area make sure to check out the group!
I’m REALLY psyched about SQL Saturday as there are going to be some awesome presenters there such as Andy Leonard (Blog | Twitter), Ken Simmons (Blog | Twitter), Joe Webb (Blog | Twitter), Brian Knight (Blog | Twitter), Kevin Kline (Blog | Twitter), Andy Warren (Blog | Twitter), Buck Woody (Blog | Twitter), Kendal Van Dyke (Blog | Twitter), Chad Miller (Blog | Twitter) and many more! The speaker lineup looks like a veritable PASS Summit East Coast edition. If you can’t make it to the Summit this year (and I highly encourage you to do so if you can) then definitely try to make it to SQL Saturday #21!
And as if the lineup of talks at the SQL Saturday event wasn’t enough to blow your mind, the week leading up to it there is a week of day-long training seminars! Again, this looks like a rock star line up featuring Andy Warren, Brian Knight, Kevin Kline, Andy Leonard and Buck Woody. Each session is $150 and WELL worth the investment.
After writing up my review for my presentation at OPASS I realized I hadn’t done one for my visit to Melbourne for the Spacecoast SQL User Group! A thousand apologies Bonnie and crew!
I arrived early in Melbourne so I spent some quality time at Starbucks for a bit before the meeting which gave me the opportunity to test and retest some of the policy demos so I didn’t repeat my blunders from the previous weekend at SQL Saturday in South Florida. When the time came around I got over to the Spacecoast Federal Credit Union headquarters building where the meeting was held (which is a beautiful building btw). The group is small but very enthusiastic crowd in that they ask a LOT of good questions. The PBM presentation went without a hitch which was nice and the presentation actually took a positive unexpected turn when we started discussing virtualization. I wound up giving a mini presentation on VMware and virtualization and how it all worked which was pretty cool.
Afterwards a few of us went over to the questionably-named sports bar called The Rendezvous in the Holiday Inn to socialize and talk shop a bit. It was interesting to hear about how Bonnie got started in the SQL world and how she came about establishing the User Group. Want to hear the story yourself? Then get over to one of their meetings! They meet on the second Thursday of each month so if you’re in the Melbourne/Cocoa Beach/Titusville area go check them out!
I just wanted to send out a quick note to say that I’ll be presenting tonight at the Spacecoast SQL Server User Group. I’ll be doing my presentation on Policy Based Management. After SQL Saturday last weekend I’ve learned a few things and added a small demo of EPMF to the end of it so hopefully this goes well. If you’re in the Melbourne area tonight come check it out!
Looks like August is definitely shaping up to be a busy one for me! First I’ll be presenting at SQL Saturday #16 in South Florida. That takes place on Saturday, August 8th. I’m really excited for this event since it’ll be the first SQL Saturday I’ve presented at.
Following that I’ll be heading over to Melbourne the following week on Thursday, August 13th for the Spacecoast SQL Server User Group meeting. At both locations I’ll be presenting my Policy Based Management 101 session. Then to finish off my month the following week I’m moving to a new place so August will definitely be an active one. Speaking of which, check out and participate in Active August! I’ll be writing up a series blog posts about my #activeaugust experience as well.
Tonight was our monthly SQL Server User Group meeting and our featured presenter this evening was Plamen Ratchev (Blog) presenting on performance tuning and query optimization. First off, he has an awesome accent. I think he’s of Croatian descent from what he mentioned but he rolls his R’s something fierce. I should’ve had him say the phrase “reporting services” a bunch of times just to make me giggle. Anyways, I’m way off topic…
We should forget about small efficiencies, say about 97% of the time: premature optimization is the root of all evil
This was a good point to open with in that if you try to focus on only performance in the development phase you’re more than likely going to perform an epic fail. He then went on to show the differences between being reactive and proactive in terms of performance tuning. His take was that in Europe their development processes focused more on being proactive and trying to take care of issues before they become major problems as opposed to trying to run around putting out fires all the time like many a DBA (myself included) is forced to do on a daily basis. In an interesting story he relayed to us he told us about how he had come to the U.S. and pitched a European software that allowed a major car manufacturer to improve their processes. The software would basically alert you if anything in production fell “out of the norm” and would advise actions on how to fix it. The American company had a different approach to their process. They basically hired a team of high-priced consultants to come in for a week, measure everything nuts to bolts about what’s wrong in the production process, produce a report and leave (whether or not problem got fixed). What surprised me most was that he told us the manager told him if there’s a problem they pretty much just build another assembly line somewhere else rather than fix current issue. If you’re wondering why they need Federal bail-out money, this story should give you a slight clue.
The presentation continued on with things such as common performance issues you’re likely to find such as inefficient queries, retrieving too much data, inefficient or missing indexes and a few other things. This was a nice list to see for both devs and DBA’s alike so everyone is aware of these common mistakes. This lead to topic of problematic designs such as the “one-true lookup” table issue. This is when rather than normalizing your data someone decides its easier to just throw everything in to one large table and add columns as needed later on. I can see some of you cringe when you read that since you’ve probably seen that in production somewhere at some point.The surprising thing that came out of this example though (to me anyways) was that sometimes this setup actually makes sense for very specific applications such as a simple survey or a medical application that is only storing straight facts (i.e. patient monitor). Another oldie but a goodie is mismatched data types on join columns or filters. While this may work without a problem, when you throw a heavy work load at something like this you’ll see performance tank because behind the scenes the data engine is having to do lots of implicit conversions to process that query for you. So remember that little tidbit next time you’re planning with your devs and database developers.
The next interesting thing I learned was regarding data type optimization. Do you know what the one of the fundamental differences is between VARCHAR and NVARCHAR besides one taking up twice as much space as the other? NVARCHAR handles multiple collations while VARCHAR is more for single so if your application is only going to be delivered via a single, default collation then stick with using VARCHAR.
I could go on and on but needless to say this was an extremely insightful and useful presentation. Another user group member, Ron Dameron (Twitter), noted in Twitter this evening
…seen this deck twice now. Learned new stuff both times. Thx Plamen
If you ever get a chance to attend one of Plamen’s presentations at a live event I highly encourage you to do so as he’s a brilliant guy and presents well. If he’s not coming anywhere near you, you can still check out his presentation stylings by watching his videos over at JumpstartTV. In closing here’s some book recommendations he threw out at the end of his slide deck. Basically this is just an excuse for me to use the cool Carousel feature from Amazon!
A few weeks back I presented at the Tampa SSUG meeting on Policy Based Management with SQL 2008. Unfortunately due to sickness and apparently my own laziness, I never got around to doing a follow-up post or posting my slide deck. First the slide deck:
As a warning the deck itself is a bit sparse with how-to info as the meat of my presentation is in demo format. Given that fact, I will start a series of blog posts covering Policy Based Management and how/what you can do with it. Keep an eye out in the coming weeks for those! In the meantime a big thank you for everyone that attended the Tampa presentation, hopefully I’ll be giving this same presentation again at SQL Saturday South Florida in August.
Just wanted to post that tomorrow night I’ll be presenting on Policy Based Management in SQL 2008 at the Tampa SQL Server User Group meeting. The details of the meeting are below, hope to see you there!
Topic: Policy Based Management
Speakers: Jorge Segarra
Location: Franklin Templeton Buidling ( Directions )
Jorge Segarra will be presenting Policy Based Management. We will be learning an overview of this powerful new feature in SQL 2008 and how you can leverage it to help manage your existing SQL environment. This will include plenty of demos, best practices and Q&A so by the end you should be able to walk away ready to take control of your SQL Servers!
Jorge has been a SQL DBA for over 5 years with experience with SQL 2000, 2005 and 2008. Some of his other specialties include virtualization, specifically on the VMware platform. He is currently the Database Administrator for University Community Hospital (www.universitycommunityhospital.org) in Tampa. Check out his blog at: http://sqlchicken.blogspot.com.
Food and drinks will be provided by Jane Powell of CIBER, Inc. CIBER is a pure-play international system integration consultancy and outsourcing company with superior value-priced services and reliable delivery for both private and government sector clients. CIBER’s services are offered globally on an outsourced, project, or staffing basis, in both custom and ERP package environments, and across all technology platforms, operating systems and infrastructures.
As usual, SWAG from the group’s stash will be raffled. SWAG will include Office 2007, books and other items.