Recap: #24hop (24hrs of PASS) – Day One

I am very happy that the committee behind #24HOP made two decisions.  One they decided to split the 24 hours into two days.  This is huge for people in the USA as we don’t have to pull all nighters.  Second, I am very glad day one fell on a Wednesday.  Why would I be exited it falls on a Wednesday?  I am excited because it is no pants Wednesday.  No pants Wednesday  means I don’t work on Wednesday’s so its very easy to attend sessions.

Day Two

If you didn’t catch it in the first paragraph there is a day two.  That’s right peeps you can still signup and attend some great sessions.  If you need some help picking a session or two I wish I could attend the ones listed below.

The following is a short review of the sessions I attended on September 15th 2010.

Gather SQL Server Performance Data with PowerShell

Allen White (Blog | @SQLRunr) showed a very slick way to automate the process of collecting WMI counters and save them in a database.  This alone was very slick but to add the icing on the cake he also showed the crowd how to build reports that work inside of SSMS.

My eyes were opened up wide when I saw how easy it was to do WMI and SQL calls with PowerShell.  I will defiantly check out http://powershell.com in the near future to get my learn on.

It looks like Allen has a great PreCon session for the SQL PASS Member Summit 2010 lined up that will get you well on your way with automating your DBA tasks.

Hardware 201: Selecting and Sizing Database Hardware for OLTP Performance

Glen Berry (Blog | @GlenAllenBerry) ran through tons of statistics behind selecting CPU’s, Memory and Disk’s for your new database servers.  I have to be honest quite a bit of this was over my head but below are a few items that stuck.

  • Optimize your hardware purchases to take advantage of your SQL and Windows Server editions
  • Don’t go cheap on CPU’s. You rarely upgrade the CPU unlike RAM or disks.
  • Xeon X5680 and Xeon X7560 were recommended CPU’s
  • SSD (solid state drives) are good for random writes (user data files) not sequential writes (log files)
  • 10K drives = 100 IOPS
  • 15K drives = 150 IOPS
  • Make sure High Performance is enable in power settings on your servers

Identifying Costly Queries

Grant Fritchey (Blog | @GFritchey) showed us several different tools you can leverage to identify costly queries.  He showed us how to setup SQL Profiler using stored procedures to lessen the load on your production boxes.  Grant also showed me a new tool I haven’t used before. This was the SQL RML Utility tool that can be helpful show how long a query really took.  Grant also showed us server DMV’s that can be used to get real-time understanding costly queries.

For some samples and resources used in the demo check out his resources blog page.

How to Rock Your Presentations

Douglas McDowell (Web | @douglasmcdowell) delivered the most important session for me.  This year I started to focus more on giving back to the community through technical presentations.  I am always looking for some tips that will improve my presentations.  The following were a few tips I plan to implement on my current presentation schedule.

  • Treat presentations like a development project
  • Storyboard each topic
  • Build an outline
  • Make sure to add RM, WIIFM and KWUC to all presentations.

You can find more in his PowerPoint presentation at http://downloads.solidq.com/DMcDowell/RockPASS_DMcDowell.zip

Conclusion

This was another great day of #24HOP.  The best part is it continues today.  The sad part is I will miss out on the sessions.  If you catch them and have good notes.  Please add them as a comment or blog them so the unlucky ones can check out the info.