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Tamarick Hill

July, the 31 Days of SQL Server DMO’s – Day 19 (sys.dm_exec_query_stats)

The sys.dm_exec_query_stats DMV is one of the most useful DMV’s out there when it comes to performance tuning. If you have been keeping up with this blog series this month, you know that I started out on Day 1 reviewing many of the DMV’s within the ‘exec’ namespace. I’m not sure how I missed this one considering how valuable it is, but hey, they say it’s better late than never right?? On Day 7 and Day 8 we reviewed the sys.dm_exec_procedure_stats and sys.dm_exec_trigger_stats respectively. This sys.dm_exec_query_stats DMV is very similar to these two. As a matter of fact, this DMV will return all of the information you saw in the other two DMV’s, but in addition to that, you can see stats for all queries that have cached execution plans on your server. You can even see stats for statements that are ran Ad-Hoc as long as they are still cached in the buffer pool.

To better illustrate this DMV, let have a quick look at it:

SELECT * FROM sys.dm_exec_query_stats





As you can see, there is a lot of information returned from this DMV. I wont go into detail about each and every one of these columns, but I will touch on a few of them briefly. The first column is the ‘sql_handle’, which if you remember from Day 4 of our blog series, I explained how you can use this column to extract the actual SQL text that was executed. The next columns statement_start_offset and statement_end_offset provide you a way of extracting the exact SQL statement that was executed as part of a batch. The plan_handle column is used to extract the Execution plan that was used, which we talked about during Day 5 of this blog series. Later in the result set, you have columns to identify how many times a particular statement was executed, how much CPU time it used, how many reads/writes it performed, the duration, how many rows were returned, etc. These columns provide you with a solid avenue to begin your performance optimization. The last column I will touch on is the query_plan_hash column. A lot of times when you have Dynamic SQL running on your server, you have similar statements with different parameter values being passed in. Many times these types of statements will get similar execution plans and then a Binary hash value can be generated based on these similar plans. This query plan hash can be used to find the cost of all queries that have similar execution plans and then you can tune based on that plan to improve the performance of all of the individual queries. This is a very powerful way of identifying and tuning Ad-hoc statements that run on your server.

As I stated earlier, this sys.dm_exec_query_stats DMV is a very powerful and recommended DMV for performance tuning. You are able to quickly identify statements that are running on your server and analyze their impact on system resources. Using this DMV to track down the biggest performance killers on your server will allow you to make the biggest gains once you focus your tuning efforts on those top offenders.

For more information about this DMV, please see the below Books Online link:

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Published Friday, July 19, 2013 10:49 AM by Tamarick Hill


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