Mastering Server Tuning with Wait Stats

(23 customer reviews)

$995.00$2,995.00

You need to speed up a SQL Server, but you’re not sure where to begin. Is it a database problem? A query issue? Not enough hardware? Goofy SQL Server settings? Good news – I do this for a living, and I’ll teach you how in 3 days of learning and fun.

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Product Description

You need to speed up a SQL Server, but you’re not sure where to begin. Is it a database problem? A query issue? Not enough hardware? Goofy SQL Server settings? Good news – I do this for a living, and I’ll teach you how in 3 days of learning and fun. Join me, Brent Ozar, as I explain how to assess your SQL Server’s bottlenecks and figure out where to focus your tuning efforts.

You’ll work along with me in a VM – each student gets their own SQL Server 2019 lab VM in the cloud with the Stack Overflow database and running workloads. Each day is structured like this:

  • 9AM-Noon – lectures, where we explain the concepts you’ll be working on
  • Noon-2PM – lab and lunch. It’s up to you whether you work on the lab for an hour first, then go to lunch, or vice versa, or spend more time on the lab. Or have martinis for lunch. Whatever.
  • 2PM-3PM – you watch Brent work through the lab you just did, explaining my techniques as I go.
  • 3PM-4PM – afternoon lecture
  • 4PM-5PM – lab homework (and you can also work on this later if you like – your VM will stay on overnight.)

This mix of lectures and labs helps reinforce the topics you’re learning and makes sure that you’ll be able to tackle the same kinds of projects in your own environment. (Many students do just that: after hours, they switch into their own environments and use the same diagnostic queries to make immediate improvements in their apps.)

You can choose to skip the lab VM – in the Mastering classes, I alternate between lectures and hands-on lab assignments. If you’re willing to build your own lab VM, you can save a ton of money. Just make sure you’ve got access to a SQL Server 2016 or newer with 4-8 CPU cores, 32-64GB RAM, and at least 600GB of free SSD space. Here’s how to set up your own lab workstation.

Labs & lectures include:

  • How to use sp_BlitzFirst and the Power BI Dashboard to identify your server’s top bottlenecks
  • How to fix common wait types like CXPACKET, PAGEIOLATCH, LCK%, SOS_SCHEDULER_YIELD
  • How to identify and mitigate poison wait types like RESOURCE_SEMAPHORE and THREADPOOL
  • How to prove that your changes made things better
  • How to decide whether configuration changes, query/index tuning, or hardware/VM changes will give you the biggest bang for the buck

This is an online class – I host it in GoToWebinar, live with me on webcam, taking questions in Slack as we go through the material together. Audio can come through either your computer audio, or by dialing into a US phone number – headset recommended either way. For more information, check out the Training Logistics PDF for our online classes.

You can watch again later with Instant Replay – for one year from the date of your course, you can watch a recorded version via online streaming. Brush up on stuff you missed or revisit your favorite topics. It’s the best of both worlds: live training with me, plus reminders. (Or, you can just buy the Instant Replay access – save money, and start watching your recordings immediately, streaming them in your browser for a year.)

Prerequisites – this course won’t explain anything about index or query tuning, but we WILL be telling you things like, “For this particular wait, you’ll need to look for these types of queries, and tune them by doing X.” We won’t explain those concepts here – we’re only going to be looking out across the entire server, and figuring out what tasks we need to perform. In some cases, you’ll be able to fix the problem just with hardware or SQL Server settings, but be aware that that’s not usually the case. Therefore, for the best possible experience, we’d recommend taking both Mastering Index Tuning and Mastering Query Tuning before tackling this class. After you enroll, do the full prerequisites including chat setup.

Class dates & times:

Schedule subject to change in the event of natural disasters, food poisoning, exploding demos:

Day 1: The Most Common Wait Types – First, let’s build a SQL Server dashboard together. We’ll collect the 3 most important performance tuning numbers – data size, batch requests per second, and wait time per core per second – and then interpret them to understand our current bottleneck. From there, we’ll start tackling the most common wait types: CXPACKET (parallelism) and PAGEIOLATCH (storage reads).

Day 2: More Wait Type Bottlenecks – We’ll demo more wait types like SOS_SCHEDULER_YIELD, WRITELOG, THREADPOOL, RESOURCE_SEMAPHORE, and ASYNC_NETWORK_IO, and you’ll get labs to figure out how to solve those wait types.

Day 3: Tougher Performance Solutions – We’ll look at solving waits with Availability Groups, show why tricks like delayed durability and buffer pool extensions aren’t usually effective, and cover throwing hardware at it. We’ll finish with how to triage performance emergencies, and you’ll get your final lab test.

23 reviews for Mastering Server Tuning with Wait Stats

  1. Sam Carey (verified owner)

    This class is a great way to level up your SQL skills. Not only will it demystify important wait stats, but the hands-on demos walk you through real-world scenarios and Brent walks you through the pros and cons of various solutions. Great investment for your company and career.

  2. yakovshlafman-1639 (verified owner)

    I am glad I finally got my company to pay for the class and I know I will get 1000% ROI. The class has all you need to learn and master your skills. It’s not easy, It will take a lot of time to get all material but it’s doable. What I like about the class it’s a good balance between theory and hands on practice.
    The best part is a collection of tools that work to help you quickly identify the root cause of a problem and if you follow Brent’s plan you can fix the issues. It’s good to see how easy Brent could address any issue with SQL Server.
    Thanks Brent

  3. BlondeDBA (verified owner)

    I heard some folks refer to Brent’s training as “Brent Ozar’s Full Experience”. I really like this description, as it accurately describes the training. For some of us who have been in the DBA industry for some time, training is a mandatory part of the job if you want your skills to remain relevant. However, I noticed that most other trainings that I have taken have one common issue, they help to introduce the subject but you don’t retain much due to the lack of hands-on labs and /or long lecturing often reciting from books-online that provides little practical value. In my opinion, Microsoft is not always the best source of information about SQL Server.

    One main thing that sets Brent’s training apart from other is the tremendous practical value. The training is very hands-on. The tools that his team developed are the actual tools Brent uses himself in his consulting business. The class introduces the tools and teaches how to properly use them. You learn how to identify bottleneck(s) and how to develop an approach to come up with the most effective solution for the real-world performance tuning scenarios. I purchased the annual pass and went through all the classes. Below is the list of my favorite things about Brent Ozar’s online training:

    1. The class provides hands-on material and demonstrates a comprehensive approach to troubleshooting performance problems and identifying root cause. You will learn how to efficiently (with set time limit) improve the situation or resolve discovered bottlenecks completely.
    2. In addition to being technically skilled, Brent is a fantastic instructor. Either its speaking with “Clippy” voice or “taking on a personality” of the SQL Server Engine Optimizer, sharing war stories from his consulting gigs and adding constant humor (at times self-deprecating ?) keeps your attention and remarkably doesn’t get old. I have gone through close to a hundred of hours of Brent’s online training (both free and paid) and often run into the same jokes over and over again and still find them hilarious, which adds levity (Brent does get into complex performance tuning scenarios that can be intimidating) and also helps to remember the material. Brent is very creative with his presentation, often uses analogy with car performance or hospital triage situations which I found to be helpful to understand the subject and retain it for a long time.
    3. The classes are well structured and tend to build on previously presented material. So, its recommended to take the fundamental classes first to feel more comfortable with more advanced topics. I would also recommend to go through all the specified pre-requisite training to keep up with the class. While lectures have perfect tempo (not too fast not too slow) but the sheer amount of information presented might be overwhelming for the 1st time. I take notes during the lecture and save the Slack chat as Brent addresses other participant ‘s questions in real time.
    4. The ability to watch the recorded class before and after (with purchased annual pass) is by far the best option which sets this training apart from every other I have seen. I replaced my “Audible” with “Brent Ozar” subscription, so I can play the courses on my way to work.
    5. The Labs are well-thought-out and could be quite challenging. They reinforce the presented material and also demonstrate the effective use of the First Responder Kit tools. You get to use beefed up VMs with large amount of cores and RAM to bring the lab environment very close to the actual production systems you encounter in the field. I love the option to download the different sizes of StackOverflow database to fit your local environment constraints, so you can practice with the labs at your own pace later on your own server.

    Every little aspect of this training appears to be carefully considered and planned. Brent started to record with a green screen behind him, so you don’t have to manage multiple screens when viewing the recorded class later. Little detail but makes a big difference and contributes to a pleasant experience.

    6. I purchased the annual pass, so could take all the classes I want multiple times. I love that the class starts so early (6am PST), as it give me an opportunity to do at least the first part of my training undisturbed. Most of us have full time DBA jobs and training is often considered a luxury, that you are supposed to arrange on your own time, so “it doesn’t interfere with your DBA responsibilities” ? Re-taking classes helps to capture the parts you missed the 1st time due to the pressures of your job.
    7. Another valuable aspect of Brent Ozar training is that you get to ask questions, at times outside the context of the actual class. The feedback you get – provided you can concisely articulate your issue – is very helpful especially if you can’t afford to hire Brent as a consultant.
    8. There are many Senior level DBAs who enter the training and contribute to the class by asking interesting questions or share their own experience deploying a particular solution. You can benefit from someone else’s success or failure. It also helps to see how your skills measure up to other DBAs.
    9. Brent is constantly improving his content factoring-in students’ feedback. So, you benefit by taking the same class multiple times. I would, however, wish that the classes’ schedule could be a little bit more aligned with the progression of difficulty of a particular class, so you start with basic like “Fundamentals of Index Tuning ”, then progress to “Mastering Index Tuning” for example, and then followed by the most challenging “Mastering Server Tuning”

    I highly recommend the training. You will be amazed how much you didn’t know. It’s kind of embarrassing …?

  4. kalotai (verified owner)

    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.

  5. Chris Fair (verified owner)

    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 wth 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 conufsed 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.

  6. Andrea Allred (verified owner)

    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!

  7. Andy Benner (verified owner)

    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.

  8. charo (verified owner)

    Awesome content,the labs are hands on and they have real day to day opportunities to analyze and solve . I highly recommend this training.

  9. alex.arkof (verified owner)

    This was great and very useful class presented by Brent who is an excellent speaker. Before taking this class make sure you’re familiar with sp_Blitz tools and Index/Query tuning technique.

  10. Sammy (verified owner)

    Great content with excellent delivery that provides invaluable insight on server tuning

  11. Randy Stone (verified owner)

    I’ve already used what I’ve learned to diagnose some ongoing problems we’ve been having on one of our servers.
    Brent is a natural teacher, which made this class easy to follow and retain what I’ve learned. The syllabus was well thought out and Brent was extremely responsive and patient with questions. Money well spent.

  12. Jim Vogler (verified owner)

    Thank you for the excellent class, Brent. I feel a LOT more confident in my troubleshooting compared to Monday morning. I am 100% positive I have some very low hanging fruit on my worst-performing systems that I can quickly make some good headway on. Hands-down, this is the best SQL server training I’ve ever had. None of my peers for the past decade have been skilled at this level of SQL server troubleshooting, so “I know what I know”. I almost always work as a solo DBA, and there’s only so much I pick up at user groups or blogs. Excellent course material, with fun and challenging labs at a good pace. I am not a coder, and some of the query mod discussions were beyond my understanding, but overall the group’s dialogue and Brent’s direction and oversight were extremely helpful, and produced several “A-ha!….” moments! Excellent class, sir!

  13. Bryan Rebok (verified owner)

    This course is the final one in Brent’s “trilogy” of “Mastering Tuning” courses, as it relies heavily on what you learned in Mastering Index Tuning and Mastering Query Tuning. Brent and his crew teach their systematic and proven approach to analyzing wait stats on a slow server – using the same tools and techniques that they use with their real-life customers. Just like the other 2 courses, the lectures are informative, and the presenters are knowledgeable and entertaining; but, the challenging and realistic labs are what set the course apart from other training. This course (and series, in general) is a great investment for any performance tuner.

  14. Daryl Smith (verified owner)

    Brent presents a detailed look into how a sql server is responding to current load for multiple different scenarios and a methodology for walking through the issues. Presentation is at a good speed and the information is useful. Would recommend for all dba’s.

  15. Matthew Pace (verified owner)

    Well thought out and structured training with great labs in order to understand how to analyse an SQL server and understand the possible actions to take.

  16. Douglas Riga (verified owner)

    Outstanding course!! I would highly recommend this course for either production or development DBAs. The insights you get into how to look at a struggling server and begin to figure out what is going on is immeasurable. If you want to really understand how wait stats can help you troubleshoot, then this is the course for you.

  17. Christian Striok-Wartha (verified owner)

    Great training.
    Learned a lot about the SQL server internals and how to analyse performance problems in a coordinated way.

  18. Gerry Veraa (verified owner)

    This course was just as great as the courses before, but had more relevance for me because you can’t always (mostly never) change the source code or even change the indexes a vendor has kindly supplied to you. So, while query tuning and index tuning will give a bigger bang for the buck, sometimes you just have to fix it with more hardware and try to scale your environment out.

    Follow the other two courses first, then follow up with this to tackle most problems in your career

  19. Alan O’Neal (verified owner)

    As with all of Brent’s classes – fantastic. So much great information is presented and the hands-on portion reinforces the concepts.

  20. techsourcing (verified owner)

    I thoroughly enjoyed this class. It was my first introduction to the sp_Blitz tools, and I absolutely love them! By the end of the class I felt I had a good grasp of how to use each of the tools to track down the issues going on on the server. There was one part around working with management to determine architecture decisions that wasn’t particularly interesting to me, but that’s just me. Thanks for a great class Brent!

  21. Lori Fry

    Great mix of lecture and hands-on lab plus the use of the SLACK website for real time communication was amazingly helpful. I always learn a lot from Brent’s classes and the convenience of doing this on-line is perfect when our budget is limited.

  22. David Hicks

    Brent has the rare qualities of being knowledgeable, understandable and fun all at the same time. The exercises are well-designed. Plus there is a good balance between instruction and hands-on learning. I highly recommend this course as well as the “Mastering Index Tuning” and “Mastering Query Tuning” courses.

  23. daniel vikström (verified owner)

    Great education gives you a good base to preform analysis of an sql server and also how to think strategy

Only logged in customers who have purchased this product may leave a review.

Bert Wagner of SQL with Bert attended one of our Mastering classes with hands-on labs, and here’s what he said about the quality of the labs and how our online classes are so different:

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