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  • SQL SERVER – OLEDB – Link Server – Wait Type – Day 23 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    When I decided to start writing about this wait type, the very first question that came to my mind was, “What does ‘OLEDB’ stand for?” A quick search on Wikipedia tells me that OLEDB means Object Linking and Embedding Database. (How many of you knew this?) Anyway, I found it very interesting that this wait type was in one of the top 10 wait types in many of the systems I have come across in my performance tuning experience. Books On-Line: ????OLEDB occurs when SQL Server calls the SQL Server Native Client OLE DB Provider. This wait type is not used for synchronization. Instead, it indicates the duration of calls to the OLE DB provider. OLEDB Explanation: This wait type primarily happens when Link Server or Remove Query has been executed. The most common case wherein this wait type is visible is during the execution of Linked Server. When SQL Server is retrieving data from the remote server, it uses OLEDB API to retrieve the data. It is possible that the remote system is not quick enough or the connection between them is not fast enough, leading SQL Server to wait for the result’s return from the remote (or external) server. This is the time OLEDB wait type occurs. Reducing OLEDB wait: Check the Link Server configuration. Checking Disk-Related Perfmon Counters Average Disk sec/Read (Consistent higher value than 4-8 millisecond is not good) Average Disk sec/Write (Consistent higher value than 4-8 millisecond is not good) Average Disk Read/Write Queue Length (Consistent higher value than benchmark is not good) At this point in time, I am not able to think of any more ways on reducing this wait type. Do you have any opinion about this subject? Please share it here and I will share your comment with the rest of the Community, and of course, with due credit unto you. Please read all the post in the Wait Types and Queue series. Note: The information presented here is from my experience and there is no way that I claim it to be accurate. I suggest reading Book OnLine for further clarification. All the discussion of Wait Stats in this blog is generic and varies from system to system. It is recommended that you test this on a development server before implementing it to a production server. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Introduction to CUME_DIST – Analytic Functions Introduced in SQL Server 2012

    - by pinaldave
    This blog post is written in response to the T-SQL Tuesday post of Prox ‘n’ Funx. This is a very interesting subject. By the way Brad Schulz is my favorite guy when it is about blogging. I respect him as well learn a lot from him. Everybody is writing something new his subject, I decided to start SQL Server 2012 analytic functions series. SQL Server 2012 introduces new analytical function CUME_DIST(). This function provides cumulative distribution value. It will be very difficult to explain this in words so I will attempt small example to explain you this function. Instead of creating new table, I will be using AdventureWorks sample database as most of the developer uses that for experiment. Let us fun following query. USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT SalesOrderID, OrderQty, CUME_DIST() OVER(ORDER BY SalesOrderID) AS CDist FROM Sales.SalesOrderDetail WHERE SalesOrderID IN (43670, 43669, 43667, 43663) ORDER BY CDist DESC GO Above query will give us following result. Now let us understand what is the formula behind CUME_DIST and why the values in SalesOrderID = 43670 are 1. Let us take more example and be clear about why the values in SalesOrderID = 43667 are 0.5. Now let us enhence the same example and use PARTITION BY into the OVER clause and see the results. Run following query in SQL Server 2012. USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT SalesOrderID, OrderQty, ProductID, CUME_DIST() OVER(PARTITION BY SalesOrderID ORDER BY ProductID ) AS CDist FROM Sales.SalesOrderDetail s WHERE SalesOrderID IN (43670, 43669, 43667, 43663) ORDER BY s.SalesOrderID DESC, CDist DESC GO Now let us see the result of this query. We are have changed the ORDER BY clause as well partitioning by SalesOrderID. You can see that CUME_DIST() function provides us different results. Additionally now we see value 1 multiple times. As we are using partitioning for each group of SalesOrderID we get the CUME_DIST() value. CUME_DIST() was long awaited Analytical function and I am glad to see it in SQL Server 2012. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Function, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Introduction to FIRST _VALUE and LAST_VALUE – Analytic Functions Introduced in SQL Server 2012

    - by pinaldave
    SQL Server 2012 introduces new analytical functions FIRST_VALUE() and LAST_VALUE(). This function returns first and last value from the list. It will be very difficult to explain this in words so I’d like to attempt to explain its function through a brief example. Instead of creating a new table, I will be using the AdventureWorks sample database as most developers use that for experiment purposes. Now let’s have fun following query: USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT s.SalesOrderID,s.SalesOrderDetailID,s.OrderQty, FIRST_VALUE(SalesOrderDetailID) OVER (ORDER BY SalesOrderDetailID) FstValue, LAST_VALUE(SalesOrderDetailID) OVER (ORDER BY SalesOrderDetailID) LstValue FROM Sales.SalesOrderDetail s WHERE SalesOrderID IN (43670, 43669, 43667, 43663) ORDER BY s.SalesOrderID,s.SalesOrderDetailID,s.OrderQty GO The above query will give us the following result: What’s the most interesting thing here is that as we go from row 1 to row 10, the value of the FIRST_VALUE() remains the same but the value of the LAST_VALUE is increasing. The reason behind this is that as we progress in every line – considering that line and all the other lines before it, the last value will be of the row where we are currently looking at. To fully understand this statement, see the following figure: This may be useful in some cases; but not always. However, when we use the same thing with PARTITION BY, the same query starts showing the result which can be easily used in analytical algorithms and needs. Let us have fun through the following query: Let us fun following query. USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT s.SalesOrderID,s.SalesOrderDetailID,s.OrderQty, FIRST_VALUE(SalesOrderDetailID) OVER (PARTITION BY SalesOrderID ORDER BY SalesOrderDetailID) FstValue, LAST_VALUE(SalesOrderDetailID) OVER (PARTITION BY SalesOrderID ORDER BY SalesOrderDetailID) LstValue FROM Sales.SalesOrderDetail s WHERE SalesOrderID IN (43670, 43669, 43667, 43663) ORDER BY s.SalesOrderID,s.SalesOrderDetailID,s.OrderQty GO The above query will give us the following result: Let us understand how PARTITION BY windows the resultset. I have used PARTITION BY SalesOrderID in my query. This will create small windows of the resultset from the original resultset and will follow the logic or FIRST_VALUE and LAST_VALUE in this resultset. Well, this is just an introduction to these functions. In the future blog posts we will go deeper to discuss the usage of these two functions. By the way, these functions can be applied over VARCHAR fields as well and are not limited to the numeric field only. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Function, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQLAuthority News – I am Presenting 2 Sessions at TechEd India

    - by pinaldave
    TechED is the event which I am always excited about. It is one of the largest technology in India. Microsoft Tech Ed India 2011 is the premier technical education and networking event for tech professionals interested in learning, connecting and exploring a broad set of current and soon-to-be released Microsoft technologies, tools, platforms and services. I am going to speak at the TechED on two very interesting and advanced subjects. Venue: The LaLiT Ashok Kumara Krupa High Grounds Bangalore – 560001, Karnataka, India Sessions Date: March 25, 2011 Understanding SQL Server Behavioral Pattern – SQL Server Extended Events Date and Time: March 25, 2011 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM History repeats itself! SQL Server 2008 has introduced a very powerful, yet very minimal reoccurring feature called Extended Events. This advanced session will teach experienced administrators’ capabilities that were not possible before. From T-SQL error to CPU bottleneck, error login to deadlocks –Extended Event can detect it for you. Understanding the pattern of events can prevent future mistakes. SQL Server Waits and Queues – Your Gateway to Perf. Troubleshooting Date and Time: March 25, 2011 04:15 PM to 05:15 PM Just like a horoscope, SQL Server Waits and Queues can reveal your past, explain your present and predict your future. SQL Server Performance Tuning uses the Waits and Queues as a proven method to identify the best opportunities to improve performance. A glance at Wait Types can tell where there is a bottleneck. Learn how to identify bottlenecks and potential resolutions in this fast paced, advanced performance tuning session. My session will be on the third day of the event and I am very sure that everybody will be in groove to learn new interesting subjects. I will have few give-away during and at the end of the session. I will not tell you what I will have but it will be for sure something you will love to have. Please make a point and reserve above time slots to attend my session. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: About Me, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Extended Events

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  • SQLAuthority News – SQL Server Wait Stats – eBook to Download on Kindle – Answer to FREE PDF Download Request

    - by pinaldave
    Being a book author is a completely new experience for me. I am yet to come across the issues faced by expert book authors. I assume that these interesting issues can be routine ones for expert book authors. One of the biggest requests I am getting for my SQL Server Wait Stats [Amazon] | [Flipkart] | [Kindle] book is my humble attempt to write a book. This is our very first experiment, and the book is beginning of the subject of SQL Server Wait Stats; we will come up with a new version of the book later next year when we have enough information for the SQL Server 2012 version. Following are the top 2 requests that I keep on receiving in emails, on blogs, Twitter, and Facebook. “Please send us FREE PDF of your book so we do not have to purchase it.” “If you can share with us the eBook (free and downloadable) format of your book, we will share it with everybody we know and you will get additional exposure.” Here is my response for the abovementioned requests: If you really need my book and cannot purchase it due to financial trouble, then feel free to let me know and I will purchase it myself and ship it to you. If you are in a country where the print book not available, then you can buy the Kindle book, which is available online in any country, and you can just read it on your computer and mobile devices. You DO NOT have to own a Kindle to read a Kindle format book. You can freely download Kindle software on your desired format and purchase the book online. For next 5 days, the kindle book is available at 3.99 in USA, and in other countries, the price is anywhere between 3.99 and 5.99. The price will go up by USD 2 everywhere across the world after 1st November, 2011. Here is the link to download Kindle Software for free PC, WP7, and in marketplace for various other mobile devices. I thank you for giving warm response to SQL Server Wait Stats book. I am motivated to write the next expanded version of this book. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: About Me, Database, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Concurrancy Problems and their Relationship with Isolation Level

    - by pinaldave
    Concurrency is simply put capability of the machine to support two or more transactions working with the same data at the same time. This usually comes up with data is being modified, as during the retrieval of the data this is not the issue. Most of the concurrency problems can be avoided by SQL Locks. There are four types of concurrency problems visible in the normal programming. 1)      Lost Update – This problem occurs when there are two transactions involved and both are unaware of each other. The transaction which occurs later overwrites the transactions created by the earlier update. 2)      Dirty Reads – This problem occurs when a transactions selects data that isn’t committed by another transaction leading to read the data which may not exists when transactions are over. Example: Transaction 1 changes the row. Transaction 2 changes the row. Transaction 1 rolls back the changes. Transaction 2 has selected the row which does not exist. 3)      Nonrepeatable Reads – This problem occurs when two SELECT statements of the same data results in different values because another transactions has updated the data between the two SELECT statements. Example: Transaction 1 selects a row, which is later on updated by Transaction 2. When Transaction A later on selects the row it gets different value. 4)      Phantom Reads – This problem occurs when UPDATE/DELETE is happening on one set of data and INSERT/UPDATE is happening on the same set of data leading inconsistent data in earlier transaction when both the transactions are over. Example: Transaction 1 is deleting 10 rows which are marked as deleting rows, during the same time Transaction 2 inserts row marked as deleted. When Transaction 1 is done deleting rows, there will be still rows marked to be deleted. When two or more transactions are updating the data, concurrency is the biggest issue. I commonly see people toying around with isolation level or locking hints (e.g. NOLOCK) etc, which can very well compromise your data integrity leading to much larger issue in future. Here is the quick mapping of the isolation level with concurrency problems: Isolation Dirty Reads Lost Update Nonrepeatable Reads Phantom Reads Read Uncommitted Yes Yes Yes Yes Read Committed No Yes Yes Yes Repeatable Read No No No Yes Snapshot No No No No Serializable No No No No I hope this 400 word small article gives some quick understanding on concurrency issues and their relation to isolation level. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQLAuthority News – Why I am Going to Attend #SQLPASS Summit 2012 – Seattle

    - by pinaldave
    I am going to Seattle I once again attend SQLPASS this year. This will be my fourth SQLPASS. Lots of people ask me why I am going to SQLPASS every year. Well there are so many different reasons for that. I go to SQLPASS because – I love it!  Here are few of the reasons I go to SQLPASS. Meet friends whom I have never met before Meet community at large – it is fun to hang around with like minded people Meet Rick Morelan – my book co-author and friend Attend various SQL Parties – there are so many parties around – see the list below Explore various new tools from various third party vendors Meet fellow Chapter Leaders and Regional Mentors And of course attend SQL Server Learning Sessions from industry known experts. The three-day event will be marked by a lot of learning, sharing, and networking, which will help me increase both my knowledge and contacts. PASS Summit provides me a golden opportunity to build my network as well as to identify and meet potential customers or employees. If I am a consultant or vendor who is looking for better career opportunities, PASS Summit is the perfect platform to meet and show my skills to my new potential customers and employers. Further, breakfasts, lunches, and evening receptions, which are included with registration, are meant to provide more and more networking opportunities. At PASS Summit, I gain not only new ideas but also inspire myself from top professionals and experts. Learning new things about SQL Server, interacting with different kinds of professionals, and sharing issues and solutions will definitely improve my understanding and turn me into a better SQL Server professional who can leverage and optimize SQL Server to improve business. I am going – are you joining? Note: This is re-blogged with modification from my 2 years old blog posts on a similar subject. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: About Me, Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority News, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Guest Posts – Feodor Georgiev – The Context of Our Database Environment – Going Beyond the Internal SQL Server Waits – Wait Type – Day 21 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    This guest post is submitted by Feodor. Feodor Georgiev is a SQL Server database specialist with extensive experience of thinking both within and outside the box. He has wide experience of different systems and solutions in the fields of architecture, scalability, performance, etc. Feodor has experience with SQL Server 2000 and later versions, and is certified in SQL Server 2008. In this article Feodor explains the server-client-server process, and concentrated on the mutual waits between client and SQL Server. This is essential in grasping the concept of waits in a ‘global’ application plan. Recently I was asked to write a blog post about the wait statistics in SQL Server and since I had been thinking about writing it for quite some time now, here it is. It is a wide-spread idea that the wait statistics in SQL Server will tell you everything about your performance. Well, almost. Or should I say – barely. The reason for this is that SQL Server is always a part of a bigger system – there are always other players in the game: whether it is a client application, web service, any other kind of data import/export process and so on. In short, the SQL Server surroundings look like this: This means that SQL Server, aside from its internal waits, also depends on external waits and settings. As we can see in the picture above, SQL Server needs to have an interface in order to communicate with the surrounding clients over the network. For this communication, SQL Server uses protocol interfaces. I will not go into detail about which protocols are best, but you can read this article. Also, review the information about the TDS (Tabular data stream). As we all know, our system is only as fast as its slowest component. This means that when we look at our environment as a whole, the SQL Server might be a victim of external pressure, no matter how well we have tuned our database server performance. Let’s dive into an example: let’s say that we have a web server, hosting a web application which is using data from our SQL Server, hosted on another server. The network card of the web server for some reason is malfunctioning (think of a hardware failure, driver failure, or just improper setup) and does not send/receive data faster than 10Mbs. On the other end, our SQL Server will not be able to send/receive data at a faster rate either. This means that the application users will notify the support team and will say: “My data is coming very slow.” Now, let’s move on to a bit more exciting example: imagine that there is a similar setup as the example above – one web server and one database server, and the application is not using any stored procedure calls, but instead for every user request the application is sending 80kb query over the network to the SQL Server. (I really thought this does not happen in real life until I saw it one day.) So, what happens in this case? To make things worse, let’s say that the 80kb query text is submitted from the application to the SQL Server at least 100 times per minute, and as often as 300 times per minute in peak times. Here is what happens: in order for this query to reach the SQL Server, it will have to be broken into a of number network packets (according to the packet size settings) – and will travel over the network. On the other side, our SQL Server network card will receive the packets, will pass them to our network layer, the packets will get assembled, and eventually SQL Server will start processing the query – parsing, allegorizing, generating the query execution plan and so on. So far, we have already had a serious network overhead by waiting for the packets to reach our Database Engine. There will certainly be some processing overhead – until the database engine deals with the 80kb query and its 20 subqueries. The waits you see in the DMVs are actually collected from the point the query reaches the SQL Server and the packets are assembled. Let’s say that our query is processed and it finally returns 15000 rows. These rows have a certain size as well, depending on the data types returned. This means that the data will have converted to packages (depending on the network size package settings) and will have to reach the application server. There will also be waits, however, this time you will be able to see a wait type in the DMVs called ASYNC_NETWORK_IO. What this wait type indicates is that the client is not consuming the data fast enough and the network buffers are filling up. Recently Pinal Dave posted a blog on Client Statistics. What Client Statistics does is captures the physical flow characteristics of the query between the client(Management Studio, in this case) and the server and back to the client. As you see in the image, there are three categories: Query Profile Statistics, Network Statistics and Time Statistics. Number of server roundtrips–a roundtrip consists of a request sent to the server and a reply from the server to the client. For example, if your query has three select statements, and they are separated by ‘GO’ command, then there will be three different roundtrips. TDS Packets sent from the client – TDS (tabular data stream) is the language which SQL Server speaks, and in order for applications to communicate with SQL Server, they need to pack the requests in TDS packets. TDS Packets sent from the client is the number of packets sent from the client; in case the request is large, then it may need more buffers, and eventually might even need more server roundtrips. TDS packets received from server –is the TDS packets sent by the server to the client during the query execution. Bytes sent from client – is the volume of the data set to our SQL Server, measured in bytes; i.e. how big of a query we have sent to the SQL Server. This is why it is best to use stored procedures, since the reusable code (which already exists as an object in the SQL Server) will only be called as a name of procedure + parameters, and this will minimize the network pressure. Bytes received from server – is the amount of data the SQL Server has sent to the client, measured in bytes. Depending on the number of rows and the datatypes involved, this number will vary. But still, think about the network load when you request data from SQL Server. Client processing time – is the amount of time spent in milliseconds between the first received response packet and the last received response packet by the client. Wait time on server replies – is the time in milliseconds between the last request packet which left the client and the first response packet which came back from the server to the client. Total execution time – is the sum of client processing time and wait time on server replies (the SQL Server internal processing time) Here is an illustration of the Client-server communication model which should help you understand the mutual waits in a client-server environment. Keep in mind that a query with a large ‘wait time on server replies’ means the server took a long time to produce the very first row. This is usual on queries that have operators that need the entire sub-query to evaluate before they proceed (for example, sort and top operators). However, a query with a very short ‘wait time on server replies’ means that the query was able to return the first row fast. However a long ‘client processing time’ does not necessarily imply the client spent a lot of time processing and the server was blocked waiting on the client. It can simply mean that the server continued to return rows from the result and this is how long it took until the very last row was returned. The bottom line is that developers and DBAs should work together and think carefully of the resource utilization in the client-server environment. From experience I can say that so far I have seen only cases when the application developers and the Database developers are on their own and do not ask questions about the other party’s world. I would recommend using the Client Statistics tool during new development to track the performance of the queries, and also to find a synchronous way of utilizing resources between the client – server – client. Here is another example: think about similar setup as above, but add another server to the game. Let’s say that we keep our media on a separate server, and together with the data from our SQL Server we need to display some images on the webpage requested by our user. No matter how simple or complicated the logic to get the images is, if the images are 500kb each our users will get the page slowly and they will still think that there is something wrong with our data. Anyway, I don’t mean to get carried away too far from SQL Server. Instead, what I would like to say is that DBAs should also be aware of ‘the big picture’. I wrote a blog post a while back on this topic, and if you are interested, you can read it here about the big picture. And finally, here are some guidelines for monitoring the network performance and improving it: Run a trace and outline all queries that return more than 1000 rows (in Profiler you can actually filter and sort the captured trace by number of returned rows). This is not a set number; it is more of a guideline. The general thought is that no application user can consume that many rows at once. Ask yourself and your fellow-developers: ‘why?’. Monitor your network counters in Perfmon: Network Interface:Output queue length, Redirector:Network errors/sec, TCPv4: Segments retransmitted/sec and so on. Make sure to establish a good friendship with your network administrator (buy them coffee, for example J ) and get into a conversation about the network settings. Have them explain to you how the network cards are setup – are they standalone, are they ‘teamed’, what are the settings – full duplex and so on. Find some time to read a bit about networking. In this short blog post I hope I have turned your attention to ‘the big picture’ and the fact that there are other factors affecting our SQL Server, aside from its internal workings. As a further reading I would still highly recommend the Wait Stats series on this blog, also I would recommend you have the coffee break conversation with your network admin as soon as possible. This guest post is written by Feodor Georgiev. Read all the post in the Wait Types and Queue series. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, Readers Contribution, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL

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  • SQL SERVER – Guest Post – Jonathan Kehayias – Wait Type – Day 16 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    Jonathan Kehayias (Blog | Twitter) is a MCITP Database Administrator and Developer, who got started in SQL Server in 2004 as a database developer and report writer in the natural gas industry. After spending two and a half years working in TSQL, in late 2006, he transitioned to the role of SQL Database Administrator. His primary passion is performance tuning, where he frequently rewrites queries for better performance and performs in depth analysis of index implementation and usage. Jonathan blogs regularly on SQLBlog, and was a coauthor of Professional SQL Server 2008 Internals and Troubleshooting. On a personal note, I think Jonathan is extremely positive person. In every conversation with him I have found that he is always eager to help and encourage. Every time he finds something needs to be approved, he has contacted me without hesitation and guided me to improve, change and learn. During all the time, he has not lost his focus to help larger community. I am honored that he has accepted to provide his views on complex subject of Wait Types and Queues. Currently I am reading his series on Extended Events. Here is the guest blog post by Jonathan: SQL Server troubleshooting is all about correlating related pieces of information together to indentify where exactly the root cause of a problem lies. In my daily work as a DBA, I generally get phone calls like, “So and so application is slow, what’s wrong with the SQL Server.” One of the funny things about the letters DBA is that they go so well with Default Blame Acceptor, and I really wish that I knew exactly who the first person was that pointed that out to me, because it really fits at times. A lot of times when I get this call, the problem isn’t related to SQL Server at all, but every now and then in my initial quick checks, something pops up that makes me start looking at things further. The SQL Server is slow, we see a number of tasks waiting on ASYNC_IO_COMPLETION, IO_COMPLETION, or PAGEIOLATCH_* waits in sys.dm_exec_requests and sys.dm_exec_waiting_tasks. These are also some of the highest wait types in sys.dm_os_wait_stats for the server, so it would appear that we have a disk I/O bottleneck on the machine. A quick check of sys.dm_io_virtual_file_stats() and tempdb shows a high write stall rate, while our user databases show high read stall rates on the data files. A quick check of some performance counters and Page Life Expectancy on the server is bouncing up and down in the 50-150 range, the Free Page counter consistently hits zero, and the Free List Stalls/sec counter keeps jumping over 10, but Buffer Cache Hit Ratio is 98-99%. Where exactly is the problem? In this case, which happens to be based on a real scenario I faced a few years back, the problem may not be a disk bottleneck at all; it may very well be a memory pressure issue on the server. A quick check of the system spec’s and it is a dual duo core server with 8GB RAM running SQL Server 2005 SP1 x64 on Windows Server 2003 R2 x64. Max Server memory is configured at 6GB and we think that this should be enough to handle the workload; or is it? This is a unique scenario because there are a couple of things happening inside of this system, and they all relate to what the root cause of the performance problem is on the system. If we were to query sys.dm_exec_query_stats for the TOP 10 queries, by max_physical_reads, max_logical_reads, and max_worker_time, we may be able to find some queries that were using excessive I/O and possibly CPU against the system in their worst single execution. We can also CROSS APPLY to sys.dm_exec_sql_text() and see the statement text, and also CROSS APPLY sys.dm_exec_query_plan() to get the execution plan stored in cache. Ok, quick check, the plans are pretty big, I see some large index seeks, that estimate 2.8GB of data movement between operators, but everything looks like it is optimized the best it can be. Nothing really stands out in the code, and the indexing looks correct, and I should have enough memory to handle this in cache, so it must be a disk I/O problem right? Not exactly! If we were to look at how much memory the plan cache is taking by querying sys.dm_os_memory_clerks for the CACHESTORE_SQLCP and CACHESTORE_OBJCP clerks we might be surprised at what we find. In SQL Server 2005 RTM and SP1, the plan cache was allowed to take up to 75% of the memory under 8GB. I’ll give you a second to go back and read that again. Yes, you read it correctly, it says 75% of the memory under 8GB, but you don’t have to take my word for it, you can validate this by reading Changes in Caching Behavior between SQL Server 2000, SQL Server 2005 RTM and SQL Server 2005 SP2. In this scenario the application uses an entirely adhoc workload against SQL Server and this leads to plan cache bloat, and up to 4.5GB of our 6GB of memory for SQL can be consumed by the plan cache in SQL Server 2005 SP1. This in turn reduces the size of the buffer cache to just 1.5GB, causing our 2.8GB of data movement in this expensive plan to cause complete flushing of the buffer cache, not just once initially, but then another time during the queries execution, resulting in excessive physical I/O from disk. Keep in mind that this is not the only query executing at the time this occurs. Remember the output of sys.dm_io_virtual_file_stats() showed high read stalls on the data files for our user databases versus higher write stalls for tempdb? The memory pressure is also forcing heavier use of tempdb to handle sorting and hashing in the environment as well. The real clue here is the Memory counters for the instance; Page Life Expectancy, Free List Pages, and Free List Stalls/sec. The fact that Page Life Expectancy is fluctuating between 50 and 150 constantly is a sign that the buffer cache is experiencing constant churn of data, once every minute to two and a half minutes. If you add to the Page Life Expectancy counter, the consistent bottoming out of Free List Pages along with Free List Stalls/sec consistently spiking over 10, and you have the perfect memory pressure scenario. All of sudden it may not be that our disk subsystem is the problem, but is instead an innocent bystander and victim. Side Note: The Page Life Expectancy counter dropping briefly and then returning to normal operating values intermittently is not necessarily a sign that the server is under memory pressure. The Books Online and a number of other references will tell you that this counter should remain on average above 300 which is the time in seconds a page will remain in cache before being flushed or aged out. This number, which equates to just five minutes, is incredibly low for modern systems and most published documents pre-date the predominance of 64 bit computing and easy availability to larger amounts of memory in SQL Servers. As food for thought, consider that my personal laptop has more memory in it than most SQL Servers did at the time those numbers were posted. I would argue that today, a system churning the buffer cache every five minutes is in need of some serious tuning or a hardware upgrade. Back to our problem and its investigation: There are two things really wrong with this server; first the plan cache is excessively consuming memory and bloated in size and we need to look at that and second we need to evaluate upgrading the memory to accommodate the workload being performed. In the case of the server I was working on there were a lot of single use plans found in sys.dm_exec_cached_plans (where usecounts=1). Single use plans waste space in the plan cache, especially when they are adhoc plans for statements that had concatenated filter criteria that is not likely to reoccur with any frequency.  SQL Server 2005 doesn’t natively have a way to evict a single plan from cache like SQL Server 2008 does, but MVP Kalen Delaney, showed a hack to evict a single plan by creating a plan guide for the statement and then dropping that plan guide in her blog post Geek City: Clearing a Single Plan from Cache. We could put that hack in place in a job to automate cleaning out all the single use plans periodically, minimizing the size of the plan cache, but a better solution would be to fix the application so that it uses proper parameterized calls to the database. You didn’t write the app, and you can’t change its design? Ok, well you could try to force parameterization to occur by creating and keeping plan guides in place, or we can try forcing parameterization at the database level by using ALTER DATABASE <dbname> SET PARAMETERIZATION FORCED and that might help. If neither of these help, we could periodically dump the plan cache for that database, as discussed as being a problem in Kalen’s blog post referenced above; not an ideal scenario. The other option is to increase the memory on the server to 16GB or 32GB, if the hardware allows it, which will increase the size of the plan cache as well as the buffer cache. In SQL Server 2005 SP1, on a system with 16GB of memory, if we set max server memory to 14GB the plan cache could use at most 9GB  [(8GB*.75)+(6GB*.5)=(6+3)=9GB], leaving 5GB for the buffer cache.  If we went to 32GB of memory and set max server memory to 28GB, the plan cache could use at most 16GB [(8*.75)+(20*.5)=(6+10)=16GB], leaving 12GB for the buffer cache. Thankfully we have SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 2, 3, and 4 these days which include the changes in plan cache sizing discussed in the Changes to Caching Behavior between SQL Server 2000, SQL Server 2005 RTM and SQL Server 2005 SP2 blog post. In real life, when I was troubleshooting this problem, I spent a week trying to chase down the cause of the disk I/O bottleneck with our Server Admin and SAN Admin, and there wasn’t much that could be done immediately there, so I finally asked if we could increase the memory on the server to 16GB, which did fix the problem. It wasn’t until I had this same problem occur on another system that I actually figured out how to really troubleshoot this down to the root cause.  I couldn’t believe the size of the plan cache on the server with 16GB of memory when I actually learned about this and went back to look at it. SQL Server is constantly telling a story to anyone that will listen. As the DBA, you have to sit back and listen to all that it’s telling you and then evaluate the big picture and how all the data you can gather from SQL about performance relate to each other. One of the greatest tools out there is actually a free in the form of Diagnostic Scripts for SQL Server 2005 and 2008, created by MVP Glenn Alan Berry. Glenn’s scripts collect a majority of the information that SQL has to offer for rapid troubleshooting of problems, and he includes a lot of notes about what the outputs of each individual query might be telling you. When I read Pinal’s blog post SQL SERVER – ASYNC_IO_COMPLETION – Wait Type – Day 11 of 28, I noticed that he referenced Checking Memory Related Performance Counters in his post, but there was no real explanation about why checking memory counters is so important when looking at an I/O related wait type. I thought I’d chat with him briefly on Google Talk/Twitter DM and point this out, and offer a couple of other points I noted, so that he could add the information to his blog post if he found it useful.  Instead he asked that I write a guest blog for this. I am honored to be a guest blogger, and to be able to share this kind of information with the community. The information contained in this blog post is a glimpse at how I do troubleshooting almost every day of the week in my own environment. SQL Server provides us with a lot of information about how it is running, and where it may be having problems, it is up to us to play detective and find out how all that information comes together to tell us what’s really the problem. This blog post is written by Jonathan Kehayias (Blog | Twitter). Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: MVP, Pinal Dave, PostADay, Readers Contribution, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Introduction to Extended Events – Finding Long Running Queries

    - by pinaldave
    The job of an SQL Consultant is very interesting as always. The month before, I was busy doing query optimization and performance tuning projects for our clients, and this month, I am busy delivering my performance in Microsoft SQL Server 2005/2008 Query Optimization and & Performance Tuning Course. I recently read white paper about Extended Event by SQL Server MVP Jonathan Kehayias. You can read the white paper here: Using SQL Server 2008 Extended Events. I also read another appealing chapter by Jonathan in the book, SQLAuthority Book Review – Professional SQL Server 2008 Internals and Troubleshooting. After reading these excellent notes by Jonathan, I decided to upgrade my course and include Extended Event as one of the modules. This week, I have delivered Extended Events session two times and attendees really liked the said course. They really think Extended Events is one of the most powerful tools available. Extended Events can do many things. I suggest that you read the white paper I mentioned to learn more about this tool. Instead of writing a long theory, I am going to write a very quick script for Extended Events. This event session captures all the longest running queries ever since the event session was started. One of the many advantages of the Extended Events is that it can be configured very easily and it is a robust method to collect necessary information in terms of troubleshooting. There are many targets where you can store the information, which include XML file target, which I really like. In the following Events, we are writing the details of the event at two locations: 1) Ringer Buffer; and 2) XML file. It is not necessary to write at both places, either of the two will do. -- Extended Event for finding *long running query* IF EXISTS(SELECT * FROM sys.server_event_sessions WHERE name='LongRunningQuery') DROP EVENT SESSION LongRunningQuery ON SERVER GO -- Create Event CREATE EVENT SESSION LongRunningQuery ON SERVER -- Add event to capture event ADD EVENT sqlserver.sql_statement_completed ( -- Add action - event property ACTION (sqlserver.sql_text, sqlserver.tsql_stack) -- Predicate - time 1000 milisecond WHERE sqlserver.sql_statement_completed.duration > 1000 ) -- Add target for capturing the data - XML File ADD TARGET package0.asynchronous_file_target( SET filename='c:\LongRunningQuery.xet', metadatafile='c:\LongRunningQuery.xem'), -- Add target for capturing the data - Ring Bugger ADD TARGET package0.ring_buffer (SET max_memory = 4096) WITH (max_dispatch_latency = 1 seconds) GO -- Enable Event ALTER EVENT SESSION LongRunningQuery ON SERVER STATE=START GO -- Run long query (longer than 1000 ms) SELECT * FROM AdventureWorks.Sales.SalesOrderDetail ORDER BY UnitPriceDiscount DESC GO -- Stop the event ALTER EVENT SESSION LongRunningQuery ON SERVER STATE=STOP GO -- Read the data from Ring Buffer SELECT CAST(dt.target_data AS XML) AS xmlLockData FROM sys.dm_xe_session_targets dt JOIN sys.dm_xe_sessions ds ON ds.Address = dt.event_session_address JOIN sys.server_event_sessions ss ON ds.Name = ss.Name WHERE dt.target_name = 'ring_buffer' AND ds.Name = 'LongRunningQuery' GO -- Read the data from XML File SELECT event_data_XML.value('(event/data[1])[1]','VARCHAR(100)') AS Database_ID, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[2])[1]','INT') AS OBJECT_ID, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[3])[1]','INT') AS object_type, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[4])[1]','INT') AS cpu, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[5])[1]','INT') AS duration, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[6])[1]','INT') AS reads, event_data_XML.value('(event/data[7])[1]','INT') AS writes, event_data_XML.value('(event/action[1])[1]','VARCHAR(512)') AS sql_text, event_data_XML.value('(event/action[2])[1]','VARCHAR(512)') AS tsql_stack, CAST(event_data_XML.value('(event/action[2])[1]','VARCHAR(512)') AS XML).value('(frame/@handle)[1]','VARCHAR(50)') AS handle FROM ( SELECT CAST(event_data AS XML) event_data_XML, * FROM sys.fn_xe_file_target_read_file ('c:\LongRunningQuery*.xet', 'c:\LongRunningQuery*.xem', NULL, NULL)) T GO -- Clean up. Drop the event DROP EVENT SESSION LongRunningQuery ON SERVER GO Just run the above query, afterwards you will find following result set. This result set contains the query that was running over 1000 ms. In our example, I used the XML file, and it does not reset when SQL services or computers restarts (if you are using DMV, it will reset when SQL services restarts). This event session can be very helpful for troubleshooting. Let me know if you want me to write more about Extended Events. I am totally fascinated with this feature, so I’m planning to acquire more knowledge about it so I can determine its other usages. Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Training, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Extended Events

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  • SQL SERVER – Update Statistics are Sampled By Default

    - by pinaldave
    After reading my earlier post SQL SERVER – Create Primary Key with Specific Name when Creating Table on Statistics, I have received another question by a blog reader. The question is as follows: Question: Are the statistics sampled by default? Answer: Yes. The sampling rate can be specified by the user and it can be anywhere between a very low value to 100%. Let us do a small experiment to verify if the auto update on statistics is left on. Also, let’s examine a very large table that is created and statistics by default- whether the statistics are sampled or not. USE [AdventureWorks] GO -- Create Table CREATE TABLE [dbo].[StatsTest]( [ID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL, [FirstName] [varchar](100) NULL, [LastName] [varchar](100) NULL, [City] [varchar](100) NULL, CONSTRAINT [PK_StatsTest] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) ) ON [PRIMARY] GO -- Insert 1 Million Rows INSERT INTO [dbo].[StatsTest] (FirstName,LastName,City) SELECT TOP 1000000 'Bob', CASE WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%2 = 1 THEN 'Smith' ELSE 'Brown' END, CASE WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 1 THEN 'New York' WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 5 THEN 'San Marino' WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 3 THEN 'Los Angeles' ELSE 'Houston' END FROM sys.all_objects a CROSS JOIN sys.all_objects b GO -- Update the statistics UPDATE STATISTICS [dbo].[StatsTest] GO -- Shows the statistics DBCC SHOW_STATISTICS ("StatsTest"PK_StatsTest) GO -- Clean up DROP TABLE [dbo].[StatsTest] GO Now let us observe the result of the DBCC SHOW_STATISTICS. The result shows that Resultset is for sure sampling for a large dataset. The percentage of sampling is based on data distribution as well as the kind of data in the table. Before dropping the table, let us check first the size of the table. The size of the table is 35 MB. Now, let us run the above code with lesser number of the rows. USE [AdventureWorks] GO -- Create Table CREATE TABLE [dbo].[StatsTest]( [ID] [int] IDENTITY(1,1) NOT NULL, [FirstName] [varchar](100) NULL, [LastName] [varchar](100) NULL, [City] [varchar](100) NULL, CONSTRAINT [PK_StatsTest] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) ) ON [PRIMARY] GO -- Insert 1 Hundred Thousand Rows INSERT INTO [dbo].[StatsTest] (FirstName,LastName,City) SELECT TOP 100000 'Bob', CASE WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%2 = 1 THEN 'Smith' ELSE 'Brown' END, CASE WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 1 THEN 'New York' WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 5 THEN 'San Marino' WHEN ROW_NUMBER() OVER (ORDER BY a.name)%10 = 3 THEN 'Los Angeles' ELSE 'Houston' END FROM sys.all_objects a CROSS JOIN sys.all_objects b GO -- Update the statistics UPDATE STATISTICS [dbo].[StatsTest] GO -- Shows the statistics DBCC SHOW_STATISTICS ("StatsTest"PK_StatsTest) GO -- Clean up DROP TABLE [dbo].[StatsTest] GO You can see that Rows Sampled is just the same as Rows of the table. In this case, the sample rate is 100%. Before dropping the table, let us also check the size of the table. The size of the table is less than 4 MB. Let us compare the Result set just for a valid reference. Test 1: Total Rows: 1000000, Rows Sampled: 255420, Size of the Table: 35.516 MB Test 2: Total Rows: 100000, Rows Sampled: 100000, Size of the Table: 3.555 MB The reason behind the sample in the Test1 is that the data space is larger than 8 MB, and therefore it uses more than 1024 data pages. If the data space is smaller than 8 MB and uses less than 1024 data pages, then the sampling does not happen. Sampling aids in reducing excessive data scan; however, sometimes it reduces the accuracy of the data as well. Please note that this is just a sample test and there is no way it can be claimed as a benchmark test. The result can be dissimilar on different machines. There are lots of other information can be included when talking about this subject. I will write detail post covering all the subject very soon. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Index, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Statistics

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  • SQLAuthority News – Speaking Sessions at TechEd India – 3 Sessions – 1 Panel Discussion

    - by pinaldave
    Microsoft Tech-Ed India 2010 is considered as the major Technology event of the year for various IT professionals and developers. This event will feature a comprehensive forum in order   to learn, connect, explore, and evolve the current technologies we have today. I would recommend this event to you since here you will learn about today’s cutting-edge trends, thereby enhancing your work profile and getting ahead of the rest. But, the most important benefit of all might be the networking opportunity that that you can attain by attending the forum. You can build personal connections with various Microsoft experts and peers that will last even far beyond this event! It also feels good to let you know that I will be speaking at this year’s event! So, here are the sessions that await you in this mega-forum. Session 1: True Lies of SQL Server – SQL Myth Buster Date: April 12, 2010  Time: 11:15pm – 11:45pm In this 30-minute demo session, I am going to briefly demonstrate few SQL Server Myth and their resolution backing up with some demo. This demo session is a must-attend for all developers and administrators who would come to the event. This is going to be a very quick yet  fun session. Session 2: Master Data Services in Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2 Date: April 12, 2010  Time: 2:30pm-3:30pm SQL Server Master Data Services will ship with SQL Server 2008 R2 and will improve Microsoft’s platform appeal. This session provides an in depth demonstration of MDS features and highlights important usage scenarios. Master Data Services enables consistent decision making by allowing you to create, manage and propagate changes from single master view of your business entities. Also with MDS – Master Data-hub which is the vital component helps ensure reporting consistency across systems and deliver faster more accurate results across the enterprise. We will talk about establishing the basis for a centralized approach to defining, deploying, and managing master data in the enterprise. Session 3: Developing with SQL Server Spatial and Deep Dive into Spatial Indexing Date: April 14, 2010 Time: 5:00pm-6:00pm Microsoft SQL Server 2008 delivers new spatial data types that enable you to consume, use, and extend location-based data through spatial-enabled applications. Attend this session to learn how to use spatial functionality in next version of SQL Server to build and optimize spatial queries. This session outlines the new geography data type to store geodetic spatial data and perform operations on it, use the new geometry data type to store planar spatial data and perform operations on it, take advantage of new spatial indexes for high performance queries, use the new spatial results tab to quickly and easily view spatial query results directly from within Management Studio, extend spatial data capabilities by building or integrating location-enabled applications through support for spatial standards and specifications and much more. Panel Discussion: Harness the power of Web – SEO and Technical Blogging Date: April 12, 2010 Time: 5:00pm-6:00pm Here you will learn lots of tricks and tips about SEO and Technical Blogging from various Industry Technical Blogging Experts. This event will surely be one of the most important Tech conventions of 2010. TechEd is going to be a very busy time for Tech developers and enthusiasts, since every evening there will be a fun session to attend. If you are interested in any of the above topics for every session, I suggest that you visit each of them as you will learn so many things about the topic to be discussed. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: MVP, Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority Author Visit, SQLAuthority News, T SQL, Technology Tagged: TechEd, TechEdIn

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  • SQL SERVER – Introduction to Wait Stats and Wait Types – Wait Type – Day 1 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    I have been working a lot on Wait Stats and Wait Types recently. Last Year, I requested blog readers to send me their respective server’s wait stats. I appreciate their kind response as I have received  Wait stats from my readers. I took each of the results and carefully analyzed them. I provided necessary feedback to the person who sent me his wait stats and wait types. Based on the feedbacks I got, many of the readers have tuned their server. After a while I got further feedbacks on my recommendations and again, I collected wait stats. I recorded the wait stats and my recommendations and did further research. At some point at time, there were more than 10 different round trips of the recommendations and suggestions. Finally, after six month of working my hands on performance tuning, I have collected some real world wisdom because of this. Now I plan to share my findings with all of you over here. Before anything else, please note that all of these are based on my personal observations and opinions. They may or may not match the theory available at other places. Some of the suggestions may not match your situation. Remember, every server is different and consequently, there is more than one solution to a particular problem. However, this series is written with kept wait stats in mind. While I was working on various performance tuning consultations, I did many more things than just tuning wait stats. Today we will discuss how to capture the wait stats. I use the script diagnostic script created by my friend and SQL Server Expert Glenn Berry to collect wait stats. Here is the script to collect the wait stats: -- Isolate top waits for server instance since last restart or statistics clear WITH Waits AS (SELECT wait_type, wait_time_ms / 1000. AS wait_time_s, 100. * wait_time_ms / SUM(wait_time_ms) OVER() AS pct, ROW_NUMBER() OVER(ORDER BY wait_time_ms DESC) AS rn FROM sys.dm_os_wait_stats WHERE wait_type NOT IN ('CLR_SEMAPHORE','LAZYWRITER_SLEEP','RESOURCE_QUEUE','SLEEP_TASK' ,'SLEEP_SYSTEMTASK','SQLTRACE_BUFFER_FLUSH','WAITFOR', 'LOGMGR_QUEUE','CHECKPOINT_QUEUE' ,'REQUEST_FOR_DEADLOCK_SEARCH','XE_TIMER_EVENT','BROKER_TO_FLUSH','BROKER_TASK_STOP','CLR_MANUAL_EVENT' ,'CLR_AUTO_EVENT','DISPATCHER_QUEUE_SEMAPHORE', 'FT_IFTS_SCHEDULER_IDLE_WAIT' ,'XE_DISPATCHER_WAIT', 'XE_DISPATCHER_JOIN', 'SQLTRACE_INCREMENTAL_FLUSH_SLEEP')) SELECT W1.wait_type, CAST(W1.wait_time_s AS DECIMAL(12, 2)) AS wait_time_s, CAST(W1.pct AS DECIMAL(12, 2)) AS pct, CAST(SUM(W2.pct) AS DECIMAL(12, 2)) AS running_pct FROM Waits AS W1 INNER JOIN Waits AS W2 ON W2.rn <= W1.rn GROUP BY W1.rn, W1.wait_type, W1.wait_time_s, W1.pct HAVING SUM(W2.pct) - W1.pct < 99 OPTION (RECOMPILE); -- percentage threshold GO This script uses Dynamic Management View sys.dm_os_wait_stats to collect the wait stats. It omits the system-related wait stats which are not useful to diagnose performance-related bottleneck. Additionally, not OPTION (RECOMPILE) at the end of the DMV will ensure that every time the query runs, it retrieves new data and not the cached data. This dynamic management view collects all the information since the time when the SQL Server services have been restarted. You can also manually clear the wait stats using the following command: DBCC SQLPERF('sys.dm_os_wait_stats', CLEAR); Once the wait stats are collected, we can start analysis them and try to see what is causing any particular wait stats to achieve higher percentages than the others. Many waits stats are related to one another. When the CPU pressure is high, all the CPU-related wait stats show up on top. But when that is fixed, all the wait stats related to the CPU start showing reasonable percentages. It is difficult to have a sure solution, but there are good indications and good suggestions on how to solve this. I will keep this blog post updated as I will post more details about wait stats and how I reduce them. The reference to Book On Line is over here. Of course, I have selected February to run this Wait Stats series. I am already cheating by having the smallest month to run this series. :) Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: DMV, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQLAuthority News – 1600 Blog Post Articles – A Milestone

    - by pinaldave
    It was really a very interesting moment for me when I was writing my 1600th milestone blog post. Now it`s a lot more exciting because this time it`s my 1600th blog post. Every time I write a milestone blog post such as this, I have the same excitement as when I was writing my very first blog post. Today I want to write about a few statistics of the blog. Statistics I am frequently asked about my blog stats, so I have already published my blog stats which are measured by WordPress.com. Currently, I have more than 22 Million+ Views on this blog from various sources. There are more than 6200+ feed subscribers in Google Reader only; I think I don`t have to count all other subscribers. My LinkedIn has 1250+ connection, while my Twitter has 2150+. Because I feel that I`m well connected with the Community, I am very thankful to you, my readers. Today I also want to say Thank You to those experts who have helped me to improve. I have maintained a list of all the articles I have written. If you go to my first articles, you will notice that they were a little different from the articles I am writing today. The reason for this is simple: I have two kinds of people helping me write all the better: readers and experts. To my Readers You read the articles and gave me feedback about what was right or wrong, what you liked or disliked. Quite often, you were helpful in writing guest posts, and I also recognize how you were a bit brutal in criticizing some articles, making me re-write them. Because of you, I was able to write better blog posts. To Experts You read the articles and helped me improve. I get inspiration from you and learned a lot from you. Just like everybody, I am a guy who is trying to learn. There are times when I had vague understanding of some subjects, and you did not hesitate to help me. Number of Posts Many ask me if the number of posts is important to me. My answer is YES. Actually, it`s just not about the number of my posts; it is about my blog, my routine, my learning experience and my journey. During the last four years, I have decided that I would be learning one thing a day. This blog has helped me accomplish this goal because in here I have been able to keep my notes and bookmarks. Whatever I learn or experience, I blog and share it with the Community. For me, the blog post number is more than just a number: it`s a summary of my experiences and memories. Once again, thanks for reading and supporting my blog! Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: About Me, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Milestone, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority News, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQLAuthority News – Tips for Traveling to Nepal

    - by pinaldave
    If you are a regular reader of this blog, you might know that I travel nearly 20+ days out of 30 days in a month. There are cases when I don’t have a chance to go home for an entire month and my family has to travel to different cities just to meet me. During my recent visit, one of my acquaintances suggested that I should blog about my travel experiences as well. This can be helpful to others who are traveling to the country or city. I have previously written about my experience about all the airlines in India. I would be writing about a few tips about traveling to the beautiful country Nepal today. Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal is very scenic. There are lots of historical places to see and visit. I was fortunate enough to stopover the Pashupatinath Temple, Bhaktapur, Vasantpur and the temple of Kumari Goddess. I also visited casinos there, but even if  I have stayed in Las Vegas for 3 and a half years before, I was not keen on them so I left the casinos just like what I did in Las Vegas . I also traveled to the famous Thamel area by car. Here are my quick tips for anyone who is planning to visit Nepal. They are not categorized but just written in the order that came to my mind. Please note that if you are an Indian, you will get a special privilege everywhere in Nepal, beginning right from the Indian airports. Use the expression “Nameste!” If you want to greet any Indian or Nepali. Indian Nationals do not need visa/passport to enter Nepal. In fact, Indian Nationals can just walk in to Nepal without any passport; but should have any valid Indian ID. There is no use of a passport since it will not be stamped at any immigration ports, whether in India or Nepal. Indian currency is widely accepted everywhere. However, please bring only Rs. 100 bills/notes as Rs. 500 or Rs. 1000 are not accepted. However, casinos there will accept larger bills. Indian National Language – Hindi is widely spoken and understood everywhere. I did not find a single person who had trouble speaking it. Nepali language uses the scripting language as Devnagari, which is similar to Hindi. Here, you will find food of almost every country.  The taste of Nepali food is authentic and very delicious. It is very safe to travel and move around in Kathmandu (despite what media suggests). However, it will really help if you have a friend who speaks Nepali. You can negotiate a few deals and cut off to almost 1/5 of the original quoted price of products sold here. If you are from Gujarat, India – you will find Nepali language sharing many common words. Temples are everywhere, so do not miss to visit a few of them. Pashupatinath is a must. Only followers of Hindu religion (from Nepal and India only) are allowed in most of the holy places. Camera is allowed everywhere except on the holy places. Now it is your turn to share your opinions or any suggestions. I think Nepal is a great country as there are lots of places to visit. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority Author Visit, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – What is Spatial Database? – Developing with SQL Server Spatial and Deep Dive into Spati

    - by pinaldave
    What is Spatial Database? A spatial database is a database that is optimized to store and query data related to objects in space, including points, lines and polygons. While typical databases can understand various numeric and character types of data, additional functionality needs to be added for databases to process spatial data types. (Source: Wikipedia) Today I will be talking about the same subject at Microsoft TechEd India. If you want to learn about how to spatial aspect of data and how to integrate them with SQL Server this is the perfect session for you. Spatial is very special concept of SQL Server and I really like how it is implemented in SQL Server. In general Performance Tuning and Query Optimization is something I always have enjoyed in my professional life. Index are my best friends and many time, by implementing and many time by removing I have improved the performance of the system. In this session, I will be talking about Index along with Spatial Data. As Spatial Database is very interesting concept, I will cover super short but very interesting 10 quick slides about this subject. I will make sure in very first 20 mins, you will understand following topics Introduction to Spatial Database One line definition Understanding Spatial Indexing Index Internals Query/Performance Tuning Query Hinting/Cost Analysis Spatial Index Catalog Views Performance Troubleshooting Finding Optimal Index using Spatial Index SP Common Errors Index Maintenance This slides decks will be followed by around 30 mins demo which will have story of geometry, geography, index internals and performance tuning. If you are interested in learning how GIS works and how SQL Server out of the box supports this wonderful tools, you will really like how the story is told. I am sure all people who attend the event will know how the Bangalore is positioned on the map of India. I will take example of Bangalore and Hyderabad and demonstrate how index can improve the performance. Well there are lots of story to tell in the session, and I will be opening this session with the beautiful script of Botticelli’s Birth of Venus created by Michael J. Swart. I will also demonstrate few real life scenario where I will be talking about Spatial Database and its usage. Do not miss this session. At the end of session there will be book awarded to best participant. My session details: Session 3: Developing with SQL Server Spatial and Deep Dive into Spatial Indexing Date: April 14, 2010 Time: 5:00pm-6:00pm Microsoft SQL Server 2008 delivers new spatial data types that enable you to consume, use, and extend location-based data through spatial-enabled applications. Attend this session to learn how to use spatial functionality in next version of SQL Server to build and optimize spatial queries. This session outlines the new geography data type to store geodetic spatial data and perform operations on it, use the new geometry data type to store planar spatial data and perform operations on it, take advantage of new spatial indexes for high performance queries, use the new spatial results tab to quickly and easily view spatial query results directly from within Management Studio, extend spatial data capabilities by building or integrating location-enabled applications through support for spatial standards and specifications and much more. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Index, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority Author Visit, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Spatial Database

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  • SQL SERVER – Attach mdf file without ldf file in Database

    - by pinaldave
    Background Story: One of my friends recently called up and asked me if I had spare time to look at his database and give him a performance tuning advice. Because I had some free time to help him out, I said yes. I asked him to send me the details of his database structure and sample data. He said that since his database is in a very early stage and is small as of the moment, so he told me that he would like me to have a complete database. My response to him was “Sure! In that case, take a backup of the database and send it to me. I will restore it into my computer and play with it.” He did send me his database; however, his method made me write this quick note here. Instead of taking a full backup of the database and sending it to me, he sent me only the .mdf (primary database file). In fact, I asked for a complete backup (I wanted to review file groups, files, as well as few other details).  Upon calling my friend,  I found that he was not available. Now,  he left me with only a .mdf file. As I had some extra time, I decided to checkout his database structure and get back to him regarding the full backup, whenever I can get in touch with him again. Technical Talk: If the database is shutdown gracefully and there was no abrupt shutdown (power outrages, pulling plugs to machines, machine crashes or any other reasons), it is possible (there’s no guarantee) to attach .mdf file only to the server. Please note that there can be many more reasons for a database that is not getting attached or restored. In my case, the database had a clean shutdown and there were no complex issues. I was able to recreate a transaction log file and attached the received .mdf file. There are multiple ways of doing this. I am listing all of them here. Before using any of them, please consult the Domain Expert in your company or industry. Also, never attempt this on live/production server without the presence of a Disaster Recovery expert. USE [master] GO -- Method 1: I use this method EXEC sp_attach_single_file_db @dbname='TestDb', @physname=N'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.MSSQLSERVER\MSSQL\DATA\TestDb.mdf' GO -- Method 2: CREATE DATABASE TestDb ON (FILENAME = N'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.MSSQLSERVER\MSSQL\DATA\TestDb.mdf') FOR ATTACH_REBUILD_LOG GO Method 2: If one or more log files are missing, they are recreated again. There is one more method which I am demonstrating here but I have not used myself before. According to Book Online, it will work only if there is one log file that is missing. If there are more than one log files involved, all of them are required to undergo the same procedure. -- Method 3: CREATE DATABASE TestDb ON ( FILENAME = N'C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL10.MSSQLSERVER\MSSQL\DATA\TestDb.mdf') FOR ATTACH GO Please read the Book Online in depth and consult DR experts before working on the production server. In my case, the above syntax just worked fine as the database was clean when it was detached. Feel free to write your opinions and experiences for it will help the IT community to learn more from your suggestions and skills. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, Readers Question, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Backup and Restore, SQL Data Storage, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Merge Operations – Insert, Update, Delete in Single Execution

    - by pinaldave
    This blog post is written in response to T-SQL Tuesday hosted by Jorge Segarra (aka SQLChicken). I have been very active using these Merge operations in my development. However, I have found out from my consultancy work and friends that these amazing operations are not utilized by them most of the time. Here is my attempt to bring the necessity of using the Merge Operation to surface one more time. MERGE is a new feature that provides an efficient way to do multiple DML operations. In earlier versions of SQL Server, we had to write separate statements to INSERT, UPDATE, or DELETE data based on certain conditions; however, at present, by using the MERGE statement, we can include the logic of such data changes in one statement that even checks when the data is matched and then just update it, and similarly, when the data is unmatched, it is inserted. One of the most important advantages of MERGE statement is that the entire data are read and processed only once. In earlier versions, three different statements had to be written to process three different activities (INSERT, UPDATE or DELETE); however, by using MERGE statement, all the update activities can be done in one pass of database table. I have written about these Merge Operations earlier in my blog post over here SQL SERVER – 2008 – Introduction to Merge Statement – One Statement for INSERT, UPDATE, DELETE. I was asked by one of the readers that how do we know that this operator was doing everything in single pass and was not calling this Merge Operator multiple times. Let us run the same example which I have used earlier; I am listing the same here again for convenience. --Let’s create Student Details and StudentTotalMarks and inserted some records. USE tempdb GO CREATE TABLE StudentDetails ( StudentID INTEGER PRIMARY KEY, StudentName VARCHAR(15) ) GO INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(1,'SMITH') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(2,'ALLEN') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(3,'JONES') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(4,'MARTIN') INSERT INTO StudentDetails VALUES(5,'JAMES') GO CREATE TABLE StudentTotalMarks ( StudentID INTEGER REFERENCES StudentDetails, StudentMarks INTEGER ) GO INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(1,230) INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(2,255) INSERT INTO StudentTotalMarks VALUES(3,200) GO -- Select from Table SELECT * FROM StudentDetails GO SELECT * FROM StudentTotalMarks GO -- Merge Statement MERGE StudentTotalMarks AS stm USING (SELECT StudentID,StudentName FROM StudentDetails) AS sd ON stm.StudentID = sd.StudentID WHEN MATCHED AND stm.StudentMarks > 250 THEN DELETE WHEN MATCHED THEN UPDATE SET stm.StudentMarks = stm.StudentMarks + 25 WHEN NOT MATCHED THEN INSERT(StudentID,StudentMarks) VALUES(sd.StudentID,25); GO -- Select from Table SELECT * FROM StudentDetails GO SELECT * FROM StudentTotalMarks GO -- Clean up DROP TABLE StudentDetails GO DROP TABLE StudentTotalMarks GO The Merge Join performs very well and the following result is obtained. Let us check the execution plan for the merge operator. You can click on following image to enlarge it. Let us evaluate the execution plan for the Table Merge Operator only. We can clearly see that the Number of Executions property suggests value 1. Which is quite clear that in a single PASS, the Merge Operation completes the operations of Insert, Update and Delete. I strongly suggest you all to use this operation, if possible, in your development. I have seen this operation implemented in many data warehousing applications. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Joins, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Merge

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  • SQLAuthority News – Professional Development and Community

    - by pinaldave
    I was recently invited by Hyderabad Techies to deliver a keynote for their 16-day online session called TECH THUNDERS. This event has been running from May 15 and will continue up to the end of the month May 30). There would be a total of 30 sessions. In every evening of those 16 day, there will be either one or two sessions from several noted industry experts. It is the same group which has received the Microsoft Community Impact Award as the Best User Group in India as for developers. I have never talked about Professional Development before. Even if this was my first time to do so, I still accepted the wonderful challenge for the sake of the thousands of audience who were expected to attend this online event. Time is of the essence; I had 15 minutes to deliver the keynote and open the event. The reason why I was nervous was because I had to cover precisely only 15 minutes- no more, no less. If I had an hour, I would have been very confident because I knew I could do a good job for sure. However, I still needed to open the event as great as it can be even if the time was short. I finally created a 6-slide small presentation. In reality, there were only two pages which had the main contents of my keynote, and the remaining slides were just wrappers and decors. You can download the complete slide deck from here. The image used in the slide deck is a curtsy of blog reader Roger Smith who sent it to me. The slide in which I spent a good amount of time is the slide which talks about Professional Development. The content of the slide is as follows: Today, Technology and You Keep your eyes, ears and senses open – Stay Active! You are not the first one who faced the problem – Search Online! Learn the web – Blogs, Forums and Friends! Trust the Technology, Not Print – Test Everything! Community and You! I had a very little time creating the slide deck as I was busy the whole day doing the Advanced SQL Server Training. I had put together these slides during the tea/coffee break of my session. Though it was just a six-bullet point, I had received quite a few emails right after keynote requesting me to talk more about this subject and share the details of my slide deck. I have talked with the event organizer and he will put the keynote online very soon. The subject of the talk is very simple; it revolves around the community. Time has changed, and Internet has come a long way from where it was many years ago. Now that we are all connected, help via the Internet and useful software is easily available around us. In fact, RSS, Newletters and few other technologies have progressed so much that the help through news is now being delivered to our door steps, instead of going out and seeking them. Sometimes, a simple search online solves a lot of problems of many developers. The community is now the first stop for any developer when he or she needs help or just wants to hang around and share some thoughts. I strongly suggest everybody to be a part of the Tech Community. Be it online, offline community or just a local user group, I strongly advise all of you to get involved. I am active in the Community, and I must say I recommend getting drawn into it. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: MVP, Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL User Group, SQLAuthority News, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Community

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  • SQL SERVER – SOS_SCHEDULER_YIELD – Wait Type – Day 8 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    This is a very interesting wait type and quite often seen as one of the top wait types. Let us discuss this today. From Book On-Line: Occurs when a task voluntarily yields the scheduler for other tasks to execute. During this wait the task is waiting for its quantum to be renewed. SOS_SCHEDULER_YIELD Explanation: SQL Server has multiple threads, and the basic working methodology for SQL Server is that SQL Server does not let any “runnable” thread to starve. Now let us assume SQL Server OS is very busy running threads on all the scheduler. There are always new threads coming up which are ready to run (in other words, runnable). Thread management of the SQL Server is decided by SQL Server and not the operating system. SQL Server runs on non-preemptive mode most of the time, meaning the threads are co-operative and can let other threads to run from time to time by yielding itself. When any thread yields itself for another thread, it creates this wait. If there are more threads, it clearly indicates that the CPU is under pressure. You can fun the following DMV to see how many runnable task counts there are in your system. SELECT scheduler_id, current_tasks_count, runnable_tasks_count, work_queue_count, pending_disk_io_count FROM sys.dm_os_schedulers WHERE scheduler_id < 255 GO If you notice a two-digit number in runnable_tasks_count continuously for long time (not once in a while), you will know that there is CPU pressure. The two-digit number is usually considered as a bad thing; you can read the description of the above DMV over here. Additionally, there are several other counters (%Processor Time and other processor related counters), through which you can refer to so you can validate CPU pressure along with the method explained above. Reducing SOS_SCHEDULER_YIELD wait: This is the trickiest part of this procedure. As discussed, this particular wait type relates to CPU pressure. Increasing more CPU is the solution in simple terms; however, it is not easy to implement this solution. There are other things that you can consider when this wait type is very high. Here is the query where you can find the most expensive query related to CPU from the cache Note: The query that used lots of resources but is not cached will not be caught here. SELECT SUBSTRING(qt.TEXT, (qs.statement_start_offset/2)+1, ((CASE qs.statement_end_offset WHEN -1 THEN DATALENGTH(qt.TEXT) ELSE qs.statement_end_offset END - qs.statement_start_offset)/2)+1), qs.execution_count, qs.total_logical_reads, qs.last_logical_reads, qs.total_logical_writes, qs.last_logical_writes, qs.total_worker_time, qs.last_worker_time, qs.total_elapsed_time/1000000 total_elapsed_time_in_S, qs.last_elapsed_time/1000000 last_elapsed_time_in_S, qs.last_execution_time, qp.query_plan FROM sys.dm_exec_query_stats qs CROSS APPLY sys.dm_exec_sql_text(qs.sql_handle) qt CROSS APPLY sys.dm_exec_query_plan(qs.plan_handle) qp ORDER BY qs.total_worker_time DESC -- CPU time You can find the most expensive queries that are utilizing lots of CPU (from the cache) and you can tune them accordingly. Moreover, you can find the longest running query and attempt to tune them if there is any processor offending code. Additionally, pay attention to total_worker_time because if that is also consistently higher, then  the CPU under too much pressure. You can also check perfmon counters of compilations as they tend to use good amount of CPU. Index rebuild is also a CPU intensive process but we should consider that main cause for this query because that is indeed needed on high transactions OLTP system utilized to reduce fragmentations. Note: The information presented here is from my experience and there is no way that I claim it to be accurate. I suggest reading Book OnLine for further clarification. All of the discussions of Wait Stats in this blog is generic and varies from system to system. It is recommended that you test this on a development server before implementing it to a production server. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Guest Post – Jacob Sebastian – Filestream – Wait Types – Wait Queues – Day 22 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    Jacob Sebastian is a SQL Server MVP, Author, Speaker and Trainer. Jacob is one of the top rated expert community. Jacob wrote the book The Art of XSD – SQL Server XML Schema Collections and wrote the XML Chapter in SQL Server 2008 Bible. See his Blog | Profile. He is currently researching on the subject of Filestream and have submitted this interesting article on the very subject. What is FILESTREAM? FILESTREAM is a new feature introduced in SQL Server 2008 which provides an efficient storage and management option for BLOB data. Many applications that deal with BLOB data today stores them in the file system and stores the path to the file in the relational tables. Storing BLOB data in the file system is more efficient that storing them in the database. However, this brings up a few disadvantages as well. When the BLOB data is stored in the file system, it is hard to ensure transactional consistency between the file system data and relational data. Some applications store the BLOB data within the database to overcome the limitations mentioned earlier. This approach ensures transactional consistency between the relational data and BLOB data, but is very bad in terms of performance. FILESTREAM combines the benefits of both approaches mentioned above without the disadvantages we examined. FILESTREAM stores the BLOB data in the file system (thus takes advantage of the IO Streaming capabilities of NTFS) and ensures transactional consistency between the BLOB data in the file system and the relational data in the database. For more information on the FILESTREAM feature, visit: http://beyondrelational.com/filestream/default.aspx FILESTREAM Wait Types Since this series is on the different SQL Server wait types, let us take a look at the various wait types that are related to the FILESTREAM feature. FS_FC_RWLOCK This wait type is generated by FILESTREAM Garbage Collector. This occurs when Garbage collection is disabled prior to a backup/restore operation or when a garbage collection cycle is being executed. FS_GARBAGE_COLLECTOR_SHUTDOWN This wait type occurs when during the cleanup process of a garbage collection cycle. It indicates that that garbage collector is waiting for the cleanup tasks to be completed. FS_HEADER_RWLOCK This wait type indicates that the process is waiting for obtaining access to the FILESTREAM header file for read or write operation. The FILESTREAM header is a disk file located in the FILESTREAM data container and is named “filestream.hdr”. FS_LOGTRUNC_RWLOCK This wait type indicates that the process is trying to perform a FILESTREAM log truncation related operation. It can be either a log truncate operation or to disable log truncation prior to a backup or restore operation. FSA_FORCE_OWN_XACT This wait type occurs when a FILESTREAM file I/O operation needs to bind to the associated transaction, but the transaction is currently owned by another session. FSAGENT This wait type occurs when a FILESTREAM file I/O operation is waiting for a FILESTREAM agent resource that is being used by another file I/O operation. FSTR_CONFIG_MUTEX This wait type occurs when there is a wait for another FILESTREAM feature reconfiguration to be completed. FSTR_CONFIG_RWLOCK This wait type occurs when there is a wait to serialize access to the FILESTREAM configuration parameters. Waits and Performance System waits has got a direct relationship with the overall performance. In most cases, when waits increase the performance degrades. SQL Server documentation does not say much about how we can reduce these waits. However, following the FILESTREAM best practices will help you to improve the overall performance and reduce the wait types to a good extend. Read all the post in the Wait Types and Queue series. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, Readers Contribution, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Filestream

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  • SQL SERVER – Data Pages in Buffer Pool – Data Stored in Memory Cache

    - by pinaldave
    This will drop all the clean buffers so we will be able to start again from there. Now, run the following script and check the execution plan of the query. Have you ever wondered what types of data are there in your cache? During SQL Server Trainings, I am usually asked if there is any way one can know how much data in a table is stored in the memory cache? The more detailed question I usually get is if there are multiple indexes on table (and used in a query), were the data of the single table stored multiple times in the memory cache or only for a single time? Here is a query you can run to figure out what kind of data is stored in the cache. USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT COUNT(*) AS cached_pages_count, name AS BaseTableName, IndexName, IndexTypeDesc FROM sys.dm_os_buffer_descriptors AS bd INNER JOIN ( SELECT s_obj.name, s_obj.index_id, s_obj.allocation_unit_id, s_obj.OBJECT_ID, i.name IndexName, i.type_desc IndexTypeDesc FROM ( SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) AS name, index_id ,allocation_unit_id, OBJECT_ID FROM sys.allocation_units AS au INNER JOIN sys.partitions AS p ON au.container_id = p.hobt_id AND (au.type = 1 OR au.type = 3) UNION ALL SELECT OBJECT_NAME(OBJECT_ID) AS name, index_id, allocation_unit_id, OBJECT_ID FROM sys.allocation_units AS au INNER JOIN sys.partitions AS p ON au.container_id = p.partition_id AND au.type = 2 ) AS s_obj LEFT JOIN sys.indexes i ON i.index_id = s_obj.index_id AND i.OBJECT_ID = s_obj.OBJECT_ID ) AS obj ON bd.allocation_unit_id = obj.allocation_unit_id WHERE database_id = DB_ID() GROUP BY name, index_id, IndexName, IndexTypeDesc ORDER BY cached_pages_count DESC; GO Now let us run the query above and observe the output of the same. We can see in the above query that there are four columns. Cached_Pages_Count lists the pages cached in the memory. BaseTableName lists the original base table from which data pages are cached. IndexName lists the name of the index from which pages are cached. IndexTypeDesc lists the type of index. Now, let us do one more experience here. Please note that you should not run this test on a production server as it can extremely reduce the performance of the database. DBCC DROPCLEANBUFFERS This will drop all the clean buffers and we will be able to start again from there. Now run following script and check the execution plan for the same. USE AdventureWorks GO SELECT UnitPrice, ModifiedDate FROM Sales.SalesOrderDetail WHERE SalesOrderDetailID BETWEEN 1 AND 100 GO The execution plans contain the usage of two different indexes. Now, let us run the script that checks the pages cached in SQL Server. It will give us the following output. It is clear from the Resultset that when more than one index is used, datapages related to both or all of the indexes are stored in Memory Cache separately. Let me know what you think of this article. I had a great pleasure while writing this article because I was able to write on this subject, which I like the most. In the next article, we will exactly see what data are cached and those that are not cached, using a few undocumented commands. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: DMV, Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Optimization, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL DMV

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  • SQL SERVER – What is a Technology Evangelist?

    - by pinaldave
    When you hear that someone is an “evangelist” the first thing that might pop into your mind is the Christian church.  In fact, the term did come from Christianity, and basically means someone who spreads the news about their faith.  In the technology world, the same definition is true. Technology evangelists are individuals who, professionally or in their spare time, spread the news about the latest new products.  Sounds like a salesperson, right?  No they are absolutely different. Salespeople also keep up to date with a large number of people, and like to convince others to buy their product – and some will go to any lengths to sell!  An evangelist, on the other hand, is brutally honest about the product, even if sometimes it means not making a sale.  An evangelist is out there to tell the TRUTH.  A salesperson needs to make sales. An Evangelist offers a Solution independent of Technology used – a Salesperson offers Particular Technology. With this definition in mind, you can probably think of a few technology evangelists you already know.  Maybe it’s a relative or a neighbor, someone who loves keeping up with the latest trends and is always willing to tell you about them if you ask even the simplest question.  And, in fact, they probably are evangelists and don’t even know it.  For a long time, the work of technology evangelism was in the hands of community and community technology leaders. Luckily now various organizations have understood the importance of the community and helping community to reach their goals. This has lead them to create role of “Technology Evangelists”. Let me talk about one of the most famous Evangelist of the SQL Server technology. Technology Evangelist only belongs to technology and above any country, race, location or any other thing. They are dedicated to the technology. Vinod Kumar is such a man, who have given a lot to community. For years he was a Technology Evangelist for Microsoft, and maintained a blog that was dedicated to spreading his enthusiasm for his favorite products.  He is one of the most respected Evangelists in the field, and has done a lot of work to define the job for other professionals. Vinod’s career has since progressed to the Microsoft Technology Center (read his post), but he is continuing to be a strong presence in the evangelism community.  I have a lot of respect for Vinod.  He has done a lot for the community and technology evangelism.  Everybody has dream to serve community the way he does, and he is a great role model for evangelists everywhere. On his blog, Vinod created one of the best descriptions of a Technology Evangelist.  It defined the position and also made the distinction between evangelist and salesperson extremely clear.  I will include the highlights of that list here, because no one can say it better than Vinod: Bundle of energy – Passion is their middle name Wonderful Story tellers Empathy, Trust, Loyalty, Openness, Accessibility and Warmth Technology Enthusiast – Doers Love people, people and more people – Community oriented Unique Style and Leadership qualities !!! Self-Confident, Self-Motivated but a student (To read the full list, see: Evangelism Beyond Borders with Evangelists) His blog is a must-read for anyone interested in technology evangelism as a career or simply a hobby.  His advice about how to gain an audience and become a trusted advisor is the best in the business. I think there is an evangelist in everyone. I, too, consider myself a technology evangelist.  Regular readers of this blog will recognize that I am dedicated to bringing information to the masses, and that I pride myself on being both brutally and honest and giving every product fair consideration. I think there is no better way of saying following subject. “Once an Evangelist – Always an Evangelist!” Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)     Filed under: About Me, Database, MVP, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority News, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Evangelist

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  • SQL SERVER – DMV – sys.dm_os_wait_stats Explanation – Wait Type – Day 3 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    The key Dynamic Management View (DMV) that helps us to understand wait stats is sys.dm_os_wait_stats; this DMV gives us all the information that we need to know regarding wait stats. However, the interpretation is left to us. This is a challenge as understanding wait stats can often be quite tricky. Anyway, we will cover few wait stats in one of the future articles. Today we will go over the basic understanding of the DMV. The Official Book OnLine Reference for DMV is over here: sys.dm_os_wait_stats. I suggest you all to refer this for all the accuracy. Following is a statement from the online book: “Specific types of wait times during query execution can indicate bottlenecks or stall points within the query. Similarly, high wait times, or wait counts server wide can indicate bottlenecks or hot spots in interaction query interactions within the server instance.” This is the statement which has inspired me to write this series. Let us first run the following statement from DMV. SELECT * FROM sys.dm_os_wait_stats ORDER BY wait_time_ms DESC GO Above statement will show us few of the columns. Here it is quick explanation of each of the column. wait_type – this is the name of the wait type. There can be three different kinds of wait types – resource, queue and external. waiting_tasks_count – this incremental counter is a good indication of frequent the wait is happening. If this number is very high, it is good indication for us to investigate that particular wait type. It is quite possible that the wait time is considerably low, but the frequency of the wait is much high. wait_time_ms – this is total wait accumulated for any type of wait. This is the total wait time and includes singal_wait_time_ms. max_wait_time_ms – this indicates the maximum wait type ever occurred for that particular wait type. Using this, one can estimate the intensity of the wait type in past. Again, it is not necessary that this max wait time will occur every time; so do not over invest yourself here. signal_wait_time_ms – this is the wait time when thread is marked as runnable and it gets to the running state. If the runnable queue is very long, you will find that this wait time becomes high. Additionally, please note that this DMV does not show current wait type or wait stats. This is cumulative view of the all the wait stats since server (instance) restarted or wait stats have been cleared. In future blog post, we will also cover two more DMVs which can be helpful to identify wait-related issues. ?sys.dm_os_waiting_tasks sys.dm_exec_requests Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL DMV, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – CXPACKET – Parallelism – Advanced Solution – Wait Type – Day 7 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    Earlier we discussed about the what is the common solution to solve the issue with CXPACKET wait time. Today I am going to talk about few of the other suggestions which can help to reduce the CXPACKET wait. If you are going to suggest that I should focus on MAXDOP and COST THRESHOLD – I totally agree. I have covered them in details in yesterday’s blog post. Today we are going to discuss few other way CXPACKET can be reduced. Potential Reasons: If data is heavily skewed, there are chances that query optimizer may estimate the correct amount of the data leading to assign fewer thread to query. This can easily lead to uneven workload on threads and may create CXPAKCET wait. While retrieving the data one of the thread face IO, Memory or CPU bottleneck and have to wait to get those resources to execute its tasks, may create CXPACKET wait as well. Data which is retrieved is on different speed IO Subsystem. (This is not common and hardly possible but there are chances). Higher fragmentations in some area of the table can lead less data per page. This may lead to CXPACKET wait. As I said the reasons here mentioned are not the major cause of the CXPACKET wait but any kind of scenario can create the probable wait time. Best Practices to Reduce CXPACKET wait: Refer earlier article regarding MAXDOP and Cost Threshold. De-fragmentation of Index can help as more data can be obtained per page. (Assuming close to 100 fill-factor) If data is on multiple files which are on multiple similar speed physical drive, the CXPACKET wait may reduce. Keep the statistics updated, as this will give better estimate to query optimizer when assigning threads and dividing the data among available threads. Updating statistics can significantly improve the strength of the query optimizer to render proper execution plan. This may overall affect the parallelism process in positive way. Bad Practice: In one of the recent consultancy project, when I was called in I noticed that one of the ‘experienced’ DBA noticed higher CXPACKET wait and to reduce them, he has increased the worker threads. The reality was increasing worker thread has lead to many other issues. With more number of the threads, more amount of memory was used leading memory pressure. As there were more threads CPU scheduler faced higher ‘Context Switching’ leading further degrading performance. When I explained all these to ‘experienced’ DBA he suggested that now we should reduce the number of threads. Not really! Lower number of the threads may create heavy stalling for parallel queries. I suggest NOT to touch the setting of number of the threads when dealing with CXPACKET wait. Read all the post in the Wait Types and Queue series. Note: The information presented here is from my experience and I no way claim it to be accurate. I suggest reading book on-line for further clarification. All the discussion of Wait Stats over here is generic and it varies by system to system. You are recommended to test this on development server before implementing to production server. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: DMV, Pinal Dave, PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Wait Stats, SQL Wait Types, T SQL, Technology

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