[Video] Office Hours: Arctic Circle Puffins Edition


Erika and I are on the road in Iceland, roaming around the countryside, and I’m taking you with us. We visited Grímsey, a tiny island on the Arctic Circle, home to gazillions of sea birds like puffins and arctic terns. I took about half an hour to answer your most highly-voted questions from here:

Questions covered in the video:

  • 00:00 Introductions
  • 01:43 Should developers create indexes for their queries?
  • 03:28 Do you recommend monitoring for resource-intensive queries?
  • 04:40 How should I set max server memory?
  • 07:30 How much free space in buffer pages is acceptable?
  • 09:42 How can I fix implicit conversion in a 3rd party app?
  • 11:55 How do you organize tasks for productivity?
  • 14:00 How do you manage your mental state for productivity?
  • 16:02 Why might too many indexes slow down selects?
  • 18:00 What’s better – queries in the app or in stored procedures?
  • 22:06 How do I prioritize DBA tasks?
  • 23:38 How do I find which queries are winning the deadlocks?
  • 24:35 How do I find out what my memory is being used for?
  • 26:10 Wrap-up
  • 27:40 Walking you over to the puffins

If you’ve got something you’d like to see me cover, ask your questions here, and while you’re at it, upvote other questions that you’d like to see covered. I’ll take the highest-upvoted questions and talk through ’em in an upcoming webcast.

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4 Comments. Leave new

  • 1. I remember when I was in high school and styudying then I prefered to wake up and just read things I wanted to remember. It worked well. Later I understood it was possible because of alpha waves.

    2. Regarding indexes: when you develop etl like system then you know how it is going to be processed. Moreover if you are a database developer then you know which indexes you will need. Of course monitoring is important but we as a team had a dba on board and we discussed performance queries. I learned a lot of dba things.

    3. Fragmentation: if you have a system with indexes not maintained for a couple of years then fragmentation helps. A number of long queries was reduced more than 20x (first monitoring was 1 day, second monitoring was 4 days so technically it is even more).

  • Thanks as always.
    Loved the puffins! In Dutch they’re called “papegaaiduikers”, which translates back to “parrot divers”. Could watch them for hours.

    Next session: in a kayak surrounded by humpback wales? (just kidding, but not entirely 🙂 )

  • I disagree that ORMs are better then devs writing bad queries. What would you rather tell your boss; the devs created 10 performance issues, and I fixed all of them, or the devs created 3 performance issues, and I couldn’t fix any of them? Which one of those is going to get you a pay rise during salary review?

    Apart from that, if devs can’t write half decent SQL queries, then they shouldn’t be writing database applications. Hiring the right devs is the answer to that problem. Moving to an ORA which neither the devs nor the DBAs understand only makes the problem worse IMO.


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