SQL Server, SQL Server Sri Lanka User Group, SS SLUG

SS SLUG Kaleidoscope – February 2012 Action

Very Interesting Twist this time! Follow the trail to see how their plan to climb high on the Action Meter worked well.

The evening kicked off with Gogula Aryalingam’s (MVP) session on Why OLAP? How OLAP. Lucky that I’ve read a bit or two about it prior to the session, else I would’ve ended up counting the number of chairs in the room. Before jumping into OLAP (OnLine Analytical Processing), Gogula explained about OLTP. He explained the limitations of it and how they can be overcome with OLAP. He went on to explain the basic differences between OLTP and OLAP, for instances OLAP uses the concept of Cubes over two dimensional tables. In cubes users can define multiple dimensions of data and map them accordingly. This would help in querying out results quicker, compared to OLTP. OLAP comes with a bigger advantage where one doesn’t have to break their heads over writing queries. Instead it’s a simple 2 step procedure, Drag n Drop! But if someone insists on the hard way out, they still have the option of writing queries for OLAP using MDX. He also explained that at present Data Marts are gradually replacing Data Warehouses. (Please refer Gogula’s comment on the post) The session wrapped up with a demo on how to use OLAP and proving a point that it is one of the best solutions for hard core reporting and analysis for both tech savyy and non tech savyy.

The much awaited event of the evening, Whirlwind DBA Demos by the Pearson Lanka DBA Team was up next. This was the first time they’ve incorporated something like this in the meet up I believe and it was indeed a good idea. It kind of elevated the interest of the meet up unlike the monotonous predictable routine of having 2 main sessions limited to heavy technical topics. And honestly, it was the first time I found the meet up to be very exciting 🙂

So the demos focused on the main day to day activities and issues faced. 6 presenters from the field, did mini presentations, 10 minutes each, on the following:

  1. Logical Partitioning for Better Performance by Dinesh Karunarathne
  2. Why Filtered Indexes? by Jude Pieries 

  3. Profiler as a QA Tool by Sanjeewa Jayawickrama
  4. Log Tail Backup to Recover Data by Dinesh Asanka (MVP)
  5. SQL Gimmicks by Prithiviraj Kulasingham (MVP)
  6. Reading Deadlocks by Susantha Bathige

Jude kept on emphasizing that “You should know your data” in order to get the ultimate use of Filtered Indexes. Sanjeewa spoke of the importance of Profiler for QA by providing a practical example, where there was a failure in Production because of not conducting a thorough test and how it could’ve been eliminated if they had used Profiler. Though Dinesh A.‘s topic was not a scenario faced on a daily basis, but he showed how prevention is better than cure by providing a demo. Preethi mentioned that, demos similar to the ones he showed can be found at sqlworkshops.com.

Overall the evening went well and the Demos were indeed a good add on to the meet up because they were light weighted plus very useful tips. Looking forward to another exciting event, the lightening talks planned for the next meet up.

Programming, SQL Server, SS SLUG

What’s the big deal about SQL Server 2012??

SQL ServerMicrosoft SQL Server 2012 RC0 enables a cloud-ready information platform that will help organizations unlock breakthrough insights across the organization“.

Unless you were living under a rock, you must be aware of the ongoing revolution in the SQL Server world about the much anticipated release of SQL Server 2012 formerly known as SQL Server Denali. The SQL Server 2012 Release Candidate was released last week.

And if your thinking that this is gonna turn out to be another blog post on the performance of the release, you better think twice. I’m not an expert in the development of the release nor do I have a clue of what the hype is all about, but I would like to bring out what I think from an eye of an IT student by connecting the dots and and pieces of what I’ve heard and read.

Just like all software products bring in new versions by improving the flaws of the previous versions and coming up with new adornments to the existing product, the newer version of SQL Server also, successfully maintains the good old tradition. Well, according to the Release Candidate 0 announcement, what can the users enjoy??

  • Greater Availability
  • Blazing fast performance
  • Rapid data exploration
  • Credible, consistent data
  • Optimized productivity

So the buzz is all about these new/ improvised aspects of the product. If you take the track records, you can see the contribution of many tech brains to achieve its current status. But a sure thing is, SQL Server 2012, is not THE Flawless product and we could expect something better than this in the future as well. It’s just another Key milestone of the SQL Server Development!