July Monthly SQL Server Checklist

4439276478_8bb7a50ab8_mIt’s a new month, and time to check out your SQL Servers to make sure everything is configured and working properly.  Originally, I had planned to put this out on the first Monday of every month.  The trouble is, yesterday was a US holiday and I was likely jet skiing.  Did I just give away that I pre-wrote this post?

As I mentioned last month, the premise of this post is help DBAs maintain their environments by getting together a monthly checklist and running through it every month.  I’ve updated the list below, but haven’t added any new posts or resources to the list.  While we are all busy people, if we don’t have time to add to the list, we need to at least work through the list.  Enjoy checking everything out.

Monthly Checklist

  1. Backup Validation: Check everything involved in the backup process.  Are your backups executing as desired?  Are the monitoring jobs properly alerting to failures?  Have their been any unexpected failures?  Have backup duration times changed?
  2. Recovery Validation: Is everything for your recovery collected and being backed up?  Have you practices restoring at least one of your SQL Server databases from production in the last month?
  3. SQL Server Updates: Is your SQL Server environment up to date?  Check each of your instances and review the most recent releases of SQL Server.  Make a plan to determine when the most recent updates will be applied.  Also, be aware the support for SQL Server releases does end at some point.
  4. Server Health: Check the performance statistics for your server(s).  Any unexpected items in your event log?
  5. Database Health: Check the performance statistics for your database(s). Any unexpected items in your SQL Server logs?
  6. Check Baselines: Are there any variances on the performance counters off of the baseline?  Is the baseline still valid?
  7. Validate Capacity Plan: If you have a capacity plan in place for your environment, check to see that what you had planned for June matches the actuals.  Any threshold violations that may require adding capacity?
  8. Status Report: What do you need to get done before next month?  What did you get done this month?  After the other tasks, write this all down and send it to your manager.

Something Missing?

Is there something missing in this list that you think should be included?  Leave a comment and I’ll add it in for next month.  I’ll follow-up next month on the first Monday of the month and we’ll see how everyone that reads this is doing.