PASS Summit 2010 Submissions

I was a little slow at submitting this year, but this afternoon I submitted my ideas for sessions for PASS Summit 2010.  If you aren’t aware of this conference – it’s probably the best way out there to learn a ton about SQL Server while networking with the people that use it daily and helped build the product.  An aware attendee will also hear rumblings of the following while at PASS – twitter, karaoke, kilts, bacon, stickers, and jagermeister.

Without any further ado, I thought I’d share the sessions that I submitted for consideration this year.

Extended Events, Work Smarter Not Harder

Often, as DBAs, we are presented with the prospect of resolving performance issues. Consider a situation where Bob the Developer shows up at your desk accusing the server of inadequacies and expecting resolution. A couple weeks of digging through log files and traces and you are able to identify code that Bob the Developer deployed that was the root of the problem. What if there was a way to do this type of performance tuning before Bob the Developer shows up and before Sue the User figures out there are performance issues? In this session we’ll take a look at Extended Events, which is one of the newer SQL Server monitoring platforms, and how you can leverage it in every day scenarios. We’ll discuss the ins and outs of how to get detailed information on the errors and events that occur within SQL Server and how to understand the information. With just a few T-SQL statements, issues that could take weeks to research can be investigated in minutes.

Getting a Grip – Adventures in Multi-Server Management

Today’s SQL Server environments have seen an explosion of databases without a similar increase in DBAs. This change has allowed management of non-mission-critical databases to interfere with mission-critical databases. Beginning with SQL Server 2008, a number of tools were introduced to help you take better control of your SQL Server environment and deal with “database sprawl.” Some of these tools include the advent of Policy Based Management to the addition of the Utility Control Point, in SQL Server 2008 R2. In this session, we’ll take a look at the tools already at your disposal and some free CodePlex tools that you can use to get a grip on your SQL Server environment.

Getting To Know Your Indexes

Without proper indexing SQL Server can be hard pressed to create efficient and performant execution plans. Dynamic Management Views (DMV) and system views provide a slew of information about indexes that can be used to analyze indexes within SQL Server. In this session we’ll go under the hood of SQL Server to look at DMVs and system views to know what indexes you have, should have, and how they feel about the way applications are treating them.

Using XML to Query Execution Plans

SQL Server stores its execution plans as XML in dynamic management views. The execution plans are a gold mine of information. From the whether or not the execution plan will rely on parallelism to what columns are requiring a key lookup after a non-clustered index seek. Through a the use of XML this information can be available at your fingertips to help determine the value and impact of an index and guide you in improving the performance of your SQL Server databases. In this session we’ll look at how you can begin to understand and query the structure of the execution plans in the procedure cache. Also, we’ll review how to uncover some potential performance issues that may be lurking in your SQL Server.