SQL Server with Mr. Denny

April 26, 2010  11:00 AM

Eval Scores from SSWUG

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

For those of you who attended the SSWUG vConference a couple of weeks ago, hopefully you caught my sessions on Day 1.  A good number of the attendees submitted evals, and I figured that I’d go ahead and share the scores with you. Continued »

April 22, 2010  9:00 AM

Second Shot vouchers for Microsoft Exams

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

For those of you who are interest in getting a second shot voucher from Microsoft, drop me an email mrdenny AT mrdenny.com with the email address that you want the voucher sent to and I’ll kick one over to you.  If you want to take more than one certification exam let me know how many you plan on taking before the end of June.

These second shot vouchers can be used for any Microsoft IT Professional, Developer of Dynamics Exam (anything which starts with 070).  The second shot vouchers can not be used for the academic exams (072 and 073 exams).

Each voucher is valid for one exam retake (if the first attempt failed) and one Practice Test discounted 40% before June 30, 2010.

I’ll try and remember to print some up and bring them with me to SQL Saturday in case anyone there wants one.

If you are on twitter feel free to send me a DM and I’ll email the vouchers to you.

Good luck on those exams,


April 21, 2010  5:00 PM

Don’t plan on enrolling SQL Express instances in your SQL 2008 R2 multi server management console

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

While Microsoft has been telling us over and over how multi-server management will be this great way to manage all your instances, don’t plan on managing your SQL Express instances with it.  Multi-Server management will only enroll Web Edition up through the Data Center Edition.  The Express edition will fail to enroll within the feature.

Also, if you planned on using the dashboard views and drilldowns or the policy based resource utilization evaluation then you better pay up.  These features will be a datacenter edition only feature.


April 21, 2010  4:12 PM

Limited SQL Server 2008 R2 Virtualization Support

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

As part of the SQL Server 2008 R2 launch it was announced that SQL Server 2008 R2 now supports Hyper-V Live Migration.  However according to MSDN only the Standard, Enterprise and Datacenter editions support Live Migration.

I’m not sure why those are the only editions which support Live Migration, but hopefully they will get this extended to the Workgroup, web and Express editions as those editions probably get virtualized more than the Enterprise and Standard edition databases do.


April 21, 2010  3:09 PM

SQL Server 2008 R2 has been Released to Manufacturing

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

Microsoft’s new database platform SQL Server 2008 R2 has gone RTM.  This means that the code has been locked, and shipped to the DVD pressing company so that they can begin pressing the DVDs.

For those looking on MSDN or TechNet to download the RTM version, hold off.  The final version will be released to MSDN and TechNet on May 3rd, 2010 and to Microsoft Volume License customers on May 13th, 2010.

Some of the features you can look forward to in SQL Server 2008 R2 include:

  • StreamInsight which provides you a low latency event processing system, which is designed to import data in near realtime.  StreamInsight is perfect for processing log files, or telephone call records which are contently processed into the platform.
  • Master Data Services allows you to build a single point which holds your business data from multiple applications into a single repository.
  • PowerPivot is probably the most talked about part of SQL Server 2008 R2 as this allows end users to enjoy the power of the SQL Server Analysis engine on their desktop so that they can create dynamic data applications where they can slice and dice the data any way they need to, without having to be connected to the SSAS instance.
  • SQL Server 2008 R2 now fully supports Live Migration and Virtualization under Hyper-V.
  • You can run SQL Server 2008 R2 on some of the largest hardware available, as SQL Server 2008 R2 supports 256 logical CPUs in a single server (with the data center edition).

If you are wondering if you have the RTM release of SQL Server 2008 R2, the build number for SQL Server 2008 R2 is 10.50.1600.1.  If you have another build then you don’t have the RTM release.

As part of the release announcement Dave Jones from the Mississippi Department of Transportation gave an overview of how MDoT uses SQL Server 2008 R2 as an early adopter using PowerPivot, Report Builder 3.0 and SSRS to meet internal needs on a highly available clustered install.

We also heard from Ron Van Vanten from Premier Bank Card who is the Directing Officer of Business Intelligence.  They manage over 40 TB of data under SQL Server, with a data warehouse which is over 20 TB in size.  They are over 150 instances of SQL Server hosting this data. Premier Bank Card is using the self service features of SQL Server 2008 R2 such as SSRS, Report Builder and PowerPivot to empower its business users to make better decisions while reducing overall costs.

The third customer that we heard from was Ayad Shammout of Care Group Systems.  Ayad talked a little bit about how PowerPivot was able to help their users quickly and easily learn how to analyze data without having to wait for IT resources.

The Parallel Scaleout Datawarehouse Edition has not gone RTM yet.  It has gone into a second RC build, and will be released later this year.

There are some major changes in what each edition supports with SQL Server 2008 R2.  Some of these include that Express supports 10 Gig databases.  The SQL Server 2008 R2 standard edition will now include backup compression saving customers from needing to purchase a third party solution to get the backup compression which was introduced in SQL Server 2008.

Be sure to check out the SQL Server 2008 R2 official launch site http://www.sqlserverlaunch.com/.


April 19, 2010  11:00 AM

Hey sysadmins, powerpivot is coming, and it’ll take a lot of disk space.

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

So if you haven’t heard of PowerPivot yet, it’s going to be the next best thing to sliced bread for your business users.  While it’ll take a while for most IT shops to get the full Sharepoint & PowerPivot integration setup, PowerPivot will be available to your users within the next few weeks as Office 2010 is released.

The basic jist of PowerPivot is that you can download a huge amount of data from your data warehouse, then slice and dice the data, analyzing it with the power of the SQL Server Analysis Services engine.  The downside of all this you ask?  Really, really big Excel workbooks.  And when I mean big, I mean big.  The user can download 30+ Gigs of data into the Excel workbook, which Excel will compress into an Excel workbook of up to 2 Gigs. Continued »

April 15, 2010  11:00 AM

Powering up and down a storage array may not be done in the order you think

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

Powering up a single server is easy. Turn on the direct attached storage, then turn on the server.  Done.  When powering your storage array down or back up there is quite a bit more to it than that.

The proper procedure for powering down your array is:

  1. Power off the servers.
  2. Power down the storage processors.
  3. Once the storage processors have powered down completely you can power down the disk drive shelves.
  4. Power down the switches.

The proper procedure for powering up your array is:

  1. Power on the switches
  2. Power on the disk shelves
  3. Power on the storage processors
  4. Power on the hosts

Now the good news on the power up is that you can do steps 1, 2 and 3 together.  The switches will take 1-2 minutes to boot up and become operational.  The disk shelves will come online within a few seconds.  The storage processors will take 8-10 minutes to come online (I’m talking about an EMC CX array here, different arrays will have different power up times).

On the power down process there aren’t a whole lot of shortcuts you can take.  Which is usually a problem, because if you have to power down the array there is usually a major power problem going on, which involves no power coming into the array.

Hopefully you never need to know this information, but if you do need to this is useful information to have.


April 12, 2010  9:00 AM

Man, I really hope this is my last post about plagiarism.

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

So there have been a lot of talk recently about plagiarism in our little corner of the Internet.   If you haven’t read up on it you can read up here, here, and here.  Sadly this wasn’t the first time that plagiarism has reared its head recently.  The prior incidents can be found here, here, here and here (among others).

While I was up at the SQL 2008 R2 Tweet Up my friends Sean and Jen from MidnightDBA (@MidnightDBA) and Jorge Segarra (@SQLChicken) and I got together to talk a bit about plagiarism in general and this recent incident.  The talk was recorded and they published it over the weekend as part of the DBAs @ Midnight series of videos.  The video was broken down into 4 sections when they uploaded it (Part 1Part 2, Part 3, Part 4).

Hopefully you’ll have as much fun watching the video as we had making it.  During the videos we are pretty critical of some people within the community (if you’ve read the blog posts I link to above you can probably guess who).

Oh, and some of the language isn’t kid/boss safe.  Consider yourself warned.


April 5, 2010  12:00 PM

Events, events, events. When the hell am I suposed to get work done?

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

This week I’ve got a few speaking events to let everyone know about.

On Tuesday April 6th, at 6pm I’ll be speaking to the LA C# User Group.  The meeting is held at the Manhattan Beach Library at 1320 Highland Ave in Manhattan Beach, CA 90266.  The group asks for $7 (or $5 is you RSVP by 3pm).

On Wednesday April 7th,, at 6pm I’ll be speaking to the SoCalDotNet User Group.  The meeting is held at Partners Consulting at 7101 Village Dr, Buena Park, CA. The group asks for $7 (or $5 is you RSVP by 3pm).

At both user group meetings I’ll be giving the same presentation “Back To Basics; Getting Back To The Basics of SQL Server“.

Also on Wednesday I’ll be attending and answering questions at the SSWUG vConference.  My sessions are from 9:30a-10:30a, 10:30a-11:30a and 12:00p-1:00p (all times are pacific).  If you haven’t registered yet, don’t forget to use my discount code DCSPVC10 to save $30.00.

Now on the 6th and 7th I’ll be work at Starbucks in the afternoons so that I don’t have to sit in traffic for ever.  On the 6th I’ll be at the Starbucks at 233 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA.  On the 7th I’ll be at the Starbucks at 7711 Beach Blvd, Buena Park, CA.  I’ll probably get there about 2pm or so on each day if anyone wants to come and hang out before the meeting.  Keep an eye on my Twitter stream (@mrdenny) as I’ll be posting where I’m at as I get there.

On Thursday I’ll be up in Redmond, WA at a Tweet Up with Donald Farmer on the Microsoft Campus.  Sadly its a private event so I can’t invite everyone to show up and hang out.

Sometime on Friday (or on Thursday after the Tweet Up) my friends Jorge Segarra (@SQLChicken), Sean and Jen McCown (@MidnightDBA) and I will be recording a pod cast.  The topic of our DBAs@Midnight recording will be plagiarism; a topic which there has been a lot of discussion about recently on Twitter.  Should be a good time recording this.  Once I know when Sean and Jen get it posted I’ll be sure to send out the link.

Hopefully I don’t have to get a whole lot of my normal work done this week.  If I do, I’m not sure when I’m actually going to be able to.


April 1, 2010  11:00 AM

Getting started with Master Data Services in SQL Server 2008 R2

Denny Cherry Denny Cherry Profile: Denny Cherry

A couple of days ago a new article went live over on SearchSQLServer.com where I dig into setting up Master Data Services.  This is the first in a series of articles which will be either 2 or 3 articles long where I’m going into MDS in some detail.

The first article “Getting started with Master Data Services in SQL Server 2008 R2” is the one which went up, with the others coming in the following months.


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