Database Health Monitor Update

Steve Stedman has an update to the Database Health Monitor:

Today I released the August 2019 release of Database Health Monitor. This is version 2.9.

My favorite new report is the Blocking By Hour of Day report which uses the existing data that is collected by the historic monitoring feature.

Click through for the change list.

Management Studio’s Staying Power

Kendra Little explains why SQL Server Management Studio isn’t going away anytime soon:

After all, SSMS is no longer the cool new kid on the block: Microsoft has shown consistent effort to develop their new tool, Azure Data Studio (the artist formerly known as SQL Operations Studio), since November 2017. Azure Data Studio is built on the modern foundation of Microsoft’s VS Code, whereas SQL Server Managed Studio is related to the legacy Visual Studio Shell.

Based on this overview, it might seem like a new SQL Server DBA or developer should primarily learn Azure Data Studio, not SSMS. And it might similarly seem like vendors should focus on developing new tooling only for Azure Data Studio.

But when you look into the details of how Azure Data Studio is being developed, it becomes clear that SSMS is still just as relevant than ever:

User base inertia is another reason, one that Kendra doesn’t mention directly. I like where Azure Data Studio is going and try to use it at least half-time. But there are a lot of people with a specific workflow they’ve developed and don’t want to change. As long as that’s a large percentage of the SQL Server population, SSMS isn’t going anywhere.

Power Bi Dataflows and the Right Tool for the Job

Matthew Roche answers a reader question and waxes philosophical at the same time:

– Power BI dataflows and CDM folders provide capabilities for bridging the low-code/no-code world of self-service BI with managed central corporate BI in Azure.
– Power BI dataflows enable Excel-like composition of ETL processes with linked and computed entities.
– Power BI dataflows can scale beyond the desktop and leverage the power of the cloud to become part of an end-to-end BI application.

But… This is just a list of features.

Read the whole thing.

Diagnosing Analysis Services with SSASDiag

Chris Webb discusses SSASDiag:

There are a lot of great community-developed tools out there for Analysis Services developers to use (BI Developer ExtensionsDAX StudioTabular EditorAnalysis Services Query Analyzer to name a few) and they have saved me vast amounts of time and effort over the years. When I joined Microsoft last month I came across one which I had never seen before but which is nevertheless quite mature and feature-rich: the SSAS Diagnostics Tool or SSASDiag for short. It’s available on GitHub here:
https://github.com/ssasdiag/SSASDiag

Read on for Chris’s initial thoughts and check out the tool.

Database Health Monitor 2.8.2

Kevin Feasel

2019-07-19

Tools

Steve Stedman has a new version of the Database Health Monitor:

Version 2.8.2 is the July 2019 Release of Database Health Monitor. There was a 2.8 release on July 17, 2019, followed shortly by a 2.8.1 and 2.8.2 release after a report of a bug in the blocking queries report that was fixed.

Read on to see what’s new.

SentryOne Plan Explorer in Azure Data Studio

Aaron Bertrand gives us the behind-the-scenes look at SentryOne’s Plan Explorer extension for Azure Data Studio:

Like the desktop application, the Plan Explorer extension is designed to provide you with richer graphical execution plans for your real-time queries against SQL Server. It is based on a modest subset of functionality; we’ve started with just the plan diagram, a basic statements grid, tooltips, and access to the XML (so you can open the plan in other tools). We will add more features to the extension over time to try to get you as close to full parity with the desktop client as possible.

I gave it a quick try this weekend and had to pop XML results into the desktop client to get what I really wanted to see, but I’m excited over what this looks like medium-term.

Replaying Workloads with WorkloadTools

Gianluca Sartori shows an example of using the WorkloadTools application to replay a workload, including where the analytics server cannot directly access the production database:

Regardless of the method that you decided to use, at the end of the replays, you will have two distinct sets of tables containing the workload analysis data, sitting in different schemas in the same database or in completely different databases.

WorkloadViewer will let you visualize performance over time, as we have seen for a single workload analysis, but this time it will be able to show you data from both workloads, so that you can compare them.

This sort of production load testing is both important and difficult; WorkloadTools makes it easier.

Undercover Inspector 1.4

Adrian Buckman takes us through recent changes in Undercover Inspector:

#119 When the backups check module reports backup issues for a database but the issue is with a FULL or DIFF and the LOG is ok, we now show just the primary server in the Preferred replicas column as a FULL and DIFF only applies to the Primary – this reduces the number of warnings raised within the report as it will no longer report for all replica nodes if the AG backup preference is set to Prefer secondary or Secondary Only. See Git issue for more details.

Click through for the full change set.

dbatools 1.0 Forthcoming

Chrissy LeMaire announces that dbatools will be out on June 19th by my count:

We’ve got about 30 issues left to resolve which you can see and follow on our GitHub Projects page. If you’ve ever been interested in helping, now is the perfect time as we only have 30 more days left to reach our goal.

If you’re a current or past dbatools developer, we’d love any help we can get. Just hit up the GitHub Projects page to see what issues are left to resolve. If someone is already assigned, please reach out to them on Slack in the #dbatools-dev channel and see if they can use your help.

Read the whole thing and see if there’s anything you can do to help.

Choosing Between Management Studio and Azure Data Studio

Brent Ozar gives us the lay of the tooling land:

Every time there’s a new release of SQL Server or SQL Server Management Studio, you can grab the latest version of SSMS and keep right on keepin’ on. Your job still functions the same way using the same tool, and the tool keeps getting better.

And it’s free. You don’t have to ask the boss for upgrade money. You can just download it, install it, and take advantage of things like the cool new execution plan est-vs-actual numbers (which also cause presenters all over to curse, knowing that they have to redo a bunch of screenshots.)

I spend a lot of time jumping back & forth between SQL Server and Postgres, and lemme just tell you, the tooling options on the other side of the fence are a hot mess.

Yeah, Management Studio is the best of the bunch. I’m using Azure Data Studio more at home but still need a couple of plugins to use it often at work. And those two beat pretty much every other tool I’ve ever worked with.

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