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  • Finally, SSMS will talk to Azure SQL DW

    Don’t get me started on how I keep seeing people jump into Azure SQL DW without thinking about the parallel paradigm. SQL DW is to PDW, the way that Azure SQL DB is to SQL Server. If you were happy using SQL Server for your data warehouse, then SQL DB may be just fine. Certainly you should get your head around the MPP (Massively Parallel ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on July 12, 2016
  • Exploring custom visuals in Power BI

    One of my favourite things about Power BI is its extensibility. For ages I would hear about how good some other self-service reporting platforms were, and how things in the Microsoft space were lacking. Power View, in particular, was frustratingly limited in what you could do with it, and I felt somewhat disappointed. It was good as a data ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on May 10, 2016
  • How to make text searching go faster

    ...but first, let’s look at one oft-forgotten reason why finding a particular piece of text can be slow, if not impossible: collation. This will then provide a useful platform for making it go faster. I say ‘impossible’, but of course it’s never impossible to find something in a database (assuming it’s there). It might take longer, but you can ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on March 7, 2016
  • A Fitbit report in Power BI for T-SQL Tuesday

    Finding things to publish online for public consumption is something I’m often a bit reluctant to do. Most of my work is for customers, and there’s no way I’m going to share some of their data unless they’ve explicitly allowed it. So when Jorge Segarra (@sqlchicken) posted a challenge to publish a Power BI report on the web for T-SQL Tuesday, I ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on February 15, 2016
  • Join Effects With UPDATE

    A lot of people don’t like UPDATE with a FROM clause. I’m going to explore what’s going on, both logically and within the query plan. And I’m doing this for T-SQL Tuesday #74, hosted by Robert Davis (@sqlsoldier). I’m going to use a fresh copy of AdventureWorks2012. I’m using SQL 2012 SP3, but the things I’m looking at should apply to most ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on January 11, 2016
  • A new superpower for SQL query tuners – Number of Rows Read

    There’s a technique that I’ve been using for some time now, and been looking for going even further back, which has become immediately available to everyone who can see a query plan (version permitting). Some years back (ok, it was 2010), I started to present at conferences about SARGability and residual predicates. I had a session at SQLBits ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 11, 2015
  • Automate ETL Testing: Cross-Server Data Comparison with PowerShell

    In collaboration with a current client over the past year or so, I've been working on the issue of Test Driven Development for ETL work, especially in the area of automated testing for data. He graciously agreed to allow me to rewrite some of the code we originally developed in Ruby as a set of PowerShell demo scripts and share it through ...
    Posted to Merrill Aldrich (Weblog) by merrillaldrich on November 22, 2015
  • Superhero powers for managing the enterprise

    This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is hosted by Jen McCown of @midnightdba fame. She wants us to write about strategies for managing the enterprise, and as a database consultant, I find myself giving advice on this kind of thing to customers remarkably often. No, I’m not going to do stories about LobsterPot customers. We don’t do that. What happens ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on September 7, 2015
  • SQL 2014 queries under a strobe light

    I just wrote a post about Live Query Statistics. Let me show you how this technology in SQL Server 2014 can be used for some amazingly cool (nerdy cool, at least) stuff. Behind the scenes, LQS uses a DMV called sys.dm_exec_query_profiles. When you run a query with SET STATISTICS PROFILE ON, the engine puts data into this DMV for every operator in ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on August 31, 2015
  • Live Query Statistics in SQL 2014, not just SQL 2016

    One of the coolest things in SQL Server 2016 is Live Query Statistics (LQS). But did you know that it’s available in SQL 2014? (Edit: Needs SP1) The thing is that we haven’t been able to view it effectively before now, before SQL Server Management Studio 2016 became available. LQS provides the ability to watch an execution plan while the query ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on August 31, 2015
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