Do you want free hardware? We can help!

Our hardware guru, Glenn Berry, recently recorded a podcast with our good friends at RunAs Radio about the licensing changes in SQL Server 2012 and how many people are now finding they have hardware they can't fully utilize without spending a bunch more money. The podcast was published today and you can listen to it […]

Results of CPU power saving survey

At the end of December I showed you how to discover if power saving is enabled on your server, which can lead to variable and often degraded performance. I also included a survey to let me know what you found after running the free CPU-Z tool on your servers. See here for the original post. […]

T-SQL Tuesday #012 : Summary of why DBA skills are necessary

Last Tuesday I hosted T-SQL Tuesday #012 (see here for the call for participation) and posed the question "why are DBA skills necessary?" This month broke the participation record with 46 people contributing posts – fabulous! Lots of people contributed for the first time too. And what I think is also really cool is that 45 […]

Benchmarking: Introducing SSDs (Part 3: random inserts with wait stats details)

Last time I posted about SSDs I presented the findings from sequential inserts with a variety of configurations and basically concluded that SSDs do not provide a substantial gain over SCSI storage (that is not overloaded) – see this blog post for more details. You can see my benchmarking hardware setup here, with the addition of […]

Benchmarking: 1-TB table population (part 5: network optimization again)

Blog posts in this series: For the hardware setup I'm using, see this post. For an explanation of log growth and its effect on perf, see this post. For the baseline performance measurements for this benchmark, see this post. For the increasing performance through log file IO optimization, see this post. For the increasing performance through separation […]

Benchmarking: 1-TB table population (part 4: network optimization)

Blog posts in this series: For the hardware setup I'm using, see this post. For an explanation of log growth and its effect on perf, see this post. For the baseline performance measurements for this benchmark, see this post. For the increasing performance through log file IO optimization, see this post. For the increasing performance through separation […]

New hardware to play with: Fusion-io SSDs

Christmas comes but once a year… really? Then mine just came early on this afternoon's UPS truck. The very nice folks at Fusion-io just sent me two of their fully-loaded top-of-the-line ioDrive Duos with 640GB of solid-state flash memory in each. This is really extra-nice of them because on Dell's Small Business website they're currently […]

When was the last time you saw one of these?

I've been spending some time reorganizing my electronic components and came across a serious blast from the past…   (Click the image for a larger version – 354Kb) Left to right, from top down: Zilog Z80 (popular in the Sinclair ZX computers) Intel 8085 from 1980 AMD 8080 from 1977 Intel 8086 from 1978 Intel […]

Don’t confuse error 823 and error 832

I was reading a thread on SQL Server Central today where someone replied to a question and confused 823 with 832. Now, 823 is a nasty error to get – it says that an I/O operation failed at the OS level and the I/O subsystem is causing corruption – SQL Server didn't even get a […]

I like it when people send me electronics

Part of being a Microsoft Regional Director is getting early access to information and private releases to play with. They also hand out free stuff occasionally. Yesterday Kimberly and I reach received a Windows 7 Sensor development board kit (and as Kimberly doesn’t tinker with electronics, I effectively got two!) – these are the same […]

Importance of choosing the right architecture and SQL Server Edition

Last week's survey was another two-fold one – when you buy new servers, what architecture to you predominantly buy, and why?; when you buy new servers, which Edition of SQL Server do you predominantly buy, and why? Here are the results as of 5/17/2009.   For the first survey, the 'other' values were basically that […]

Are your disk partition offsets, RAID stripe sizes, and NTFS allocation units set correctly?

I've just been setting up some of our new hardware, and wanted to do some background reading to ensure I use the correct disk partition offset, RAID stripe size, and NTFS allocation unit size to enable the best possible performance for the volumes I'm creating. You may not of heard about this (or your disk […]

New research paper: Migrating Server Storage to SSDs: Analysis of Tradeoffs

At the last few conferences I've presented at, there have been questions about using SSDs (Solid-State Drives) for enterprise storage and whether that will change some of the database maintenance practices. My answer to that is "I don't know" (ha – bet you thought I was going to say "It depends!") because adoption of SSDs […]