The second day of PASS

I attended Kimberly Tripp and Paul Randal’s session on database maintenance, from planning to post-mortum. Absolutely fantastic. I think it should be titled ‘A Database Comedy’ though. 🙂

The day started with a discussion on sql internals and query processing details, and then, after lunch dove into details of various maintenance tasks, including file maintenance, log maintenance, index maintenance, backups and restores, consistency checking, and corruption checking and recovering from that.

After the session there was the usual opening party and the SSC gambling party. All awesome.

Photos so far –

The only minor problem is that the hotel’s free internet access isn’t working. Hopefully they’ll get that sorted soon.

The first day of PASS

The conference started with a bang with a full day workshop with Itzik Ben-Gan on advanced T-SQL querying and programming. The advanced adjective wasn’t a joke, if anything it was an understatement.

The workshop started with a look at the OVER clause, new in 2005 and unfortunatly not enhanced in 2008. Itzik covered the OVER clause as it applies to aggregates and also how it works with the ranking functions that it’s usually associated with. He also discussed some of the aspects of OVER that exist in the SQL standard but are not implemented (yet) in the product. Hopefully in the next release…… Itzik also looked at using the row number function to create a more powerful TOP.

He looked at ways to create custome aggregations, including cursors, CLR user-defined aggreates and T-SQL tricks to compute aggregates that there aren’t built-in commands for, like median and product.


Off to PASS

I’m leaving today for the PASS conference in Seattle. Looking forward (not) to 26 or so hours of flying.

I am looking forward to the conference. It’s going to be a different experience this year. It’s the first PASS conference where I’m anything other than a regular attendee. It’s going to be fun.

I’ll try to post each day about the events of that day. They’ll probably be short posts. I don’t expect to have much free time there.

PASS 2008 community summit

The (almost complete) schedule for the 2008 PASS conference is now available and there are some fantastic looking sessions.

Some of the highlights of the schedule (at least for me) are:

The big news (not that it’s exactly news by now) is that I’m speaking at the summit this year. I’m presenting a session on how to write badly-performing queries. The session is late on Friday afternoon and is immediately followed (in the same room) by Adam Machanic and Peter DeBetta’s session on Antipatterns and Malpractices. Looks like a fun afternoon focused on how things shouldn’t be done.

TechEd 2008 – Wednesday

And so it’s all over for another year. Time to pack up, travel home and tomorrow, go back to the office. It’s been a great conference. I know there was a lot of concern about the new venue and there were a few teething problems, but overall, I think it was a very good event.

There were only two sessions this morning. I started off with a deep and very technical look at the data mining algorithms in SQL 2005. I understood some of it, but I need to brush up on my statistics.

For the second session of the day, Peter Willmot and I ran a session on basic SQL security concepts for the architects and developers. It seemed well received and it was very well attended for the last session of TechEd.


SQL Server 2008 is here!

SQL Server 2008 RTMs today, 6 August 2008. The announcement was made at the closing keynote of Tech Ed South Africa, about two hours ago.

Congrats to all in the SQL Server team, all the developers, testers, managers and everyone else involved. You guys did an awesome job.

TechEd 2008 – Tuesday

Day two of TechEd sessions and the information deluge continues.

i ran two chalk and talk sessions today, both turned out better than i expected and I was very impressed with both the turn out and involvement of the people at the second. I’ll see if I can get related materials up later in the week.

Other sessions that I attended included a very impressive look at game development using XNA, WPF and Silverlight, with a bit of apache chucked in for good measure. The session was partially delivered by a presenter sitting in Seattle and partially by the presenter in the room. The slow internet access down in this end of the world showed, but not too much.


TechEd 2008 – Monday

So, today was the first full day of teched, and as usual, it felt like standing underneath an information waterfall. So much to see, learn and try to remember.

I started the day with Peter Willmot’s session on BI, specifically on cubes and how to present them to the users. Couple of cool sharepoint features, including reporting service web parts and the excel services. Since I committed to learning sharepoint, it’s interesting to see just how much integrates into it.


TechEd 2008 begins

So, TechEd South Africa started today. So far it’s been fun. As usual for the local TechEd events, the sunday was the opening keynote and a nice party. Some points that struck me during the keynote:

  • Microsoft is heavily pushing the virtualisation technologies, including Hyper-V
  • The application virtualisation looks fantastic for large corporations
  • Silverlight 2 looks very cool
  • Still no release date for SQL Server 2008

I have nothing particularly technical, just a couple pictures of the opening party.