Database Health Monitor Beta 8.1 Released Today

Today Database Health Monitor Beta 8.1 released.  After the beta 8 release about three weeks ago there were a couple small issues discovered that have been addressed in Beta 8.1

Beta 8.1 was release to fix some obsolete code from a very old beta that causes the application to expire on Feb 1st, 2014, this limitation has now been removed.  Beta 8.1 also added some better error handling. In beta 8 there was a crash found in some configurations where minimizing the app caused a crash.  This has now been fixed.

New Charts

 

The biggest change in Beta 8 was the rewrite of many of the charts for an improved look and feel.

Please if you are using Beta 8 or older, please update to Beta 8.1.  Download at http://DatabaseHealth.com/download

Thanks!  Enjoy the product.

-Steve

Database Health Monitor – Beta 8 – Soft launch

Today I launched Database Health Reports Beta 8 as a soft launch. What I mean by the soft launch is that other than updating the DatabaseHealth website and this blog posting, I haven’t done much to promote it.  Why you might ask?  Due to it being a holiday week between Christmas and New Years, there are many people out of the office. I figured I would wait until after January 1st to make a big splash.

Beta 8 is out. The biggest change is the charting. About 75% of the charts in the system have been completely rewritten. I was using a charting module that didn’t allow for the flexiblity that was needed to make the charts look the way I wanted. In September right after the Beta 7 release I started rewriting the charts from scratch.  Between now and the next Beta I will work to get more of the charts converted over to the new look.

Here is an example of some of the newer charts. The red and green bars on the plan cache are used to indicate change.  Red indicates that the value was worse, and green indicates that it improved or stayed the same. The CPU by database chart was rewritten to make better use of the available space.

New Charts

 

Also shown in the above screen shot is the new Server Configuration panel with details on the specific version of SQL Server, when it was installed, the number of processors and more.

Beta 8 Release Notes

Beta 8 Released 12/29/2013.

The following changes have been made since Beta 7. The big feature in the Beta 8 is the rewrite of many of the charts.

New Features

  • Renamed to Database Health Monitor, attempting to avoid confusion with SSRS Reports.
  • Additional checks for obsolete or unusual settings (SHRINK_DATABASE, TORN_PAGE_DETECTION).
  • Blocking reporting with hierarchical drilldown on the blocking queries.
  • Server details panel showing logical and physical cpu counts, SQL Server Start time, SQL Server install data, Server Name, SQL Server version info, and information on real or virtual server.

Bug Fixes

  • Multithreading the re-connect of databases, vastly improving the startup time if one or more databases is not available.
  • A large amount of the project has been refactored to help mature the product and allow for additional feature growth, and reduce bugs.
  • Improved background threading.
  • Updates and bug fixes on SQL Technical Debt.

SQL Server Performance for Developers

For the .NET programmer, Visual Basic programmer or PHP programmer, if you are accessing a SQL Server database there are some things you should know to performance tune your queries. Learn how to improve query performance with Indexes, how to properly use parameterized queries, using the query analyzer, and avoiding common SQL Server performance pitfalls.

PerformanceTuning

This presentation is a lot of fun. This is one of the few presentations where there is audience participation. Four luck participants will be selected to help simulate the work that SQL Server does when accessing tables structured with different types of indexes.

Download the presentation here:

PerformanceTuning.zip

If you are interested in performance, please take a look at the Database Heath Monitor.

SQL Server FILESTREAM and FileTables

Monday: Using FILESTREAM and FILETABLES in SQL Server

Configuring and Using FILESTREAM and FILETABLES in SQL Server.  Developers love to use SQL Server to store files, but this causes headaches for the DBA, finally a reasonable solution for file storage in SQL Server FILETABLES and FILESTREAM. SQL Server 2008 and 2012 add the new features of FILESTREAM and FILETABLES. Learn how to configure and manipulate files in your SQL Server with FILESTREAM, then learn how to do everything that FILESTREAM sounds like it should do with FILETABLES. With FILETABLES inserting is as easy as drag and drop.

Here is the outline for the presentation:

  • FILESTREAM – SQL Server 2008 and newer
    • Introduction and Configuration
    • Creating a Table Using FILESTREAM
    • TSQL FILESTREAM Access
  • FileTables – SQL Server 2012 and newer
    • Configuring and Creating FileTables
    • Insert, Update and Delete with a FileTable
    • Drag and drop with the file system

 

Here are the slides from the presentation and the supporting sample files.

Filestream and FileTables.zip

 

Speaking at Vancouver DevTeach this week.

This week I will be attending and speaking at Vancouver DevTeach. This event taking place on December 2nd to 4th 2013 at the Vancouver Sheraton Wall Center Hotel. Monday and Tuesday I have morning presentations which leaves the rest of the day to attend a few other sessions.

DevTeach

Here are the sessions that I will be presenting.

Monday: Using FILESTREAM and FILETABLES in SQL Server

Configuring and Using FILESTREAM and FILETABLES in SQL Server.  Developers love to use SQL Server to store files, but this causes headaches for the DBA, finally a reasonable solution for file storage in SQL Server FILETABLES and FILESTREAM. SQL Server 2008 and 2012 add the new features of FILESTREAM and FILETABLES. Learn how to configure and manipulate files in your SQL Server with FILESTREAM, then learn how to do everything that FILESTREAM sounds like it should do with FILETABLES. With FILETABLES inserting is as easy as drag and drop.

Tuesday: SQL Server Performance for Developers

For the .NET programmer, Visual Basic programmer or PHP programmer, if you are accessing a SQL Server database there are some things you should know to performance tune your queries. Learn how to improve query performance with Indexes, how to properly use parameterized queries, using the query analyzer, and avoiding common SQL Server performance pitfalls.

Looking at the lineup of other speakers this looks like it will be a great few days of education. It is nice to attend a conference so close to home, no flights involved for me this time.

A great weekend at Startup Weekend Bellingham

StartupWeekend

What a great time at Startup Weekend Bellingham this wekend. Now that I have had a chance to catch up on sleep and get back into my normal routine, I figured its a great time to write a summary.

How it all worked, the brief summary:

Friday night we pitched ideas to the group of about 70 people. The pitches were limited to 1 minute. After the pitches were complete teams voted for the best ideas. After the top 12 or 14 ideas were chosen teams were formed. At this point my idea didn’t have enough interest so I joined a team, which I quickly discovered was not a good technology fit for me.

Saturday morning: I resigned from the first team realizing that I didn’t have much to contribute, and joined another team. I would like to thank the 3Dconnect team for welcoming me in late.  This team was a perfect technology fit for me. The tea quickly bonded and we start the agile development process to build a company. By noon we had finished 2 sprints, we had a website in place, and we had a really solid plan on where we were going.

Saturday afternoon: we were cruising on developing our product while the 11 other teams were working on projects too. We had a couple of pivots, or shifts in the direction we were going, but since we were using agile development, this didn’t slow us down at all. By then end of the day we had completed 6 sprints, and we had a website that accomplished most of what we were looking for. We also met with several mentors (thanks to all) during the day on Saturday and they helped guide or direction.

Sunday morning we kicked things off early at 7:00, and around 9:30 we had a possible customer, certainly an industry expert in our work space showing us a prosthetic hand that he had build using 3d printers. This really got the team motivated of the things that could be accomplished with our work. We also produced a short video showing off  the site on Sunday morning.

Sunday afternoon worked continued on the business plans we built a second video to really show what it is we are doing. The team met with several mentors, and we prepared our overall presentation for the end of the day. We completed 6 more sprints on sunday for a total of 12 sprints over the weekend. The team really picked up the whole scrum sprint cycle and we benefited from it.

Sunday Evening – the presentations each team presented for 5 minutes with 4 minutes of questions and answers with the judges. The judges then went into a room and deliberated for what felt like a long time. After that the judges presented their over all thoughts on each team and the winning teams were announced.

The Teams

In order of the final presentations.

Town Scout:  Making riding the bus cool again. Bus schedules on your mobile devices.

First Move: Every date should be successful. University dating site.

Ergo Minder: Product to lock your computer and force you to exercise.

3Dconnect: This was my team. Bringing 3d printing to the world. Connecting people with printers with people that want to print.

Bucky: Whats in your bucket list. Website to help people do things from their bucket list.

Intern Me: Connecting interns with business.

CBeyond: Bitcoin credit card processing.  Bit plastic.

Houseware: Controlling your home from your mobile device.

Help Me Feed Myself: Personalized food tips, advice for the foodie.

Almost a Gentleman: providing lessons and a monthly package to turn you into a gentleman.

Livable Air Solutions: Scrubbing carbon from the atmosphere.

Voter Quotient: A platform for political data analysis.

My Team

Here are my team members. What an incredible team to spend the weekend with to build a company.

Kyla Hall is a senior at Western Washington University studying Manufacturing and Supply Chain Management as well as Business and Sustainability. Kyla plans to become a leader in the sustainability movement using her functional understanding of manufacturing, supply chain, business and engineering with her expertise in environmental issues affecting business.

Kyla Hall is a senior at Western Washington University studying Manufacturing and Supply Chain Management as well as Business and Sustainability. Kyla plans to become a leader in the sustainability movement using her functional understanding of manufacturing, supply chain, business and engineering with her expertise in environmental issues affecting business.

Yes, thats me…

David Katsandres is a Computer Science major at Western Washington University and has a passion for entrepreneurship and technology.

David Katsandres is a Computer Science major at Western Washington University and has a passion for entrepreneurship and technology.

Marilyn Flint is a teacher of university, secondary and adult levels and an author of  multimedia programs using songs and games to teach English and math.

Marilyn Flint is a teacher of university, secondary and adult levels and an author of multimedia programs using songs and games to teach English and math.

Joe Sturgeon is a senior level Marketing student at Western Washington University. He  is Vice President of the Western Washington University Collegiate DECA chapter and he  enjoys helping others market themselves and network effectively.

Joe Sturgeon is a senior level Marketing student at Western Washington University. He is Vice President of the Western Washington University Collegiate DECA chapter and he enjoys helping others market themselves and network effectively.

Alex White is a Marketing student at Western Washington University. He has a passion for entrepreneurship, innovation and cutting edge technologies.

Alex White is a Marketing student at Western Washington University. He has a passion for entrepreneurship, innovation and cutting edge technologies.

Here is the team at work:

IMG_0391

My teams project

3Dconnect.co –  BRINGING 3D PRINTING TO THE WORLD

Just check out the site. We are up and running, and we plan to do some pivoting, and make this company happen.

3D-ConnectHere is the video on the company I helped start.

The Winners – The results from Startup Weekend Bellingham 2013.

Third place was First Move, a very well done dating site. I must for the university student. Great job.

Second place was my team. 3dConnect

First Place … Almost a Gentleman. Excellent job!

Thoughts

What a great weekend, and I met some great people, and even though my idea didn’t get selected on Friday night I have already been contacted by a couple people from the weekend who want to build my idea.

I learned lots this weekend, and also had a chance to share some of my knowledge, which is always a great combination. We built something great!

Thanks to all the sponsors, judges, and mentors for making this happen.