Monthly Archives: February 2011

The Local Community and Lay offs

On Friday one of our well known tech companies in the SLC, UT area had to do some layoffs of some wonderful employees.  You can read about the changes in store for Kynetx here.  Having been through a layoff it’s never a good feeling.  At the same time it opens new doors and opportunities if you’re open and ready for them.  Thom Allen (Blog|Twitter) wrote me on twitter introducing me to @MikeFarmer on twitter this morning and asked if I knew anyone hiring. I decided to write up a quick blog post hopefully helping some of them out in what they can do to get a new position. Sometimes 140 characters is just not enough to say everything needed.  Here are some suggested things for a person that has been laid off can do.

Polish that resume

Make sure your resume is up to date with your latest experience/skills. Make sure it’s in a form that’s easy to email and post on websites.  Better yet if you have a blog or website list it there and link back to it from an email.

Blog

Blogging is a great way to get started on your experiences and give potential employers a spot to find information about you. Even if you haven’t started this already now is a great time to start so you can talk about your experiences at the company.  WordPress and Blogger are two very common platforms that you can have setup and running in minutes.

Social Networking

Twitter is a great start to get connected.  Thom wrote me on twitter this morning about Mike Farmer (Twitter) looking for work.  That inspired this post and I forwarded his information on to others as well.  Get social and more doors will be open to you.

Linked In

Another social networking aspect, get your resume uploaded there and start connecting with people in the community so you can get your name out there. They also have many discussion forums to look for positions.

Monster, Dice and Recruiters

Hit the pavement as they use to say, get out to the job sites (Monster, Dice etc…) and get your resume up on them.  Talk to the recruiters in our area or Technical recruiting firms like STG (they are hiring right now).  Tek Systems, Kforce and Robert Half and many others are out there willing to help.

These are just some of the things I can think of to do if you’re dealing with a layoff.  If you’re a company looking for Great talent check out these gentleman that were just laid off.

Mike Farmer Twitter = @mikeFarmer

Wade Billings Twitter = @Qwade

Jessie Morris Twitter = @JessieAMorris

Mike Grace Twitter = @MikeGrace

Utah Code Camp is coming up on March 19th as well.  This is a great chance to socialize with other companies and learn some new technologies perfect chance for someone laid off to get there name out there.

I know there were more laid off from Kynetx, please feel free to leave contact info in the comments or let me know and I’ll update the post.  I hope all of you get the chance to open new doors and work with some more great companies we have here around the community.

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What should PASS Be?

Pass Summit 2010

My new job has kept me away from blogging recently but when Andy Warren (blog|Twitter) posted the question on his blog “What should PASS be” I couldn’t resist.

If your one of my few followers reading this I’m guessing you know my long history with PASS.  I’ve been in most of the volunteer roles PASS has.  I’ve accomplished many things as a volunteer I’ve also failed on many things.  I believe now more than ever PASS needs to focus on “Keep Moving Forward” This is one of my favorite sayings and one I tell my team often.  We’ve all walked into a data center/database/software system and wanted to cry, yell or fire some really big guns. PASS needs to focus on what it’s doing well right now and keep doing it.

Continue making the summit great.

Magic Sauce

In my opinion the Summit is the best SQL DBA conference you can get.  I have attended others and other trainings but nothing has the feel of the summit.  Something was built there, some magic sauce was put together and the most important thing I think PASS needs to do is keep stirring the pot and keeping making magic sauce.

Focus on Regional events and 24 hours of pass

Take the magic sauce from the Summit and spread it around.  SQL Rally is a great idea and we need to do more of them.  Keep the momentums going refine the process and make it better, I love local events put on by local people.  I put a lot of time and effort into our SQL Saturday and I want to continue to see others make great events locally.  Those local events truly make local community; while it’s easy for some to use Social Media to have a global community others just want that local community.  We should foster community no matter what shape it takes.  24 hours of PASS is an excellent training resource as well. I would love to see 24 hours of pass ask the speakers to do the same presentations at later dates to local SQL chapters via live meetings. I know some already do this but it would be great to get the speakers for 24hop together with chapters to start working out some schedules and ways of getting those presentations out to the user groups.

Focus on your Volunteers

I’ve given a lot of my time to PASS and I know many many more that have as well.  We need to recruit others and get them involved as well.  The more people that are willing to give some time to help others the better our community will be.

As always I can’t thank the Board the volunteers and everyone at HQ that makes PASS possible. I’ve said it many times that I really appreciate the hard work that everyone has put in.  Anyone that gives of themselves freely is a hero in my book.  So let’s “Keep Moving Forward”

T-SQL Tuesday #15 Summary

T-SQL Tuesday #15 is over!

This summary took me a little longer than I expected thanks to a late night of production work on Tuesday.  Wow 34 blogs for T-SQL Tuesday this time.  I really enjoyed reading everyone’s post on Automation.   Many of the tasks that I’m working on since coming to a new company are in the blog posts below.  It will be great to put these tasks to use quickly in my new position.  Hopefully this summary will help others as well to easily find all the answers they need on Automation.

Here’s a link to the original blog post detailing all the information about T-SQL Tuesday #15.

Muthukkumaran Kaliyamoorthy started us off showing how to collect critical errors from SQL Server and sending them out through DbMail.

Robert Cook Aka SQLMashup tells us all about the types of automation tools that you can utilize to make your life easier.  He gives a lot of options and many links about the tools.  Great resource to check out love the Pizza analogy as well.  🙂

Pinal Dave aka SqlAuthority Pinal talks about the good and the bad of Automation.  Sometimes Automated jobs can go very wrong and hurt more than they help.  I like his perspective on this.

Rob Farley Gives us a quick reminder that automation is very helpful to our day to day lives.

Noel “Not Null” Mckinney reminds us that T-SQL can automate just by utilizing it for what it was designed for and keeping others from re-inventing the wheel.  Good job in setting them straight Noel.

Jason E Bacani Jason tells us how to use data driven subscriptions in SSRS to automate the checking of data on a day to day basis.  I agree if you can automate something you should!

Sankar Reddy lets us know to automate our backups and make sure to automate the testing of the restores.

Nick at Dev blog tells us all about the RED product by Wherescape to automate the DataWarehouse load process.  Looks like an interesting tool for loading data.

Robert Hartskeerl tells us to look into powershell and how much it can really do even though we may still be wired for T-SQL.

Mark BroadBent AKA Retracement tells us when some good times to use Automation are and gives us an Awesome script to create a restore script of our database.  Execute caution where you run this one.  🙂

Bob Pusateri gives us a most excellent script in powershell to test our backups.  I was just telling my team to start a project on this exact topic.  They will be starting at this excellent post.  Thanks Bob! 🙂

Ted Krueger shows us a great powershell script using regex to strip off Nolock out of statements.  I could see this easily adapted to lots of cases.

Jonathan Kehayias aka The Rambling DBA gives us a great post explaining the steps you need to take to automate and manage a large scale SQL Server environment.  Even if you don’t have a large scale environment there are great suggestions in here check it out.

David Howard warns us to not get stuck in a Dave process.  Automating at the start will save you more time in the end.  I appreciate the warning from someone that has been there done that as well.  🙂

Chris Shaw poses the question of when do tables need re-indexing and suggests checking out Michelle Ufford and Ola Hallengren’s scripts on Re-indexing.  Having worked with these scripts before I would suggest checking them out!  Check out the post for the links.

Allen Kinsel gives us a simple and easy to use script to grant permissions on objects.  Since I’ve written almost the exact script years ago I’ll gladly call it automation.  I’ve used my variation hundreds of times to save many hours of work.  🙂

Grant Fritchey gives us suggestions on how to keep a server side trace going all the time.  Great suggestions from grant on what you should do to maintain the trace. I typically keep my server side trace running every 15 minutes to store the file and load it to the table.  I have this fully automated so it’s just a sql job that runs.

Kerry Tyler aka AirborneGeek gives us a look at how automation doesn’t have to be fancy and you can use the GUI to get you started on your scripts.  I love this approach since I’ve told many people in the past if you want to see how SQL is doing things just script it out and you’ll start to learn.

Steve Jones aka way0utwest reminds us to not only watch the watcher (watch your automation routines) but keep things simple and don’t try to account for every single anomaly.  This is a great piece of advice as I frequently see people get stuck on scope of a project instead of getting the project done.

Matt Velic shows us an excellent way to automate summarization of data and walks us through how to use SQL Agent to make it run daily.  Well written and great information.

Aaron Bertrand walks us through setting up an entire testing environment with Powershell.  This was totally awesome for me as I’ve used VSTS load testing agents a lot at my last position and this hits home as an easy way to get things setup and running.  Great use of automation!

Brian Garraty aka NULLgarity gives us excellent examples of biting the bullet and going with powershell for his automation.  I’m in the same boat on this one and need to jump in with both feet first!  Thanks for the push!

Robert Davis aka SQLSoldier gives us an excellent post on automating and monitoring Db mirroring.  If you’re using mirroring this one would be a great set of scripts to add to your toolbox.

Wes Brown aka SQLIO gives us a great example of automating pulling the IO stats for your db’s from sys.dm_io_virtual_file_stats.  Having written a procedure just like this last year it gives me some great pointers on things I might want to change.  Well done Wes.

Karen Lopez aka DataChick lets us know that the lazier you are the better data modeler you will be.  🙂  Just kidding, she shows us that automating tasks helps you to be more productive in the things you need to be productive in.  Great suggestions that everyone can use to work better.

John Welch shows us a simple and powerful little script to apply XSLT files to XML files changing the xml files.  This is simplicity with powershell at its best IMHO, great job.

Allen White shows us how to create a script with powershell to backup our logs when they get to close to full.  He also mentions a great idea which is automating your automation scripts by making it so objects can be re-created on the fly.  I love this idea as well and try to put it into many of my automation scripts.

Jason Brimhall gives us a script to size out our database before it reaches Prod.  This looks very handy to help you predict what sort of data size you will need in the future.  Great script to add to the toolbox.

Chad Miller aka Sev17 gives us a script to script out all your SSIS packages from the server to the file system.  This can be very handy if you needed to get lots of packages out of the server and into source control or a file backup of the packages.

Tom Powell aka Philergia advises us all to use SQL Server CMS to manage our servers and automate all our tasks.  This is something I’m planning on looking into in the very near future so it’s a welcome reminder!

Brian Davis gives us a script to go through a list of sql servers and grab what account is running the sql server service.  Great use of Powershell and automation, I can see using this in the future!

Jason Fay aka Dba Star gives us a script to let us know not only when SQL Server restarts but informs you of the status of your databases when you do restart.

Aaron Nelson aka Mr Powershell himself, was probably the most excited about the topic (funny since he was one of the last to get in).  He lets us know that powershell is not just about scripting it can be used for automating and mixing lots of tools together.  Along with the 2 scripts he includes in the post he challenges us to find other scripts he doesn’t yet have in his library.  I suggest we all take him up on that.  🙂

Sal Young came in a little late but gives us a quick reference to a previous post on reading SQL logs with powershell and codeplex project to monitor your sql servers with powershell.

Invitation to T-SQL Tuesday #15 Automation in SQL Server

Having taken part in several T-SQL Tuesday’s I decided I would finally put my name in to host one.  I figured it would be a good way to lose my sanity learn some great ideas from this wonderful SQL community.  I figured that since many of you out there set a goal this year to blog more and to learn Powershell then this Topic should help in both of those goals.    So the topic I have chosen for this month is Automation!   It can be Automation with T-SQL or with Powershell or a mix of both.  Give us your best tips/tricks and ideas for making our lives easier through Automation.  Now here are all the details you’ll need for a successful T-SQL Tuesday post!

What exactly is T-SQL Tuesday? Words from the Master Adam Machanic (Blog|Twitter)

“Each month a blog will host the party, and about a week before the second Tuesday of the month a theme will be posted. Any blogger that wishes to participate is invited to write a post on the chosen topic. The event is called “T-SQL Tuesday”, but any post that is related to both SQL Server and the theme is fair game. So feel free to post about SSIS, SSRS, Java integration, or whatever other technologies you’re working with in conjunction with SQL Server. Even if your post includes no T-SQL we still want to see it.”

The Rules

1.       Your post must go live between 00:00:00 GMT on Tuesday the 8th of February and 00:00:00 GMT on Wednesday the 9th.

2.   Your blog post has to link back to the hosting blog and the link must be anchored from the logo (the blue one shown at the top of this post) which must also appear at the top of the post.

3.  If trackbacks won’t work properly then please leave a comment below so that your post is accounted for in the roundup.

Extra Points

1. Advertise! Include a reference to T-SQL Tuesday in the title of your post.

2. Tweet! Use the hash tag #TSQL2sDay to follow links and other relevant conversations.

3. Host! Consider hosting T-SQL Tuesday yourself. If you’re interested let Adam Machanic Know. If you’ve participated in two T-SQL Tuesdays previously and you keep up your blog (blog monthly for the last six months) then he’ll put you in the rotation.

Looking forward to reading through all the great submissions!