My classes have really sucked lately, and I apologize.

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I teach my Mastering classes in a regular rotation: Mastering Index Tuning, then Mastering Query Tuning, then Mastering Server Tuning. I go 1-2-3 like that because they build on each other, and I repeat ’em over and over through the year so people can gradually make progress.

I just finished another rotation, so it’s time to go through the reviews – not just the good ones, mind you, but all of the reviews, in order, to understand how I’ve been doing lately. Here goes:

Mastering Index Tuning Reviews

Mastering Index Tuning

Absolutely incredible! Indexing is something we can all work on, and honestly this is the place to brush up. Brent’s class was entertaining and engaging, and with the labs he sets up well worth the money. I couldn’t be more happy with the class, will definitely be looking into Mastering Query Tuning next!” – Brandon, March 11

“Throrough and entertaining. Brent hits Sql Server indexing’s high points, low points and all points in between. Then he gives you a lab to do the work to let the lecture sink in. During the lab, he’ll help you out, in real time. And later you can watch the session again and do the labs again, on your own. It’s a great way to learn. I wish there were similar courses for C#, Angular and Javascript.” – Jay Taylor, March 8

Brent’s way of teaching is unmatched! This class is an absolute must for SQL Server professionals. Perfect amount of lecture, lab time, and Q&A.” – Mohammad Darab, March 8

“Absolutely loving it. The class, Brent style, everything. I have to admit, I had my reservations before the class, but boy I was wrong about it. Less than 5 minutes in the first lab anyone can see the insane amount of work what was put into the class. This admiration only grows through the 3 days as everything is marching toward the last lab. I am really grateful to Brent and his team to use their extensive real-life knowledge and put this class together. Cannot wait till Query Tuning starts, probably I will start the previous recordings” – Kalotai, March 8

This class was just top notch. Brent is very entertaining and he explains the material in such a clear and concise manner. I learned a ton. Looking forward to the next class” – Katie, March 7

“The Master Index Tuning class is great. From the way the material is presented, to working the labs I really enjoyed this class. In fact, I have take 4 of Brents classes and they all are wonderful. I do highly recommend. And since I purchased the season pass, I look forward to the next class I take.” – Michael DeMore, March 7

Brent is a great instructor with deep SQL Server knowledge and has a great sense of humor. Class was extremely educational and I highly recommend it. Looking forward to signing up for additional courses in the future.” – C. Brien, March 7

Mastering Query Tuning Reviews

Mastering Query Tuning“If Mastering Index Tuning is a must have, Mastering Query Tuning is an absolute must have. I already know I will be in trouble for Mastering Server Tuning in about a month time :). Back to Mastering Query Tuning: it is not only informative, but the knowledge transfer is very entertaining too. And there is a great amount of knowledge in the class. By the end of the third day my head was tried to burst open a bit with the extra information, as it turned out I was not alone with this. I feel about Mastering classes as I feel about electric heated motorcycle gear: until you try it, you cannot even imagine what you missing from life. Once you had it, you do not want to live without it. If you work with SQL and you can only have one training course in your life, you really need to pick the Mastering classes. Go for all 3.” – Kalotai, April 8

“Another very educational, eye-opening course in the Mastering series! I’m not a developer by any means but after this course I am pretty comfortable tackling slow performing queries. Thank you Brent!” – Mohammad Darab, April 5

“After taking the Mastering Index Tuning class, I was expecting to come into Mastering Query Tuning and learn a lot. I was not disappointed. I would argue this class is harder than Index Tuning. There are just more moving parts to understand and take advantage of. One of the things I enjoy about this training is watching someone do things that are not necessarily part of the “plan” and then figure out what went wrong. Brent does a good job of it live. He’s not just a “trainer” who is parroting things off an MS SQL Server Training slide deck. I really like this training format. Brent does a great job in front of the camera. P.S. The difference between people that want 10 and 20 minutes breaks made me laugh out loud !” – Andy Benner, April 4

Mastering Server Tuning Reviews

Mastering Server Tuning“Brent is making harder and harder to write a review and not to sounds like a fanboy (fangirl). In my previous reviews (Mastering Index Tuning, Mastering Query Tuning) I have highlighted how great is the material, how well the lectures are built. The true appreciation for the classes comes though after you did all 3. I can only repeat myself that these courses a must have if you ever just looked at MS SQL server. The best thing what you can do for yourself is that you are not working on the days of the course, and you dedicate your whole day for the classes. I consider myself very lucky that I signed up for this. One of my best decisions in my life. Thank you Brent for creating these courses and doing a fantastic job to transfer the knowledge. Oh, and I am definitely a fanboy for life.” – Kalotai, May 14

“I highly recommend taking Brent’s “Mastering Server Tuning with Wait Stats” class. For three days I learned more about how to performance tune my database servers than I have in any other class I’ve taken. What I liked best about this class is that the examples and labs were not just some steps to follow to get to a predetermined solution, as I’ve had in other classes, but they were specific problems set up to make the students think about and work through the solution using the knowledge from the lecture. Brent’s lecture style is easy to follow along with and a lot of fun. He does a really good job of keeping the subject material interesting and keeping the students engaged. I found myself wanting more lecture just because he’s a lot of fun to listen to. I will say this class would be more beneficial if you take either “Mastering Index Tuning”, “Mastering Query Tuning”, or both first. I did not and felt slightly confused at times. It’s not a big hindrance, and you will eventually catch up, but it would give the student a better background. Regardless, Brent’s teaching style and real-world examples easily help you overcome any slight deficiencies from not taking those classes first. Either way, you can be positive that you will be a better at tuning SQL Server after taking this class.” – Chris Fair, May 9

“I LOVED this class! Before this class, I would feel flustered when tuning issues came up and I had one hammer that I would turn to when I was in trouble. Now I have a full tool kit and more confidence to find how I can improve a servers performance. The labs help tons and are great to help me fully understand the problem before I see the solution presented. While I took the online only class, I felt there was a ton of great interaction through the slack channel. I loved the stories that help me better understand the concepts and the easy and kind way that Brent answers questions. He doesn’t make you feel stupid for not understanding a concept and is patient to help you get the best result. I will absolutely be back for more! Thank you!” – Andrea Allred, May 7

“This class was well worth the price of admission. Brent is constantly trying to improve his classes and it shows. The labs and lectures show a great deal of effort has gone into them. The labs are rewarding when you get them right and there is a depth to them so that it’s not a cakewalk. On the other hand, Brent’s not afraid to tackle a problem live with everyone watching. I think that is one of the more enjoyable aspects of his classes. I really like the format of this training and I am hoping I can convince my boss to get another season pass.” – Andy Benner, May 6

“Awesome content, the labs are hands on and they have real day to day opportunities to analyze and solve . I highly recommend this training.” – CHaro, May 6


Live Class Season PassForgive me for a moment while I bask in the glow of your reviews. I’ll give you fifteen minutes to stop that. Okay, maybe twenty.

I’ve seriously poured my heart into building a balance: a balance of lecture versus hands-on labs, a balance of tough challenges versus things you can actually accomplish in the time given, a balance of theory versus real-world stuff you can put to use the very same day.

I’m really proud of what I’ve built, and how you’ve reacted in classes while we’ve worked together. I’ve loved the questions you ask, the excitement you share with me when we get to go off-track on new demos, and your willingness to collaborate with others in Slack on your homework. I love seeing y’all work together – and compete against each other, too!

I think my Mastering classes are the best way to learn things that will really make a difference in your career. However, what I think doesn’t matter – all that matters is what y’all think.

And I’m so excited and humbled and fist-pump-y that y’all like ’em too.

Another round is about to start.
Wanna join us?

Heck yeah, you do. Time to pitch it to the boss. Here’s my upcoming lineup for the next quarter, in order:

And if you wanna take all of ’em, that’s where my Live Class Season Pass comes in.

I’m not gonna lie: my classes aren’t cheap. If you want inexpensive classes taught by people who’ve never done this stuff in real life, who don’t build the very open source scripts you use in your everyday performance tuning, you’ve got plenty of choices. There are plenty of local instructors who’d love to read you the slides that somebody else wrote.

You should read the reviews on those, though.

Oh, the students don’t have the ability to leave public reviews?

Huh. Wonder why that is.

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11 Comments. Leave new

  • You guys and Kendra Little are the best! Thank you so much for helping me grow and really understand.

  • I really had a pleasure to take all the classes. If I get opportunity I will take them again as I learn more every single time. Extremely helpful to Performance Tuning Expert like me.

  • Andrea Allred
    May 22, 2019 11:20 am

    You sucked me in by saying the “classes lately have sucked”, because I was wondering who would have said that after attending one. Happy to see it was total clickbait. 🙂 You rocked the class I attended and am still digesting all that I have learned from it. Thanks for being our friendly, neighborhood hero.

  • Steve Malcolm
    May 22, 2019 11:46 am

    Does it say it all to tell you that I scheduled my surgery around these classes. Thanks for having these for us.

  • Martin Guth
    May 22, 2019 10:20 pm

    Only thing that sucks from my perspective is that as an EU citizen I am not able to take any of your online classes. However I had the honor to attend your precon at techorama NL last year “Performance Tuning for Developers”…true developers where under-representated while true “brent fans” all over the place and that was well earned Sir in my humble view. Regarding training could you imagine a cooperation with any EU business as you do in selling your Consultant Toolkit?

  • AlessandroD
    May 23, 2019 3:43 am

    How many students per class?

    • Alessandro – it varies depending on the class type, workload, date. I set a much lower max on student count for classes with labs, for example, because I have to guide students on their homework answers.

  • One weird trick., etc.

  • winthrop.gutmann
    May 24, 2019 6:43 am

    By the title of the blog post I was shocked, then I read the rest of the post. I definitely fell for the clickbait. Looking forward to the next round of classes! (And SQL Saturday when you’re in Boston!)


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