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Day: April 2, 2021

Auto-Failover Groups and Grace Periods

Taiob Ali clears up some misunderstanding:

The auto-failover groups feature for the Azure SQL database can be configured with an automatic failover policy. Azure triggers failover after the failure is detected and the grace period has expired. Grace period is determined by a setting called ‘GracePeriodWithDataLossHours’ that cannot be set under one hour. Why is it not allowed to set a time which is less than an hour? Can your business tolerate the application be down for that period? Should your turn off Auto Fail-over and set it to manual?

I noticed a lot of confusion around this setting, including my own. Some of the confusion is due to a lack of clarity in the documentation. I checked with the Microsoft Azure SQL team, and they are actively working on clarifying some of the questions I raised.

I want to thank Dimitri Furman and Roberto Bustos from the Azure SQL Team for clarifying some of my confusion that I will share here.

Read on for a Q&A style explanation of auto-failover and grace periods.

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What to Do if a Database Isn’t Synchronizing

Lee Markup has some advice:

I currently manage 5 AlwaysOn Availability Groups. Two are on SQL Server 2014 and overdue for an upgrade, while three of them are on SQL Server 2017.  From time to time I have run into a couple of different situations that I needed to troubleshoot and I want to tell you where to look and what to check on in these scenarios. I can’t possibly tell you about everything that could go wrong, but I can tell you about my experience with AlwaysOn Availability Groups and let you decide if that experience helps you or not.

Click through for more.

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Fixed Server and Database Roles in SQL Server

Greg Larsen takes us through the built-in set of server and database roles in SQL Server:

Managing Security for SQL Server is extremely important. As a DBA or security administrator, you need to provide access for logins and database users to resources within SQL Server. SQL Server has both server and database resources where access might need to be granted. Access to these resources can be granted to either individual logins or database users or can be granted to roles, for which logins or database users can be members. Granting access via a role is known as role-based security.

There are two types of roles: fixed or user-defined. In this article, I will discuss the different fixed server and database roles provided with SQL Server and how these roles can be used to support role-based security to simplify providing access to the different SQL Server resources. In a future article, I will discuss user-defined server and database roles.

Click through for more information. Or just give everybody sysadmin. I mean, that’s probably fine, right?

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Power Query and the First Day of the Week

Ed Hansberry decrees that henceforth, Thursday shall be the first day of the week:

By default, Power BI starts its week on Sunday, but that doesn’t work for every situation. Some companies prefer their week start on Monday, and I recently helped someone that needed their week to start on Thursday. Fortunately, by tweaking your date table in Power Query, you can make this change with no calculations at all.

Click through to see how.

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VMware In-Guest Time Synchronization

David Klee reviews a product update:

I just found out that VMware has updated their in-guest time synchronization with the 7.0 Update 1 release. Previously, we had to manually disable some of the advanced time synchronization ‘features’ that didn’t adhere to the front-end GUI option that said to not synchronize the guest time with the host. For most VMs, it is not that big of a deal, but for SQL Servers running in a highly available configuration, this act could break your availability solution.

Click through to see what has changed in the product.

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