XE Profiler - Initial Thoughts

SSMS 17.3 was recently released. There's a raft of new items in the release. That includes "XE Profiler", which is what I want to focus on.

When you open SSMS 17.3 and navigate to the Object Explorer window, at the bottom you'll see the new "XE Profiler" node. Expand it and there are two items: "Standard" and "TSQL". Navigate back up the tree to Management, expand it, find "Extended Events", expand it, then expand "Sessions". You should also see two new Extended Events sessions: "QuickSessionStandard" and "QuickSessionTSQL".


Visual Studio: Create a Python Environment from SQL Server 2017 Machine Learning Services

Dave Mason SQL Server 2017 Visual Studio Python

I'm starting to experiment with Python scripts in SQL Server 2017 using Machine Learning Services (In-Database). The problem is, I don't know Python. If I run into a Python error, the output I get from SSMS is not looking too helpful. My instincts tell me I'll be much better off developing and debugging Python code from a development tool. What I settled on was to use Visual Studio along with the Python interpreter that comes with SQL Server 2017 Machine Learning Services. I ran into a few issues that I'll review here.


Regular Expressions With R And T-SQL

Dave Mason SQL Server R RegEx

Have you ever had the need to use Regular Expressions directly in SQL Server? I sometimes hear or see others refer to using RegEx in TSQL. But I always assume they're talking about the TSQL LIKE operator, because RegEx isn't natively supported. In TSQL's defence, you can get a lot of mileage out of LIKE and some clever pattern matching strings, even though it's not authentic RegEx.


The End Of Tanking?

NBA Draft Lottery

As you may have heard, the NBA Board of Governors approved a revision to the Lottery Format for 2019. Many reports on this activity are proclaiming the incentive to "tank" has been eradicated and that the tanking problem has been solved. This couldn't be farther from the truth.


Azure Virtual Machines: Initial Thoughts

Last week was a weird one for me. For the first time in more than 25 years, I found myself unemployed. I was anticipating using my newfound abundance of free time to learn as much as I could while I continued searching for my next employment opportunity. But my plans got scuttled: as a Floridian, I found myself coping with the aftermath of hurricane Irma. I was fortunate to have no damage to my home. There was plenty of cleanup to be done around the house, however (mostly downed tree limbs). I was one of the lucky few that had power at home. Many local friends were not so lucky. Some of them came over for a hot shower, the glory of air conditioning, and a sympathetic ear. Schools were closed for the week and my young son was home.


Dipping My Toes In The Azure Pool

Dave Mason SQL Server Azure Blob Storage

I've known about SQL Server's ability to backup a database to Microsoft Azure Blob Storage for some time. But until recently, I'd never tried it. This seemed like one of the easier ways to start learning about Microsoft Azure, so I decided to give it a try.


Passing The Torch At The End Of The Road

Dave Mason SQL Server Documentation

This is my final week of employment with my current employer. I've decided to leave and begin my search for other opportunities. Now, as in the past, my final two weeks have been hectic. Numerous people have wanted my time for knowledge sharing in the hopes of having a smooth hand off to whoever ends up filling my shoes. Although my decision to leave came abruptly, I've been ready for the hand off for a long time. Let me explain.


A TSQL Developer Contemplates CHAR(82)

Dave Mason - R dplyr

I've been reading R Programming for Data Science and trying to make some sense of Big Data and how it fits into my world as a SQL Server professional. To be frank, it's been slow going. After three months, I'm not even halfway through the book, which isn't that long to begin with. In my defense, I have gone to three SQL Saturdays in that span, along with writing nine blog posts. I could have done worse.


Identifying Deprecated Feature Usage (Part 2)

Dave Mason - SQL Server Deprecation

In my previous post, I took a stab at monitoring deprecation events for SQL Server. It didn't go so well. A deprecation event occurred more than 5,000 times in a very short period of time, and I got one email for every occurrence. Not good. Here's what I kept seeing over and over:


Identifying Deprecated Feature Usage (Part 1)

Dave Mason - SQL Server Deprecation

I've wanted to do some Event Notification testing for SQL Server deprecation events for quite some time. The thought process here is that I could send myself an alert to identify usage of SQL Server features that will be removed from the next major version (or future version) of SQL Server. I could then forward this info to development and let them take action...or not (I kid, I kid). Today is the day I finally got around to the testing. I didn't get very far, though.