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The Nine Circles of Developer Hell

Humor
8 Comments
Commit message: Duck! Everyone’s code is terrible. But exactly how terrible is yours? First Circle: Code Limbo We can’t say this is good code, but for the most part nobody notices it. Second Circle: Code Lust Cool function, bro! Third Circle: Gluttonous Code There’s always one simple piece of logic that’s been written hundreds of…
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Defragmentation Proven to Completely Fix Performance Issues

Humor
25 Comments
SPRINGFIELD – Local systems administrator Jackie Toole was carried through city streets today on the backs of ecstatic Acme Tooling employees. For months, Acme’s accounting department had complained of slow performance in their payroll application. “Saving a new hire took minutes, and we had no idea what was going on. Jackie did something, and next thing…
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Overheard in Performance Tuning Training Class

Humor, SQL Server
7 Comments
A sampling of things overheard at our 2015 Performance Troubleshooting Class in Denver: “I’m not a GUID hater.” “Oh, God help me. I’ve clicked on XML.” “Reporting Services looks around at the available memory, makes itself at home, maybe takes its pants off.” “Where would I go to check if I — hypothetically — accidentally set…
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The Most Confusing Words, Phrases, and Acronyms in SQL Server

Humor
13 Comments
Words are hard. Acronyms are even harder. Here’s the words that give me the most trouble when talking to people about SQL Server. And thanks to all my Twitter friends quoted here for their suggestions! Replication “I have a question about replication…” “Which kind? Transactional? Merge? Peer to Peer?” “Availability Groups.” Technically, the word “replication”…
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Brent’s Bad Idea Jeans [Video]

Bad Idea Jeans, Humor, SQL Server
9 Comments
Over the years, I’ve come up with some rather “interesting” answers to SQL Server problems including: Warming up SQL Server’s buffer pool by selecting all the data from all the tables Creating indexes with triggers Adding nonclustered indexes to clustered columnstore indexes Compressing backups the hard way Putting databases on a RAM drive In this 20-minute…
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How to Add Nonclustered Indexes to Clustered Columnstore Indexes

SQL Server 2012 introduced nonclustered columnstore indexes, but I never saw them used in the wild simply because once created, they made the underlying table read-only. Not a lot of folks like read-only tables. (Bad news, by the way – that limitation hasn’t disappeared in 2014.) SQL Server 2014 brings clustered columnstore indexes, and they’re…
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Top Classic Country Songs for SQL Server DBAs

Humor
13 Comments
“I Shot a Server in Reno (just to watch it die)” Johnny Cash “AlwaysOn on My Mind” Willie Nelson “WASD, Don’t Take Your Single Thread to Town” Kenny Rogers “Transactions in the (Replication) Stream” Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton “Stand by Your Maintenance Plan” Tammy Wynette “Ring Buffer of Fire” Johnny Cash “Your Deadlockin’ Heart”…
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Bob Dylan Explains TempDB (Video)

Humor, TempDB, Videos
8 Comments
How many files must a TempDB have before it’s allowed to be fast? How many table variables must a server walk down before it’s considered a table? The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind, and Bob Dylan will share it with you in this 25-minute video – hopefully you can understand him.
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Learn to Speak DBA Slang

Humor
37 Comments
Ever wonder what those big-company DBAs are saying when they start busting out the cryptic terms?  Learn the slang of database administrators with this handy reference guide. Wizard of Oz – admin who makes everyone think things are automated, but he’s really just duct taping things together. “The executives think we’ve got a reporting dashboard,…
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Troubleshooting the Top Five Waits Occurring in SQL Server DBAs

Humor, SQL Server
12 Comments
We’ve all been there: the SQL Server Database Administrator has been running slowly and everyone’s getting cranky. How can you tell what’s wrong and what steps you need to take to restore normal operations? Database administrators have great instrumentation. When asked, they’re happy to tell you about their bottlenecks in excruciating detail. Use this handy…
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“Who Wrote This?” Contest

Humor
Over and over, readers leave comments here saying things like “Nice comment, Brent” on a post that Kendra wrote.  We laugh about it – after all, they can’t really be reading that closely if they don’t even notice the name on the bottom of the post, right above where they’re commenting – but we started…
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SQL Server App Store Reviews

Humor
21 Comments
If SQL Server cost $4.99 in the App Store, what would the reviews look like? Not as good as the Access app – ** By B. Analyst, December 6, 2011 I don’t understand what all the fuss is about.  The GUI in this app sucks.  It’s hard to build reports, and it’s overpriced.  $4.99?!? Save…
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Your caption here.

Christmas Caption Contest

Humor
93 Comments
It’s the holidays, and you’re not working that hard anyway.  In the comments, give me your best caption for this photo by midnight GMT on Sunday, December 26th, 2010: Your caption here. I’ll pick the winner on Monday morning and post it here.  The winner gets these stickers, SQLskills stickers, and the EFF prize pack…
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Joel and Kevin - Awesome Buttons

I ___ with Brent

Humor
188 Comments
I need creative help with my name. At TechEd, Quest is promoting their MVPs and experts like Joel Oleson and Kevin Kline with a really cool series of buttons, t-shirts, and banners.  Joel and Kevin have awesome buttons: Joel and Kevin - Awesome Buttons Really cool, right?  But what on earth do we do with…
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Vidas Matelis, Scoopmeister

#SQLR2 Launch Goofs

Humor
9 Comments
When I lose my MVP status, we’ll all look back on this blog post and understand why.  I just can’t help myself though – Microsoft has made some real head-shaking decisions over the last couple of weeks. Sorta-Kinda-Announced-But-Not-Really – At UK Tech Days, Microsoft staff announced a release date of May 21st. No press releases…
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All The Storage an Access Guy Needs

Top 10 Reasons Why Access Still Doesn’t Rock

Humor
248 Comments
Database Journal published an article yesterday about the Top 10 Reasons Why Access Still Rocks for Developers.  After I wiped the coffee off my monitor, I had to write a rebuttal. The following headlines are theirs, not mine, but the responses are mine. 1. The price is right. The author says: “Access is freely available…
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