SQL Server Thoughts from the Field

Rob's SQL Server & BI Blog

SQL Server Thoughts from the Field

  • Enabling Kerberos Authentication for Reporting Services

    Recently, I’ve helped several customers with Kerberos authentication problems with Reporting Services and Analysis Services, so I’ve decided to write this blog post and pull together some useful resources in one place (there are 2 whitepapers...
  • Performance Dashboard Reports for SQL Server 2008

    During a recent visit to Seattle for a Microsoft conference, I learned from my colleague Michael Thomassy that it's possible to run the SQL Server 2005 Performance Dashboard reports on SQL Server 2008, with a slight modification. There is a great new...
  • Caching SSRS Reports for Performance

    I’ve been fairly quiet on the blogging-front recently, but I have been busy working with SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) ! I've also been fortunate enough to present a session to customers on SSRS scalability at a recent Business Intelligence Operations...
  • Hosting the Performance Dashboard Reports in SSRS

    I blogged a while back about modifying the SQL Server 2005 Performance Dashboard reports to run on SQL Server 2008 . I’ve since been working with several customers who use these reports for performance troubleshooting, but who would like to host...
  • SQL Server 2005 Performance Dashboard

    I've had one or two requests recently to set up the Performance Dashboard reports on SQL Server so I've created this blog post to step through the process. Firstly, the Performance Dashboard was created to allow customers and support engineers to monitor...
  • Windows Failover Clustering Overview

    The host node in the failover cluster performs a "looks alive" check every 5 seconds. An IsAlive check is performed every 60 seconds using SELECT @@SERVERNAME. If this fails the IsAlive retries 5 times and then attempts to reconnect to the instance of...
  • SQL Server 2008 - Performance Studio

    I've been looking at this new feature of SQL Server 2008 in order to demo it to customers, and I have to say it's pretty cool ! Along with Resource Governor and compression, it's one of my favourite new features and a good reason to consider an upgrade...
  • Windows Memory (PAE/AWE/3GB)

    PAE (Physical Address Extension) PAE is the added ability of the IA32 processor to address more than 4GB of physical memory. The following OS's can use PAE to take advantage of physical memory beyond 4GB: Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server...
  • SQL Server Statistics

    SQL Server 2005 collects statistical information about indexes and column data stored in the database. These statistics are used by the SQL Server query optimizer to choose the most efficient plan for retrieving or updating data. Good statistics allow...
  • Detecting SQL Server 2005 Blocking

    Database queries should be able to execute concurrently without errors and within acceptable wait times. When they don't, and when the queries behave correctly when executed in isolation, you will need to investigate the causes of the blocking. Generally...
  • SQL Server 2005 Multi-Site Clustering with Windows Server 2008

    I was working recently with a customer who was looking to deploy a SQL Server 2005 cluster across 2 geographically dispersed sites using Windows Server 2008. They were looking to utilise the new clustering improvements in Windows Server 2008 to build...
  • SQL Server Locking

    Locking is a mechanism used by the Microsoft SQL Server Database Engine to synchronize access by multiple users to the same piece of data at the same time. Before a transaction acquires a dependency on the current state of a piece of data, such as...
  • DBCC CHECKDB

    DBCC CHECKDB checks the logical and physical integrity of all objects in the specified database by performing the following: Runs DBCC CHECKALLOC on the database Runs DBCC CHECKTABLE on every table and view in the database Runs DBCC CHECKCATALOG...
  • Mirroring Multiple SQL Server Databases on a Single Instance

    This is a question I get asked a lot by customers (last week being the latest) and the answer really depends on which platform you are running on. There is a support policy in Books Online that states that we only support a maximum of 10 mirrored databases...
  • SQL Server and Windows Memory

    SQL Server 2000 Enterprise Edition introduced support for the use of Windows 2000 Address Windowing Extensions (AWE) to address 8GB of memory on Windows 2000 Advanced Server and 32GB of memory on Windows 2000 Datacentre. With AWE, SQL Server can reserve...
  • SQL Server Wow64 Perfmon Issues

    I recently came across some issues running perfmon on Windows Server 2003 where the OS is 64-bit and SQL Server is 32-bit (Wow64). The SQL Performance counters were not appearing as the default Perfmon is 64-bit, which is unable to read the 32-bit SQL...
  • OpsDB SQL Server Automation Tools Released

    A great set of SQL Server automation tools has just been released by Microsoft onto the SQL Server Community Worldwide site... http://sqlcommunity.com/ScriptsTools/OpsDBOperationsDatabaseforSQLServer/tabid/275/language/en-US/Default.aspx These are...
  • Weird Problem with Virtual PC 2007

    Had a weird problem with Virtual PC 2007 where the blue screen would flash up when I ran the program, yet the console window would not appear even though Virtual PC was running in the task manager and the system tray. The Virtual PC console had effectively...
  • Indexing Strategies

    I attended a SQL Server User Group meeting earlier this year and heard a presentation about favourite DMV's. Mentioned in the discussion was sys.dm_db_index_usage_stats and that got me thinking about indexing strategies. I have been involved in performance...
  • Troubleshooting SQL Server 2008 Performance Problems

    A new whitepaper covering the topic of performance troubleshooting in SQL Server 2008 has now been released. You can download the paper from the following link: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd672789.aspx
  • Scottish SQL Server User Group Meeting - 29th January

    I have uploaded my slides from my Upgrading to SQL Server 2008 session at the recent Scottish SQL Server User Group meeting held in Edinburgh on the 29th January. It was good to see a number of new faces at the meeting, and if you fancy coming along in...
  • SQL Server 2008 Cumulative Update #2 Released

    Cumulative Update package 2 has now been released for SQL Server 2008. See the following KB article for full details: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/958186/en-us
  • CU #3 for SQL Server 2008 Released

    On January 19, 2009 Microsoft shipped the Third Cumulative Update for SQL Server 2008 RTM. This CU represents 36 Resolved Issues and 30 Unique Customer Requests. More details and download details can be found here: http://support.microsoft...
  • SSUG Presentation 19th August

    Thanks to all who attended the SSUG meeting in Edinburgh last night. I've included my slides and demo scripts in the attached file (SSUG_190810_ExecutionPlans.zip). I've also included some additional references relating to discussions we had during the...
  • Scottish Area SQL Server User Group

    I'm happy to announce that the next Scottish SQL Server User Group will be hosted at Microsoft Edinburgh on the evening of the 13th November. Full details of the agenda and how to register can be found on the UK SQL Server User Group site here: http...