Indexing

How to Think Like the SQL Server Engine: Included Columns Aren’t Free.

In our last cliffhanger episode, I said that if we ran this query: Transact-SQL UPDATE dbo.Users SET Age = Age + 1 WHERE Id = 643; 123 UPDATE dbo.Users  SET Age = Age + 1  WHERE Id = 643; And we had this index: Transact-SQL CREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_DisplayName_Age ON dbo.Users(LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age); 12 CREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_DisplayName_Age  ON…
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How to Think Like the SQL Server Engine: Should Columns Go In the Key or the Includes?

In our last episode, in between crab rangoons, I had you create either one of these two indexes: Transact-SQL CREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_Includes ON dbo.Users(LastAccessDate, Id) INCLUDE (DisplayName, Age); GO CREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_DisplayName_Age ON dbo.Users(LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age); GO 1234567 CREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_Includes  ON dbo.Users(LastAccessDate, Id)  INCLUDE (DisplayName, Age);GOCREATE INDEX IX_LastAccessDate_Id_DisplayName_Age  ON dbo.Users(LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age);GO And I said…
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How to Think Like the SQL Server Engine: Building Wider Indexes to Deal with Bad T-SQL

In our last episode, we were running into problems with these two queries: Transact-SQL SELECT LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age FROM dbo.Users WHERE LastAccessDate BETWEEN '2018-08-31' AND '2018-09-01' ORDER BY LastAccessDate; SELECT LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age FROM dbo.Users WHERE CAST(LastAccessDate AS DATE) = '2018-08-31' ORDER BY LastAccessDate; 123456789 SELECT LastAccessDate, Id, DisplayName, Age  FROM dbo.Users  WHERE LastAccessDate BETWEEN…
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How to Think Like the SQL Server Engine: What’s a Key Lookup?

In our last couple of queries, we’ve been using a simple query to find the Ids of everyone who accessed the system since mid-2014: Transact-SQL SELECT Id FROM dbo.Users WHERE LastAccessDate > '2014-07-01' ORDER BY LastAccessDate; 1234 SELECT Id  FROM dbo.Users  WHERE LastAccessDate > '2014-07-01'  ORDER BY LastAccessDate; But Ids alone aren’t all that useful – so let’s…
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How to Think Like the SQL Server Engine: Adding a Nonclustered Index

When we left off in the last post, our users kept running this query, and they want it to be really fast: Transact-SQL SELECT Id FROM dbo.Users WHERE LastAccessDate > '2014/07/01' ORDER BY LastAccessDate; 1234 SELECT Id   FROM dbo.Users   WHERE LastAccessDate > '2014/07/01'   ORDER BY LastAccessDate; Let’s pre-bake the data by creating a copy of…
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Identical twins

Yet Another Way Missing Index Requests are Misleading

Graduates of my Mastering Index Tuning class will already be familiar with the handful of ways the missing index DMVs and plan suggestions are just utterly insane. Let’s add another oddity to the mix: the usage counts aren’t necessarily correct, either. To prove it, Let’s take MattDM’s Stack Exchange query, “Who brings in the crowds?” He’s…
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Aborted index creation

What happens when you cancel or kill a resumable index creation?

SQL Server 2019 adds resumable online index creation, and it’s pretty spiffy: Transact-SQL CREATE INDEX IX_DisplayName ON dbo.Users(DisplayName) WITH (ONLINE = ON, RESUMABLE = ON, MAX_DURATION = 1); 12 CREATE INDEX IX_DisplayName ON dbo.Users(DisplayName)  WITH (ONLINE = ON, RESUMABLE = ON, MAX_DURATION = 1); Those parameters mean: ONLINE = ON means you’ve got the money for…
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Are nulls stored in a nonclustered index?

When you index a nullable field, are the rows with nulls stored in the index? It’s easy enough to find out by creating a table with a nullable field, and then creating an index on it: Transact-SQL CREATE TABLE dbo.Employees ( ID INT IDENTITY(1, 1) PRIMARY KEY CLUSTERED, EmployeeName VARCHAR(50) NULL ); GO INSERT INTO…
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Can deleting rows make a table…bigger?

Michael J. Swart posted an interesting question: he had a large table with 7.5 billion rows and 5 indexes. When he deleted 10 million rows, he noticed that the indexes were getting larger, not smaller. Here’s one way that deletes can cause a table to grow: The rows were originally written when the database didn’t…
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