Thursday, April 30, 2009


SQL Server: Physical Database Layout versus Database Size

Paul Randal has posted the results from his latest survey of physical database file/filegroup layouts for various database size categories over at his blog. Given that he received over 1000 responses, this is very interesting info.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


How to identify your SQL Server version and Edition

This Microsoft support article, How to identify your SQL Server version and Edition, shows how for all versions from SQL Server 2008 back to 6.5

For SQL Server 2008:

SELECT SERVERPROPERTY('productversion'), SERVERPROPERTY('productlevel'), SERVERPROPERTY ('edition')

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


New Azure Training Kit Available

Microsoft have released an updated version of the Azure Services Training Kit:

The Azure Services Training Kit April update now includes the following content covering Windows Azure, .NET Services, SQL Services, and Live Services:
  • 11 hands-on labs – including new hands-on labs for PHP and Native Code on Windows Azure.
  • 18 demo scripts – These demo scripts are designed to provide detailed walkthroughs of key features so that someone can easily give a demo of a service.
  • 9 presentations – the presentations used for our 3 day training workshops including speaker notes.

The training kit is downloadable from here.

Monday, April 13, 2009


SQL Server 2008 replication to Previous Versions (2000, 2005)

I was just researching a question on SQL Server replication, whether SQL Server 2000 can participate with SQL Server 2008 in a replication strategy. The answer is yes:

SQL Server 2000 and SQL Server 2005 can both participate in replication topologies with SQL Server 2008. For SQL Server 2000 the minimum version is Service Pack 3. For SQL Server 2005 the minimum version is Service Pack 2.

Ref: Using Multiple Versions of SQL Server in a Replication Topology

When you replicate between or among different versions of SQL Server, you are usually limited to the functionality of the earliest version used. For example, if you upgrade a Distributor to an instance of SQL Server 2008, but you have a Publisher that is running an instance of SQL Server 2005 and a Subscriber that is running an instance of SQL Server 2000, you are limited to the general functionality and replication functionality of SQL Server 2000.

Because the SQL Server on-disk storage format is the same in the 64-bit and 32-bit environments, a replication topology can combine server instances that run in a 32-bit environment and server instances that run in a 64-bit environment.

There are some breaking changes in the replication agent security model detailed here: Breaking Changes in SQL Server Replication

Sunday, April 05, 2009


Möbius Transformations Revealed: The Beauty of the Complex Plane

Möbius Transformations Revealed is a wonderful, short film that illustrates the beautiful correspondence between Möbius transformations and motions of the sphere.

The film, created by mathematicians Douglas N. Arnold and Jonathon Rogness, has been viewed over 1.5 million times on YouTube, and is among one of the YouTube top favorites of all time.

A high resolution version along with other information can be found here.

If you are interested in finding out more, there is no better place to start than Tristan Needham's amazing Visual Complex Analysis.

Wednesday, April 01, 2009


Microsoft Certification and Second Shot

Yesterday, I sat the Microsoft certification upgrade exam 70-454: Transition Your MCITP SQL Server 2005 DBD to MCITP SQL Server 2008 DBD. I followed Rob Farley’s advice:

“I always tell people to do exams during Second Shot season.

Reason being - it makes the first one a practice. Don't bother studying, don't bother stressing, just go and see how you do. Then you can sit it a second time for real.”

I’m not such a huge fan of the upgrade exams as they can be a bit hit and miss (after all, it’s hard to cover so much in a relatively small number of questions), but I passed. It was a very helpful experience; there were a few questions where I was unsure of the answers, so I came home and read up on them.

Microsoft’s Second Shot promotion, where you get a second chance to pass an exam, is on until June 30th 2009. In addition, if you register for second shot you can get any IT professional or developer e-learning collection for just US$35 (normally priced up to US$350).

You can also get 50% off Microsoft Certification exam for attending the sessions live on April 1st (today!): all TechDay attendees will be given a special URL and discount code to register for a Microsoft certification. You must take your exam by May 31, 2009.


Powered by Blogger