Let’s mix things up with a new way to learn.

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Because learning SQL Server is painful, we’ve been experimenting with new topics, new guest instructors, new ways of talking to other students during class, and much more. In addition to our new live class lineup covering PowerShell, Linux, Always On Availability Groups, SSIS, and analytics, I’ve also got something wildly new.

I’ve got a new Mastering series:
hands-on, real-world.

I built new 3-day classes on index tuning, query tuning, and server-level tuning where:

  • Hour 1: I teach you a concept first with slides and demos
  • Hour 2: You work in a cloud VM on a challenging problem
  • Hour 3: I show you how I’d solve that exact problem
  • I finish by showing you how to tell if this problem is affecting your own SQL Server, and we discuss data from different students who are willing to share theirs

We keep repeating that process through the course of the 3 days – lectures, labs, and then looking at your own SQL Server to see how it relates to your apps.

The problems are just like real life. I started with Stack Overflow’s >100GB database, then built a series of workloads to simulate real world issues. You’ve got a lot of queries running simultaneously, and you don’t get any explanations. You have to figure out which indexes you need to fix, what queries need to be tuned, and then you’ve gotta roll up your sleeves and do the work. It’s a race against the clock – just like real life.

The problems build on each other. Through the course of each class, you gradually get more familiar with a workload. You start to learn what parts of it you can fix, and what parts of it stymie you, and what parts you may need to revisit a few months later when you’ve upped your game.

The problems are as hard as you are good. If you’re struggling with the basics, then you’ll need the full amount of time to tackle the problem’s

You can work on the problems at your pace. Everybody wants to pull you in a million directions, and you just can’t dedicate your whole day to a training class. We take extensive breaks through the day so you can pick when you want to work on the labs, when you need to catch up on work email, and when you wanna go do lunch. If you want to skip watching me work on the lab, you can – and just come back in when it’s time to get your next problem assignment. Heck, some of our early-access students even worked on their lab VMs overnight!

It’s like an arcade game for SQL Server.

Let’s have fun with your horrible queries!

When I went through the Microsoft Certified Master classes, the final lab exam was thrilling and challenging. I was exhausted, but the more that I talked to my fellow students, the more I wanted to play it again and again.

I built these labs with two things in mind:
pushing you, and letting you have fun.

This ain’t tiny-laptop-VMs, either: you get an 8-core, >60GB RAM VM with all solid state storage because I want you to be able to rapidly test different indexes and queries. We’ll be working with the Stack Overflow database, over 100GB of data so that slow queries really do go slowly.

You’ll be chatting in Slack with your fellow students as you go along, talking about your techniques, what you’re seeing in the lab, and helping each other try to set the best throughput scores. (Or maybe giving them false hints and hindering them. I never can tell with you people.)

You get my personal advice on your SQL Server, too.

Before class starts, you’ll run an app that collects data like sp_Blitz, sp_BlitzCache, sp_BlitzIndex, and more from a SQL Server that you’re worried about. It centralizes the data into an easy-to-share Excel spreadsheet.

I’ll personally review that data, and send you an email with advice on what parts of the training class you should focus on. I’ll talk about which queries or indexes need your attention, and as we walk through the exercises, I’ll tell you which parts are the most relevant to you.

Then, as you’ve got questions about how the class relates to your own server, I’ll be able to refer to your own server’s data. I’ll have all the information at my fingertips so that I can give you really, really, really thorough answers – not generic useless “it depends” fluff, but exact answers with real-world value.

It’s like a mix of training and consulting – you’ll learn exactly what I’d do in your shoes. (Because hey, when I look at your server, it’s like I get to play the arcade game too!)

This really is different.

There’s nothing like it in the industry today, and I bet you’re going to want to play the game – uh, I mean take the class – again and again.

To help your addiction, we’re offering a Live Class Season Pass: take all of the classes, over and over through 2018. Each time, you’ll learn more – but also keep improving your own SQL Servers, getting new custom advice each time.

Register now: seats are 50% off to celebrate the launch.

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Here’s what our early-access students said about our new courses.

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