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I'm at the SQL Server and Azure Data Services Roadshow 2019 at the Denver Tech Center today. Lots of good info. on how to make SQL Server work in the cloud, including some especially interesting stuff about shared storage with Kubernetes and built-in HADR orchestration. One challenge I've run into... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
Anyone who's ever worked with SharePoint databases knows that the Search Service database names have strangely long alphanumeric strings appended at the ends. These database names are created automatically by the SharePoint Products Configuration Wizard, and they can greatly vex SQL Server DBAs for various reasons, not least because we... Continue reading
Posted Apr 11, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
(This post was excerpted from my previous blog ....) As you may already know, I can’t listen to songs without skeptically questioning the stories behind them. Maybe I should’ve been a police detective or something. One story I’ve always wondered about is “Saturday in the Park,” by Chicago. Robert Lamm,... Continue reading
Posted Mar 8, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
Before Microsoft gave us the ability to have a high-availability/disaster recovery (HADR) availability group (AG) span two windows server failover clusters (WSFCs), the only options we had for keeping databases consistent between geographically distant data centers were traditional mirroring, SAN-replicated clusters, and log shipping (and actually, SAN replication was never... Continue reading
Posted Mar 4, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
One of the best things we've done over the past couple of years with respect to Windows Server administration is replace most of our service accounts with group-managed service accounts (GMSAs), the passwords for which are handled by the domain controller's key distribution service (KDS). This means we no longer... Continue reading
Posted Feb 14, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
A few years ago I wrote some manual maintenance scripts for a SQL Express instance--since SQL Express doesn't have SQL Server Agent, it can't have the "official" SQL Server Integration Services maintenance plans like an Express or Standard Edition instance can--in PowerShell and T-SQL and set them to run from... Continue reading
Posted Jan 30, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
While attempting to update some database views for a financial application back end, I kept getting this error from SQL Server: OLE DB provider "SQLNCLI11" for linked server "<aLiNkEdSeRvEr>" returned message "Login timeout expired". OLE DB provider "SQLNCLI11" for linked server "<aLiNkEdSeRvEr>" returned message "A network-related or instance-specific error has... Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2019 at brett.dee.dba's blog
Today we found a PI Asset Framework database (PIFD) with a runaway transaction log taking up more than 95 GB on a 100 GB LUN in development. The database was in SIMPLE recovery model, so it should not have been bloating up. Attempts to shrink the log ... DBCC SHRINKFILE... Continue reading
Posted Dec 17, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
We have to reset lots of passwords regularly, which is one reason we've gotten more into using group-managed service accounts (GMSAs), and other team members will often ask if resetting a domain service account password will impact something on a related data server. This is a valid question because we... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
Yesterday, we received this one solitary error e-mail from an application server hosting a message application (which I'll call XYZPDQ to protect the guilty innocent) at 21:30:23 UTC: ABORTING - Exception: System.Data.Entity.Infrastructure.DbUpdateException: An error occurred while updating the entries. See the inner exception for details. ---> System.Data.Entity.Core.UpdateException: An error occurred... Continue reading
Posted Dec 13, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
From time to time, I have to troubleshoot a SQL Server instance entirely from the command line. Today we got an e-mail from one of the sysadmins asking about errors on a SharePoint Web server in development. This Web server evidently has a SQL Server instance (we, the DBAs, did... Continue reading
Posted Dec 6, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
Today the development team complained that a pair of QA data servers was having issues with its common availability groups (there are four HADR Always On availability groups shared between just these two machines), making the databases unusable. I said I'd have a look and immediately noticed the LUN for... Continue reading
Posted Nov 29, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
I ended my last post writing about the use of GUIDs in clustered indexes, and in this post I'll elaborate on why this is a bad practice. Consider that the purpose of an index is to improve the speed of data retrieval, and using a clustered index instead of a... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
One of our support staff recently approached me to find out why a client application was timing out during its initial configuration. He knew it was connecting to the database but couldn't determine what was happening exactly. I kicked off the configuration myself, looked at Activity Monitor for the database... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
I currently work as a SQL Server DBA in the power industry for a company that provides reliability services for the Western Interconnection ( One service that this company provides is Real-Time Contingency Analysis (RTCA): The existing and potential operating conditions of the power grid are evaluated based on real-time... Continue reading
Posted Nov 12, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
It's the final day of PASS Summit 2018 in Seattle, WA, and among other things, I'm brushing up on my PowerShell skills .... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2018 at brett.dee.dba's blog
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Nov 9, 2018