Showing posts with label rant. Show all posts
Showing posts with label rant. Show all posts


Plagiarism: A Community Destroyed

Personal Thoughts

Just to be clear, I don't expect everyone to have my same thoughts. I personally fully support SQLServerCentral and how the help a great community exist. They host tons of articles and moderate a forum well enough to build a rather strong following of people that are highly involved. 

Then we have these articles... Plagiarism Apology notes, Stealing whole books, and many other things... just search Plagiarism and see what all pops up. I try my best to note every author, provide extra links, and overall just take any efforts to give the proper author his due credit.

This is a short post. Just something that spurred from today's events.


Busy Busy Weeks, Finally Some Good News! SQL 2008 / 2008 R2 Will Get Their Final Service Pack!

We will actually be getting our final Service Pack! 

The information can be found here. You may still want extended support if you just simply cannot upgrade... but at least you're going out with one final update. This is a copy and paste from the link listed above, "We are planning to ship one last Service Pack for both SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2. Because of the maturity of SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2, these Service Pack(s) will be an exception in terms of timing and will ship after mainstream support of these releases ends on July 8th 2014."

This is awesome! Of course, but why is this awesome!?

Obviously we will love having one final Service Pack, that much is given. What I personally thing is so fantastic about this is that the community requested that they give us one more Service Pack. Glen Berry requested one through connect and got almost 900 votes here. Christoph Muthmann put in the same request specific to SQL Server 2008 R2 here. Brent Ozar even did a post asking just the simple question, "Did Microsoft stop releasing SQL Server Service Packs?"

I guess it means we won, but what did we win?

Ok, yes it's more about them just finishing off their products life cycle with one final update to close the door with a happier feeling all around... but it's more than that. Here's where I'll step off the ledge and just give an opinion. It's felt like Microsoft hasn't been listening to anyone who actually buys their product... Look at the numbers of people that just wanted a start menu option that has hurt windows 8 so bad. Yes, I know it's there now... that's not the point. Well, I guess it is the point? If they're finally listening to us, now is the perfect time to start asking for things back like the MCM, some sort of higher level training or cert, or just various requests that would help out the community as a whole.

A bit far fetched, I know...

That doesn't mean we shouldn't try. It appears someone is listening now. Let's take advantage while the ears are open. The one thing I'd like to see is either the return of the MCM or at least open up the MCM testing and labs so we can at least see these famed tests. (I hope this link works... it was giving me fits today)


SQL 2014 Release Date, April 1st

I'm not a fan of anything releasing on April Fool’s Day, but that's not for me to decide. I personally cannot wait to upgrade to 2014.  I want to see the full power behind PCI-e based SSDs pushing extended ram. I want to have the security of having a server go down and it not take out both sides of the Availability Group. If you haven't heard, when one goes off, it shuts them both down. I want to rebuild my partitioned indexes online. I have lots of wants, but how long will I have to wait to install?

I'm torn here. An old theory was to wait for Service Pack 1 before installing anything by Microsoft. Did we replace Service Packs with new versions? How long will we have to wait for the next "version"?  I hope I'm wrong here. I do love new features. I love upgrades. I do not like upgrading every year. 

I have this feeling that we're about to see releases every other year at most. We may quite possibly see a release per year. I do not want to see this happen. larger agencies stay on older tech longer. I think that coupled with the increased prices for SQL Server with the core licensing may in fact push people off of the Microsoft stack. They may not lose enough to hurt them bad enough, but they will lose some. 

What other Database platforms would you all consider? I personally hope we get back to seeing service packs and keep this stack strong. We have too strong of a community to see it split. 

This is a quote from their SQL Saturday posting, "We are encouraging participation in our food drive to benefit the Westside Cares food pantry located at the facility where the SQL Saturday event will take place.  Toward the end of the event, we plan to give people additional chances to win SWAG based on the amount of items each person brings for donation to the food pantry."

I really hope we can we can get enough people to bring food to make a large difference. 

If you disagree, please let me know. I'd love to hear other opinions.


SQL Server Enterprise is Cheaper than Standard

Free Month of Plural Site

I'm interested in seeing your responses. Any relevant response will be accepted and a free month of Plural Site will be given away. You do not have to agree with me to be relevant. I want to hear what you think.

Now this may seem a bit far-fetched, hear me out. 

This is a bit long winded for me.

First we will address the minimum requirements. We are comparing core licensing only. You must purchase at least 4 cores. Enterprise Edition costs $6,874 per core. That's a starting price of $27,496. Standard Edition costs $1,793 per core. That's a starting price of $7,172.

Now I know what you're thinking, a $20,324 difference seems pretty open and shut against this. This is where I ask that you hear me out. It gets a bit tricky here. Let's start comparing the benefits of upgrading.

Limits Standard Enterprise
64 Unlimited
Indexing Offline Online
Table Compression No Yes
Fast Recovery No Yes
Table Partitioning No Yes
Resource Governor No Yes
I know there are a lot more difference relating to BI, AS, RS and many other aspects. Let's just get enough out there to prove the point. I just told you that a $20,000 dollar cost was a savings yes? How can we save $20,000 by spending it? 

How much do you make a year? 

How about your other DBA, or the JR you're about to hire? How many Developers do you have on staff? How many of them are over worked trying to keep your old Standard server running? Look at your database closely. Let's answer some questions; we'll address this question last.

Do you have the maximum ram that your server can support in it? 

That may be 192, 384, any other number. Unless your server is older, it should support more than the 64GB of RAM that Standard does. I know I know, Windows Server Standard only supports 32GB of RAM, but that changed in Server 2012. 2TB is the RAM limit now. I know SQL 2014 allows for 128GB of RAM standard, but that still means more room to grow.

Do you have processor cores just going idle most times? 

Just because you have 12 cores doesn't mean you need to license 12. You can set SQL to use the limit of what you license it to use. Only license what you need.

Do you have SLA's to meet that have been difficult due to maintenance windows? 

Online indexing allows you to rebuild tables just about any time. You do still get a minor lock at the start and end of an online operation, but that's far better than during the whole process.

Do you have issues with archiving those massive tables?
Is their performance falling behind? Partitioning can help you swap parts of the table in and out while being minimally intrusive. You can even address fragmentation per partition instead of hitting that 10 billion row table all at once. In 2014 you can even do that operation online now!

Do you have multiple databases on the same server fighting for resources?

Well now you can split them up logically instead of having that same conversation about splitting them up physically. 

Are you fighting for more space or even considering moving to an Enterprise SAN?

Page compression is a beautiful thing. It should pose no problems on archived tables. If CPU is not a bottle neck currently, you can expand the window of what you compress. Heavily used tables may not benefit as much... but here's where partitioning can work with this. Page Compression saves quite a bit of space. This may be just enough of a space saver to allow you to request those SSDs you've been wanting.

Let's add this all together.

Yes there is a cost up front, but now you no longer need to hire a 3rd full time DBA or Developer. If you get that system on SSD's since we're using page compression to keep our sizes small and partitioning to keep our archived data on slow disks, our response time is faster. We were previously running to the edge of our RAM at all times, now we have cached static data from a month ago. These disks are only being accessed to present changes. Our DBAs are getting more sleep now that their fragmentation jobs aren't blocking all night long. Our maintenance windows are getting shorter and our SLAs have more room to breathe. 

This view will not fit all organizations. As always, the phrase "It depends" will fit in this scenario as well. Think carefully about all these issues and the time you've burned fixing them. You could be working on that next project to make your company even more money.

I mentioned Developers in this post. I'll explain now why. With compression, partitioning, more caching, faster access to those tables... you can hide a lot of "quick" codding with that much faster power. I'm not saying that we should code poorly because we can. I'm saying that we can code how we need because we can. Once it's up and working, you can then go back and fine tune. 

Enterprise Edition has a higher cost. Asking for more SSD's and more RAM has an additional cost. Not having your talented knowledgeable DBAs and Developers quit due to long hours, continually fighting uphill battles and being denied tools or extra personnel will cost you a lot more in the end. Training your next DBA alone may make up this cost. Not losing your customers due to the inability to meet SLA requirements has a large cost monetarily and to your reputation. 

Let's make the world happier, one Database shop at a time.


Who Do You Rely On?

We tend to think of ourselves as self reliant. Sit and think for a second, how many people do you rely on?

Help Desk

Our angry callers hit them first. They let us know if something's down and our monitor doesn't see it. The more information we can give them, the easier they can make our lives. If you know you have a planned outage, give them a heads up. They will appreciate it immensely.


These are the people that build the applications your business is making it's money from. They connect customers with the data you're protecting. We need to get along with them. If we put ourselves on an even level and make sure we keep a good balance, we can get so much more done. Protect the data, but not at the cost of the business.

Network Admin

When you try and hit a server and can't because the routes were updated again, instead of just being mad at the Network Admin, consider this. All those times you had no problems? It's because they had it working. They're in the same boat as us. Noone notices how good of a job we're doing until it all catches fire.

System Admin

I haven't built a production system from the ground up in years. I love my Sys Admins. They get tasked to setup 50 new SQL boxes, 100 new IIS servers and half a dozen DC's for various projects. Once they do all the heavy lifting, we can use a single PS script to install SQL for us across all the new servers and just go to lunch. Give them credit for working on all the things they do so we can concentrate on what we actually want too.


Good managers go to bat for you. They are the ones that argue for new budgets to get more tools, people, hardware and even that soda fountain in the break room. They're the ones trying to make sure no one calls you while you're on vacation or tries to get the SQL Saturday hotel room paid for when you sneak off on the weekends. The more you work for them, the more they'll work for you. (Bad managers excluded, terms and conditions apply, not available at all jobs, see supervisor for details)

Mend The Fence!

Take the time now. Think of some way you can make it easier to work with them and get the projects completed that needed to be done. The easier we make it to work together, the better we can make our companies. I hate seeing posts of an SA or NetAdmin trying to lock down the DBA just as much as I hate seeing the DBA lock out the Developers from even staging. There are times when it's required, but others it just simply isn't. I'm not saying give the DBA's Domain Admin or the password to the proxy servers, or even giving the Developers SA on production... But sometimes a little read only helps a lot when isolating a problem at 2 am on Christmas morning.

Final Thought

I'll end with this. Where I work now, our Network Admins are great. They go the extra mile to take care of us. Our first line support staff goes out of their way to get all the information they can. Our SA does what he can to make our lives easier and our Developers talk with us when they have a question. This may sound like everyone doing their job, but let's be honest. This is the exception. This helps raise retention. Get your people involved, make them feel equal and make sure to take a day and let them enjoy it. Maybe a little Dave and Busters with a long lunch. You'd be surprised what wonders that'll do for your staff.


To All Recruiters - Canned Emails Kill Kittens: Day 9

Small disclaimer

I'm going to file this one under rant. Let me first say that there are some wonderful recruiting agencies out there. In OKC there are actually a few. Two specifically stick out as they've helped our SQL community without asking for much spotlight time. I would highly recommend GDH Consulting. Travis Warner has been an excellent host and very good to us. Augustine Wiah from TekSystems has shown a genuine interest in making a better link here and helping get rid of some of the bad blood between IT and consulting in general.

With the niceties covered...

Why... Why do I get 10 E-Mails a day blind marked asking If I'm interested in a fantastic help desk position? the exact quote is below:

"I am interested in speaking with you as I have been impressed with your Help Desk experience.   I have helped countless professionals advance their career with top companies and wanted to have a conversation with you.   Please give me a call at the number below or just reply to this email and let me know a good time to reach out to you."

Don't get me wrong. I love having help desks. The great ones are essential for any business. There is no way my help desk experience is impressive. I've got SA background, DBA background, Security background... Why target me for a help desk?

Now, now... I know. It was an email with a great generated response canned in there with just my name auto filled into the TO: line and the Subject: line. Still, this is the entirety of my complaint! They want a number, meet time, face time, new resume that they can forward along... and we still don't get anything semi personalized? At least skim the E-Mail before you send it.

We can help the healing begin...

This post was supposed to be about what DMV's I think are very useful. Instead I choose to rant. Oh well, I'll just get that post out later. You all could post any recruiter horror stories you may have. Come on, let it out.

Don't forget! only two more Mondays left this month! That means two more prizes!