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  • Blog Post: SQL Azure notes & queries as at August 2011

    One of the best things about cloud services is that every few months a new version comes out and users can instantly use all its new features. One of the worst things about cloud services is that every few months a new version comes out and users are able to instantly use it and all its new features...
  • Blog Post: Application Platform Knowledge Hub

    Albert Einstein once remarked that you don’t need to remember everything, you just needed to remember where to look.  When it comes to learning about Microsoft products this can sometimes be harder than it ought to be and what resources there are ...read more
  • Blog Post: Azure Data and Databases - When to use what

    I have been asked to do a post on Windows Azure SQL Databases (formerly known as SQL Azure), but I think it might be more useful to discuss some of the wider issues so I put together a few FAQs that I often get asked. Why use a public cloud service like Azure to store data? Probably not to save...
  • Blog Post: System Center Advisor– now live

    I remember hearing about a Project Houston about a year ago, a cunning plan to allow Microsoft to check the heath of your SQL Server databases and the operating system it sits on. It is now live and it’s called System Center Advisor . It works by using ...read more
  • Blog Post: Share the Love Competition Winners Announced!

    On Wednesday 1st February we launched the Share the Love competition for our community to win one of three SQL Server branded NorthFace Fleeces. (as shown below) The Three winners are: Jen Stirrup Daniel Sutton Dave Morrisson Congratulations folks and look out for additional competitions...
  • Blog Post: Lab Ops 2–The Lee-Robinson Script

    In my last post I mentioned how Marcus Robinson & had adapted PowerShell scripts by Thomas Lee to build a set of VMs to run a course in a reliable and repeatable way.  With Marcus’s permission I have put that Setup Script on SkyDrive, however he has a proper day job running his gold partnership...
  • Blog Post: Key trend in the consumerisation of IT: self service

    Consumerisation is an amazing trend; the idea that anyone can make choices about the way they work and the tools they use to get their job done. From an IT point of view it can, at first, look like a scary proposition. All those people bringing in different bits of kit and making you look after them...
  • Blog Post: Case Study: Retailer Avoids Tens of Millions in Growth Costs, Eases Innovation, and Boosts Security

    Read all about how one of the world’s largest member owned businesses is benefiting from Microsoft SQL Server 2008. ​"Because SQL Server 2008 R2 is so scalable, we can expand from 6 million to 20 million members for 10 percent of what it would have cost on our old solution" Chris Sproston,...
  • Blog Post: Server 4024 part 1 – Virtualisation

    A database is only as good as the operating system it resides on. SQL Server only runs on Windows and given that Windows Server 2012 (WS2012) is a huge change from what there was in Server 2008 R2 what does this new OS mean for the DBA.  The reference to Server 4012 is because that would be WS2012...
  • Blog Post: NO SQL Server

    I spent last Thursday at Black Marble’s Architect Forum and my slot was on SQL, NoSQL, some SQL. It went down very well but I used OneNote on my tablet not PowerPoint and like all modern art my drawing needs a bit of explaining.. Databases were originally ...read more
  • Blog Post: Getting Started with SCOM 2012 beta

    System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) 2012 is now in beta along with all of the other System Center 2012 suite , and because it’s a beta the installation process is a little tricky. Having spent a morning on it I thought it would be good if I told you ...read more
  • Blog Post: Tech.Days Online is Back! 24th/25th/26th April

    New years resolution: must blog more! It's only taken me to the end of January to start my resolution but I'm going to try one blog article per month. We're bringing back Tech.Days Online on the 24th/25th & 26th of April. This time with more days and more topics. Simon and Andrew will be back...
  • Blog Post: Installing SQL Server in a Virtual World

    I do get occasional feedback that SQL Server is hard to install, all those screens all those checkboxes etc. etc.  This is simply a reflection that there is so much in SQL Server aside form the database engine, however if you know what you want and you are doing this regularly then script it, if...
  • Blog Post: Guest Post: Top Tips from QA - Creating business diagrams from within SQL Server without using Visio services or third party tools

    Mark ‘Fitz’ Fitzgerald is the principle technologist for business intelligence, covering SQL, PerformancePoint and ProClarity at QA . He is a twenty-year veteran of the IT industry, with experience that ranges from mainframes, help desk and MIS systems. Mark has experience developing business...
  • Blog Post: SQL Server Spruce up

    Landrovers, will take a lot of pounding and neglect, but when my wife drove hers to Australia she made very sure it was properly set up for 2 years on the road Similarly SQL Server is also often out in the wild far from DBA’s and inspection from maintenance tools, like System Center .  However now...