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  • SQLAuthority News – Best SQLAuthority Posts of May

    - by pinaldave
    Month of May is always interesting and full of enthusiasm. Lots of good articles shared and lots of enthusiast communication on technology. This month we had 140 Character Cartoon Challenge Winner. We also had interesting conversation on what kind of lock WITH NOLOCK takes on objects as well. A quick tutorial on how to import CSV files into Database using SSIS started few other related questions. I also had fun time with community activities. I attended MVP Open Day. Vijay Raj also took awesome photos of my daughter – Shaivi. I have gain my faith back in Social Media and have created my Facebook Page, if you like SQLAuthority.com I request you to Like Facebook page as well. I am very active on twitter (@pinaldave) and answer lots of technical question if I am online during that time. During this month couple of old thing, I did learn by accident 1) Restart and Shutdown Remote Computer 2) SSMS has web browser. If you have made it till here – I suggest you to take participation in very interesting conversation here – Why SELECT * throws an error but SELECT COUNT(*) does not? 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, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQLAuthority News – Social Media Series – LinkedIn and Professional Profile

    - by pinaldave
    Pinal Dave on LinkedIn! It seems like a few year ago, there was a big “boom” in social media websites.  All of a sudden there were so many sites to choose from.  MySpace or Orkut?  Blogging websites for your business or a LinkedIn account?  The nature of the internet is to always be changing, but I believe that out of this huge growth of websites, a few have come to stay.  Facebook is obviously the leader in social media networking, especially for your personal life.  Blogging is great, but it can be more of a way to get your ideas out there, rather than a place for people to connect to you professionally.  If you want to have a professional “face” on the internet, LinkedIn is the way to go. LinkedIn is best explained as “professional Facebook.”  This is simplifying things a little bit too much, but it is certainly a website where you link up with professional contacts, so that others can see where you have worked, who you have worked with, and what projects you have done.  This is a much better place for professional contacts to find you than someplace like Facebook, where all they will see is your face and maybe picture of you at a birthday party or something like that! Because so much of my SQL Server life is conducted on the internet, especially on my blog, I felt that it would be a good idea to have a well-maintained LinkedIn web page as well, so that if anyone is curious about me and my credentials they can quickly and easily find me and see that I am for real, and not someone pretending to know a lot about SQL Server. My linked in profile is www.linkedin.com/in/pinaldave.  I keep all my professional information here, and I update it as often as possible.  Feel free to come find me, especially if you would like to “link up” and share professional information.  The technology world is becoming more and more interconnected, and more and more international.  I feel that it is very important to stay linked up virtually, because so many of us are so far apart physically. I try to keep very connected with my LinkedIn profile.  I let anyone connect with me, and I read updates from the professional world very often.  I keep this profile updated, but do not post things about my personal life or anything that I might put on Twitter, for example.  I also include my e-mail address here, if you would like to contact me professionally.  This is the best place for me to conduct business. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Social Media

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  • SQLAuthority News – Social Media Series – Twitter and Myself

    - by pinaldave
    Pinal Dave on Twitter! Frequent readers of my blog might know that I am trying to get more involved in all social media sites, both professionally and personally.  Readers might also know that I have often struggled with finding the purpose of some social media sites – Twitter especially.  One of the great uses of social media is to stay connected and updated with followers.  Twitter’s 140 character limit means that Twitter is a great place to get quick updates from the world, but not a lot of deep information.  In fact, I have the feeling that Twitter’s form might actually limit its usefulness – especially for complex subjects like SQL Server. However, #sqlhelp has tag has for sure overcome that belief. You can instantly talk about SQL and get help with your SQL problems on twitter. I believe in keeping up with the changing times, and it didn’t feel right to give up on Twitter.  So I have determined a good way to use Twitter and set rules for myself.  The problem I was facing that if I followed everyone who interested me and let anyone follow me, I was completely overwhelmed by the amount of information Twitter could give me every day.  It didn’t seem like 140 characters should be able to take up so much of my time, but it took hours to sort through all the updates to find things that were of interest to me and to SQL Server. First, I was forced to unfollow anyone who made too many updates every day.  This was not an easy decision, but just for my own sake I had to limit the amount of information I could take in every day.  I still let anyone follow me who wants to, because I didn’t want to limit my readership, and I hope that they do not feel the way I did – that there are too many updates! Next, I made sure that the information I put on Twitter is useful and to the point.  I try to announce new blog posts on Twitter at least once a day, and I also try to find five posts from other people every day that are worth re-Tweeting.  This forces me to stay active in the community.  But it is not all business on Twitter.  It is also a place for me to post updates about my family and home life, for anyone who is interested. In simple words, I talk every thing and anything on twitter. If you’d like to follow me, my Twitter handle is www.twitter.com/pinaldave.  It is a good place to start if you’d like to keep updated with my blog and find out who I follow and who my influences are.  Twitter is perfect for getting little “tastes” of things you’re interested in.  If you are interested in my blog, SQL Server, or both, I hope that my Twitter updates will be interesting and helpful. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Social Media

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  • SQLAuthority News – Social Media Series – Facebook and Google+

    - by pinaldave
    Pinal on Facebook and Google+ Unless you have been living under a rock for the last few years, you know that Facebook is the first and last word in social networking.  Everyone has a Facebook account – from your local store to the 10-year old school child.  Because of this ability to be completely connected to everyone in your entire life, keeping a Facebook page for a professional business can be tricky. For the most part, I use Facebook strictly for personal matters.  I am friends only with friends I know in the “real” world (as opposed to my “virtual” online friends) and with family, of course.  I chat with friends on Facebook and upload personal photos to share with family who are far away.  I hope this doesn’t make readers from my professional life feel left out.  You can follow me on Facebook at www.facebook.com/SQLAuth, but you should know that Twitter is probably the better place to find updates about SQL Server and my blog (you can follow me on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pinaldave). There are definitely businesses who keep in touch with their clients using Facebook, but I felt the need to keep my personal and professional life separate.  That’s why I was so excited to find out Google was coming out with their own social media site, Google+.  On Google+ I post some personal things as well, and there is a lot of overlap between what I put on Facebook and what I put on Google+.  But since Google+ has become so popular amongst the “techie” crowd, I have found that it’s a good place to follow some of the stars of the Microsoft world, like Scott Hanselman and Buck Woody. If you are also a member of Google+, I am looking to expand my circle there.  You can find me at https://plus.google.com/104990425207662620918/posts.  Google+ is the newest face in the social media world, and it still hasn’t found a good footing between personal and professional yet.  That’s why I felt it would be a good idea to jump on the site early and help them determine which way to go.  Maybe someday it will be a place where business and personal can mix. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Social Media

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  • SQLAuthority News – Social Media Series – YouTube and Movies

    - by pinaldave
    Pinal Dave on Youtube! Some people might not know it, but YouTube is actually more than a place to watch funny cat videos and people singing their favorite pop songs – it’s actually a social media site.  When you are a member of YouTube you can follow people who regularly post videos, post video responses of your own, and even gain a following for your own videos.  I myself was not aware of YouTube’s potential until recently, when I started to make SQL Server in Sixty Seconds videos. YouTube is very different than other types of social media, and a big factor is that anyone can look at videos without being a member.  Unlike other social media sites, like Twitter and Facebook, you have to have an account in order to participate.  But on YouTube you are even more anonymous.  To make and post videos you need an account, but anyone who comes to the site can look at what you’ve made without signing in or leaving any trace of having seen your material.  This makes YouTube very anonymous and hard to track. However, we should not overlook the power of video on the internet.  Over the past few months I have been making SQL Server in Sixty Second videos and have come to love it.  It is very exciting to be able to talk about a subject that mostly I write about, and for many people video is far more accessible and easy to understand.   I have really enjoyed diving into something new, and would love to have more people check out these videos and give me feedback.  You can find me at www.youtube.com/user/pinaldave. I am very excited with all the possibilities on YouTube and it might just be the technology evangelist in me, but I would love for other people to discover how fun and exciting this site can be, too.  Don’t think of it as just a place to find funny videos and waste a few minutes of your time, think of it as a place to learn and interact with interesting people.  Come watch a few of my videos, while you’re there.  Remember, everything is free and there are no contracts to sign, but I hope that you get as excited as I am and join up.  We need more people creating good content on this site! Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Social Media

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  • SQL SERVER – Fix : Error : 8501 MSDTC on server is unavailable. Changed database context to publishe

    - by pinaldave
    During configuring replication on one of the server, I received following error. This is very common error and the solution of the same is even simpler. MSDTC on server is unavailable. Changed database context to publisherdatabase. (Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 8501) Solution: Enable “Distributed Transaction Coordinator” in SQL Server. Method 1: Click on Start–>Control Panel->Administrative Tools->Services Select the service “Distributed Transaction Coordinator” Right on the service and choose “Start” Method 2: Type services.msc in the run command box Select “Services” manager; Hit Enter Select the service “Distributed Transaction Coordinator” Right on the service and choose “Start” Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Error Messages, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Replication

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  • SQL SERVER – 2011 – Wait Type – Day 25 of 28

    - by pinaldave
    Since the beginning of the series, I have been getting the following question again and again: “What are the changes in SQL Server 2011 – Denali with respect to Wait Types?” SQL Server 2011 – Denali is yet to be released, and making statements on the subject will be inappropriate. Denali CTP1 has been released so I suggest that all of you download the same and experiment on it. I quickly compared the wait stats of SQL Server 2008 R2 and Denali (CTP1) and found the following changes: Wait Types Exists in SQL Server 2008 R2 and Not Exists in SQL Server 2011 “Denali” SOS_RESERVEDMEMBLOCKLIST SOS_LOCALALLOCATORLIST QUERY_WAIT_ERRHDL_SERVICE QUERY_ERRHDL_SERVICE_DONE XE_PACKAGE_LOCK_BACKOFF Wait Types Exists in SQL Server 2011 and Not Exists in SQL Server 2008 SLEEP_MASTERMDREADY SOS_MEMORY_TOPLEVELBLOCKALLOCATOR SOS_PHYS_PAGE_CACHE FILESTREAM_WORKITEM_QUEUE FILESTREAM_FILE_OBJECT FILESTREAM_FCB FILESTREAM_CACHE XE_CALLBACK_LIST PWAIT_MD_RELATION_CACHE PWAIT_MD_SERVER_CACHE PWAIT_MD_LOGIN_STATS DISPATCHER_PRIORITY_QUEUE_SEMAPHORE FT_PROPERTYLIST_CACHE SECURITY_KEYRING_RWLOCK BROKER_TRANSMISSION_WORK BROKER_TRANSMISSION_OBJECT BROKER_TRANSMISSION_TABLE BROKER_DISPATCHER BROKER_FORWARDER UCS_MANAGER UCS_TRANSPORT UCS_MEMORY_NOTIFICATION UCS_ENDPOINT_CHANGE UCS_TRANSPORT_STREAM_CHANGE QUERY_TASK_ENQUEUE_MUTEX DBCC_SCALE_OUT_EXPR_CACHE PWAIT_ALL_COMPONENTS_INITIALIZED PREEMPTIVE_SP_SERVER_DIAGNOSTICS SP_SERVER_DIAGNOSTICS_SLEEP SP_SERVER_DIAGNOSTICS_INIT_MUTEX AM_INDBUILD_ALLOCATION QRY_PARALLEL_THREAD_MUTEX FT_MASTER_MERGE_COORDINATOR PWAIT_RESOURCE_SEMAPHORE_FT_PARALLEL_QUERY_SYNC REDO_THREAD_PENDING_WORK REDO_THREAD_SYNC COUNTRECOVERYMGR HADR_DB_COMMAND HADR_TRANSPORT_SESSION HADR_CLUSAPI_CALL PWAIT_HADR_CHANGE_NOTIFIER_TERMINATION_SYNC PWAIT_HADR_ACTION_COMPLETED PWAIT_HADR_OFFLINE_COMPLETED PWAIT_HADR_ONLINE_COMPLETED PWAIT_HADR_FORCEFAILOVER_COMPLETED PWAIT_HADR_WORKITEM_COMPLETED HADR_WORK_POOL HADR_WORK_QUEUE HADR_LOGCAPTURE_SYNC LOGPOOL_CACHESIZE LOGPOOL_FREEPOOLS LOGPOOL_REPLACEMENTSET LOGPOOL_CONSUMERSET LOGPOOL_MGRSET LOGPOOL_CONSUMER LOGPOOLREFCOUNTEDOBJECT_REFDONE HADR_SYNC_COMMIT HADR_AG_MUTEX PWAIT_SECURITY_CACHE_INVALIDATION PWAIT_HADR_SERVER_READY_CONNECTIONS HADR_FILESTREAM_MANAGER HADR_FILESTREAM_BLOCK_FLUSH HADR_FILESTREAM_IOMGR XDES_HISTORY XDES_SNAPSHOT HADR_FILESTREAM_IOMGR_IOCOMPLETION UCS_SESSION_REGISTRATION ENABLE_EMPTY_VERSIONING HADR_DB_OP_START_SYNC HADR_DB_OP_COMPLETION_SYNC HADR_LOGPROGRESS_SYNC HADR_TRANSPORT_DBRLIST HADR_FAILOVER_PARTNER XDESTSVERMGR GHOSTCLEANUPSYNCMGR HADR_AR_UNLOAD_COMPLETED HADR_PARTNER_SYNC HADR_DBSTATECHANGE_SYNC We already know that Wait Types and Wait Stats are going to be the next big thing in the next version of SQL Server. So now I am eagerly waiting to dig deeper in the wait stats. 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 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 – Disable Clustered Index and Data Insert

    - by pinaldave
    Earlier today I received following email. “Dear Pinal, [Removed unrelated content] We looked at your script and found out that in your script of disabling indexes, you have only included non-clustered index during the bulk insert and missed to disabled all the clustered index. Our DBA[name removed] has changed your script a bit and included all the clustered indexes. Since our application is not working. When DBA [name removed] tried to enable clustered indexes again he is facing error incorrect syntax error. We are in deep problem [word replaced] [Removed Identity of organization and few unrelated stuff ]“ I have replied to my client and helped them fixed the problem. What really came to my attention is the concept of disabling clustered index. Let us try to learn a lesson from this experience. In this case, there was no need to disable clustered index at all. I had done necessary work when I was called in to work on tuning project. I had removed unused indexes, created few optimal indexes and wrote a script to disable few selected high cost indexes when bulk insert (and similar) operations are performed. There was another script which rebuild all the indexes as well. The solution worked till they included clustered index in disabling the script. Clustered indexes are in fact original table (or heap) physically ordered (any more things – not scope of this article) according to one or more keys(columns). When clustered index is disabled data rows of the disabled clustered index cannot be accessed. This means there will be no insert possible. When non clustered indexes are disabled all the data related to physically deleted but the definition of the index is kept in the system. Due to the same reason even reorganization of the index is not possible till the clustered index (which was disabled) is rebuild. Now let us come to the second part of the question, regarding receiving the error when clustered index is ‘enabled’. This is very common question I receive on the blog. (The following statement is written keeping the syntax of T-SQL in mind) Clustered indexes can be disabled but can not be enabled, they have to rebuild. It is intuitive to think that something which we have ‘disabled’ can be ‘enabled’ but the syntax for the same is ‘rebuild’. This issue has been explained here: SQL SERVER – How to Enable Index – How to Disable Index – Incorrect syntax near ‘ENABLE’. Let us go over this example where inserting the data is not possible when clustered index is disabled. USE AdventureWorks GO -- Create Table CREATE TABLE [dbo].[TableName]( [ID] [int] NOT NULL, [FirstCol] [varchar](50) NULL, CONSTRAINT [PK_TableName] PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED ([ID] ASC) ) GO -- Create Nonclustered Index CREATE UNIQUE NONCLUSTERED INDEX [IX_NonClustered_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] ([FirstCol] ASC) GO -- Populate Table INSERT INTO [dbo].[TableName] SELECT 1, 'First' UNION ALL SELECT 2, 'Second' UNION ALL SELECT 3, 'Third' GO -- Disable Nonclustered Index ALTER INDEX [IX_NonClustered_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Insert Data should work fine INSERT INTO [dbo].[TableName] SELECT 4, 'Fourth' UNION ALL SELECT 5, 'Fifth' GO -- Disable Clustered Index ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] DISABLE GO -- Insert Data will fail INSERT INTO [dbo].[TableName] SELECT 6, 'Sixth' UNION ALL SELECT 7, 'Seventh' GO /* Error: Msg 8655, Level 16, State 1, Line 1 The query processor is unable to produce a plan because the index 'PK_TableName' on table or view 'TableName' is disabled. */ -- Reorganizing Index will also throw an error ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] REORGANIZE GO /* Error: Msg 1973, Level 16, State 1, Line 1 Cannot perform the specified operation on disabled index 'PK_TableName' on table 'dbo.TableName'. */ -- Rebuliding should work fine ALTER INDEX [PK_TableName] ON [dbo].[TableName] REBUILD GO -- Insert Data should work fine INSERT INTO [dbo].[TableName] SELECT 6, 'Sixth' UNION ALL SELECT 7, 'Seventh' GO -- Clean Up DROP TABLE [dbo].[TableName] GO I hope this example is clear enough. There were few additional posts I had written years ago, I am listing them here. SQL SERVER – Enable and Disable Index Non Clustered Indexes Using T-SQL SQL SERVER – Enabling Clustered and Non-Clustered Indexes – Interesting Fact Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Constraint and Keys, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Generate Report for Index Physical Statistics – SSMS

    - by pinaldave
    Few days ago, I wrote about SQL SERVER – Out of the Box – Activity and Performance Reports from SSSMS (Link). A user asked me a question regarding if we can use similar reports to get the detail about Indexes. Yes, it is possible to do the same. There are similar type of reports are available at Database level, just like those available at the Server Instance level. You can right click on Database name and click Reports. Under Standard Reports, you will find following reports. Disk Usage Disk Usage by Top Tables Disk Usage by Table Disk Usage by Partition Backup and Restore Events All Transactions All Blocking Transactions Top Transactions by Age Top Transactions by Blocked Transactions Count Top Transactions by Locks Count Resource Locking Statistics by Objects Object Execute Statistics Database Consistency history Index Usage Statistics Index Physical Statistics Schema Change history User Statistics Select the Reports with name Index Physical Statistics. Once click, a report containing all the index names along with other information related to index will be visible, e.g. Index Type and number of partitions. One column that caught my interest was Operation Recommended. In some place, it suggested that index needs to be rebuilt. It is also possible to click and expand the column of partitions and see additional details about index as well. DBA and Developers who just want to have idea about how your index is and its physical statistics can use this tool. Click to Enlarge Note: Please note that I will rebuild my indexes just because this report is recommending it. There are many other parameters you need to consider before rebuilding indexes. However, this tool gives you the accurate stats of your index and it can be right away exported to Excel or PDF writing by clicking on the report. 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 Server Management Studio, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Utility, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Retrieve and Explore Database Backup without Restoring Database – Idera virtual databas

    - by pinaldave
    I recently downloaded Idera’s SQL virtual database, and tested it. There are a few things about this tool which caught my attention. My Scenario It is quite common in real life that sometimes observing or retrieving older data is necessary; however, it had changed as time passed by. The full database backup was 40 GB in size, and, to restore it on our production server, it usually takes around 16 to 22 minutes, depending on the load server that is usually present. This range in time varies from one server to another as per the configuration of the computer. Some other issues we used to have are the following: When we try to restore a large 40-GB database, we needed at least that much space on our production server. Once in a while, we even had to make changes in the restored database, and use the said changed and restored database for our purpose, making it more time-consuming. My Solution I have heard a lot about the Idera’s SQL virtual database tool.. Well, right after we started to test this tool, we found out that it really delivers what it promises. Using this software was very easy and we were able to restore our database from backup in less than 2 minutes, sparing us from the usual longer time of 16–22 minutes. The needful was finished in a total of 10 minutes. Another interesting observation is that there is no need to have an additional space for restoring the database. For complete database restoration, the single additional MB on the drive is not required anymore. We can use the database in the same way as our regular database, and there is no need for any additional configuration and setup. Let us look at the most relevant points of this product based on my initial experience: Quick restoration of the database backup No additional space required for database restoration virtual database has no physical .MDF or .LDF The database which is restored is, in fact, the backup file converted in the virtual database. DDL and DML queries can be executed against this virtually restored database. Regular backup operation can be implemented against virtual database, creating a physical .bak file that can be used for future use. There was no observed degradation in performance on the original database as well the restored virtual database. Additional T-SQL queries can be let off on the virtual database. Well, this summarizes my quick review. And, as I was saying, I am very impressed with the product and I plan to explore it more. There are many features that I have noticed in this tool, which I think can be very useful if properly understood. I had taken a few screenshots using my demo database afterwards. Let us see what other things this tool can do besides the mentioned activities. I am surprised with its performance so I want to know how exactly this feature works, specifically in the matter of why it does not create any additional files and yet, it still allows update on the virtually restored database. I guess I will have to send an e-mail to the developers of Idera and try to figure this out from them. I think this tool is very useful, and it delivers a high level of performance way more than what I expected. Soon, I will write a review for additional uses of SQL virtual database.. If you are using SQL virtual database in your production environment, I am eager to learn more about it and your experience while using it. The ‘Virtual’ Part of virtual database When I set out to test this software, I thought virtual database had something to do with Hyper-V or visualization. In fact, the virtual database is a kind of database which shows up in your SQL Server Management Studio without actually restoring or even creating it. This tool creates a database in SSMS from the backup of the same database. The backup, however, works virtually the same way as original database. Potential Usage of virtual database: As soon as I described this tool to my teammate, I think his very first reaction was, “hey, if we have this then there is no need for log shipping.” I find his comment very interesting as log shipping is something where logs are moved to another server. In fact, there are no updates on the database from log; I would rather compare it with Snapshot Replication. In fact, whatever we use, snapshot replicated database can be similarly used and configured with virtual database. I totally believe that we can use it for reporting purpose. In fact, after this database was configured, I think the uses of this tool are unlimited. I will have to spend some more time studying it and will get back to you. Click on images to see larger images. virtual database Console Harddrive Space before virtual database Setup Attach Full Backup Screen Backup on Harddrive Attach Full Backup Screen with Settings virtual database Setup – less than 60 sec virtual database Setup – Online Harddrive Space after virtual database Setup Point in Time Recovery Option – Timeline View virtual database Summary No Performance Difference between Regular DB vs Virtual DB Please note that all SQL Server MVP gets free license of this software. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com), Idera (virtual database) Filed under: Database, Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Add-On, SQL Authority, SQL Backup and Restore, SQL Data Storage, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Utility, SQLAuthority News, T SQL, Technology Tagged: Idera

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  • SQL SERVER – Four Posts on Removing the Bookmark Lookup – Key Lookup

    - by pinaldave
    In recent times I have observed that not many people have proper understanding of what is bookmark lookup or key lookup. Increasing numbers of the questions tells me that this is something developers are encountering every single day but have no idea how to deal with it. I have previously written three articles on this subject. I want to point all of you looking for further information on the same post. SQL SERVER – Query Optimization – Remove Bookmark Lookup – Remove RID Lookup – Remove Key Lookup SQL SERVER – Query Optimization – Remove Bookmark Lookup – Remove RID Lookup – Remove Key Lookup – Part 2 SQL SERVER – Query Optimization – Remove Bookmark Lookup – Remove RID Lookup – Remove Key Lookup – Part 3 SQL SERVER – Interesting Observation – Execution Plan and Results of Aggregate Concatenation Queries In one of my recent class we had in depth conversation about what are the alternative of creating covering indexes to remove the bookmark lookup. I really want to this question open to all of you and see what community thinks about the same. Is there any other way then creating covering index or included index to remove his expensive keylookup? Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Backup and Restore, SQL Index, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority News, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology

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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 – 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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  • SQL SERVER – World Shapefile Download and Upload to Database – Spatial Database

    - by pinaldave
    During my recent, training I was asked by a student if I know a place where he can download spatial files for all the countries around the world, as well as if there is a way to upload shape files to a database. Here is a quick tutorial for it. VDS Technologies has all the spatial files for every location for free. You can download the spatial file from here. If you cannot find the spatial file you are looking for, please leave a comment here, and I will send you the necessary details. Unzip the file to a folder and it will have the following content. Then, download Shape2SQL tool from SharpGIS. This is one of the best tools available to convert shapefiles to SQL tables. Afterwards, run the .exe file. When the file is run for the first time, it will ask for the database properties. Provide your database details. Select the appropriate shape files and the tool will fill up the essential details automatically. If you do not want to create the index on the column, uncheck the box beside it. The screenshot below is simply explains the procedure. You also have to be careful regarding your data, whether that is GEOMETRY or GEOGRAPHY. In this example,  it is GEOMETRY data. Click “Upload to Database”. It will show you the uploading process. Once the shape file is uploaded, close the application and open SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). Run the following code in SSMS Query Editor. USE Spatial GO SELECT * FROM dbo.world GO This will show the complete map of world after you click on Spatial Results in Spatial Tab. In Spatial Results Set, the Zoom feature is available. From the Select label column, choose the country name in order to show the country name overlaying the country borders. Let me know if this tutorial is helpful enough. I am planning to write a few more posts about this later. Note: Please note that the images displayed here do not reflect the original political boundaries. These data are pretty old and can probably draw incorrect maps as well. I have personally spotted several parts of the map where some countries are located a little bit inaccurately. Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Add-On, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Spatial, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQL Utility, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Out of the Box – Activty and Performance Reports from SSSMS

    - by pinaldave
    SQL Server management Studio 2008 is wonderful tool and has many different features. Many times, an average user does not use them as they are not aware about these features. Today, we will learn one such feature. SSMS comes with many inbuilt performance and activity reports, but we do not use it to the full potential. Let us see how we can access these standard reports. Connect to SQL Server Node >> Right Click on it >> Go to Reports >> Click on Standard Reports >> Pick Any Report. Click to Enlarge You can see there are many reports, which an average users needs right away, are available there. Let me list all the reports available. Server Dashboard Configuration Changes History Schema Changes History Scheduler Health Memory Consumption Activity – All Blocking Transactions Activity – All Cursors Activity – All Sessions Activity – Top Sessions Activity – Dormant Sessions Activity -  Top Connections Top Transactions by Age Top Transactions by Blocked Transactions Count Top Transactions by Locks Count Performance – Batch Execution Statistics Performance – Object Execution Statistics Performance – Top Queries by Average CPU Time Performance – Top Queries by Average IO Performance – Top Queries by Total CPU Time Performance – Top Queries by Total IO Service Broker Statistics Transactions Log Shipping Status In fact, when you look at the above list, it is fairly clear that they are very thought out and commonly needed reports that are available in SQL Server 2008. Let us run a couple of reports and observe their result. Performance – Top Queries by Total CPU Time Click to Enlarge Memory Consumption Click to Enlarge There are options for custom reports as well, which we can configure. We will learn about them in some other post. Additionally, you can right click on the reports and export in Excel or PDF. I think this tool can really help those who are just looking for some quick details. Does any of you use this feature, or this feature has some limitations and You would like to see more features? Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Server Management Studio, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Shrinking NDF and MDF Files – Readers’ Opinion

    - by pinaldave
    Previously, I had written a blog post about SQL SERVER – Shrinking NDF and MDF Files – A Safe Operation. After that, I have written the following blog post that talks about the advantage and disadvantage of Shrinking and why one should not be Shrinking a file SQL SERVER – SHRINKFILE and TRUNCATE Log File in SQL Server 2008. On this subject, SQL Server Expert Imran Mohammed left an excellent comment. I just feel that his comment is worth a big article itself. For everybody to read his wonderful explanation, I am posting this blog post here. Thanks Imran! Shrinking Database always creates performance degradation and increases fragmentation in the database. I suggest that you keep that in mind before you start reading the following comment. If you are going to say Shrinking Database is bad and evil, here I am saying it first and loud. Now, the comment of Imran is written while keeping in mind only the process showing how the Shrinking Database Operation works. Imran has already explained his understanding and requests further explanation. I have removed the Best Practices section from Imran’s comments, as there are a few corrections. Comments from Imran - Before I explain to you the concept of Shrink Database, let us understand the concept of Database Files. When we create a new database inside the SQL Server, it is typical that SQl Server creates two physical files in the Operating System: one with .MDF Extension, and another with .LDF Extension. .MDF is called as Primary Data File. .LDF is called as Transactional Log file. If you add one or more data files to a database, the physical file that will be created in the Operating System will have an extension of .NDF, which is called as Secondary Data File; whereas, when you add one or more log files to a database, the physical file that will be created in the Operating System will have the same extension as .LDF. The questions now are, “Why does a new data file have a different extension (.NDF)?”, “Why is it called as a secondary data file?” and, “Why is .MDF file called as a primary data file?” Answers: Note: The following explanation is based on my limited knowledge of SQL Server, so experts please do comment. A data file with a .MDF extension is called a Primary Data File, and the reason behind it is that it contains Database Catalogs. Catalogs mean Meta Data. Meta Data is “Data about Data”. An example for Meta Data includes system objects that store information about other objects, except the data stored by the users. sysobjects stores information about all objects in that database. sysindexes stores information about all indexes and rows of every table in that database. syscolumns stores information about all columns that each table has in that database. sysusers stores how many users that database has. Although Meta Data stores information about other objects, it is not the transactional data that a user enters; rather, it’s a system data about the data. Because Primary Data File (.MDF) contains important information about the database, it is treated as a special file. It is given the name Primary Data file because it contains the Database Catalogs. This file is present in the Primary File Group. You can always create additional objects (Tables, indexes etc.) in the Primary data file (This file is present in the Primary File group), by mentioning that you want to create this object under the Primary File Group. Any additional data file that you add to the database will have only transactional data but no Meta Data, so that’s why it is called as the Secondary Data File. It is given the extension name .NDF so that the user can easily identify whether a specific data file is a Primary Data File or a Secondary Data File(s). There are many advantages of storing data in different files that are under different file groups. You can put your read only in the tables in one file (file group) and read-write tables in another file (file group) and take a backup of only the file group that has read the write data, so that you can avoid taking the backup of a read-only data that cannot be altered. Creating additional files in different physical hard disks also improves I/O performance. A real-time scenario where we use Files could be this one: Let’s say you have created a database called MYDB in the D-Drive which has a 50 GB space. You also have 1 Database File (.MDF) and 1 Log File on D-Drive and suppose that all of that 50 GB space has been used up and you do not have any free space left but you still want to add an additional space to the database. One easy option would be to add one more physical hard disk to the server, add new data file to MYDB database and create this new data file in a new hard disk then move some of the objects from one file to another, and put the file group under which you added new file as default File group, so that any new object that is created gets into the new files, unless specified. Now that we got a basic idea of what data files are, what type of data they store and why they are named the way they are, let’s move on to the next topic, Shrinking. First of all, I disagree with the Microsoft terminology for naming this feature as “Shrinking”. Shrinking, in regular terms, means to reduce the size of a file by means of compressing it. BUT in SQL Server, Shrinking DOES NOT mean compressing. Shrinking in SQL Server means to remove an empty space from database files and release the empty space either to the Operating System or to SQL Server. Let’s examine this through an example. Let’s say you have a database “MYDB” with a size of 50 GB that has a free space of about 20 GB, which means 30GB in the database is filled with data and the 20 GB of space is free in the database because it is not currently utilized by the SQL Server (Database); it is reserved and not yet in use. If you choose to shrink the database and to release an empty space to Operating System, and MIND YOU, you can only shrink the database size to 30 GB (in our example). You cannot shrink the database to a size less than what is filled with data. So, if you have a database that is full and has no empty space in the data file and log file (you don’t have an extra disk space to set Auto growth option ON), YOU CANNOT issue the SHRINK Database/File command, because of two reasons: There is no empty space to be released because the Shrink command does not compress the database; it only removes the empty space from the database files and there is no empty space. Remember, the Shrink command is a logged operation. When we perform the Shrink operation, this information is logged in the log file. If there is no empty space in the log file, SQL Server cannot write to the log file and you cannot shrink a database. Now answering your questions: (1) Q: What are the USEDPAGES & ESTIMATEDPAGES that appear on the Results Pane after using the DBCC SHRINKDATABASE (NorthWind, 10) ? A: According to Books Online (For SQL Server 2000): UsedPages: the number of 8-KB pages currently used by the file. EstimatedPages: the number of 8-KB pages that SQL Server estimates the file could be shrunk down to. Important Note: Before asking any question, make sure you go through Books Online or search on the Google once. The reasons for doing so have many advantages: 1. If someone else already has had this question before, chances that it is already answered are more than 50 %. 2. This reduces your waiting time for the answer. (2) Q: What is the difference between Shrinking the Database using DBCC command like the one above & shrinking it from the Enterprise Manager Console by Right-Clicking the database, going to TASKS & then selecting SHRINK Option, on a SQL Server 2000 environment? A: As far as my knowledge goes, there is no difference, both will work the same way, one advantage of using this command from query analyzer is, your console won’t be freezed. You can do perform your regular activities using Enterprise Manager. (3) Q: What is this .NDF file that is discussed above? I have never heard of it. What is it used for? Is it used by end-users, DBAs or the SERVER/SYSTEM itself? A: .NDF File is a secondary data file. You never heard of it because when database is created, SQL Server creates database by default with only 1 data file (.MDF) and 1 log file (.LDF) or however your model database has been setup, because a model database is a template used every time you create a new database using the CREATE DATABASE Command. Unless you have added an extra data file, you will not see it. This file is used by the SQL Server to store data which are saved by the users. Hope this information helps. I would like to as the experts to please comment if what I understand is not what the Microsoft guys meant. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Readers Contribution, Readers Question, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Subquery or Join – Various Options – SQL Server Engine knows the Best

    - by pinaldave
    This is followup post of my earlier article SQL SERVER – Convert IN to EXISTS – Performance Talk, after reading all the comments I have received I felt that I could write more on the same subject to clear few things out. First let us run following four queries, all of them are giving exactly same resultset. USE AdventureWorks GO -- use of = SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE E.EmployeeID = ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA WHERE EA.EmployeeID = E.EmployeeID) GO -- use of in SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE E.EmployeeID IN ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA WHERE EA.EmployeeID = E.EmployeeID) GO -- use of exists SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE EXISTS ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA WHERE EA.EmployeeID = E.EmployeeID) GO -- Use of Join SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E INNER JOIN HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA ON E.EmployeeID = EA.EmployeeID GO Let us compare the execution plan of the queries listed above. Click on image to see larger image. It is quite clear from the execution plan that in case of IN, EXISTS and JOIN SQL Server Engines is smart enough to figure out what is the best optimal plan of Merge Join for the same query and execute the same. However, in the case of use of Equal (=) Operator, SQL Server is forced to use Nested Loop and test each result of the inner query and compare to outer query, leading to cut the performance. Please note that here I no mean suggesting that Nested Loop is bad or Merge Join is better. This can very well vary on your machine and amount of resources available on your computer. When I see Equal (=) operator used in query like above, I usually recommend to see if user can use IN or EXISTS or JOIN. As I said, this can very much vary on different system. What is your take in above query? I believe SQL Server Engines is usually pretty smart to figure out what is ideal execution plan and use it. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Joins, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Subquery or Join – Various Options – SQL Server Engine Knows the Best – Part 2

    - by pinaldave
    This blog post is part 2 of the earlier written article SQL SERVER – Subquery or Join – Various Options – SQL Server Engine knows the Best by Paulo R. Pereira. Paulo has left excellent comment to earlier article once again proving the point that SQL Server Engine is smart enough to figure out the best plan itself and uses the same for the query. Let us go over his comment as he has posted. “I think IN or EXISTS is the best choice, because there is a little difference between ‘Merge Join’ of query with JOIN (Inner Join) and the others options (Left Semi Join), and JOIN can give more results than IN or EXISTS if the relationship is 1:0..N and not 1:0..1. And if I try use NOT IN and NOT EXISTS the query plan is different from LEFT JOIN too (Left Anti Semi Join vs. Left Outer Join + Filter). So, I found a case where EXISTS has a different query plan than IN or ANY/SOME:” USE AdventureWorks GO -- use of SOME SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE E.EmployeeID = SOME ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA UNION ALL SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeDepartmentHistory EA ) -- use of IN SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE E.EmployeeID IN ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA UNION ALL SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeDepartmentHistory EA ) -- use of EXISTS SELECT * FROM HumanResources.Employee E WHERE EXISTS ( SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeAddress EA UNION ALL SELECT EA.EmployeeID FROM HumanResources.EmployeeDepartmentHistory EA ) When looked into execution plan of the queries listed above indeed we do get different plans for queries and SQL Server Engines creates the best (least cost) plan for each query. Click on image to see larger images. Thanks Paulo for your wonderful contribution. Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, Readers Contribution, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Joins, SQL Optimization, SQL Performance, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Mirroring Configured Without Domain – The server network address TCP://SQLServerName:50

    - by pinaldave
    Regular readers of my blog will be aware of my friend who called me few days ago with very a funny SQL Problem SQL SERVER – SSMS Query Command(s) completed successfully without ANY Results. This time, it did not take long before he called me up with another interesting problem, although the issue he was facing this time was not that interesting and also very specific to him, however, he insisted me to share with all of you. Let us understand his situation at first. My friend is preparing for DBA exam Exam 70-450: PRO: Designing, Optimizing and Maintaining a Database Server Infrastructure using Microsoft SQL Server 2008 and for the same, he was trying to set up replication on his local laptop. He had installed two different instances of SQL Server on his computer and every time when he started the mirroring, it failed with common error message. The server network address “TCP://SQLServer:5023? cannot be reached or does not exist. Check the network address name and that the ports for the local and remote endpoints are operational. (Microsoft SQL Server, Error: 1418) Well, before he contacted me, he searched online and checked my article written on the error in mirroring. However, he tried all the four suggestions, but it did not solve his problem. He called me at a reasonable time of late evening (unlike last time, which was midnight!). I even tried all the seven different suggestions myself, as previously proposed in my article; however, none of them worked. While looking at closely at services, I noticed something very simple. He was running all the instances on ‘Network Services’. In fact, his computer was a stand-alone computer. There was no network at all. Also, there was no domain or any other advance network concepts implemented. I just changed services from ‘Network Services’ to ‘Local System’ as his SQL Server was running on his local system and there were no network services. This prompted to restart the services. As this was not the production server and his development machine, we restarted the services on the laptop (do not restart services on production server without proper planning). After changing the ‘services log on’ account to localsystem, when he attempted to reconfigure the mirroring it worked right away. As usually in production server, proper domains are configured and advance network concepts are implemented I had never faced this type of problem earlier. My friend insisted to post this solution to his situation, wherein there was no domain configured and setting up mirroring was throwing an error. According to him, this is bound to help people, like him, who are preparing for certification using single system. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Error Messages, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Certifications, SQL Mirroring

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  • SQL SERVER – Generate Database Script for SQL Azure

    - by pinaldave
    When talking about SQL Azure the common complain I hear is that the script generated from stand-along SQL Server database is not compatible with SQL Azure. This was true for some time for sure but not any more. If you have SQL Server 2008 R2 installed you can follow the guideline below to generate script which is compatible with SQL Azure. As above images are very clear I will not write more about them. SQL Azure does not support filegroups. Let us generate script for any table created on PRIMARY filegroup for standalong SQL Server and compare it with the script generated for SQL Azure. You can clearly see that there is no filegroup in the code generated for SQL Azure. Give it a try and please your comment here about what do you think about the same. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: Pinal Dave, SQL, SQL Add-On, SQL Authority, SQL Query, SQL Scripts, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology Tagged: SQL Azure

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  • SQLAuthority News – Feature Pack for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 SP4

    - by pinaldave
    If you are still using SQL Server 2005 – I suggest that you consider migrating to later version of the SQL Server 2008/2008 R2. Due to any reason, you wanted to continue using SQL Server 2005, I suggest that you take a look at the Feature Pack for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 SP4. There are many different tools and features available in pack, which can be very handy and can solve issues. Microsoft ADOMD.NET Microsoft Core XML Services (MSXML) 6.0 Microsoft OLEDB Provider for DB2 Microsoft SQL Server Management Pack for MOM 2005 Microsoft SQL Server 2000 PivotTable Services Microsoft SQL Server 2000 DTS Designer Components Microsoft SQL Server Native Client Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Analysis Services 9.0 OLE DB Provider Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Backward Compatibility Components Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Command Line Query Utility Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Datamining Viewer Controls Microsoft SQL Server 2005 JDBC Driver Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Management Objects Collection Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Compact Edition Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Notification Services Client Components Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Upgrade Advisor Microsoft .NET Data Provider for mySAP Business Suite, Preview Version Reporting Add-In for Microsoft Visual Web Developer 2005 Express Microsoft Exception Message Box Data Mining Managed Plug-in Algorithm API for SQL Server 2005 Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services Add-in for Microsoft SharePoint Technologies Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Data Mining Add-ins for Microsoft Office 2007 SQL Server 2005 Performance Dashboard Reports SQL Server 2005 Best Practices Analyzer Download Feature Pack for Microsoft SQL Server 2005 SP4 Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Documentation, SQL Download, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Service Pack, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLAuthority News, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – Fix : Error 3623 – An invalid floating point operation occurred

    - by pinaldave
    Going back in time, I always had a problem with mathematics. It was a great subject and I loved it a lot but I only mastered it after practices a lot. I learned that mathematics problems should be addressed systematically and being verbose is not a trick, I learned to solve any problem. Recently one of reader sent me an email with the title “Mathematics problem – please help!” and I was a bit scared. I was good at mathematics but not the best. When I opened the email I was relieved as it was Mathematics problem with SQL Server. My friend received following error while working with SQL Server. Msg 3623, Level 16, State 1, Line 1 An invalid floating point operation occurred. The reasons for the error is simply that invalid usage of the mathematical function is attempted. Let me give you a few examples of the same. SELECT SQRT(-5); SELECT ACOS(-3); SELECT LOG(-9); If you run any of the above functions they will give you an error related to invalid floating point. Honestly there is no workaround except passing the function appropriate values. SQRT of a negative number will give you result in real numbers which is not supported at this point of time as well LOG of a negative number is not possible (because logarithm is the inverse function of an exponential function and the exponential function is NEVER negative). When I send above reply to my friend he did understand that he was passing incorrect value to the function. As mentioned earlier the only way to fix this issue is finding incorrect value and avoid passing it to the function. Every mathematics function is different and there is not a single solution to identify erroneous value passed. If you are facing this error and not able to figure out the solution. Post a comment and I will do my best to figure out the solution. Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.sqlauthority.com) Filed under: PostADay, SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Error Messages, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, T SQL, Technology

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  • SQL SERVER – 2008 – Introduction to Snapshot Database – Restore From Snapshot

    - by pinaldave
    Snapshot database is one of the most interesting concepts that I have used at some places recently. Here is a quick definition of the subject from Book On Line: A Database Snapshot is a read-only, static view of a database (the source database). Multiple snapshots can exist on a source database and can always reside on the same server instance as the database. Each database snapshot is consistent, in terms of transactions, with the source database as of the moment of the snapshot’s creation. A snapshot persists until it is explicitly dropped by the database owner. If you do not know how Snapshot database work, here is a quick note on the subject. However, please refer to the official description on Book-on-Line for accuracy. Snapshot database is a read-only database created from an original database called the “source database”. This database operates at page level. When Snapshot database is created, it is produced on sparse files; in fact, it does not occupy any space (or occupies very little space) in the Operating System. When any data page is modified in the source database, that data page is copied to Snapshot database, making the sparse file size increases. When an unmodified data page is read in the Snapshot database, it actually reads the pages of the original database. In other words, the changes that happen in the source database are reflected in the Snapshot database. Let us see a simple example of Snapshot. In the following exercise, we will do a few operations. Please note that this script is for demo purposes only- there are a few considerations of CPU, DISK I/O and memory, which will be discussed in the future posts. Create Snapshot Delete Data from Original DB Restore Data from Snapshot First, let us create the first Snapshot database and observe the sparse file details. USE master GO -- Create Regular Database CREATE DATABASE RegularDB GO USE RegularDB GO -- Populate Regular Database with Sample Table CREATE TABLE FirstTable (ID INT, Value VARCHAR(10)) INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(1, 'First'); INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(2, 'Second'); INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(3, 'Third'); GO -- Create Snapshot Database CREATE DATABASE SnapshotDB ON (Name ='RegularDB', FileName='c:\SSDB.ss1') AS SNAPSHOT OF RegularDB; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO Now let us see the resultset for the same. Now let us do delete something from the Original DB and check the same details we checked before. -- Delete from Regular Database DELETE FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO When we check the details of sparse file created by Snapshot database, we will find some interesting details. The details of Regular DB remain the same. It clearly shows that when we delete data from Regular/Source DB, it copies the data pages to Snapshot database. This is the reason why the size of the snapshot DB is increased. Now let us take this small exercise to  the next level and restore our deleted data from Snapshot DB to Original Source DB. -- Restore Data from Snapshot Database USE master GO RESTORE DATABASE RegularDB FROM DATABASE_SNAPSHOT = 'SnapshotDB'; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Clean up DROP DATABASE [SnapshotDB]; DROP DATABASE [RegularDB]; GO Now let us check the details of the select statement and we can see that we are successful able to restore the database from Snapshot Database. We can clearly see that this is a very useful feature in case you would encounter a good business that needs it. I would like to request the readers to suggest more details if they are using this feature in their business. Also, let me know if you think it can be potentially used to achieve any tasks. Complete Script of the afore- mentioned operation for easy reference is as follows: USE master GO -- Create Regular Database CREATE DATABASE RegularDB GO USE RegularDB GO -- Populate Regular Database with Sample Table CREATE TABLE FirstTable (ID INT, Value VARCHAR(10)) INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(1, 'First'); INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(2, 'Second'); INSERT INTO FirstTable VALUES(3, 'Third'); GO -- Create Snapshot Database CREATE DATABASE SnapshotDB ON (Name ='RegularDB', FileName='c:\SSDB.ss1') AS SNAPSHOT OF RegularDB; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Delete from Regular Database DELETE FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Restore Data from Snapshot Database USE master GO RESTORE DATABASE RegularDB FROM DATABASE_SNAPSHOT = 'SnapshotDB'; GO -- Select from Regular and Snapshot Database SELECT * FROM RegularDB.dbo.FirstTable; SELECT * FROM SnapshotDB.dbo.FirstTable; GO -- Clean up DROP DATABASE [SnapshotDB]; DROP DATABASE [RegularDB]; GO Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com) Filed under: SQL, SQL Authority, SQL Backup and Restore, SQL Data Storage, SQL Query, SQL Server, SQL Tips and Tricks, SQLServer, T SQL, Technology

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