The Multifunctioning DBA


April 12, 2011  5:10 PM

SQL Saturday #73 was a Success

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

SQL Saturday is now complete and in my mind it was a success. I was not able to attend the full event so I can not do a full review of the day but I can speak to the parts that I was able to attend. It was not much but it was fun.

I flew in to Orange County at 11:20AM and got a cab to take me to the event. The cab dropped me off outside of the campus on the side of the swap meet and that was crazy. It was very busy but fun to check it out as I was walking to the event. Once I got to the Campus I had a hard time finding the right building but that was not the fault of the organizers. That is just me and I get lost. I had a map with the location marked and just had a hard time finding it. Once I found it, I found that I arrived just in time for Lunch. I signed in got my badge and grabbed my lunch. It was a good lunch and I was not disappointing. Since I was speaking I did not have to pay for the lunch but I would have. After I ate I found the room that I was presenting in as I was presenting right after lunch. I went in, about an hour early, and got my stuff set up and started to just walk through the presentation one last time. Never did get very nervous this time and I am sure that is because I have done this presentation before.

As people strolled in I made sure to hand everyone a Powershell Sticker and a Business card. The business card that I handed out was for a drawing of sorts at the end for some PowerShell Plus Licenses. After all had come in and settled I had 27 in my session and all seemed to be interested in what I was talking about and that is always nice. I am looking forward to getting the feedback forms so I can see what people really thought.

After my session I attended one more session on Vitualization, this was done by Microsoft so it was Hyper-V Centric but not a sales pitch and I appreciated that. The content was great and it was a good session. Unfortunately that is all I was able to do and attend at the event but I did find out that just over 200 people showed up and I would say it was a great and successful event. Also all the food that was left over from lunch was donated to a local shelter for abused women and I really liked that. Just another great way the SQL Server Community gives back.

I would like to thank all that were involved in the event planning as they did a great job and from what I was able to see, everything ran very smooth. I would also like to thank all the sponsors because without you these events would not be possible. Also all the attendees for coming out and making the event a success. I hope that you all got something out of the event and especially my session if you attended.

April 8, 2011  9:30 PM

Speaking about SQL Server

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

I just ran across a great Blog post by Jen McCown (Blog | Twitter) about breaking into speaking. Speaking is something that I never thought I would do or enjoy doing until I bit the bullet and I did it. My first time was at SQL Saturday #47 in Phoenix just two months ago. I loved doing it so much that I am going to speak at SQL Saturday #73 Tomorrow in Orange County. It was amazing to have people sit down and actually be interested in what you want to share. I am by no means an “expert” or “master” at anything especially concerning Powershell and SQL Server but I am speaking about those items.

In twitter discussions and reading blogs from some of the big hitters in the community like Brent Ozar (Blog | Twitter) and Denny Cherry (Blog | Twitter) who are both “Experts” and “Certified Masters” with SQL Server among other things, I was convinced that they did not start out that way and that if I know something well enough, better then my audience anyway, that I can get up and speak about it. Up to the time my first session started I was very nervous and pretty much regretting the decision all around. But once things got going and I had a full room and everyone was looking up at me and actually paying attention all that went away. Now I was just a guy talking about Tech that we are all interested in. I, and I am sure you, have heard a hundred times or more, “Content is King”. If you have something to talk about that even one person is interested in then you should talk about it. That person will find you and I am willing to bet that many more will follow.

The SQL Server Community, as far as I know, is made up of great people that are all willing and in most cases eager to learn and share knowledge. I think that is the biggest thing that makes our community stand out from others. I have never felt so welcome into a tech community as I do the SQL Server Community and that is because of all of us. Most of us are happy to help and see each other succeed. I know that Brent Ozar has said this before and I agree 100%. This is a quote from Brent’s most recent post, “I feel most successful when those around me succeed”. (Read more: http://www.brentozar.com/#ixzz1Iy6Zo7vR
Copyright 2011 Brent Ozar. All rights reserved.
) I love that he said this and I think that most of us feel that way. At least those of us that are active in the community. That is why so many smart people hang out on the #sqlhelp hash tag on twitter helping everyone that asks. It is a great thing and I can’t thank all who have helped me enough.

In closing I only have this advice. GO OUT AND DO IT!!! I know it can be scary to stand up and speak in front of peers and you may feel that you do not have the amount of knowledge that they do in some areas, but that is OK. Go talk about what you know and they will come… Start at local groups, do a video cast on your blog, speak at a SQL Saturday and if you are crazy do it at the PASS SUMMIT. I must be crazy because I am thinking of submitting a session for pass. I think you will be surprised at how fun it can be and how all the jitters will work themselves out once you get going. Just Practice until you know it inside and out and then practice some more. I really think that was the key to my success. And do not be afraid to get some negative comments, just take it in stride and use it to better your next session but do not give up because one person has something bad to say.


April 6, 2011  10:07 PM

PowerShell Plus Licence giveaway

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

Just like in Phoenix I will have two Full PowerShell Plus Licenses to give away during my Powershell session. I will also have a 25% off promo code for everyone and anyone else that would like to purchase the product. I have to thank Idera for being so supportive of the community and for letting me give away these keys.

I will probably do it like I did in Phoenix. I will hand everyone a business card with a number on the back. At the end of the session I will run a Powershell Script that will randomly pick two of those numbers and if you have it you get the key. I will give you the key right then and I will also need to get your name and email to send to Idera so you will get support for a full year at no cost.

Thanks again to Idera and all of the sponsors of these events. We could not do it without you all.

I hope to see you at SQL Saturday #73 in Orange County this Saturday the 9th. I know I am really looking forward to it.


April 5, 2011  8:35 PM

Be Aware – Data Breach

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

This week I ran across something that I thought everyone should be aware of.

http://venturebeat.com/2011/04/02/epsilon-data-breach-results-in-a-huge-loss-of-customer-data/

So if you do or have aver done business with these groups, I would say to be on the lookout and make sure your AV and AS apps are updated. You may get what looks to be a legit email and it could be something harmful. Just be aware and be careful.


March 31, 2011  5:14 PM

Free Redgate SQL Search

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

Just found a free tool from Redgate called SQL Search. I just downloaded it and am going to give it a try and see how it works. I think that it sounds like a great tool and I will let you know what I think after giving it a test drive. Just thought I would share the link so you can as well. I love free stuff!!


March 30, 2011  4:47 PM

SQL Saturday #73

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

Call for speakers has closed and the schedule is up. Looks like it will be a fantastic event and I am excited to be a part of it. Check out the SQL Saturday #73 Home page and look for yourself. It is a free day of training with some great presenters. I wish I could be there for the full day and not have to fly in, present, and fly out. I am excited to be a part of it and am looking forward to presenting again. I had so much fun doing it the first time so I hope to have as much fun again.

Hope to see you there at the Powershell for the DBA session!!


March 29, 2011  4:47 PM

Urban Dare (Complete)

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

Last week I posted about a race called Urban Dare that my wife and I were participating in. It was Saturday and I am proud to say that I did complete the race. I thought that we had a respectable time of just over 3 hours to complete all challenges. I thought that until I found out that the winner completed all in just over 1 hour. WOW that was fast. The race had 8 clues and three dares that had to be completed. It was a lot of fun and I was shocked that my wife and I did not get into any fights or arguments. We really worked well as a team.

One thing that really hindered us was that we did not bring a pen. We had two droid phones, a netbook with a cell card but no simple pen. All the tech in the world could not replace the mighty pen. So if you are going to run the Urban Dare take a pen. We got the clue sheet and sat down and started searching for the answers. We were only stummped on one and that was OK. the biggest flaw was not having a pen so we could write down all of the locations and then map out a good route. We ended up backtracking a little and that killed us.

Over all it was a blast and I think I would do it again. I need to get into better shape though. I was so sore the next day that I got nothing done around the house that I wanted to do. Any way go do it and have a good time.


March 26, 2011  12:13 AM

Free E-Books

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

I just found some killer free E-Books from Redgate here. So I just found these and have not looked at them in depth yet but I am looking forward to the SQL Server Execution plans and the Mastering SQL Server Profiler. Both should help me to identify where we can really tune and find issues. Thanks for making these available and if you do not already have them you should go out and get them now.


March 25, 2011  5:21 PM

Urban Dare

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

This is not a tech topic but I think that all people need to have some work life balance and I work pretty hard so now it is time to play. Urban Dare is a one day mini “Amazing Race”. This year, tomorrow in fact, is the race in Tempe AZ. My wife and I will be running this race. I think it should be some good fun and based on some of the videos that I have seen I am getting pretty excited about it.

My wife got us a ticket to participate as a christmas gift to me. I was not all that excited at first, even though I do like the Amazing Race. Now that I have looked into it and watched the videos I am very excited to run the race. Maybe I will see you there. I know that some of our friends will be running it as well and the loser is buying at the after party. So I have to win because they can drink…

Wish us luck and I will let you know how it went later.


March 24, 2011  7:00 AM

Android Root

Colin Smith Colin Smith Profile: Colin Smith

about 18 months ago I got my first and only Android phone. I chose the HTC Hero on the Sprint Network. I really do not have any complaints except that after the upgrade to 2.1 I heard that HTC and Sprint would not be allowing me to upgradeĀ  any further. I get it, the phone is Gen 1 hardware and they have to continually develop to push out the new releases. I would not want to do that either. So since I have another 6 months before I am eligible for my phone upgrade, I decided to root my phone. Best thing I have ever done to the phone. Now I am running vanilla Android with no overlays or bloatware and I can move apps to the SD Card. This allows the phone to have more internal memory to do things like run the phone.. I am looking forward to getting a new MOD with 2.3 on it but I am very happy with the way my phone is running now. It should get me by until I can get my upgrade. Just hope that Sprint gets some good dual core phones by that time.


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