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  • Filegroups and Non-Clustered Indexes

    Let’s start with some basics and then jump in a bit deeper, for this post to go with the 40th T-SQL Tuesday, hosted this month by Jen McCown. SQL Server holds data, and that data is stored physically in files. Of course, in the database world we think of the data as living in tables*, so naturally there must be some sort of mapping between the ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on March 11, 2013
  • A TOP Query

    For the blog post that I’ll publish tomorrow, I wrote a query that I thought needed a blog post all of its own. This is that post. The query was this one. Its results aren’t that interesting, it’s just a list of dates with a random number between 0 and 99. Just some sample data that I thought I’d use. SELECT TOP ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on March 11, 2013
  • Behind the scenes of PowerShell and SQL

    Every year, PowerShell increases its stranglehold on the Windows Server system and the applications that run upon it – with good reason too. Its consistent mechanisms for interaction between its scripting interface and the underlying systems make it easy for people to feel comfortable, and there is a discoverability that has been lacking in many ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on February 11, 2013
  • MCM – I passed!

    I was wrong – I passed the MCM lab last month. I know I thought I’d failed – I’m still surprised that I passed. Maybe I managed to satisfy enough of enough questions. Certainly none of the questions were beyond me, as I wrote just after I’d sat it. But I do know that I left more questions in an incomplete state than I would’ve liked. The things ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on January 4, 2013
  • The SQL Query Optimizer – when Logical Order can get it wrong

    It’s very easy to get in the habit of imagining the way that a query should work based on the Logical Order of query processing – the idea that the FROM clause gets evaluated first, followed by the WHERE clause, GROUP BY, and so on – finally ending with whatever is in the SELECT clause. We even get in the habit of creating indexes that focus on ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 30, 2012
  • SQL Replication demystified

    I spent some time explaining SQL Server Replication to someone recently. They said they hadn’t ever really understood the concepts, and that I’d managed to help. It’s inspired me to write a post that I wouldn’t normally do – a “101” post. I’m not trying to do a fully comprehensive piece on replication, just enough to be able to help you get the ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 25, 2012
  • The MCM lab exam – two days later

    Readers of my blog, or followers on Twitter will know I took the MCM Lab exam a couple of days ago. I let people know I was doing the exam, rather than doing the ‘normal’ thing of doing it in secret and hoping no-one found out until a successful result had been published. Oh, and this post has been approved by the MCM program’s boB Taylor ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 22, 2012
  • MCM Lab exam this week

    In two days I’ll’ve finished the MCM Lab exam, 88-971. If you do an internet search for 88-971, it’ll tell you the answer is –883. Obviously. It’ll also give you a link to the actual exam page, which is useful too, once you’ve finished being distracted by the calculator instead of going to the thing you’re actually looking for. (Do people ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 18, 2012
  • Joins in single-table queries

    Tables are only metadata. They don’t store data. I’ve written something about this before, but I want to take a viewpoint of this idea around the topic of joins, especially since it’s the topic for T-SQL Tuesday this month. Hosted this time by Sebastian Meine (@sqlity), who has a whole series on joins this month. Good for him – it’s a great ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on December 10, 2012
  • An MCM exam, Rob? Really?

    I took the SQL 2008 MCM Knowledge exam while in Seattle for the PASS Summit ten days ago. I wasn’t planning to do it, but I got persuaded to try. I was meaning to write this post to explain myself before the result came out, but it seems I didn’t get typing quickly enough. Those of you who know me will know I’m a big fan of certification, to a ...
    Posted to Rob Farley (Weblog) by rob_farley on November 18, 2012
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