SQL Server is a great product however it’s not something I often talk or rave about. It’s the unsung hero of the majority of the software we use and a lot of the time, we don’t look after it properly and that’s assuming we deploy it properly in the first place. A colleague and friend of mine @LupoLoopy was at a SQLBits conference last week where Brent was speaking and it pipped my forgotten interest for SQL Server so I took to Brent’s site for some SQL inspiration.
It didn’t take long for me to find some great material. If you are in the SQL Server business then I’d really recommend some if not all of this material to you. I haven’t gotten through them all myself yet, but the eBooks I have no doubt are great insightful reads and the tools, sp_Blitz and sp_BlitzIndex will be so useful to you, you’ll probably wonder how you lived without them as I did when I first saw them.
Please don’t thank me for any of these tools and documents as they are all property of Brent Ozar Unlimited, his SQL Server practice but please do thank me for showing them to you if you haven’t already heard of Brent. If you haven’t heard of Brent then he is a SQL Server Master and a Microsoft MVP for SQL Server: a big deal basically.
SQL Server Tools
sp_Blitz is a free tool that gives your SQL server a full bill of health and tells you everything you want to know but didn’t know was wrong with it. My personal feeling is that this tool should be made mandatory to run against all SQL servers at periodic intervals to keep them in a sensible state of health.
sp_BlitzIndex is another tool but instead of checking out the health of your SQL Server, this checks the health of your database indexes so that you can get the most performance out of your databases.
SQL Server eBooks
SQL Server 2005, 2008, 2008 R2, 2012 and 2014 Setup Guide. This is a full on how to setup SQL Server by Brent book and probably number one on your reading list if you are ever installing SQL Server.
AlwaysOn Availabity Groups Setup Checklist isn’t a book as such but it’s a very helpful ticksheet you can use to make sure that when configuring SQL Server AlwaysOn Availability Groups that you haven’t missed a step and be left scratching your head wondering why it isn’t working as you had designed.
High Availability and Disaster Recovery Worksheet is the final example I like from Brent which helps you to decide which HA and DR technologies you should employ in your SQL Server designs. This is a really simple yet effective sheet to have with you if you design SQL Server deployments.