The Top 3 Trickiest Features in SQL Server (Twitter Poll)

I’ve worked with a lot of features in SQL Server. I know what I think is tricky and more difficult than it looks like at first. But experiences vary, right?

So I asked the Twitterverse, “What are the Top 3 Trickiest Features in SQL Server?”  Here’s what I heard back.

#1: Replication

SQL Server Replication “wins” the top spot for being mentioned by the most people. Maybe it won because it’s touched the hearts of the most people since it works with Standard Edition. Maybe it’s just been in the product long enough to have tricked lots of us?

#2: Availability Groups

Coming in second is SQL Server Availability Groups. These may have only been with us since SQL Server 2012, but their complexity has impressed quite a few people already.

#3: DBAs

The number three place goes to a feature I hadn’t thought of myself… database administrators themselves. I laughed out loud when I saw these tweets, but, well, there’s some truth in it. We are a tricksy bunch!

Honorable Mentions

Other top tricky features that came up:

  • Service Broker (guessing they worked at MySpace)
  • Security
  • SSIS (oh, the clicking! the clicking!)
  • SQL Server Clustering
  • PIVOT
  • XML
  • CLR
  • Active Directory (ah, Kerberos authentication, you devil you)
  • Resource Governor (someone actually used Resource Governor!?!?!)
  • Extended Events
  • SAN Administrators
  • Enterprise Architects

My Personal Top 3

Turns out I’m not so different from the Twitter community. My personal top three trickiest features are: Availability Groups, Replication, and Service Broker. (I’m not really all that into queues in SQL Server, but I do like Event Notifications, which use the Broker framework.)

What are yours?

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7 Comments. Leave new

  • I assume developers were the ones polled? 😉

    • Kendra Little
      August 1, 2014 10:01 am

      Nope. In fact, I think DBAs agreed that they are one of the trickiest features!

  • Kris Gruttemeyer
    August 1, 2014 2:03 pm

    I think I’d have to go with XML, Availability Groups and PIVOT, personally.

    XML just mystifies me. It is true sorcery. Might be a great webcast topic!

    • Kendra Little
      August 4, 2014 10:17 am

      Haha, I’ll save that webcast for Jeremiah. He wrote a ton of XQuery when he wrote sp_BlitzCache.

  • I don’t mind being referred to as “Tricky”. I was a big Run DMC fan back in the day 😉

    Incidentally, my vote’s in for Service Broker.

  • I would have to go with Replication, CDC and SSAS – The more I work with Availability Groups the easier they are, fortunately !!

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