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You need to relax and get out more.

We SQL Server DBAs are constantly checking that cell phone, worried about that email from a user saying, “The server is borked.”  When it comes in, we drop everything, run to the nearest laptop, and try to figure out just how bad things are and if they’ve gone back to normal.

You’ll be more relaxed on the weekends if you can do these two things:

  • Find out before the users find out
  • Be able to check health from anywhere

There’s a web app for that – Red Gate SQL Monitor.  It sends you emails when things start to go pear-shaped, and then you can whip out your trusty iPad to check your server’s health and stats from anywhere.  You can see it live now by going to http://monitor.red-gate.com, which shows SQLServerCentral’s database servers.  (You don’t have to log in, but of course you’d use the built-in username/password security for your own SQL Monitor web site.)  A few screenshots:

Red Gate SQL Monitor Dashboard

Red Gate SQL Monitor Dashboard

Host Machine Stats

Host Machine Stats

SQL Server Instance Statistics

SQL Server Instance Statistics

SQL Server Error Log

SQL Server Error Log

All from your iPad, anytime you’re within range of WiFi or a 3G cellular signal.  You can stop worrying about what your server’s doing, and start being present with your family, your friends, and your hobbies.

What’s that?  You don’t have an iPad?

Red Gate wants to fix that.  They’re giving away 30 prize packages, each with a 16GB 3G iPad and a license to Red Gate SQL Monitor!  I got 10 to give away, Steve Jones is giving away 10, and Grant Fritchey is giving away 10, but you can only enter in one of our contests.  To enter for mine, all you have to do is post a blog comment below and tell me where you’d go if you didn’t have to worry about what your servers are doing.  The deadline for entry is Friday, December 17th, 2010, and then we’ll pick 10 random lucky winners to be announced on Monday, December 20th, 2010.  (And if you win, you owe me a picture of yourself monitoring your SQL Servers with your new iPad!)

Here’s the fine print:

  1. The contest is open to professionals with SQL Server monitoring responsibility. Entrants must be 18 years old or over.
  2. Entries must be received by Friday, December 17, 2010. The contest organizers accept no responsibility for corrupted or delayed entries.
  3. Employees of Red Gate, the contest organizers and their family members are not eligible to participate in the contest.
  4. Entries are limited to one per person across the three simultaneous contests hosted on www.SQLServerCentral.com, www.BrentOzar.com, and www.ScaryDBA.com.
  5. The organizers reserve the right, within their sole discretion, to disqualify nominations.
  6. The organizers’ decisions are final.
  7. Red Gate Software and those involved in the organization, promotion, and operation of the contest and in the awarding of prizes explicitly make no representations or warranties whatsoever as to the quality, suitability, merchantability, or fitness for a particular purpose of the prizes awarded and they hereby disclaim all liability for any loss or damage of any kind, including personal injury, suffered while participating in the contest or utilizing any prizes awarded.

So whatcha waiting for?  Leave a comment for your chance to win or check out the contests on Steve Jones’ blog and Grant Fritchey’s blog!

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  1. If I didn’t have to worry about my servers I would go to Kauai and take the road to Hana which I promised my wife a long time ago :-)

    • Denis, you’d had to drive over the ocean then. Can an iPad help you doing so? :) Road to Hana is on Maui. I know, since my wife and me took the adventure last year. (And I’d never do it again, btw. But that’s another story)
      Regards,
      Holger

  2. It sounds cliche’ but……

    I’d go to DISNEYLAND!!! ;)

  3. I would like to say to tropical place in Caribbean but in reality I would trade that for uninterrupted attendance of CES in Vegas.

  4. I would go camping in the Pacific Northwest (in the summer, of course).

  5. It’s about 20 degrees here right now. I would go somewhere warm enough to play golf.

  6. I’d go to the mountains and go snowboarding, have been trying to get back on the slopes for years but never have the time.

  7. Hi Brent,

    This is great question. Where would I go? As I mentioned to you in person for me, I want to go on Cruise. (Please note, I had not mentioned yet SQL Cruise). We are from India and Cruise culture is now picking up here.

    We all have traveled in Air plane, fancy trains and by road of course. What we have not experience is long trip in Cruise.

    Last time when we went into the sea on 3 hour boat ride, we did not have phone connection or coverage. My wife was very happy as I was away from the desktop and phone.

    Our dream is to go to Cruise. Just as I mentioned to you earlier may be SQL Cruise may be good idea as well. I still need to figure out the Visa thing for family.

    However, the dream is there – Cruise (may be SQL Cruise – if visa works out).

    Kind Regards,
    Pinal

  8. If I didn’t need to be constantly connected then I would go on a road trip round Europe. I’d drive from my house in Manchester, England. Then make it over France, maybe hit Spain but with one target in mind. Rome! I’ve never been and it would be amazing to drink in the architecture. Part of my role is software architect, my friends joke about it not being real architecture. Well I’d like to compare it to the real thing and what better place to do that than Rome.

    Also Pizza should be it’s own food group! Mega.

  9. I will go to Macchu Picchu. Not even a cellphone tower around.

  10. I would go to SQL Pass, but also turn it into a ’14 day event’ and head up to Vancouver to check it out as well. Learning, vacation, culture, 2 countries… sounds like a fun trip!

  11. I would be cooking something in the kitchen, following a recipe on the the propped-up iPad next to me. And if one of my SQL Servers borked, I could easily multitask into the Red Gate SQL Monitor app to see what was wrong. All without taking my hand off the mixing bowl…

  12. If I didn’t have to worry what my servers were doing, I’m pretty sure I’d be down at my local pub where there is absolutely no 3G or Wifi signal.

  13. My idea’s not fancy or glamorous, but it would be the best deal of all; I’d go home. I’d head home a little earlier, spend more time with the family, help smooth out those chaotic evenings of dinners and homework and bed times, and enjoy a little more of the precious little time I have with my wife and kids.

  14. I’d go to a magical place where unicorns and leprechauns are my friends and servers never crash. Barring that I’d probably end up in Margaritaville.

  15. I’d be out in my boat on the Isle of Wight searching the various wrecks for fish and treasure. Check out http://www.wrecksite.eu/Wrecksite.aspx for exact GPS co-ordinates / locations.

  16. I’d go Into the Wild. So many places to visit outside of internet reach that just aren’t feasible today, being the only DBA at the company.

  17. If I didn’t have to monitor our SQL servers from the office, I’d use Red Gate’s SQL Monitor on my iPad: from a deckchair on Sentosa Beach (sipping a cocktail of course).

  18. Where would I go? Where wouldn’t I go! Between climbing the stairs leading up to the giant Buddah statue on Lan Tau island and combing through the aisles of the Golden Computer Centre in Sham Shui Po, I could help the hosting manager for my organization keep our database servers running smoothly from the streets of my favorite city: Hong Kong. After a stop over at the Dragon Centre mall, I’d hit the train station to head across the boarder to ShenZhen, China. There, I would be able to not only visit my wife’s family, but also do a bit of shopping in one of the largest (and coolest) electronics districts in the world, Huaqiang Bei (seriously, you have -got- to check this place out, roughly 7 blocks of wall-to-wall electronics: from reels of film for movie projectors to state-of-the-art motherboards that have yet to be released). I would grab a little lunch from one of my favorite sushi/noodle restaurants (you know the one, right next to McDonald’s). The days of remoting to my servers and checking perfmon would be a thing of the past (especially as I would have to deal with the Great Firewall of China) — I could pull up sql monitor, check my servers as I raise my check in the air then await my change as I plan my next move. Dong men? Buzz out to the country-side? Go to one of my favorite spas (6-7-8)? Who knows? This is a trip I try to take often, but have to take rarely. Between my responsibilities at work as well as within the community, I have to temper that wild spirit that demands that I put on my best pair of walking shoes, open the door wide, and look for the next big adventure.

  19. I moved back to Phoenix in order to try to re-connect with friends and colleges from my old job. We were a very tight group and the company was “assimulated” into other facilities in the corporation. Our group has since been scattered, but the group continues to meet every Friday for lunch. I have tried for almost 6 six months and have yet been able to escape and join them.

    If I win, I can reconnect with all of my old friends!

  20. If I wasn’t worrying about my servers I would go on a treat weekend away with my family to Crieff Hydro -a luxury family hotel in Scotland. And after that weekend of indulgence and over-eating I’d need another weekend away orienteering/running :-).

    I’d love an ipad, sigh . . . .

  21. I have used some RedGate products and find them to be of the Highest Grade. Having an iPad wouldn’t be too shabby, either.

    Oh and I’d go to Iceland or someplace else where I could see the Northern Lights.

  22. PASS Summit 2011….finally

  23. I’d go to Zanzibar. Do they have a golf course there?

  24. I would go glacier skiing in Austria after I learn how to ski. I should need about 2 weeks.

  25. Being a Dad, I get more enjoyment seeing my girls happy than anything else. Disney Cruise Line has just finished build one of the most beautiful ships at sea, the Disney Dream – http://disneycruise.disney.go.com/ships-activities/ships/dream/ – so I would go on a cruise with my family since that is what they like most.

    Thanks Brent!. Great contest.

    Happy Holidays,

    Jeff

  26. I’d focus more on the Exchange servers, and not worry about if SQL is behaving itself.

  27. First I’d go home early on weekdays and spent good time with family. On weekends I’d go biking on my Motor Cycle along with my wife, to all the places where I have not been through the roads less traveled!

  28. Lessee, so many places to go – Australia, China, Hong Kong, Italy, France, Japan?

    I got it. A cruise around the world… Could check on servers at each port :)

  29. Where would I go if I didn’t have to worry about what my servers were doing?

    I’ve been a DBA / DB Professional for a long time now. In that time (years and years…) I’ve pushed myself to monitor and tune (and install and help where I can) probably far too much. I say it has been too much because I’ve skipped out on a lot of things that I should be more attentive to; family being on the top of that list. One of the things only in the last year or so that I realized I would truly like more time for is showing and telling my sons how the last 20 years has made me. More in detail about how I pulled myself to being the DBA I am today. I have to face it; time is expensive in simply having an extra 4-5 hours a day in order to just sit and chat with me sons can be difficult. As DBAs, most of us can’t go without checking on the servers or working on something in them. That consumes us and takes a lot of the time we “should” be doing things like just hanging out with our families. Really, who is completely comfortable with not checking your DB servers every other hour? So in that; what would I do if I didn’t have to worry about the servers? I’d take the time I endlessly end up using to check the servers nightly to making sure all is good and spend that extra time with my wife and kids.

    I didn’t have to think about this reply much in all honesty. I’ve been trying to do this more and more over the last year when I realized I spend far too much time doing what we do and tending to the servers as if they were my children. They aren’t though and we should be able to in a way, ignore them. Not a plug but; I’ve tested SQL Monitor out pretty heavily and it is what Red Gate promos it as. I think the products future will be very good as we grow with it.

  30. Where would I go?

    Possibly (more likely probably) an RF free zone where my cell phone wont work and no wifi or 3g to lure me back to the dark side!

  31. I’d finally get to go to the bathroom^H^H^H

    I’d probably mount the iPad and ride my bike across America, or at least to Alabama.

    Hmm, if my wife is reading this those are all jokes, I’d clearly rather take her to Italy or at least Mobile, Alabama (the Italy of the south).

  32. Hi Brent

    To the north pole to see santa being that it’s christmas and see the Aurora Borealis.

    Victoria

  33. I’d follow the Lady Gaga World Tour. :)

  34. I would take myself and my family to Florida to enjoy all the Disney attractions as well as the beautiful beaches.

    Merry Christmas!

    Chad

  35. First I would take some time over the holiday’s to go and visit my grandparents in Utah that I have not seen in many years. Due to building my DBA career I cannot travel much and do not stray far from work. With these two great tools (iPad and SQL Monitor) I would have more freedom to keep an eye on things remotely.

    Secondly I would stop by Las Vegas and have a great time gambling and kicking back and enjoying a vacation that is five years overdue.

  36. I would go to Barcelona. Hang out at a sidewalk bar, enjoy the nice weather, lazily glance at the iPad from time to time while sipping Sangria and eating tapas.

    ….check on plane fare….

  37. If I didn’t have to worry about monitoring our in-house and client’s servers, I would go on a SQL Cruise!

    Seattle to Alaska sounds like a great SQL Cruise destination and content!

    Regards,
    Jose Chinchilla aka SQLJoe

  38. I would FINALLY be able to go on a Holiday/Cruise
    {you know whatI’m talking about} or even a shopping trip and have TRUE piece of mind that I can easily “Interact” without any hassle with my lovely or mis-behaving Database systems – even if I needed to do it straight from the Toilet seat! Note: I have ommited a picture of this for obvious & lega reasons

  39. I’d be able to spend more vacation time in the waterparks with my kids!

  40. I think I would go back to school and find another challenging job.

  41. If I didn’t have to worry about my servers I’d actually take more than 2 days off consecutively…on a cruise I go.

  42. Hi Brent,

    I would go home early to spend my time with my wife and our dog. If we were on holiday I would go to the beautiful island of Ruegen in Germany.

    Mike

  43. I would head to one of our nice beer gardens here in the Bavarian Forest.

    Greetings from Bavaria :)

  44. If I didn’t have to worry about monitoring these pesky SQL Servers, I’d take a cruise in Europe – possibly the Mediterranean, or throughout the Islands of Greece. If only I had a portable device and software that would allow me to monitor my servers remotely, I could make this dream a reality…..

  45. Pingback: Giving Away 10 Apple iPads and Red Gate SQL Monitor!

  46. I’d like to say that i’d go on some exotic adventure in the Himalayas, complete with a posse of Sherpa guides (one carrying just the iPad) and ending with an epic, witty-one-liner-filled, John Williams-scored chase scene through the streets of Shambhala.

    Truth is that i’d probably ‘just’ spend more time with the family, maybe a day with the kids that involved more Disney princesses and less ‘wtf does THAT error mean?!’

    One thing’s for sure: the promised iPad pic will absolutely involve a man-purse.

  47. Where would i go if i did not have to worry about the servers? I’d go to bed and catch up on all the sleep I have had to miss while monitoring, fixing and sometimes cursing the production boxes at 3 AM. I’d go out with my significant other instead of a) falling asleep when i get home because I have been up for 39 hours or 2) telling her I have to work tonight. I’d go the gym and work off some of the weight I have gained from 3 am pizza deliveries. I’d go away on a weekend without having to leave contact numbers “Just In Case”. I’d just GO and be free.

  48. With that kind of load off my mind? I’d go to bed :)

  49. Wow that would really give me time to please mi wife and take my family in a road trip vacaction for a week or two, to visit all the places we wanted to see for about two years now. Also we’d go visit my dougther grand parents who live on the country.

    The iPad and the Red Gate SQL Monitor would really help me spend more quality time with my family.

  50. I’d go to bed and get some good quality ZZZZZZZZZs… Resting easy knowing RedGate is keeping an eye on my servers for me.

  51. Wonder what the signal is like at the top of Haleakala on Maui? That’s where I’d be, uninstalling Idera’s SQL Diagnostics Manager while watching Red Gate SQL Monitor!

    Realistically, I’d definitely love the ability to use an iPad to RDP to my desktop and servers at work while away from the office. For example, waiting for my kids to come out of viola practice or after school clubs or on the couch taking in a Michigan State basketball game (pause on the DVR is another great innovation!).

  52. Don’t think my previous comment worked…
    I would use the extra time to do more things with my kids, take them to the park more, go to more of their activities that I often miss, things like that.
    Thanks!

  53. If I won, I would go to the Internet cafe to check my e-mail; then drive around to find a good signal on my mobile to check my e-mail; then off to the library to log in real quick and check my e-mail; then home, where I can – you guessed it – check my e-mail!

  54. Wow! It sounds like fun! For sure I’d spent my time watching a game from my soccer team, the best soccer team here in Brazil: Corinthians, of course!!!!

  55. To the mountains! But I’d wait till it’s warmer.

  56. I would have more free time for family, training and doing cool projects at work.

  57. Brent, I’d actually like the Redgate software more than the ipad but that’s a nice bonus! I would, of course be able to relax on one of the “long rocky beaches”of my New England home if I could relax and not worry about my servers! Thanks for all you do!

  58. If I didn’t have to worry about the SQL VMs were doing, I would take a weekend away and head out to the New Forest (take some bikes out with us) – relax and spend some time with the spousal unit :) I’m sure there is 3G signal out there :D

  59. So all SQL Servers are behaving? Away to Koh Phangan, Thailand! It’ll be like in this picture (taken on August), only with a brand new iPad!

    http://sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc4/hs953.snc4/74596_469225448524_683208524_5856976_1321928_n.jpg

    Cheers!

  60. Where would I go? Hmm, where wouldn’t I go? To start with, I’d head home with peace of mind to spend more time with my family, secure that I could check up on the servers any time I needed (including the two clusters I just inherited).

    And then, at least once a month, I’d head off to the local #ChiSQL user group meetings to get some more knowledge (I hear for the Feb meeting we’ve got a totally awesomesauce presenter returning).

    And then on a more annual scale, perhaps we could extend those family trips a bit more (and maybe I could find time for more SQL self-study!)

  61. where would I go? I’d go all the way back to bed after a heavy weekend of patching

  62. In a hammock under a couple of shade trees sipping ice tea and enjoying a cool spring breeze.

  63. If I could glance through all of my servers before bed at night, I might not end up having a re-occurring dream of the cheat raving (reference http://www.homestarrunner.com/sbemail45.html). That and I would not have to plan nice dinners with my girlfriend around restaurants with wi-fi. She is getting tired of Krystal burgers (white castle for you northerners).

  64. I’d go to Ye Olde Starbucks and talk up my baristas. Actually, while I’m there I’ll use the iPad to start a SQL Server and (maybe) some other stuff blog. I’m just a SQL n00b but I have a passion for the SQL Server community and I need to start somewhere. This might just be the kick-in-the-pants/shot-in-the-arm/(why are these all violent?)/etc I need to get off my ETL Developer/DBA (Yes, in that order. I dunno 70/30? Jeez! Get over yourself!) duff and start contributing in a bigger way.

  65. i’d to…back to sleep! lol

  66. I would either spend more time in gym working off this extra weight I’ve gained from sitting at a desk for the 10+ years or I would end up with a serious angry birds addiction on the iPad and never leave the couch.

  67. Well….If I dont have to worry about my servers I will attend free training all week and hit bars at the weekend…Or I will sell the ipad and pay for SQLCruise or one of your sessions:-)

  68. If I didn’t have to worry about our SQL environment I’d hang out on my deck with the dog enjoying the peace and quiet.

  69. I’d go for a run and be able to leave my cell phone at home.

  70. I would finally start enjoying my life! Go cross country and end up somewhere deep in the heart of mother nature. Climb mountain and take that perfect sunrise shoot I’ve always wanted to take.

  71. I would go help shovel snow off the Metrodome’s roof!

  72. I’d go anywhere that didn’t have cell phone coverage (or just turn the phone off).

  73. I would go to Italy and eat, India to pray, and Bali to vacation!

  74. I would go travel Europe and Asia. The world is huge and life is too short to be couped up in a cubical for 1/3 your adult life. I would start fully living.

  75. Many years ago I had a Windows Mobile ‘phone which came with a client for Remote Desktop Protocol. Through a complicated series of steps which involved opening an RDP session to my home PC and then a VPN connection to a client’s servers. On one occasion I used this to debug a failed SSIS job – using all the power of the phone’s GSM signal, 240 x 320 pixel screen and stylus – from the very top platform of Blackpool Tower. I thought at the time I might be the only person ever to be writing and running code from there.

    I personally wouldn’t have a use for the Red Gate tool so I’m not entering this giveaway, but it’s entertaining to read about everyone else’s needs.

    Cheers
    Duncan

  76. I’ll go on a date with my wife, knowing that everything is OK and that I have access to monitor my db at any time! Thanks.

  77. I would pack my 3 teens into a car and head to the biggest mall I could find that had a nice food court with comfy chairs. I’d take my laptop with the latest RPG game and just play play play, taking occational food and restroom breaks while my teens go nuts in the stores and movie theaters. There’s a REAL break from reality! :-)

  78. I’d take a flight into space… if only I had $200K floating around my bank account!

  79. I’d go to the Penny Arcade Expo on both coasts. As it is, I only catch Seattle each year, and still keep my laptop at hand.

  80. I would spend more time on the beautiful island of Menorca, so I could monitor my Spanish customers databases from nearer to them, in a more conducive temperature.

  81. I’d travel the world with my new iPad working from Europe, Australia, China, Japan, Canada and home eating and enjoying the food from all around the world. Visiting the office periodically, just to let them know I can still work hard while traveling the world too.

  82. I’d probably sleep in, under lots of blankets. It’s cold, folks.

  83. I would give a piece of my life back to the people who are the most important – my wife and children. I would spend time with my children not having that itching feeling in the back of my head worried about what is going on. Whether it is classroom holiday parties, trips to the park or a day trip to Orlando, freedom to enjoy them without anxiety. I would also spend more quality time with my wife to keep a strong bond. From there, trips to exotic remote places would come naturally.

  84. I’d turn on my electric hitchkicker’s thumb and catch the next space ship to alpha centauri.

  85. Would never leave my fishing boat.

  86. I would spendz more of my day relaxing inside the laundry hamper. It has strong AT&T 3G signal in therz.

  87. I would go backpacking and fly fishing for a week in the Absorka Beartooth mountain range just south of Red Lodge, Montana.

  88. I would take my family to Hawaii and not worry about a single thing.

  89. If I didn’t have to keep an eye on my DB instances, I would use my extra time to find newer and faster ways for my stuff to scale, and build new features. Proactive engineering is a lot more fun than reactive, after all.

  90. Brent,
    I’d go to one more yoga class or to spend more time reading your blog :)

    Cheers

  91. With an iPad and SQL Monitor, I would actually go home once in a while. (I know, what a concept!)

    Actually, once home, the iPad would most likely be commandeered by Wife or Children, so maybe I should rethink this…

  92. I would fulfill my dream of lounging in an Adirondack chair in the Adirondacks. An iPad is the perfect “lean back” computing device for an Adirondack chair.

  93. I would go to St. Simons Island GA and only come back when Spring is here.

  94. I think I ask myself this question almost daily nowadays. In all honesty, I really would like to go to a lot of places, especially warm places but I would give that all up to spend more time with family, my wife, friends and my dog. I would like to reconnect with quite a bit of people I have fallen out of touch with in my life. I would like to start my own family and have time to spend time with them.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love my job and I have truly enjoyed the last 12 years working with SQL Server. I just wish that sometimes I have the opportunity to dictate what is important in my life.

    Great contest at a great time. It is certainly that time of year to sit back and reflect at all that we have accomplished and all that we would like to accomplish both personally and professionally.

    Happy Holidays to All, wishing us all that our aspirations come to fruition in 2011.

  95. Having an Ipad to help monitor my databases would help with the coming training I am going through for my MS SQL licenses.

    angrySQLbird out.

  96. I would go to Timberline Lodge on Mt Hood in Oregon. I haven’t made it up to the mountain yet this year to go snowboarding, but I would be happy to send you a picture of me monitoring my servers from the ski lift or bar!

  97. Hi Brent,

    If I didn’t have to worry about the servers I’d take the family to Disneyworld or a Disney Crusie during the colder months, and travel to as many different MLB parks as I could during the summer.

    Maybe I’ll have to narrow this down a little since the iPad won’t bring me tons of money too…

  98. I would be able to join my family on their upcoming trip to Europe and not have to stay behind. Well, having said that, there are a few other issues as well, but if nothing else, I can stay in touch with them in a more spontaneous fashion using the iPad.

  99. Bottom line, since becoming a full-time DBA, I have not taken a REAL vacation with my family. If I had a peformance monitoring solution like Red Gate SQL Monitor and an iPad to facilite that monitoring, I would take my family on a much needed LONG vacation to the destinatin of their choice. If the kids chose it would probably be Disney World; however I’m thinking of visiting my brother’s family in Maryland that I haven’t seen in over 4 years.

    Just the thought of “remote monitoring/access” gives me goose bumps!

  100. If I could get away from my SQL Server monitoring tasks I would take my new kayak out and paddle it.
    I built it last winter and was too busy to get it on the water. How sad is that!

    I will send you a picture of it if you want. It is a very pretty blue that my wife picked out.

  101. I think I’m going to Katmandu,
    that’s really, really where I’m going to.
    If I ever get out of here,
    that’s what I’m gonna do.

  102. I would go ANYWHERE I WANT, or nowhere, just stay at home and relax. With no worry of crash or other problems, I am stress free and thus would be happy and free to be wherever I wanted. What a dream!

  103. I’d take a break from saving the City and head out to the beach – once it stops snowing!

  104. I would be home more and enjoy spending time with my family if I could monitor and troubleshoot my servers from anywhere.

    It would also give me the time and freedom to study and take my certification tests I’ve been working on for so long! The closest authorized testing center is over an hour away… then afterwards I could stay in town to celebrate!! :)

  105. If I didn’t have to worry about what my servers are doing, I would love to take my wife for a weekend away to New England in the Fall. Ideally we could find a nice secluded romantic cabin with a mountain view and a fireplace. Now to figure out what to do with the 4 kids… Is there an app for that?

  106. My family and I would go snow skiing for a week, it would be great to just check on thing with would packing a laptop everywhere you go.

  107. Pingback: Exciting Give Away -- 10 days of Christmas | Triangle NC Business Intelligence User Group (tripassBI)

  108. Four years ago I went to Disneyland Florida on honeymoon after I got married for the second time and I was just about starting to dig deep into a SQL career having only touched the service until then. That has to be two of the best weeks of my life (first time ever in the US from the UK, first time ever flying and I’ll be the big 5-0 next year) and I just know I would have to go back there.

  109. Hi Brent,

    I’d like a chance to win an iPad!!

    Cheers

    James

  110. At this point, we can’t even go far from home in town without me carrying my laptop. I am the only DBA we have so I have been on call 24×7 since 2002 when we started using SQL Server. I normally don’t get more than one call per week but if I’m not home, I have to drop what I’m doing and get there or the office to fix whatever has gone wrong.

    Most of our problems result from a poorly written vendor application that we can’t yet get away from. It causes deadlocks that, if I can’t catch them quickly enough, stop SQL Server and consequently all of the applications that hit this server. If I had a monitoring tool that would email me when a deadlock occurs and a way to fix the problem before it gets big, I could avoid the panic phone calls from our help desk and my boss.

    The freedom of being able to go around town and know that I can fix a problem wherever I’m at is only a dream. We would be able to see my brother more frequently and my sister-in-law (which would make my wife happy). Even mini-vacations with just my wife to spend a night away from home in a hotel would be possible without having to carry the laptop.

  111. This is an extract of my letter to Santa Claus:
    “If I win it I will go to Rome and Vatican City to explore all the ancient monuments and shoot a lot of photos with my new wide-angle 11-16 mm lens. I will eat italian desserts (I love tiramisu…) and enjoy the free time. :)”

    The entire letter was:
    “Dear Santa Claus,
    I am a production SQL Server DBA. There are four people in my team.
    I want to say that I have been very good this year, I did a lot of installations, I tuned a lot of queries and started to blog.
    I am very excited about Christmas and … the idea to win an Apple iPad and Red Gate SQL Monitor. I read about this in Brent Ozar’s blog.
    I know that Christmas is very demanding time in the North Pole – like a DBA day.
    Your elves probably know that I play for an Apple iPad and I am confident that they will do their best to put it up for me or something else I will truly adore /in case I won’t win the iPad/.
    If I win it I will go to Rome and Vatican City to explore all the ancient monuments and shoot a lot of photos with my new wide-angle 11-16 mm lens. I will eat italian desserts (I love tiramisu…) and enjoy the free time. :)
    Yours sincerely
    VeronikaP”

  112. I’d just go and walk the Earth. You know, like Caine in Kung Fu, walk from place to place, meet people, get into adventures.

  113. WOW! This is a hard decision. There are so many beautiful places on this big rock to see. I know my wife’s choice would be Germany. So maybe we would start there and just see the sites.

  114. It would have to be someplace kid friendly, as I have three kids under 3. And since it’s about 7 degrees F outside, I’d want someplace warm. I’d say Orlando.

    Regardless, have a great holiday season all hard working DBAs out there.

  115. I have to be on call every other week, so having a monitoring system to proactively prevent servers meltdowns (rather than react to problems when they hit) would be awesome. I could go on a tour of the world, visiting all of the famous and not so famous wineries with my trusty iPad which is small enough and light enough that I wouldn’t mind carrying it along in my bag. Oh, and I’d bring back a bottle or two for Brent. :)

  116. I would hop a plane to New Zealand and finally walk the Milford Track (http://www.backpack-newzealand.com/articles/topic111.php). Then spend another week or two looking for places like Hobbiton.

  117. Great blog post and so totally true, I dont even care where I would go, not having gone on a vacation in years where I haven’t checked my phone and brought my laptop, I would just be happy to unplug.

  118. I think I’d sneak down to the datacenter and point my finger at the servers muttering something along the lines of “haha, I’m not watching! I’m NOT watching”

  119. I would go where the kids can’t follow for an adult-only vacation.

  120. I’d go to Disney World! Actually my family goes there a lot anyway, but it would be great if I didn’t have to run back to the hotel to fix something when work calls.

  121. I’d just go home, without worry that I have to go back to my workplace

  122. I would go to Hawaii, sit on Waikiki beach and eat mangoes.

  123. I’d go to the pool more often with my kids!

  124. I would spend more time with my son off road in our Jeep. So I’d go to the desert.

  125. I would like to travel somewhere warm, even with our unseasonably warm weather.
    My favorite spot has been Grand Cayman for quite awhile – the snorkeling/diving is just my kind of getaway.

  126. When I am on call my wife gets angry because I do not like to take the dogs for a hike if it is going to be more than about 30 minutes before I am back to a computer. So if I had an I-Pad and Red Gates Monitoring I would go on those hikes anytime and the dogs would be so much more happy every third week.

  127. I’d go hiking in Point Reyes – far from laptop.

  128. We join our heroes as Luke Skywalker is attacking the Death Star:

    [Darth Vader is zeroing in on Luke's fighter]
    Darth Vader: I have you now!
    [one of Vader's wing-men explodes]
    Darth Vader: What?
    HanSQL: YAHOOO!
    [the Millenium Falcon appears]
    Tie Fighter pilot: Look out!
    [HanSQL fires again, the second fighter collides with Vader's, sending him careening away]
    [HanSQL checks his iPad. Thanks to Red Gate's trusty SQL Monitor tool, he can check his server's performance from anywhere, even in the heat of battle!]
    HanSQL: The server’s all clear, kid, now let’s *blow* this thing and go home!
    [Luke fires, the torpedoes dive down the exhaust port; the Millenium Falcon leads the remaining rebel ships away as the Death Star explodes]
    HanSQL: Great app, kid! It’s one in a million!

    In all seriousness, I’d spend more time training. Peace-of-mind is a valuable resource as a DBA, and when I’m not having to frantically monitor server instances, I’m able to spend my time training. There’s a cycle I’ve been trying to practice as a DBA: 1. Streamline and automate DBA tasks, 2. Spend new spare time training, 3. Use new training to start cycle over at step 1. Lather, rinse, repeat. I’m focusing hard on getting the MCM, and a tool like SQL Monitor will allow me more time to study and less time worrying about monitoring instances manually. Plus, it’ll help me fight the Evil Empire.

  129. I’d go skiing to Keystone, Colorado without a care in the world about our servers!

  130. I would take the MCM course!

  131. I don’t have to worry, I have others to do that, so anywhere would be fine :-)
    I know, therefore I do not need an i-Pad and SQL Monitor.
    But hey! how else would I get the cool toys and software.

  132. Nowhere! There’s no place like home…

  133. I’d be trying to scale Mount Kilimanjaro!

  134. I will like to travel 3166.571 Miles from Southampton, UK (50°53.861′N,1°24.154′W) to Amaokwe-Item, Nigeria (5°45.035′N,7°40.138′E) to start an IT (Database) Training Centre for the youth in the community. My Dream! and Yes there is 3G service there. And yes that is my hometown. And yes my current employer will be happy!

  135. I’m currently sitting at work in London monitoring servers, and if I was able to head off I’d love to jump on a plane to the United States and visit your amazing country ! If I had an IPad to take on my travels with me that would be an added bonus :) There’s so much of America I’m dying to see so here’s to some up comming adventures.

    Emma

  136. If I didn’t have to worry about my servers, I would be relaxing at home with my wife and 1-yr old twin daughters without checking my Blackberry or Laptop every 10 seconds waiting for Job Status emails or Deadlock Graph alerts.

    Ahhh…to be young and server-free again!

  137. I would finally take that trip to Akihabara in Tokyo where I can geek out knowing monitoring is within easy reach.

  138. What I’ll do with the extra time:
    This is going to sound corny, but at Christmas I love going with a couple of friends dressed in Santa to the local hospital and greeting the kids in the children’s ward, we play carols, (off key), and we hand out chocolate Santas.
    I would love to use the IPAD to help us with the caroling, ’cause we REALLY could use the help!
    Kids are good natured and play along, it really makes us feel great afterwards and less guilty when we go shopping at the mall. Bringing joy this holiday to one kid at a time…

  139. I’d probably have to go to work to fix all the problems that Red Gate SQL Monitor will show! ;)

    More Monitoring = More Problems (to fix)

    Which is probably a good thing if you like sorting out problems like me…

  140. Brent, good question. There are many things that I would if I did not have to worry about what my database servers are doing. Following are my priorities:
    •Spend time with family while am not sweating with different calls and pagers.
    •Go to SQL Cruise (which is what I am hoping for in 2011).
    •Attend Local, national and Virtual SQL Server Training Events. When servers are not behaving, I can learn SQL stuff from your recorded videos, and live presentation since I do not want to miss any of your presentations. I will attend PASS Summit 2011, if I do not have to worry about servers during that time frame.
    •Start getting involved in the SQL Community and share what I know.
    •Follow your blog all the time to learn new things every day. I love what you write in SQL World.
    • Get connected with friends around the world.

    Thanks,
    Abi Chapagai

  141. If I didn’t have to worry about my servers, I would ascend to a higher plane of existence.

  142. I guess I would go to more scout meetings, football practices, football games, band concerts, volleyball practices, volleyball tournaments and everything else of my kids that I have to miss from time to time due to server monitoring when I am on call.

  143. I’de go on SQLCruise! Wait I’m already going, so I’de be able to do more things like go out for dinner while I’m on call and don’t want to lug around a huge suitcase with the 20lb laptop. Plus an Ipad would give me a more appealing Nerd Karma over the laptop when out in public!

  144. Would not matter where I went… I would remain confident in the fact that I would always be “connected”. That confidence would be freedom enough.

  145. I would love to go somewhere, but since we are buried in snow, I would just chill out in front of a football game on TV.

  146. New Zealand for the Ironman
    http://www.ironman.co.nz/

  147. With an iPad my egomaniacal plans to take over the world would be one step closer… with SQL Monitor.. I’d constantly be reminded that I’m too busy to rule the world :P.

  148. DBA island…it’s a nice place!

  149. Why, off to the nearest bar to raise a glass to Red Gate, Apple, Al Gore (for inventing the Internet), and you Brent. Cheers!

  150. I’d take my wife to a beach in the Dominican Republic.

  151. I would go personally shake the hands of the SQL Monitor team in Europe, then go find the closest pub, and drink myself silly.

    I downloaded the SQL Monitor trial Thursday, and am very happy so far.

  152. I’d go back to Italy. First and only visit was for a family funeral. Still somehow fell in love with the place. This time I’d take the kids and not feel so guilty about enjoying myself.

  153. I would go to a ranch I know of near Geneva, Wyoming. No cell phones, but there is a land line so I can choose when to contact with work.

    Riding horseback, watching bald eagles soar and the elk grazing, no worries no presure. iPad in a saddlebag in case I can’t stand all the freedom from work.

  154. I would definitely go camping!

  155. Man if I could take a vacation that actually lasted more then 2 days, I would love to go to Europe…

    I really need to get out more.

  156. I will be going to Miami.

  157. Pingback: iPads for Christmas « Voice of the DBA

  158. I would go to the Maldives and then when i got back convince as many people as possible to use Red Gate Software telling them how great a solution they provide

  159. I’d take my 3 year old daughter to the New England Aquarium so she can see sharks and yell “SHARK!” and then run away from them yelling “I’VE GOT TO GET AWAY!”

    Eventually I’ll get the point across to her that they can’t get out of the tank.

  160. This would be a sweet b-day gift for me on the 20th! Aside from that, I would spend more time helping my boys build cool stuff with my, err I mean their Legos.

  161. Where I’d go if I had an iPad to monitor my servers, or where I’d go if I didn’t have to worry about my servers at all?

    In the former case, the PASS Summit. One of the reasons I wasn’t able to go this year was the concern that I wouldn’t be as responsive to production issues as we needed me to be for that week. An iPad and the ability to get out ahead of those issues would have addressed that nicely.

    But if I didn’t have to care about my servers at all? My wife and I would spend two weeks gadding about Europe, probably. Not having to worry about being able to get online at a moment’s notice, not having to care about the time differential, not even needing to make sure we’re available by cell phone at all times…ah, bliss!

  162. Hi Brent (and sorry for my english).

    I’m a SQL senior dba at one of the biggest banks in Spain and a frequent reader of your blog, SQLServerCentral and of course Grant’s site.

    Currently I have to monitor more than 120 SQL Servers in my environment.
    As I have not been able of finding a nice solution for monitoring my servers for several months, I’m currently developing my own monitoring application.
    As you can Imagine I’m wasting more time in this task than in controlling my servers.

    So I’m gone give a try to SQL Monitor and if I win, I will waste my time controlling and monitoring SQL Monitor (:-)) till I ensure that I can relax and let it work for me. At that point I will spend a lot more time with my two children and my wife (she was looking me. The official response is playing more billiard with my frieds)…

    Greetings from Spain.

  163. I’d go on vacation. Seriously, I’ve never taken one. I don’t care where, just so long as there’s 3G or some other form of connectivity. I helped to found a startup right out of high school and are still working very hard at keeping it going – 8 years running so far. My responsibilities include much more than maintaining our database servers so decent tools are a Godsend.

  164. I’d finally find time to blog/tweet and all that SQL professionals do :), and attend a SQL Immersion event if I could :) Thanks Brent.

  165. I’d be spending more time on the atlantic oceans beach in the summer, instead of spending more time inside closed buildings.

  166. I would go to Aruba, and relax with the Iguanas :)

  167. With the worries off my mind I would take the family to the mountains and enjoy the snow.

  168. I would go to Indianapolis to see family.

  169. I would listen to the rain falling on the ocean in the Gulf Islands (the Canadian version of the San Juans :)).

    I would probably also take longer breaks. Being able to take an hour for lunch without being out of touch… luxury.

  170. This last weekend I would’ve gone to the movies with my wife and kids.

    But, the question is where will I go, not where I would have gone. Taken in that context and falling into dreamland, I’d leave the kids at Grandma and Grandpa’s house and take my wife out of the cold Wisconsin winter to a nice warm desert spa in Arizona where people bring drinks to you as you sit on your chaise by the pool where thoughts of wind chill, diapers and “stop fighting with your sister” never enter your consciousness.

  171. I would bring the newborn son to see his great grandfather in Singapore. And make sure there’s Wifi on the flight so my new Ipad can access Red Gate SQL Monitor.

  172. I would go camping out at the lake with the family!! The 3G connectivity would allow me to follow this great blog! **wink, wink, nudge nudge**

  173. I would go home to NOLA and see my family.

  174. I’d go to Gulf Shores, Alabama to get some stress-free relaxing time away from the cold, snowy Midwest.

  175. First, I’d go to the bathroom. Putting that off while I deal with database fires for the past decade has given me unreal self control, but also an iritable bowel.

    After that… Whistler BC for some DH Mountain Biking.

  176. I would first go on a world tour to showcase all my fellow DBAs mate around the globe on how I make this possible with the help of iPad and SQL Monitor, then we can have fun together on subsequent tour :). How cool is it if all DBAs are on the move at one time?

  177. I would go to California because my 3 year old keeps talking about California.

  178. I’d use the iPad to be productivley monitor the servers during the long, boring, endless project meetings I get dragged into. And then only to find out that the database requirements are to store 10 records.

  179. Would get in a lot more road trips in my 1984 Nissan 300ZX Turbo 50th Anniversary.

    http://www.cardomain.com/ride/3839152/1984-nissan-300zx

    First would probably be San Diego to visit the Grandparents and enjoy the weather. Summertime swing by Michigan and Boston to see other family.

    Would be useful to have in late July 2011 for the National Z Convention in Savannah, GA.

  180. I would go on a road trip and visit all four universities that my children are currently attending.

  181. I could go home.

  182. I would take a trip to Kuala Lumpur!

  183. Wow, great contest. Where would I go… my wife and I just had baby number 3 at the end of September, so I would use this iPad to stay at home and spend more time with her and my other 2 kids. This time of year we also head through the Smoky Mountains for a quick overnight trip, pick me and I’ll try to get the Pic from in front of the Pigeon Forge, TN sign!

  184. I’d go to the British Virgin Islands, Jost Van Dyke to be specific. I’d get comfortable in a hammock at the Soggy Dollar and RELAX.

  185. I just go to India and cruise my royal enfield which has been sitting idle for a while..

  186. I could work from home and spend some quality time with my kids.

  187. I’d go home and finally be able to watch all the MCM Training Videos (In the iPad)

  188. Well, buddy.

    If I didn’t have any Servers to worry about, I’d definitely take my long-awaited trip back to my motherland – South Africa. I haven’t been back for 3 years & I haven’t taken my family to see it, yet.

    First place I’d go, guaranteed.

    See you soon.
    G

  189. I would be on my way to Red Gate to thank everyone with a kiss (or a handshake if you insist) for the iPad, but even more for the very useful tools they make! :)

  190. I want it so I can sell it on ebay and work via my phone from the taco truck.

  191. I would definitely go home with my wife… just for not to forget the stress hahahaha.

  192. I would go to the town of Las Negras in the very South East corner of Spain. Sit silent in the cafe by the beach, and look out at the sea and dream

  193. I will go skiing on weekends. Work more from the home, which in fact could be store/cafe/friend’s place

  194. Since I am in MinneSnowta i am not going anywhere right now, but the runways should be cleared by Chirstmas and I could take my new iPad and monitor SQl Server from Seattle or perhaps I could take it with me to cub scout Polar Camp and monitor SQL server while snow tubing down the hill.

  195. I would definitely do something with my family. Hopefully a nice long weekend away camping without any electronics. Well, maybe some headphones to wear while sleeping. Just in case the folks next door snore.

  196. It would be anywhere that is warm & sunny! Indiana is freezing cold, right now!

  197. I would go to Singapore. I went on business about 10 years ago. I loved it. They have plenty of WiFi there so it would be easy to check on my servers.

  198. I would take a few weeks off and travel up to Beaver Island, MI, with my wife. The family cabin has nothing fancy, and having the iPad would ease my co-workers nerves for that “just in case” moment.

  199. If I didn’t have to worry about what my servers were doing, I’d be in a wonderful place.

  200. I will definitely try to persuade my colleague to get an iPad and I will go somewhere without wifi coverage and really enjoy my holiday :-).

  201. I’d definitely be out of the house more with the family at any number of places like camping in our state parks (Texas) some of which have wifi access (not sure this is a good idea).

  202. If I didn’t have to worry about our servers I’d take my daughter to visit my grandmother down in sunny Orlando. :)

  203. I’d go visit my grandparents in Samoa.

  204. Hm.. if I don’t have to worry about my servers because it has SQL Monitor to keep an eye on it, I will be home worrying about my iPad and making sure it has plenty of juice… We’re DBAs and “Murphy’s” is our best friend.

  205. If I didn’t have any Servers to worry about, I would be a better happy person because I would stay more time with my family(wife, parents and relatives) and my friends. Moreover, I’d sleep without preocupation. Thats would be great. Thats is a dream.

  206. I long for a simpler time. A time when we weren’t always online and attached to a phone. A time when we could go hiking in the woods and some other dba wouldn’t walk by on the phone. So, I would find that place, pack my tent and a good book (or download a few iBooks :) ) and head off. To the woods. For some peace and quite. disconnected silence….birds chirping, wind blowing on the top of a mountain…some good tunes playing from iTunes….ah, a simpler time….that would be nice.

  207. I would use my time to make my databases even more better.

  208. If I didn’t have to worry about servers, I’d have more time to work on a startup, continue learning new technology, and connect with other developers!

  209. This is pretty cool. My in-laws don’t have internet access but I do get some reception on my iPhone.

  210. I would turn my attention to my oracle, and mysql db’s. I need the ipad so that I can watch your podcast@ work : )

  211. I would go on an Alaskan cruise. I’ve always wanted to go but now that Paul and Kimbery posted their pictures, I want to more! We have auditors that go up there often but I can’t seem to convince them to take me along.

  212. I promise to send you a picture from the Riviera Maya and drink Cuban rum in your honor. And not rub in the fact that it is 100 degrees warmer there than it is in Chicago…

    Norman Heyen

  213. I would go to the bookstore, read more techie books and drink coffee. Until I got the Ipad, and it would be ebooks ever after. Would love to remotely monitor my databases, too.

  214. I would grab my 60yr old camera, a whole pile of film (old school) and fly off to Shanghai to walk the old/new streets. The same streets that famed photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson walked 60 years ago to photograph the dynamic world of the street.

    The only reason I would need a blackberry would be to call my wife to tell her that I was having an amazing time!

  215. I would sip hot cocoa in my chonies while sitting in front of a roaring fire and watching the snow pile up.

  216. To follow the rules to win an iPad and Red Gate monitor, I would go home to spend Christmas with my family and I could also watch NF on the iPad if I have to go into the office.

    I. M. Happy,
    winners circle,
    Red Gate, BC

    This MSG is self promoting.

  217. … having the time to grab the wife, baby girl and 2 dogs and be able to go out to hike in the woods. Imagine stopping by a stream, unpacking the iPad, quick server check, back in the bag and off we continue our hike… IT life redefined

  218. I’d definitely go on a nice long Alaskan cruise.

  219. I would head to Arizona for winter and monitor my servers. I would NOT return to Minneapolis until spring. Then i can justify taking Friday afternoons off and still monitor the sql servers from Target Field!

    Jason

  220. Living in prime off-road country, it would be great to be able to head off to a nearby riding area without having to worry about the status of servers.

  221. Probably Starbucks. I feel like everyone their has an Apple product me.

  222. Hi Brent. Been a DBA now since the 6.5 days. I would love to have a dashboard that I can see at a moments notice since I manage over 50 instance myself. Thanks and all the best.

  223. If I didn’t have to worry about my instances I would take a long road trip down to Mexico for some beach and resort action. Mas, por favor.

  224. I would go crazy.

  225. If I weren’t monitoring SQL servers, I’d take me a 2 week trip to 2 great american cities.

    First, I’d go to Houston to see if I could find where Brent Ozar used to live and get my picture taken in front of his old hacienda. Sure, I’d check out the normal sites in and around Houston like the Johnson Space Center, and the beaches at Galveston, but I’d also check out downtown Houston and see what makes it such a cool city. In the evenings I’d take my pretty wife to all of the Pappas restaurants (1 each night) and would have to take her to Brent’s favorite Houston night spot, Gilley’s in Pasadena, Texas (even though it’s closed now ;)).

    After leaving Houston, I’d catch a flight to Brent’s current city, Chicago which is probably my 2nd favorite US city. In Chicago, the first item on my list would be to find Brent’s current address, and shake his hand, and get a picture taken with him. Then, I’d have to check out Michigan Avenue. Take a river cruise, and attend a sporting event at one of the many professional sports venues. No trip to Chicago is complete without a day at Grants Park, and out on Lake Michigan. Of course, you have to see the Navy Pier, and the aquarium, and why not take in some of the great eating establishments the city has to offer like Geno’s East, and the Frontera Grill.

    Yep, this is the trip I’d take if I had an Ipad to monitor my servers and was able to actually leave my office and have a life.

    Please let me win.

    Holland G. Humphrey

  226. I would still go to work but I don’t have to worry about being at work on time. I can check the servers during my long commute to work on the Metra.

  227. I would go down down to goblin town, and using my ipad as a flashlight i’d find a shiny ring that could turn me invisible! My nephew would one day inherit the ring and probably lose it or something, but at least I’d have it for a little while.

  228. I’d love to finally be able to justify getting some time off and taking the promised but long delayed trip to Canada and the Northern US again with my partner. (I live in Aus)

    It’s been way too long and planned for some time, many friends to catch up with and people to meet but difficult to justify getting time off with the recruitment hassles over the past 12-18 months and being the only one on deck 90% of the time leaves very little wiggle room.

  229. I would actually go somewhere nearby, and that’s Congaree National Park (http://www.nps.gov/cong/index.htm). My boys and I have only done one of the trails, and because bad weather was coming in, we did it really quickly. Since it’s an “old growth floodplain forest,” there’s so much to see and do. Otherwise, I’d love to take them down to Magnolia Gardens and Cypress Gardens down in Charleston. Magnolia Gardens is absolutely beautiful and I’ve never had a chance to go out in that swamp. Teeming with wildlife, peaceful and away from everything… are you kidding me? Either of those two locales would be great.

  230. I would spend more time soaking in the bath, I work too hard already – do they make waterproof IPad covers???

  231. Pingback: Where I’d Go | JonoTech.com

  232. I’d take my 3 year old hiking in the Issaquah Alps. More than a few times I’ve taken my pager hiking, and it’s difficult to enjoy the outdoors when you’re constantly worrying about getting a call. Having the ability to check the vitals on SQL at the trailhead and maybe again on the trail would let me relax a little more and enjoy the time together. Here are a few pictures from one of our past trips up Poo Poo Point in Issaquah, WA:
    http://jonotech.com/1088/where-id-go/

    Also, my company recently bought me a Redgate SQL Refactor license and I have to say they make great software. That tool alone has saved me huge amounts of time.

  233. I would have time to work to
    1) Work on my web site – justsqlit.com
    2) Add a few blog post
    3) Continue training to be the best I can be.
    4) Sleep better at night.

  234. @brent ozar

    i will go to my home country that is hyderabad india to see my parents as it has been three years i have not seen them.

    if i get little shot time then i will fly to ohio or florida to see my brothers.

    thanks for the contest.
    thanks for your blogs it really helps to daily dba life.

    Ishtiaq Ahmed
    Operations Database Administrator
    Portfolio Solutions
    Lender Processing Services, Inc.
    1270 Northland Drive, Suite 200
    Mendota Heights, MN 55120
    (651) 707-1731 (W)
    (651)-280-8440 (C)
    ishtiaq.ahmed@lpsdesktop.com
    http://www.lpsvcs.com

  235. My 14 months son just started walking… Will love spend more time with him… play and go to beach for walk (v.v. long walk) and have infinite fun. Wouldn’t trade that time for nothing !!!

  236. I need my life back….work!An iPad with SQL Monitor would cetainly help me achieve that.

  237. I would go to the zoo with my kids.

  238. I’d be able to go spend more time with the family and to take care of my health – go to a gym.

  239. If I was not monitoring my servers I would visit the great state of Alaska. I have always wanted to visit and take a vacation there!

    I have been using the Redgate ToolBelt Suite for the last 3 years. Best money spent so far on a 3rd party tool for MSSQL.

  240. An all summer and part winter road trip from Bellingham, WA to Barrow, AK :)

  241. If I didn’t have to worry about what my servers were doing, I would go to my son’s pre-school. I would love to have more time to introduce him at a young age to all the wonderful technology we have now and help get him started on his MCM! (got to hit them up when they are young!)

  242. I will be finally able to travel to French Open and see some kick ass Nadal rallies while inside the court with my ipad wont have to worry about servers any more

  243. If I had portability like that, I could spend more time visiting my Mum… or dating.

  244. I would sit at home on the weekend with my family. Kick back and watch Walter milk a cow.

  245. where you’d go if you didn’t have to worry about what your servers are doing?

    I love to go with ipad to cafeteria in my office for coffee and go out of office to smoke cigarette relaxingly along with monitoring server.

    Note: I have access to wi-fi in my company.

  246. l would go to catalina and work from an island.

  247. My first kid took her first baby steps (2 years ago) while we were launching live one of the major elearning sites. Now my second baby will take his first baby steps soon enough, and I don’t want to miss that.
    But truth be told, I don’t think that ipad thing will last more than, say, a week, so I won’t have much of a chance of monitoring my servers from the ipad:-)

    regards,
    io

  248. I’d be on the first plane to New Zealand to find a beach in the middle of no where and sit and watch the sea.

  249. I want to go and meet Wiki-leaks guys to request them to furnish some info about PARIS HILTON.Haven’t heard about her for a while:-)

  250. Given a bit more freedom, I think that I’d run a few more Spartan Races – http://www.spartanrace.com/

    Heck, does that mean that I’d need a picture at the race with my iPad?

  251. I’d spend more time playing with my SQL Servers and doing more of the SQL exams.

    “The larger the island of knowledge, the longer the shoreline of wonder.” ~Ralph W. Sockman

  252. I will go for hiking in Himalayas. Its been a long time since I went for hiking after taking up DBA job.

  253. I will immediately start to write adventure novel in 2 parts:
    1. “A nightmarish life without SQL Monitor”
    2. “How to use a lot of free time(or life with SQL Monitor)”

    What can help me to do it?
    Yes! Right! iPad and SQL monitor.
    :-)

  254. I would either go to Australia and New Zealand – which I wanted to do for a long time – or I would make a cooking journey through Italy and France, hopefully finding some tasty recipies :-)

  255. I would go and chill in a jacuzzi in the snow.

  256. Hi Brent

    With the flexibility of not worrying about my SQL Servers i would go in thin air to summit Everest Base Camp…

  257. Hi Brent,

    I am the only DBA at our company, so while planning my holiday trip to the philippines I was urged to check the hotel for w-lan access and of course to pickup my notebook. Trying out some drinks at the beach while catching a glimpse of our servers’ status is so much cooler :)

  258. I would like to go to Brasil with carnaval !

  259. i would go to picnic with my family

  260. I will go for hunting my girl friend, am single ready to mingle…….

  261. Woo Hoo! I’d go to the North Shore in Minnesota. Spend a few days on the Scenic drive. Lake Superior Scenery, fantastic meals, and super-friendly people! Thanks Brent and Thanks Red-Gate for making this happen…

  262. I think I’d go see my mom, Spokane Washington. Not the most exciting entry on this list, but that’s where I’d go.

  263. I’d go to Machu Picchu hunt some Chupacabras.

  264. I’d be able to…

    1) Spend some more time at university (not because I want to, because I should :P , damn classes being so long)
    2) Take a trip somewhere, maybe go to Uruguay for the day (I’m Argentine btw)

  265. I’d head off to Australia to watch England sticking it to them in the Ashes

  266. With my newfound freedom of being able to step away from the office while being able to monitor servers anywhere, anytime, I’d book a trip to the PASS Summit 2011. There I would have to buy Brent, Steve & Grant the first two rounds for making my life so much easier.

    Simultaneously, with all of my extra time being able to proactively manage some of my 50+ instances, I would take up blogging on my new iPad.

  267. i would build a little atachment for my easle.
    so while i am painting in the studio or in the woods, i could easily be informed of server status.
    may even rip off a few colors from the ui…

  268. I can’t wait to start living at home again. Free to worry less.

  269. I would go to bed. AS getting up in the middle of the night to fix an issue is not my ideal dream (which is what it feels like sometimes the next morning).

  270. I’d take my beautiful wife that I don’t get to spend as much time with as I’d like and take her to Europe.

  271. If I didn’t have to worry about my servers, I would go on a date. That is, if I can find someone who isn’t scared of a nerd that’s been stuck inside too long. So, if you have any compassion…. HELP!

  272. Simply go fishing. Take some time to relax and think about somthing other than “what if” a server is down tooooooooo long.

  273. Man I’d go to way more college football games with the family without having to worry about the pager going off in the middle of the game and have to leave!!

  274. Brent,

    I’d sit in Krispy Kreme donuts until…

    a) I run out of money
    b) They run out of donuts
    c) I get stretchered out due to injury
    d) I am forcibly removed

    Cheers

  275. I would go home early from work and cook a real meal ( grandma’s famous meatballs ) for my kids (instead of Mac and Cheese). Not that there is anything wrong with Mac and Cheese. Then after dinner we can go toboganning ( aka down hill sledding ) in the winter. In the summer, swimming at the lake.
    Red Gate to the rescue…..

  276. I’d be seeing if Santa is still stuck in my Chimney from last year.

  277. I would head to the hill for some snowboarding if we ever get snow around here. Everyone is getting tons of snow and we have been getting rain instead. I guess that is what happens when you buy a season pass for the first time, hehe.

  278. I would spend some quality time at home with my family.

  279. A good vacation with my family in Europe.

  280. If I were able to go somewhere without having to worry about monitoring servers, I’d go some place WARM! Here in northeast Ohio, today’s high is supposed to be about 15 degrees, and the wind chill as low as 10 below.

  281. I will be playing in a chess tournament trying to get a national master norm. My USCF rating have been stuck in the 1900′s for a while. With RGSM,I will have the time and peace of mind to move it on up.

  282. I would take my iPad with me on my yearly cruise. There is plenty of wifi available in most ports so I could definitely see me sitting on the balcony of my room on my Big Ship away from home and checking to make sure my servers were running sweetly as I sipped my coffee. Then because the iPad is so portable, I could take it with me on my excursions! I could see myself finding comfort in the fact that I could check my servers while sipping pina coladas on the beach in Cozumel or ensuring that I could enjoy that cave tubing ride in Belize because I had my iPad along in a cute little waterproof pouch! And finally, I could even be secure in knowing my servers were ok as I play away at the penny slot machines in the ship’s casino!

    Now that’s the way to lessen the worry about what’s going on with my servers while I am away and enjoying myself! Ahhh…..relaxation, here I come!

  283. Lunch – peacefully :)

    Seriously though when on call the BlackBerry just doesn’t cut it when an email alert comes in and all you can do is look through the text. It would be NICE to be able to dig a bit deeper rather than having to get up and go back to my desk.

    Dreaming…. Even if I don’t win thanks for the fun while I think about it. :)

  284. If I got this new, shiny iPad I would be feeding crocodiles with chickens far away from my databases!

  285. I would go on my first cruise to the Carribean!!!!!!!! YO MAANNNNN

  286. If I were to win this I could go into the future happier.

    I wouldn’t have to rush in traffic to get to work.
    I wouldn’t have to rush in traffic to home to be able to dial in.
    I wouldn’t have to rush around to ensure things aren’t breaking.
    I wouldn’t have to carry a heavy laptop everywhere to be able to dial in.

    As a bonus the reduced rushing means I will probably also live longer :)

  287. I will go anywhere I can play golf in 30 deg temp with a cart full of beer.

  288. I’d go to the Antarctica, stand next to an Emperor penguin and have my picture taken (this is on my bucket list). But I have to say, with temperatures in Atlanta this morning at 14 degrees, the Antarctica isn’t looking so appealing … despite the inhabitance of Emperor penguins.

  289. I have always been a fan of extreme adventures, whether it be climbing the northern flank of K2, rock climbing, diving in shark infested waters, etc. This time, though, I would probably have to chose a visit to someplace like the Amazon jungle – I have never been to a jungle environment before and it would be a great escape from work!

  290. I’d relax fishing in Halong Bay, Vietnam.

  291. If I’m lucky enough to win this contest, I would be able to spend more time with my wife and our soon-to-be-born baby. We would then be able to go on family vacations without me worrying about the databases! :)

  292. I would go anywhere in the Caribbean where I could relax on the beach, snorkel, and enjoy the sun!

  293. I’d go off to my 6 year olds events without worrying about having to leave in the middle to check on a problem.

  294. Hello Brent,

    My answer is simple but takes a moment to explain. I’d be able to spend one extra day per month in Toronto with my daughter. You see, I’m divorced from her mother and we live in two different provinces. I drive from Montreal to Toronto once a month on a Friday night, pick up my daughter on Saturday to spend time with her, then drive back on Sunday. Having an iPad with a simple monitoring tool would mean that I could drive out on Thursday night instead. It would mean we could spend more time at a museum, or the Science Centre, or Casa Loma instead of my worrying about the clock for the entire trip. This is real quality time with my daughter that I value very highly.

  295. I will go to Mount Everest!

  296. I’d like to see monitoring thru a firewall nice and easy ala LogMeIn style…without the sec issues….and world peas!

  297. I really wouldn’t go anywhere, but I would spend more quality time with my family and especially the grandkids.

  298. Brent,

    I would spend more time on my tractor in Vermont taking care of the organic farm I help out on. iPhone’s work OK from an email notification perspective but the iPad form factor would allow me to actually make changes in the field. (excuse the pun)

    Hope you have a great holiday.

    –sean

  299. I’d love to be away spending time with my young family and wife somewhere nice and hot. Its been particularly cold here in Scotland recently so a bit of heat would be well appreciated knowing that I’m ahead of the game should events go pear shaped.

  300. I’d round up the folks and go diving in the Great Barrier Reef
    :daniel

  301. I wouldn’t go anywhere I would be at total piece knowing that I can which is a vacation in itself.

  302. My husband and I are foodies, so we would take a driving tour of the California coast and eat, eat, drink, eat, then maybe drink some more.

  303. We visited France a couple years ago. I’d go back to Paris in a heartbeat.

  304. If I didn’t have to keep track of my 100+ DBs constantly, I’d finally be able to go for the 3 week SQL Server MCP session in Redmond, or even better, go on the next SQL Cruise!

  305. I would stay home and watch Seinfeld reruns.

  306. I would go home earlier and monitor the servers while playing with my kids.

  307. My wife and I started a software business 13 years ago in Pennsylvania. My wife recently decided to open a small hotel/restaurant in Puerto Rico. As you can imagine, she travels quite frequently so she can better manage the operations. Unfortunately, I am unable to accompany her on these trips because of monitoring the databases and business located here.

    If I were to win an iPad, I would be able to travel with her more often. I would be very grateful for this very generous gift, and would probably reciprocate by offering a weeks stay at our hotel.

  308. I’d love to go to the Marquesas. A friend spent some time there on a six-month sailing adventure and said it was the most beautiful place they stopped.

  309. If I had nothing to worry about I would like to go to the Outback in Australia. About as remote as you can get with no way to check on the systems or be bothered.

  310. I will go to Paris, France and check my servers’ status while having a café ole. Merci, Red Gate SQL Monitor.

  311. I’d feel much more comfortable lounging on the beach knowing I have good solid monitoring and the tools to address issues when I need to.

  312. I am not sure it’s a case of where would I go but more of a case of where wouldn’t I go?

    Last year I hit a couple of SQLSaturdays, one locally in Redmond and another in Salt Lake. In 2011 I’d really like to hit a few more, ones that are a little further from home.

    I’ve already submitted a session to SQLSat #67 in Chicago and plan to present at least 4 times next year at different events.

    Having the ability to check the health of my environment without having to crank up the laptop, vpn in and bounce through a few servers would be such a nice thing to have on those travels.

  313. I would take my kids back to the “rock” and visit Twillingate to watch the icebergs drifting by and enjoy the wildlife.

  314. I go to Holden Beach, NC!!! I’d get a waterproof cover for the thing and take it out on the sea kayak! It would take away all of the angst I get when I’m “out of pocket”.

  315. Haleakala – This is the volcano on Maui and a very popular tourist attraction. Many people drive to the top, some pay for a bike ride down from the top, but only a very few have the really great experience of hiking down into the volcano. Inside the Volcano is like being in another world. The scenery is like Mars with multiple colored rocks, lava flows, cinder conves, and sands. Most of the Volcano is above the humid air near the surface but the trade winds can blow clouds UP into the volcano. I have been lightly ‘misted’ on from these clouds where the botton brim of my hat was wet and the top was dry.
    Best way to hike the volcano is to park at the Halemau‘u Trail (8,000 ft.) just past the park headquarters. Leave the car there and catch a ride up to the top of Haleakala (10,000 ft). Hike down the Sliding Sands trail to the Halemau trail and back up to the car. It’s about 11.5 miles but mostly downhill except for the steep last part back up to the car. Be sure to take a jacket and plenty of water.

  316. I’d finally take my motorcycle for a trip in the desert Southwest of the United States. I’d see the Cliff Dwellings and the Grand Canyon. I’d experience Saguaro cactuses for myself!

  317. Heck, I’d just settle for being able to dine out when I’m on call with my family uninterrupted, or perhaps go to a karate practice or tournament without worrying about having to run off (due to server problems, and not due to losing a fight! LOL)

  318. It would get used in my son’s sheet fort. Not only would it be used for monitoring work related issues but it might be able to spot aliens, pirates or mole men. All depending on our journey that day.

  319. I would be on a Southern Most Florida beach with 3G access relaxing and thumbing through the pages of my favorite book Professional SQL Server 2008 Internals and Troubleshooting :)

  320. Interesting how many people want to win…including me… :)
    Well, I’d return back to Hurghada, Egypt, where my honeymoon was. It was a great time, I’d like to repeat it. Nothing to worry about, there are no clouds on the sky, the last rain was 5 years ago…hmmm…

    But, in the late evenings, I’d play Dexter and hunt down all the stupid and arrogant developers who produce bad performing schema and code and are absolutely sure that the server itself and the operating staff is the root cause of the bad performance. :)

    Anyway, I take it easy…

  321. Simple as SQL :) – Buenos Aires, Argentina – Tango!!!

  322. I have two young children, so If I didn’t have to worry about what my servers were doing, I’d be spending more time with them, coaching their various sports teams, taking them to zoos and dinosaur museums, and chocolate factories (ok I admit, that last one might be more for myself)
    Then I’d finally take my wife (and kids) to her dream destination of Scandinavia, since she’s the one who has so graciously put up with all the late night phone calls and dinner interruptions and various mutterings under my breath which should not be repeated here.

  323. Not having to monitor SQL – well that would sort one half of the family out. My wife is also a DBA , so at least one of us will get some sleep , between looking after the children. :)

  324. When one of our DBA’s left a few months ago, it threw our Blackberry rotation into chaos. Where we used to rotate once every three weeks in terms of being on call, we went through a period once every other week or two weeks in a row, not fun at 3am. Even now that we have a replacement and are at full strength, I’m slowly realizing there is a whole quality of life issue involved, and I don’t want to have to schedule around my friends birthdays or go on trips out of town, having to worry how close I am to an internet cafe or lugging my large laptop. I would love to just be able to go to the beach in the summer, see the leaves in the fall, and not have to tell my friends “Sorry, I’m on call” just because I’m worried about a backup failure. :)

  325. I would take my 14 year old daughter (who suffers from Irritable Bowel Syndrome and still always make the A Honor Roll) snowboarding and snow skiing in Vail Colorado. We had planned to go in February of this year, but a severe winter storm hit the Gulf Coast, wreaked havoc with the airlines, and forced the cancellation of our dream vacation. iPad or no iPad, we’re going during Mardi Gras week because she’s a great kid and deserves it after what she’s had to endure.

    Good luck to all contestants!

  326. I would use the time to study more the SQL Server Exams that I am hoping to pass.

  327. I would go to starbucks, eat an apple fritter and enjoy the new ipad. I hear they are pretty good. ;)

  328. Wow, everybody wants an iPad. I know I do! And I mean, come on, who can beat the low, low price of a comment post?? Guess I’ll have to put in my two cents. . .

    If I didn’t have SQL servers to worry about, I think I’d go give this place a try — supposedly it’s the longest, fastest, highest zipline in North America. Sounds like the kind of place you can’t find coverage for receiving those server alerts and panicked phone calls. Ah, nothing but the soothing sounds of nature high up in the Catskills. Well, that and the wind whipping by as you zip like crazy down the side of a mountain! Sounds like my kind of place :)

  329. I would go to paradise. Paradise for me is being present and joyful when I’m with my loved ones. It’s pretty hard to do that when you have to worry about what’s going on with the servers…

  330. I’d go to Lake Athabasca in northern Saskatchewan, Canada… fishing for a week.

  331. I’m sure it has been said, but I’d just go home. Much easier to get real work done there :-)

  332. If I didn’t need to worry about my SQL Production servers over this silly season I would be in Margaret River , Western Australia where the only IT stuff is the cash tills at the wineries, breweries and restaurants. The major attractions there include surfing, relaxing in a rural paradise and unwinding from the hectic urban lifestyle. The best part would be playing with my small child doing what they want for a change when they want, rather than being handy to Mum’s work :(

  333. NYC or northern California. I’d love to see the city or take a drive in the napa valley.

  334. I’d go to Nantucket, MA. I used to go there every summer to work during my undergraduate years. It has been some 3 years I have visited the place. During those 90 hours a week fray, I always used to think of coming back once for a real nice vacation once I start my professional career. I guess:

    if exists(select name from WinnerList with (nolock) where isIpadWinner = 1 and isRedGateWinner = 1)

    has my name, I can make a trip there soon!! :)

  335. I suppose I would go to Incline Village and relax at the lake. :)

  336. Hi Brent Ozar,
    Where would I go?
    I would go to my hometown where my grandma lives.
    The last time when I rang her, she told me she want to meet me before she pass away.
    Since that time I was willing to go back my hometown for a while.
    But if I go there, I need to spend at least 10 days and I cannot leave my SQL servers that long,
    I was thinking there is something can help me to monitor my servers from anywhere and anytime I want.
    At last, sql monitor is the answer. But I still don’t have budget to buy this..
    Then I found this contest….
    Wooow!! Great!!!
    I think this is a chance to go to my hometown and to see my grandma….
    (Dreaming … Dreaming.. Ha Ha..) :)

  337. I’d go to Paris France with the family. The last time we went it was raining and cold.

  338. I would go visit my mother, and cook her warm soup in this cold weather.

    Now you want me to win so you can help feed my mother soup. ;)

  339. Hi Brent,

    Blimey that is a toughie – I mean with our oranisation I always have to worry about what is going on with our servers – night and day !!!

    If I was actually allowed to have a nice break then it would have to be somewhere warm. We are having really terrible weather over here in the UK at the moment.

    I think I’d like to go back to Orange County, California. I worked there once a few years back and it was amazing – well, compared to the UK anyway !

    Hope you have a great Christmas – thanks for all the amazing blogs !!!

    Kieron

  340. I’d go back in time (apparently there’s an app for that), fly over to Seattle and “persuade” whoever it was who thought adding autoshrink to the maintenance plan wizard was a good idea to have a rethink.

  341. First, install Windows blue screen of death sceensaver – I’d hate to miss the adrenalin rush. Then, Bournemouth beach, winter, summer, rain or sun – I can dream can’t I.

  342. I would use the free time to go out for a meal with my family.

  343. Easy. I’d go to the nearest Apple Retail Cathedral and head upstairs (sorry, to the mezzanine, rather…) to the Genius Bar(TM). I’d idly sit sipping espresso with my flash new iPad and wait for the first Evangelist Genius to approach.

    “Hey, buddy! Whatcha doin’ with your iPad over there?”
    “Ah, nothin much. Just checking on my SQL Servers.”

    Because you can be a PC. On a Mac.

    Obviously I’d escape by means of a down-stairs somersault montage as the monotheist monument began to crumble…

    • Paul – heh, been there. I’ve had to visit the Genius Bar a few times – own any piece of gear with a really good extended warranty, and you’ll find yourself in that situation – and it’s always fun. They can tell by my answers that I know at least a little about IT, so then they’ll ask what I do for a living. It’s always fun saying, “Yep, I give presentations at Microsoft offices about Microsoft products using my Apple gear.” :-D

  344. I would go to the bathroom.

  345. I would have lot’s of quality time with my family.

  346. Hmmm, I think I’d go to bed!

  347. Somewhere deep in the woods, where there is no network of any kind, and nowhere to charge anything.

  348. Hi Brent,

    I would definitely go to Switzerland for a month and relax at the countryside!

    Then, when I would come back, I would continue working with SQL Server 2000, 2005, 2008, 2008 R2 and 2011! :)

    Cheers,
    Artemakis

  349. I’d move across the coffee shop to the comfy chair with no outlet.

  350. It would be great to win. :-)

  351. I would go out in the middle of my 40 acres and sit in my deer stand. I’m too busy now to spend enough time there.

  352. Home to spend some quality time with my gorgeous wife!

  353. Hi Brent,

    I would spend more time with the family and then catching up on my backlog of SQL Server reading I’ve been putting off.

    Thanks,
    Dave

  354. I would go to the Animal Care Center and work as Volunteer for that group who helps and treats the injured cows.

  355. I’m trying to modernize our data operations, and SQL Monitor could help me take a huge step in the right direction.

    With less to worry about at work, maybe I could finally take a trip to San Francisco, my favorite city, for something other than a conference.

  356. If I am free from work, I will spend most of my time play with my kids.

  357. I would go to Austraila for Christmas on the beach. Far too cold in Britian at the moment.

  358. Work on planning a trip to outer space…hmmmm would and iPad even work there? Maybe I need to stick closer to home.

  359. I’d use it in my woodworking shop. Then I could monitor the servers and watch instructional videos as needed.

  360. If i did not have to worry about any servers then i would simply go back to bed.

    Once there i would close my eyes and my mind would take me wherever i wanted, limited only by itself!

    Merry Christmas.

  361. I will do simple thing: spend more time with my 4 years old daughter

  362. In the immortal words of Otis Redding, having more free time would put the “Shama Lama in the rama rama ding dong”

    My wife would smile.

  363. A little less stress, a little more time with the family and a slightly better life – I would consider this to be an incremental backup of my life.

  364. I’d finally take my (4 months now) overdue honeymoon with my wife driving down the coast of California.

  365. Wow! What would I do? I’d finally be able to take a vacation without stressing about having to run to the nearest place that has free wifi. Being one of two DBA’s at my company, we have to stress so much about scheduling vacations and worrying about who is going to be available…No more of “Hey I am at a restaurant and can’t log in, are you at home???” …And I won’t have to worry anymore about my wife saying “AGAIN ! ! !”

  366. If I had to worry less about the servers, Id like to trade forex from Antartca

  367. I would go home and spend more time with my family.

  368. If I could go anywhere it would be back to Fort Myers Beach, FL. As when my family was there a year ago my 3 year old had the time of his life. Plus it is in driving distance of so many nice places to go visit. Although the one thing I would change would be to try and make it down there when there isn’t a cold snap going on.

  369. If my servers were completely autonomous (and my wife and 3-yr old), I would be in the out islands of the Bahamas doing a little diving, sailing and flying (may also involve a lottery ticket – Hey, a guy has to have goals).

  370. We all need more time for making snowmen and snowball fights with the kids, right?

    I’d definitely spend time with the family.

  371. i would finally go to bed :)

  372. Perhaps I am too easy to amuse.. going outside – anywhere – for a few hours without a frazzled tech calling me would be bliss. Grocery shopping, piano lessons, all of that only stress free!

  373. Actually, I would probably just hang out at my favorite coffee shop more.

  374. I would go to Starbucks and be the cool kid with an iPad!

  375. I’m also overdue a honeymoon after the recession practically destroyed my finances. After that I would probably want to do a graduate degree.

  376. I will go to Watkins Glen International an enjoy another Montoya’s win…

  377. I would use my IPAD to escape a war room… Go to the pub sit in front of an open fire and have a decent pint!

    Browse for an app to work out how to play call of duty remotely and send an email to the mrs to come and pick me up as i forgot about servers and got drunk!

  378. Pingback: SQL for Newbies – A Site for People New to Microsoft SQL Server » Goals for 2011

  379. If I had to worry less about the servers I’d get my boat out of the garage more than 3 times next summer.

    Boats shouldn’t get dusty, ya know?

  380. I wouldn’t even have to get out of bed!

  381. Downeast Maine for some deep cold xc skiing and a cabin with a fireplace, ayahp.

  382. Whistler, BC Canada for skiing :)

  383. I’d spend more time with my kids, and take them on the road trip to Yellowstone that I have been promising for a while now…..

  384. I would go to a beach like in the Corona commercials. But don’t worry, I wouldn’t skip the iPad on the water or anything.

  385. I would be away from my computer hiking, camping, spending time with my family!

  386. I would love to go on the 5 day SQLCruise 2010 from Miami to Grand Cayman and Cozumel.

  387. This summer I would sit relaxing on Lambert’s Cove Beach looking out on Vineyard Sound on the island of Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts with my iPad and SQL Monitor. No need to worry!

  388. I’d really like to spend more time at the local park with my twin 2 year old boys. They like feeding the ducks and I think that I’m missing out on it..

  389. Baby on the way in March and recent SQL issues requires more of my time. Would be nice to have a central view to whats going on either at my desk or at home.

  390. I would go on that vacation I’ve been putting off for the past two years, I hear brazil is nice this time of year …

  391. I’d go to London for Premier League football matches that get good around christmas.

  392. Sorry I did not read the requirement clearly. please remove my previous comment and use this one instead.

    I will definitely go out with my family to go skiing in Yosemite National Park, my wife’s favorite place.

  393. Ha Let me Think,
    I would spend more time Cooking, and visiting new places each time around US firt and then World with my Wifey.

    Kiran.R

  394. I would go ski at lake of tahoe with my family!

  395. I would go back to Xalapa and spend some time at Texolo Falls.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xalapa
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cascada_de_Texolo

    Now, that’s livin’!

  396. A wise man once said “The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.”.

    I truly do not want to only read a page or even a chapter of the book that is our world. There is a vast amount of knowledge and life experiences to be had for those that have the freedom to travel.

    This give away will allow the lucky winners to read the novel that is our planet Earth.

  397. Finally… a chance to watch my sport events and servers at the same time… giving me the opportunity to watch games worry free on my to Europe

  398. Well the UK is rather cold right now , so if getting away was more than a dream, I’d take my family down under to Australia!

  399. Awwwww this would be soooo nice. And the app looks awesome !

  400. I would go have an uninterrupted lunch!

  401. I would love to have an iPad to monitor my SQL Servers! I would use it to check the health of my SharePoint databases running within the Department of Defense!

  402. I would proceed directly to Internet Y Tacos (http://www.flickr.com/photos/lecates/454787692/), which is a Taco joint in Puerto Morelos, Quintana Roo, Mexico. With lots of internet as well as lots of tacos it is the perfect environment to support the new, worry-free Kendra. Ideally with an iPad.

  403. Poolside in Mexico!

  404. I could finally take my family to Seattle to visit my aunt and uncle. The last time I was there was 20 years ago with my parents.

  405. I will go to hawaii and monitor servers using SQlmonitor!!!!!

  406. I’d head off to jolly old England to attend the 2011 Formula 1 British Grand Prix at Silverstone and route for Sebastian Vettel!
    My spouse / wife / significant other / girlfriend (all the same person, not a group thing) would of course be by my side during the event, trying to spot celebrities. I’d be using the iPad to check my SQL Servers, while my wife attempted to drive on the opposite side of the road in a rented Mini Cooper (S model of course! Union Jack flag on the roof… ), while drinking a, warm, Guinness (hmm is that legal?, who cares it’s a fantasy!), ahhhhhh on coming traffic!
    This is my beautiful wife? Well, how did I get here?

  407. Definitely would find myself somewhere I could enjoy outside since it is cold and snowy here in MN. Also, since I’ll be at Disney World in January, it probably wouldn’t hurt to be able to keep up on things while I’m there.

  408. Spend lots of time in sports bars.

  409. I will visit my family, whom I do not see for a long time.

  410. I would go to Neringa resort in Lithuania

  411. I would spent my quality time with my friend or girlfriend :p, at Starbucks, while enjoying a cup of Cappucino Java Chip, and my free iPad from RedGate’s giveaway, and using it’s Wi-fi to browse without worrying my DB Server will crash / down without notice, because I DO BELIEVE :
    “With SQL Server Monitor from RedGate, DBA can have
    some of their own ‘Quality Time’”

  412. I would hitch up my caravan and head out on the open road for the ultimate hot desking experience…

  413. Be with family in India, it’s been few years when I last went.

  414. mmm if I didn’t have to worry about what my servers where doing a number of things must have happened: I must have finally figured out how to use SQL and/or someone else is looking after the shop whilst I’m on Christmas Holidays – either way life is good!

    In which case, an Ipad would come in mighty handy – I have no idea what to get my husband for Christmas.

    Not that I’m giving the Ipad to him, but online shopping will be much more pleasant done from the comfort of bed! there’s got to be an app for that right?

  415. I would go and watch one of my 4 year old son’s swimming classes. I’d love to watch him swim, but I am usually stuck at my desk for a few hours after 5 keeping an eye on the SQL 2008 load.

    I work in the Midwest and the vast majority of our clients are on the west coast. Late in the day we tend to see a large increase in traffic as the west-coasters get back from their “executive” lunches and start hitting our data-driven web sites hard. I need to watch for poorly written dynamic queries and over ambitious data hogs and act accordingly.

    With the IPad in tow, I could break the shackles of my desk and keep an eye on things from the pool. Who knows, with a little encouragement and support he could be the next Michael Phelps :)

    Thanks for your consideration!

  416. Boy, if I had this monitoring tool, I could spend less time monitoring my SQL servers and more time donating my kidneys to the sick, third world child labor victims I often come across during my trips to deliver vaccines and clean water in Africa.

  417. Honestly I am not sure I would go anywhere in particular.

    I would spend more time at my house reading about what I should expect when you are expecting a baby. I also hear that there are some good ipad apps for that.

    2011 is going to be a great year!

  418. If I didn’t have to worry about what my servers are doing, I’d be able to go to Brent’s blog and re-read every article he’s ever written! :)

  419. I would go to the Millennium Stadium Cardiff on the 21st May 2011 for the Heineken Cup Final (The rugby equivalent of the Super-bowl).
    Two years ago I was at the final in Murrayfield Stadium Edinburgh but a server at a client site went down and unfortunately I was the unlucky one who had to leave the game and go try to restore the database. Bad times, especially so since my fellow Irish men went on to lift the cup! The better half was not impressed at being abandoned.

    This year if I had an iPad and Red Gate’s SQL Monitor I wouldn’t miss a try…or get into trouble!

  420. I’d finally take that 3 month world cruise. I have found that no mater where I cruise they always have a connection available on the ship.

  421. I would pack up the van and take a real family vacation out west to let my kids see their cousin they never met and tour Mt Rushmore, the Badlands and every sight in between without worry.

  422. I would probably have a lot more time to spend with my newborn kid ;)

  423. I would go to Amsterdam to check out the Van Gogh and Rijksmuseum.

  424. I’d go to Zihuatanejo and see if I can find my friend, Andy.

  425. Being a railfan, I’d go on some long scenic train trips…

  426. I would go skiing! Alta/Snowbird, Taos, the back bowls of Vail… Do you think my new iPad would work in the back country? Guess we’ll have to find out!

  427. Let see…not having to monitor locally. That would allow me to move someplace a tad warmer…some place where I could have less winter on my car and driveway.

  428. I’d get on my motorcycle and go from Connecticut to Alaska and back. About 5 weeks trip that is on my bucket list.

  429. Hi Brent,

    I will go with my lovely wife to Orlando which remind me for my childhood (and normal life before being a DBA) to spend some time in Walt Disney World Resort and SeaWorld where I would like to meet my best childhood friend “Shamu”!
    I promised her to visit Orlando one day but that time did not come yet!

    We (my wife & myself) spent part of our honeymoon in a cruise; and since both of us are DBA, we are sure that “SQL Cruise” will be nice option to go for after having some fun in Orlando.

    I will be waiting for that time; when I will be far (physically and mentally) for servers ;)

  430. I’d go to SQL PASS and not worry about what my servers are doing because I could check on them easily and get on with life. I remember attending PASS when it was in Dallas. I worked about 75% of the time on my laptop, which made the educational and social portions of PASS pretty bad. Being able to get in and out quickly would have really helped me.

    (Ironically, the person hired as my co-worker/replacement remembered seeing me there and feeling pity for that poor guy who worked all the time. Little did he know…)

  431. I’d go to Bali island resort and visit Thailand and Singapore on a month long vacation!

  432. If I had an easy way to monitor my SQL databases, I would actually leave the office/stop working from home. This would also give me a chance to eat dinner without my Blackberry which means my girlfriend would stop hitting me.

    If I got really adventurous, I’d be scuba diving by the Great Barrier Reef, but that’s assuming I don’t have to take my Blackberry with me.

  433. What an opportunity. I’d simply walk down to the river near the office more often and watch the sun on the the water, possibly flick out a bait now and then and count the birds and server warnings.
    Heaven on earth. Happy Holidays.

    Stevo
    >

  434. I’d go to the Stadium and watch my favorite soccer team win :D

  435. Oh, The Places I’d Go!

    Today’d be my day
    I’d be off to great places
    Not tied to my desk
    With those sad, desk-tied faces

    With my iPad in hand
    And Red Gate on the box
    I could go see a band
    One that rolls and that rocks

    Take my kid to the zoo
    To feed the alpacas
    Watch her play the kazoo
    Or even maracas

    My wife would enjoy
    Italian at eight
    Since now I annoy
    By coming home late

    My server would feel
    Not the least bit neglected
    While my life would reveal
    Joys I’ve ‘til now rejected

    Yes, today’d be my day
    I’d be off to great places
    While remotely I’d play
    With my disk IO traces

  436. For me it would have to be a dream holiday to Langkawi, Malaysia with the wife and kids.

    Thats the furthest I will have gone from the DB Server, since becoming a DBA all those years ago.

  437. Tour steam trains with son
    Bike parks along with daughter
    Dance all night with wife

  438. I would go out of the country for a long weekend, strictly informing the staff that the place where I’ll be has no internet or phone signal, and so it’s impossible to reach me. Then I’ll spend 4 glorious days in Catalunya, and just stuff my face with jamon Iberico and other Catalan cuisine.

  439. I will go on Australia tour if I don’t need to worry about the performance of my sql servers. I will like to see the koala bears there and the kangaroos.

  440. I’d take a motorbike tour of the fantastic Mpumalanga Highlands a few hundred km East of where I live. I’d like to go in Winter, when the dry countryside is exquisitely beautiful, but given the opportunity, I’d go right now if I could.

  441. Where would I go if I had an IPAD that could run SQL Monitor? ANYWHERE I WANT! Currently, I monitor nearly 300 servers with over 4000 databases, so I’m “tied down” and would love to be more mobile. With use of an IPAD and SQL Monitor, I could get away from the office and spend more time with my family and still make sure that my SQL servers are performing well. My wife, my kids, my grandson, and my dogs would certainly appreciate it. I also might a chance to spend more time at a beach… any beach where it’s 80+ degrees.

  442. I’d go out an build a snowman!

  443. That’s an easy one it would have to be the Pub!

  444. Well I would say on SQL Cruise if the data rates weren’t so high. Since I’ll be a complete DBA n0ob to start the new year, I’ll most likely be curled up in the corner of the server room with my iPad in hand watching every little change ready to jump in.

  445. I’d go, well I’d go somewhere WARM with the family. Preferably somewhere I could stick my toes in the sand and sip on a tasty beverage.

  446. If I had an iPad and Red Gate SQL Monitor I would feel much better about taking my family to northern MI for our annual ski/snowboard trip. I’m not sure how far up the hill (yes hill, there really aren’t mountains in Michigan) the wireless signal reaches although I would welcome the opportunity to try it! Nothing worse than being on top of the hill and having the Help Desk paging me.

    Besides, the photo I will provide if chosen will be awesome, combine 2 of my passions (which are polar opposites, no pun intended) in one sweet photo.

  447. I would plan a trip to Israel to rediscover the foundations of my faith and enrich my Bible knowledge.
    I want to find my humanity and in doing so help others rediscover theirs. I want to make the world a better place to live.
    Thanks for the opportunity.

  448. I would like to go to Hawaii, and use the ipad as a digital photo frame on my night table (showing the server stats, of course.:)). that make my vacation much peaceful.

  449. The possibilities would be endless because I would become the cool kid on my team at work for once in my life!!!

    I would all of a sudden…
    Never have my coffee cup go empty,
    Get invited to romantic dinners with my
    counterparts,
    Go on family vacations even though they’re
    not my immediate family,
    Have all kinds of people that I have never
    seen before come up to me saying
    wonderful things about me.

    You may ask… WHY? The answer is simple: For the opportunity to take me along with them so I can fix the issues that come up while they are out having fun.

    I’m sure that there would be bad things that would go along with this such as going to their children’s musicals, funerals, or even to the mall to help them buy their last minute Holiday gifts because they were too busy the week before monitoring and fixing the servers. BUT hey… even in those not so great moments; I will have something pretty bad -@ss to play around with and I won’t even feel taken advantage of!

    Just think about all of the pictures that I would have to show!

  450. I would pack up the horses and head off into the sunset (up into the mountains of the Pacific Northwest)

  451. Wow where would you go if you had some semblance of freedom from monitoring your servers 24/7. I would probably be able to spend some more time with my family and friends.
    I can finally book that trip for the next Americas Cup Race. I am not a sailor, though I would not mind being on the crew especially for Americas Cup 34 as they will be using catamarans instead of the usual J Class boats.
    What better way to manage a server than riding on one of those. But sadly Team Oracle would need to change to Team SQL.
    Yes the possibilities to augment existing monitoring technology with the IPAD would be endless.

  452. I would go on a long motorcycle trip to the mountains or somewhere that has no cell phone coverage.

  453. I’d head to as many music festivals as I could, cause it’s pretty hard to bring a computer along when your camping (but an iPad on the other hand…) I’d probably start with Snoe.down in Vermont. I’d also like to go to The Gathering of the Vibes up in Connecticut, the All Good festival in West Virgina, and wherever Phish hopefully has theirs this summer. Plus any others that come up along the way!

  454. I would go and join the circus, being careful to avoid having my new ipad crushed by an elephant of course.

  455. I’d go on a nice long trail run. An iPad should fit nicely into my Camelback. And there are lots of cell towers on the tops of the mountains that it could connect to. Of course, I’d have to get back into trail running shape first, before I could go on a long run. Maybe the iPad would help with that, too.

  456. I’m going to Disneyland! Well, only if I win, of course.

  457. I would go to the British Virgin Islands on a chartered bareboat cruise because it is the perfect place to get away from it all while enjoying all my favorite hobies – sailing, photography, SCUBA, snorkeling, enjoying good food and drink, beautiful places, and great friends! And the iPad and RedGate SQL Monitor would enable me to be there without skipping a beat or perhaps even being missed at work! ;)

  458. First, I would scour the Expedia and Travelocity websites for last minute deals to Fort Lauderdale Florida. And since I would have my iPad to take with me on the vacation, the dates of my vacation will be flexible so I could book the best deal on whatever dates. I’ll also be flexible with the time the flights leave, basically could be anytime of the day, it wouldn’t matter, all because I would have my iPad with me at all times to monitor the SQL Servers using the new Red Gate SQL Monitor web app.

    Soon, I’ll be lying on the beaches of Florida with my wife and 16 month old baby, sipping on a non-alcoholic margarita and playing in the sand with my son… and at the same time monitoring SQL Servers, thousands of miles away, on my new iPad!

    Now this is technology at its best, allowing us to free ourselves and give ourselves a well deserved break from the daily grind.

  459. I would be riding the chairlift to the top of Snowmass Ski Area and enjoy the view, praying I don’t have to use that iPad. Just enjoy the views.

  460. True story:
    Years ago, I needed a solo pilgrimage. I planned five days away, packed all I needed, and drove to Estes Park – the gateway to the Rocky Mountains. I registered my backcountry plans with the visitor’s bureau, and hiked across the Rockies. It took me two days, and a good deal of pain – I hadn’t prepared in any real way. It was beautiful, it was perfect.

    There’s no way I’d get a signal in the Rocky Mountain backcountry, so I couldn’t go back there and use my iPad to monitor the servers. But I’d *think* about being there while I sat on my back porch with my iPad.

  461. If i win ipad, definitely i will be more on roads as driving and traveling is my passion along with SQL. Winning an ipad will help me a lot in monitoring the servers when i am on move!!!

  462. If I get an ipad, I will not worry about work while I drive across the country. I drive a lot and worry about getting paged while on interstate. On an unrelated note, if I win this ipad, I also hope to get lucky to find a unicorn :).
    Happy holidays.

  463. I would love to go back to Athens Greece to visit my wife’s family. I’d even take my wife and our 2 boys who haven’t met that side of their family yet. Of course this would be followed up with some beach time, exploring runes, and chartering a sailboat to go island hopping. Redgate SQL Monitor has a one touch ‘EASY BUTTON’ that solves all database problems once you’re notified, Right?

  464. I would travel to my country, Guatemala. And spend time with my mom and the rest of the family.

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