SQL Foundations - Day 2 2013

This post is a continuation of an earlier post that you can find here, on Day 1 of the SQL Foundations course I attended.  The session was presented by: Allan Hirt (blog | twitter), and Ben Debow (blog | twitter) .


Day 2: Thursday, August 29th

Session 4: Indexing Fundamentals

Ben was the sole presenter on this topic. He gave many ideas to think about as well as explaining about indexing. Indexing is more than just putting an index on a table, it requires more planning. Creating an overall indexing strategy will help find that balance between SQL, performance and hardware that is the true desired goal. To start off with, focus on the highly reference objects first. Ben gave a demo which showed a great tool to use, SQL Sentry Plan Explorer, to help dive into more depth. He also showed how Excel can be used to filter and sort the index usage statistics to gain much more insight into what to tackle, and when.

He also gave multiple tips, including making sure to know when the SQL server instance has been restarted. All of the metadata which is helpful to review is cleared out when the instance is restarted.


Session 5: Administration Essentials

I was really looking forward to this session, and was not disappointed! Both Ben and Allan started this session with a pie chart that showed all the high level tasks a DBA is responsible for: Backups/Restores; Monitoring; Security and Auditing; Performance; Maintenance; Inventory and configuration. For each of these topics, they explained many things that are useful to watch out for and the tools to use to do so, also metrics/thresholds to use as guidelines. I took a LOT of notes in this session and was pleasantly surprised to learn specific things I can utilize right now.

At the end of the session, they made sure to mention that all the tools in the world are great, but dont forget about YOU. Keeping up with your training and learning is important as well. You can use classes, webcasts, local user groups, conferences, brown bag learning lunches, etc., to stay current. You never know when that knowledge will be handy!


Session 6: Troubleshooting 101

As with Tuesday, I was pulled away from this session by work (ohh gotta love it - huh?). I did get to listen to the first few minutes though. They started with some sage advice: Listen fully to the problem first, dont just start clicking half way through what the person talking is saying. Also, develop and use a formalized troubleshooting approach to increase effectiveness, this will help in times of emergency when someone is literally watching over your shoulder.

I will watch the recorded version of the session at a later time and finish this update.

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