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Category: Source Control

Thoughts on Using Source Control

Kevin Chant shares some thoughts:

In this post I want to cover more thoughts about SQL Server professionals using version control. Because I have had some interesting conversations since my last post about it.

In a previous post I covered how SQL Server professionals can benefit from using version control. Which you can read in detail here.

Now I want to clarify a few things relating to it as well.

Read on for those thoughts.

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Tying Azure Data Factory to Source Control

Eddy Djaja explains why you really want to tie Azure Data Factory to your source control:

Azure Data Factory (ADF) is Microsoft’s ETL or more precise: ELT tool in the cloud. For more information of ADF, Microsoft puts the introduction of ADF in this link: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/azure/data-factory/introduction. As some have argued if ADF will replace or complement the “on-premise”  SSIS, it is uncertain and only time can tell what will happen in the future.
Unlike SSIS, the authoring of ADF does not use Visual Studio. ADF authoring uses a web browser to create ADF components, such as pipelines, activities, datasets, etc. The simplicity of authoring ADF may confuse the novice developers on how ADF components are saved, stored and published. When logging to ADF for the first time after creating an ADF, the authoring is in the ADF mode. How do we know?

Click through for the explanation and some resources on how to do it.

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A Script for Peer Reviews of Code

Paul Andrew shares with us a script which is useful for peer reviewing code before check-in:

Does the code include good comments? Things that explain the reason why logic has been implemented to assist future developers looking at the same code.

All to often I see code comments written that just translate from code to English and tell me what is happening. What should be fairly obvious to the reviewer as they read the code. Why is so much more important.

It’s a 20-point checklist, but worth reviewing and adapting for your own purposes.

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Distributing Notebooks

Grant Fritchey wants to know where to buy notebooks and notebook accessories:

I’m myopically focused at the moment on Azure Data Studio, but there are a lot of other places and ways to create or consume notebooks. However, I’m going to keep my focus.

The issue I’m running into, is distributing the notebooks.

There are a lot of great comments. Before reading them, here’s my answer:

  • GitHub repos, like Grant mentions. They’re good, though I have the same feeling about a production notebook that I do about an SSIS package: notebooks are binaries (after a fashion). For pedagogical purposes, I’ll absolutely slap notebooks into GitHub, typically without data. But for a real data science project, those notebooks can get hefty when you store all of the data in them, and it’s really hard to diff the JSON to understand what changed.
  • Binder and Azure Notebooks are services which let you host notebooks remotely. Binder reads from a GitHub repo and spins up a virtual environment for you. Azure Notebooks lets you run notebooks (including F# notebooks) against free VMs in Azure, or you can use your own VM for more power. Azure Notebooks let you fork projects pretty easily. I haven’t used Google Colab but it looks pretty similar to Azure Notebooks.
  • When you start up Jupyter Notebooks, you’re really starting a server. You can have a server running in your environment with your team’s notebooks. I’d probably still drop them in source control as well.
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Forking GitHub Repos and Contributing to Open Source Projects

Rob Sewell takes us through the process of contributing to an open source project:

– Fork the repository into your own GitHub

– Clone the repository to your local machine

– Create a new branch for your changes

– Make some changes and commit them with useful messages

– Push the changes to your repository

– Create a Pull Request from your repository back to the original one

You will need to have git.exe available which you can download and install from https://git-scm.com/downloads if required

For bonus points, we learn that Shane O’Neill doesn’t use the Oxford comma.

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A Git Cheat Sheet

Kendra Little has a cheat sheet for working with Git:

I created a cheat sheet for the Git Command Line Interface to go along with my Git tutorial for SQL Change Automation video. I find the Git CLI to be very friendly and easier to learn than a GUI interface.

Given the number of “How do I extricate myself from this Git mess?” messages in my company chat, I’m not sure I’d call the Git CLI friendly. Nonetheless, Kendra does a great job of putting together most of the common commands in an easy guide.

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SQL Server Trends Worth Watching

Grant Fritchey follows up on a Kevin Hill tweet:

There are a million things to learn about in our rapidly shifting technological landscape, but I think this assessment, especially the way it was put, “no longer justify ignoring” really nails some of the fundamentals.

Let’s talk about why you can no longer ignore Docker, Git and DBATools either.

If you’re a DBA and aren’t familiar with Docker, Git, or DBATools, that’s a pretty good trio of things to spend some time learning. You can survive without them, but you’re more likely to thrive if you know them.

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Storing Container Images in GitHub Package Registry

Andrew Pruski shows how we can use GitHub Package Registry to store private container images:

The GitHub Package Registry is available for beta testing and allows us to store container images in it, basically giving us the same functionality as the Docker Hub.

However the Docker Hub only allows for one private repository per free account whereas the Github package registry is completely private! Let’s run through a simple demo to create a registry and upload an image.

It’s pretty easy to set up, so check it out.

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Version Control and Power BI Desktop

Gilbert Quevauvilliers takes us through version control with PBIX files:

In the second part of my blog post I am going to detail how to use the version control with Power BI Desktop files.

This will include adding files, checking files in and out, viewing previous versions and reverting to previous versions.

If this is the first time you are reading this blog post, I would highly suggest reading Setting up Version Control for my Power BI Desktop Files (PBIX) with no additional Cost * | Part 1

In short, Gilbert treats PBIX file as any other data file. These can get kind of beefy, though, so I’ve also saved them as templates—that way, you get the structure without pulling in all of the data.

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Reverting a Git Push

Stuart Moore takes us through backing out a commit in Git when you pushed to the wrong branch:

We’ve all done it. Working for ages tracking down that elusive bug in a project. Diligently committing away on our local repo as we make small changes. We’ve found the convoluted 50 lines of tortured logic, replaced it with 5 simple easy to read lines of code and all the test have passed. So we push it backup to github and wander off to grab some a snack as a reward

Halfway to the snacks you suddenly have a nagging doubt in the back of your mind that you don’t remember starting a new branch before starting on the bug hunt.

Read on for the process.

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