SQL Saturday #43

Coming up rapidly is SQL Saturday #43 (twitter). This is the second SQL Saturday in Redmond, unfortunately I missed the first as it nicely coincided with knee surgery, however I am fit and ready to go this time. 

I’m not speaking, but I still wanted to do my part and so volunteered to help out in any way come the day. As a consequence I will be getting an early start and will be out at the event at 6:30am to help put out signs. Being up so early means I should be fully awake when the first session comes around. 

Cameron Mergel (blog | twitter) posted about the sessions he plans to attend on Saturday. It was such a good idea I decided to do the same, so here’s what I’m going to be hitting up come the weekend:

9am – Exploring SQL Server System Information with DMVs – Greg Larsen

This session will explore different DMV and how they can be used to obtain information about your SQL Server environment. There will be a number of demo’s. In these demos different DMV’s will be used provide different infomation about how your SQL Server instance is running. Peeking under the covers is now only a DMV away.

 This was probably the easiest choice of the day for me. You can never know enough about DMVs. Feeling comfortable with transactions and SSIS put those to the back of my list and the chances of me using Report Builder are slim to none.


10:30am – Accelerating SQL with Solid State – Sumeet Bansal

Solid-state technologies are changing the way that MS SQL users run their databases. DBA’s are achieving significant TCO savings through performance enhancements, reliability improvements, and reduced energy and real estate costs using solid-state technologies. Solid state is changing the way datacenters look and how MS SQL Servers perform. This session will address: 1) On overview of solid state technology options for SQL Server 2) Why solid state makes a difference? 3) An comparison of the different types of NAND Flash-based products and the advantages and disadvantages of each: a. Disk-based SSDs b. Onboard/Embedded PCI Express devices c. Host-based PCI Express devices 4) Customer proof: Wine.com case study 5)Raffle for a Steve Wozniak

Tough choice here as Dean Richards session “Tuna Helper for DBAs and Developers” was looked really compelling. In the end I felt this might suit me better due to an upcoming datacenter migration and complete SQL Server environment build out that I am going to be working on over the next year. It’s a chance to take a look at SSD and maybe give me some ideas for the upcoming architecture decisions I will need to make.


12:30pm – SQL Server and PowerShell – Donabel Santos

This session will cover how you can get started with PowerShell, and how you can use PowerShell with SQL Server. Powershell, a scripting language that leverages Microsoft .NET Framework, can help you manage and automate SQL Server. Demos will include common PowerShell tasks and commands, and querying/scripting/automating SQL Server using SMO and applicable .NET Libraries.

 Another tough choice. Passing up the chance to attend a Kalen Delaney session on compression feels a little crazy. In my defense I was lucky enough to attend a full day pre-summit seminar at Pass 2008 where Kalen spent hours going through the internals, including compression. If you’ve read any of my blog you can see I am a little keen on powershell and I’ll take up pretty much any chance to increase my knowledge on that front.


2pm – Using SQL Trace/Profiler Effectively – Robert Davis

The session will cover the difference between SQL Trace and SQL Profiler, and why we recommend using SQL Trace in a production environment. Topics covered will be how and when to use SQL Profiler vs SQL Trace, how to create a trace template and convert it to a SQL script, and how to start a SQL Trace running in response to a performance event. Demos will include creating a trace template and converting it to a script and an example of how SQL Profiler can bring your whole server to a crawl.

 It was this or Clifford Dribble presenting “Utility Control Point in SQL 2008 R2”. Ultimately it came down to what I use. I can’t see myself working with R2 in the near future and I felt that Robert’s session would help provide me with a way to build a presentation of a similar topic to internal teams.


3:30pm – SQL Server for the Oracle DBA – Buck Woody

Come hear Buck Woody, Microsoft’s “Real World DBA” give a marketing-free introduction to SQL Server for the Oracle professional. No experience in SQL Server is necessary – we’ll cover the basics of SQL Server Architecture using Oracle concepts as a guide. If you’re an Oracle professional and you want to add SQL Server to your “knowledge arsenal”, come hear this overview. You’ll also get a list of resources that will enable you to research further.


People give rave reviews of Buck Woody presentations. I just couldn’t pass this one up despite really wanting to go see Chuck Lathrope on “Replication Performance Tuning and Troubleshooting”. I can also take back the information from this session and talk to the “O side massive” folks at work.

That’s it. There’s no mention of an afterparty yet, maybe something will come up. I’m also really hoping that someone will have the England/USA game streaming through lunch and that Donabel dedicates a little screen real estate for the second half.

It should be really good day, absolultely looking forward to it and meeting some new folks.


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