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SQL Data Partners Podcast

In this podcast, I discuss a variety of SQL Server related topics mixed with a sprinkling of professional development and I talk with some of the biggest names in the industry. I want to introduce new and familiar topics and talk about them in a way you may have not considered. We are all on different stages as data professionals. I hope you will join me and Steve on the SQL trail compañeros--you won't regret it.
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SQL Data Partners Podcast
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Companeros, welcome to the SQL Data Partners Podcast, a podcast dedicated to SQL Server related topics which is designed to help you become familiar with what’s out there, how you might use features or ideas and how you might apply them in your environments.

Dec 14, 2017

I have heard it said "People don't quit jobs--they quit managers".  At a recent event, I decided to ask people what they thought the qualities of a good manager are.  Perhaps you aren't thinking of getting into management; however, at some point in your career you will have the opportunity to lead.  We share your thoughts and comment on the challenges of having the qualities of a good manager.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/12/14/episode-121-what-makes-a-good-manager. Have fun on the SQL Trail!

Dec 7, 2017

Shouldn't they have fixed that instead of putting out all these new features?  That might be what you are thought when you saw the title for today's episode.  SQL Injection is still a big deal in today's databases and we are pleased to have Bert Wagner on the program to talk with us about how it can affect you and the applications you protect.

One of the most difficult aspects to deal with SQL Injection is to decide who is responsible for dealing with it?  Bert does a great job giving us some insights on what he has seen work and we invite you to give us your comments about how you have gone about trying to evade a SQL Injection attack.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/12/06/episode-120-sql-injection. Have fun on the SQL trail!

Nov 30, 2017

At first glance you might think our podcast topic is from way out in left field; however, as you think about it there are a number of reasons we should be talking about GitHub.  Even if you don't need a public source control repository for creating code, GitHub is becoming the preferred place for creators to publish their content and the ability to interact with other is extremely value.  In this episode we give some of our thoughts around getting started with GitHub and how it might differ from some of the other options out there.

Don't forget to leave your 'Tips and Tricks' on the podcast page.  If we get enough submissions, we will start that new segment in January.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/11/29/episode-119-should-i-get-involved-with-github. Have fun on the SQL Trail!

Nov 24, 2017

After having attended PASS Summit and seeing all the new features coming it out, it can be very easy to overlook the basics--they are boring.  These features have been around forever.  This may be true, but they still play an important role and ignoring them won't help get you those fancy new features any time soon.

In this episode, our topic is index maintenance, with an emphasis on what has changed or what might change.  Is the query store feature going to impact the way we maintain our indexes?  We invite one our favorite guests, Sean McCown back to talk with us and give some of his thoughts.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/11/24/index-maintenance. Have fun on the SQL Trail!

Nov 15, 2017

Have you ever had a week without a Wednesday?  Me neither, so for this episode, we recap our experience at PASS Summit and talk about all the amazing compañeros we met and give some thoughts around our very first meetup.  It was so much fun to meet everyone and both Steve and I gave sessions, which was a great experience--and a first for me.

One, we both realized after the fact is, we are not good at social media or taking pictures!  We apologize we don't have a bit more to share on that front, but hey--we do have faces for radio.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/11/15/episode-117-pass-summit-retrospective/. Have fun on the SQL Trail!

Nov 8, 2017

If you have ever worked with Microsoft support, you probably came across the PssDiag tool they use to collect information about your environment.  My experience with the tool is it always seemed, well--a bit clunky.  Now, it does collect lots of information and seemed to be a bit overwhelming when I was first a DBA.  Fast forward a few years and PssDiag was not a tool I use anymore and was not sure if anyone outside of Microsoft was using it.  I run into Jared Poche in Raleigh and he mentions he really likes the tool and mentions some of the improvements they have made over the years.  Well, you can guess where this is heading.

We talk with Jared about his experience with the tool and cover some of the basics about how you might go about using this tool in your environment.  There are two pieces to this tool, the first is the utility that collects the data and the second is the reporting piece SQL Nexus.

Are you using PssDiag?  Let us know if the comments below.

The show notes for today's episode can be found at  http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/11/07/episode-116-are-people-still-using-pssdiag. Have fun on the SQL trail!

Nov 1, 2017

It was a beautiful idea.  Gather together with a group of our podcast listeners in a conference type format and find ways for us to connect and help each grow.  I had seen it down in other events; however, I wanted to add my own flavor.  I wanted this to be different.  While the event turned out great and we got good marks from the attendees, we didn't have the response we were hoping for.  In this episode of the podcast, we have our companero conference retrospective.

We try to give our honest feedback about what we did well, what could have been improved, and what the attendees reported.  I can't say enough about the help I got from our speakers--Jonathan Stewart, Kevin Feasel, Randolph West, Tracy Boggiano, and Doug Purnell.  They were awesome and the event was much simpler because of them and their commitment.  They are truly my companeros on the SQL trail.

The show notes for today's episode can be found at  http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/10/31/episode-115-the-companero-conference-retrospective. Have fun on the SQL trail!

Oct 25, 2017

One of the advantages to a small conference is the ability to take attendee feedback and put it in place during the conference.  We actually made time for the attendees to pick topics they wanted to discuss and this episodes comes from one of our attendees Aaron Hayes.

How do I start consulting?It can be very tempting to think of the good life of consulting.  I almost liken it to playing the lottery--what am I going to do with all that time and money?  While the odds on successful consulting are a bit higher than the lottery, just saying you are a consultant won't automatically bring in the clients.

The reasons data professionals get into consulting are varied and in this episode we are joined by Randolph West and Jonathan Stewart, former podcast guests, to talk about the reasons we started consulting and some of the challenges along with our decision.

From my own personal experience, working for yourself--whether you consider yourself a contractor or a consultant--is very rewarding but demanding work.  There is no one to tell you want to do, but there are very few security nets as well.  One of the most important ideas I can suggest for those who want to own their own business is--forget the technology, how are you going to help other people?  If you are ok with the idea of focusing on others, then there are great opportunities in store.

Do you have thoughts about jumping into technology?  Let us know in the comments below.

 

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/10/20/episode-114-how-do-you-start-consulting. Have fun on the SQL trail!

Oct 11, 2017

"If I have seen further, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants."  Those words are attributed to Issac Newton and they are fitting for the way I was feeling recently as I thought back to those who have helped me in my career.  While we might always want things to be better, as technologies we have it pretty good.  There are unnumbered people who have dedicated untold amounts of time so we can have the tech available to us.  We take a moment to think about those who have paved the way for us to be where we are now.

Whose shoulders are you standing on?  Let us know in the comments below.

 

The show notes for today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/10/11/giants/. Have fun on the SQL trail!

Oct 4, 2017

When listener Mel Vargas first suggested the topic of patching, I was not sure this would work as a topic; however, the Equifax story had just developed and there are many other security related issues that could be prevented with patching.  Match that with our guest, Robert Davis, who just happened to publish some articles on patching and I decided we needed to do this episode.

I should never have doubted this as topic.  While we are a bit more protected in SQL Server than others, the security threat is still real and this is something everyone has to go through.  Robert presents us with some interesting details on how he goes about patching and we think you will find the episode compelling.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/10/04/episode-112-keeping-up-with-patching/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Sep 27, 2017

Sometimes just getting approval to attend a conference is a challenge, but getting the green light isn't the only thing you should plan for.  Sure, you want to learn some things--but a google search can teach you too.  In fact this week we are hearing about new features and functionality from the Ignite event--and I am catching all of it in my bunny slippers.

Why attend a conference then?

Conference season is upon us and Steve and I share some thoughts on why we attend conferences and some of the strategies we have used in the past.

The show notes from today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/09/28/episode-111-how-do-you-prepare-for-conferences/. Have fun on the SQL Trail!

Sep 20, 2017

As you work with other people, you will experience resistance when you suggest changes and want to implement something new.  Why is this?

One podcast listener shared an experience where a problem was occurring.  The suggested a solution.  The idea was rejected.  No solution presented itself and the idea was submitted various times.  When nothing else was working, the idea was finally implemented.

The suggested change successfully helped the situation.  Victory!

Later, another issue arose and a similar suggestion was made.  The expectation was the suggestion would be well received; however, this was not the case.  The idea was still met with hostile resistance.

Have you faced a situation like this before?  Why wasn't there an trust built because of the first recommendation?

Our conversation for today's episode centers around the idea of building trust on the teams you work with.  As most our listeners are in the data platform space, we thought it would be a good idea to reach outside our community to folks we might receive the most pushback from--developers.  We are happy to have Richard Campbell on the show with us today.  Richard is the co-host of the .NET rocks podcast and you might recognize him from one of his many Channel9 videos.

We chat with Richard about how we can build trust and some common ways we attempt to show authority can backfire on us and actually cause more problems.  We talk about some of the ways those we trust have gone about earning our trust.  I know you enjoy this episode.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/09/20/episode-110-how-do-i-build-trust-with-my-team/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Sep 13, 2017

In episode 64 we interviewed Patrick Thomas, the program manager for the MCP program which includes certifications.  There continues to be quite a bit of discussion around certifications, so it only makes sense that we give our take on the matter.  Both Steve and I are certified, so this may give away some of our thoughts.

Certification is a tricky thing.  Much of the value you get out of a certification is dependent on where you on in your career and what your next step is going to be.  This is going to be different for every person, so this decision is one that only you can make.  This can make a decision on which certification to get and even when to get it a challenge.

Our conversation really revolves around what a certification will get you and what it won't help you with.  Do you agree with our list?  Let us know!

Sep 6, 2017


After a brief hiatus, we are back on the air to continue the conversation and let me tell you--we have a great conversation lined up for this episode.  The discussion around what will happen to the relational database, and by extension us as administrators continues to get quite a bit of traction.  Even within SQL Server, we are starting to see more features that don't fit the traditional relational mode and a podcast listener inquired about getting our thoughts.  As I thought about a guest for this episode, I didn't want to get someone tied to a product.  They, like me, would be biased and I wanted to get someone a bit removed from the situation.

Our guest today is Andrew Snodgrass, the research vice president at Directions and we chat about the future of the relational database and what the future of the data environment we manage might look like.  I hope you will find his insights valuable as an outsider.  While we don't get into the specifics of what databases are mostly like to be around, Andrew does give us administrator some idea's on what technologies we should start exploring.

What are your thoughts around the future of the relational database?  Join the conversation and let us know!

Aug 3, 2017

Data analytics is all anyone seems to talk about anymore.  We've even caught the bug at SQL Data Partners and have started working with data platform MVP César Oviedo from Costa Rica.  César has been helping us on some projects and we thought it was time we introduced him to everyone.  On the Spanish front, he has been very busy putting out YouTube videos and publishing content for BI LATAM (Latin America).  We invite him on the show to introduce himself and our conversation turns to the idea of BI for the little guy--smaller organizations that need to take advantage of analytics and how the ecosystem is changing to support them.

We are happy to introduce César to you and know you will enjoy hearing from in this episode and future episodes.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/08/02/bi-for-the-little-guy/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jul 26, 2017

User: What was that record before it was updated?
Me: I don't know.  Maybe I could restore a backup?
User: Really? You have to do all that? It is just one record.
Me: (under my breath) Yes, a record YOU updated.

If you have ever had a conversation like this you know how difficult it can be to implement auditing of records as they change.  With temporal tables, a new feature, we have the ability to track point in time information about a record without the huge expense of setting up auditing and tracking.  While you won't want to use this on every table, when there are tables with sensitive data you want to audit from time to time, this feature will come in handy.  We are happy to have Randolph back on the program with us to talk about this new feature.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/07/25/episode-106-temporal-tables/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jul 19, 2017

How can you tell when a change is enough of a change?  How do you know you didn’t make too big of a change?  Steve and I discuss some thoughts around what you might look for when you make certain changes.  Some of the components we cover include Max degree of parallelism, cxpackets, virtual log files, the number of log files for a database, backup retention and memory.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/07/18/enough/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jul 13, 2017

Do you have any experience with [Insert random technology]?  Your heart starts to race and your palms get a little sweaty.  You don’t want to say no–we’re tech folks–we know stuff, but there are so many new things to learn!  How are you supposed to keep up with it all? In this episode, we chat with Eugene Meidinger about his thoughts on keeping up and his ideas on the most important learning components.

The show notes for today's episode can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/07/07/keeping-up-with-technology/ and we hope to see you on the SQL trail.

Jul 5, 2017

When we write our queries to the database, SQL Server has to go and figure out the best way to go and bring back the data you asked for. A query plan is created to help SQL Server remember how to get the data for this query. It takes time to make these queries, so the database wants to limit the number of times it has to create the plans so it will try to reuse the plan as much as possible.

Our topic for today's episode is query plan reuse and the pros and cons with this concept. We will also touch on the concept of parameter sniffing--a technique SQL Server uses to try and figure out the best values to use for the execution plan with the hopes the plan will help the most queries. Special thanks to James Youkhanis for the suggestion.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/07/04/episode-103-plan-reuse/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jun 29, 2017

One of the newer features in SQL Server is availability groups, which can help solve a number of business problems.  As administrators, availability groups introduce some complexity as we are tasked to make sure the Recovery Point Objective (RPO) and Recovery Time Objective (RTO) can be meet for these servers.  The complexity comes because we have different instances that must work together, but they don't always see eye to eye.  In this episode, we chat with Tracy Boggiano of channeladvisor about how they go about monitoring their availability groups and the pros and cons of the out of the box tools.  Our discussion touches on process of  the availability group process and Tracy has posted her scripts on her bog for you use as you look at reviewing your environments.  I think you will enjoy this discussion.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/06/29/episode-102-monitoring-availability-groups/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jun 21, 2017

Listener Cody Ford wrote in and asked if we could share some thoughts on getting familiar with an unfamiliar database.  While we have done episodes in the past on best practices, this episode takes the approach of what we should look for on a server that is new to us--the components we should document and then review for potential updates.

Do you agree with our list?  Let us know on by leaving a comment on the show notes page.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/06/07/inspect-new-database/and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jun 14, 2017

Something a bit strange happened in episode 100--almost like something out of the twilight zone, but don't take our word for it.  Check out our latest episode as tell some of the stories that led up today.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/06/14/episode-100-listener-qa-c144/and have fun on the SQL trail

Jun 7, 2017

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenon or fraud syndrome) is a term coined in 1978 by clinical psychologists Dr. Pauline R. Clance and Suzanne A. Imes referring to high-achieving individuals marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a "fraud".  In this episode of the SQL Data Partners podcast, we take on a topic that is not technical; however, might play a very important role in some of the opportunities we take--or miss out on.  Today's guest is Mindy Curnutt, a 3x MVP and a real chance taker as she recently decided to become independently employed.

In this episode we talk through the idea of imposter syndrome and give some examples of how it affects us, but we also try and tackle ways we can identify it and steps to help us overcome.  I think you are going to find this episode very interesting and we hope you enjoy it.

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/06/07/episode-99-imposter-syndrome/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

Jun 1, 2017

In a recent SQLSaturday conference, I walked into the speakers room and asked the question--What is the first thing you change after you install SQL Server?  It was interesting to get their take on the server setup and I think you will enjoy the conversation.  There are various answers on this one but some of the speakers have mentioned stuffs like set auto grow files, SQL Prompt, SQL parameter class and max memory among others.  I would like to thank Kevin Feasel, Jonathan Stewart, Eugene Meidinger, Raymond Kim, Tracy Boggiano, Mindy Curnutt, Thomas Grohser, and Vladimir Oselsky for their suggestions.

 

The shownotes can be found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/06/01/episode-98-the-first-change/

May 24, 2017

If you have ever been responsible for a replication environment, you know what a pain that can be.  Many of the guests of the show will point out their frustration with replication and many are loathe to use it--myself included; however, there are a few brave souls out in the world who do use replication regularly--and even use it well.  Chuck Lathrope is our guest today and he talks us through some of the components of replication and why we might not need to be so skittish about this long time feature.

We cover all the basics including an overview of Transactional Replication, Merge Replication, Peer-to-Peer replication and Snapshot Replication, the concept of publisher, distributor and subscriber in relation to replication.  The most important piece is Chuck gives us some good business cases for why we might use replication and I think you will find the discussion interesting.  Thanks for joining us on the SQL trail!

The shownotes for today’s episode is found at http://sqldatapartners.com/2017/05/24/episode-97-sql-server-replication/ and have fun on the SQL trail.

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