SQLAuthority News – A Million Hits a Month – A Milestone

March 2011 has been very good month. SQLAuthority Blog got more than 1 Million Hits in a single month. Total hits so far is around 25 Million from the inception of the blog.

My statistics are maintained by WordPress.com by themselves. I have shared the same over here.

You can see the permanent page of the same over here as well.

I am very thankful to all of you for your unconditional support to this blog.

You can subscribe to blog by Feed, Email and Twitter.

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQL SERVER – SSRS 2008 R2 – MapGallery and Codeplex – World Map

SQL Server 2008 R2 has negatively integrated ability to work with maps. There are few ways how one can select map and use them in their projects. The one I recently came across was MapGallery. By default SQL Server 2008 R2 is enabled for USA maps. This is quite common request from developers around the globe that they want the same feature available in their own country.

Solid Quality Mentor Diego Nogare has recently worked on project and have put the same project online on CodePlex. This project has maps from all around the world and one can use the existing maps as well create new maps as well. The new maps also can be used by others. I am sure every developer who has previously requested the same feature will be happy as this project is now live.

I love working with Spatial Database and I have written before many articles on the same subject. I have earlier wrote about the article on the same subject over SQL SERVER – World Shapefile Download and Upload to Database – Spatial Database.

Have any of you worked with this tool and if yes, what is your experience.

Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – SolidQ Journal Released – A Must Read for All

SQL Server is one of the most popular products of Microsoft and a large amount of quality content is available online. Solid Quality Mentors have together built a superior quality journal, which contains the best of the best authentic articles from renowned experts of SQL Server.

When I downloaded SolidQ Journal, the very first feeling I got was like that of old days of reading technology magazines online. Very soon, I was busy reading the articles one by one and did not realize that I spend nearly 3 hours on single sitting reading the entire journal. After reading it completely, I felt that I am grateful that I am working for the company that is behind this wonderful publication. SolidQ Journal  will now surely fill in the void in SQL Server space by compiling such articles.

The article which impressed me the most was that of Dr. Greg Low. He raises very interesting questions regarding foreign keys.

Should SQL Server Automatically Index Foreign Key Constraints?

Although you can usually create better indexes on columns in foreign keys constraints than that provided by a default index, the problem is that often no index is created on foreign keys at all. What is your opinion on the same? Dr. Greg explains this subject very interestingly. He starts this article with a real world experience of Solid Quality Mentors talking about creating index to improve performance and then leads to a wonderful explanation of the current scenario and his proposed solution. If this question has ever raised your curiosity, I suggest that you read the article.

In addition to Dr. Greg, there are many Excellent SQL Server Experts who have contributed to this journal. Many thanks to Fernando G. Guerrero, Mark Tabladillo, Stephen Cohen, Brian Moran, Andrew J. Kelly, Gianluca Hotz, Craig Utley, Greg Low, Ken Spencer, and Herbert Albert for taking time out from their busy schedule and providing this FREE quality read to the community.

Read SolidQ Journal

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – SQL SERVER 2008 R2 Pricing

I was recently asked question about SQL Server 2008 pricing. I have bookmarked official site here which lists the pricing.

Official site: What’s New in SQL Server 2008 R2 Editions

Editions Per Processor PricingRetail
Per Server Plus CAL PricingRetail
Parallel Data Warehouse $57,498 Not offered via Server CAL
Datacenter $57,498 Not offered via Server CAL
Enterprise $28,749 $13,969 with 25 CALs
Standard $7,499 $1,849 with 5 CALs

However, I have bookmarked following site of Brent Ozar SQL Server 2008 R2 Pricing and Feature Changes. I think Brent has answered one very interesting question there that SQL Server R2 is FREE for only who has purchased software assurance.

I really would like to know if your organization is upgrading to SQL Server 2008 R2. Please leave your comment here.

Reference : Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Office 2010 Readiness Check – Are you ready for Office 2010?

PowerPivot for Excel is a data analysis tool that delivers unmatched computational power directly within the application users already know and love—Microsoft Excel. Office 2010 is the next version of Office 2010. We all know Office 2010 is on the verge of getting released and the reviews available online say that it’s a phenomenal product.

My friend Vijay Raj has written excellent article on Office 2010 Readiness Check. Vijay is a Microsoft MVP, focusing on Application Setup and Deployment. He is also a Springboard Series Technical Expert Panel member for Windows 7.  He is one among the core team members at BDotnet and BITPro User Groups. Apart from being passionate about Technology evangelism, he loves music. He is also a big fan of Mark Russinovich, A R Rahman and Sachin. He blogs at http://www.msigeek.com.

Let us read the piece he sent for SQLAuthority.com readers to aid them with Office 2010 Readiness Check

Are you ready for Office 2010? It may look simple for an end-user, but when you look it from an enterprise perspective, there are lots of things which need to be considered before the migration and Compatibility stands out to be one big stop point. Compatibility issues may cover everything right from your environment till the addins which you develop.

Microsoft has released 2 tools (Office Environment scanning tool (OEAT) and Compatibility Inspector) which will exactly help you address this concern.

Office Environment scanning tool (OEAT)

This a comprehensive tool which (along with documentation) assists a customer in the assessment phase of deployment. It identifies the currently installed applications and installation environment, add-ins currently in use by Office clients, programs that are not registered as add-ins but still interact with Office programs, provides a report on the Environmental assessment (potential upgrade issues) and also reports the Add-ins assessment–list of third party programs and information about the compatibility of those programs with Microsoft Office 2010.

Read this article to know more on how you can use the Office Environment scanning tool (OEAT)
(http://www.msigeek.com/2007/want-to-install-office-2010-use-this-assesment-tool-oeat)

Microsoft Office 2010 Compatibility Inspector

This tool compares existing code against the Office 2010 object model by using a text search for known properties and methods that have changed. It includes a basic scanner where definitions and remediation links are updated from a central online location. It also generates a summary report and a details report. The summary includes the total lines of code scanned as well as total lines identified as potential candidates for object model changes. The details report includes the module name, line number, and links to remediation for each identified issue along with color-coded flags for impact guidance. You can run the tool against specific projects. This tool is available as an addins for both Office and Visual Studio.

Read this article to know more on how you can use the Compatibility Inspector (http://www.msigeek.com/2821/fixing-code-compatibility-issues-with-office-2010-compatibility-inspector)

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Hyderabad Techies February Fever Feb 11, 2010 – Indexing for Performance

I recently presented in Hyderabad User Group on the subject of The Other Side of SQL Server Index: Advanced Solutions to Ancient Problem , you can read more about this event here SQLAuthority News – MUGH – Microsoft User Group Hyderabad – Feb 2, 2010 Session Review. I really had great time talking about Index and Index Tuning. Index is very important part of database performance tuning and understanding it is a big thing. I have learned a lot of performance tuning tricks from Itzik Ben-Gan and Greg Low.

After successful session at Hyderabad User Group, I have presented follow up technical session at online Hyderabad User Group Hyderabad Techies. The title of the session was SQL Server Index Maintenance: Detect, Create, Detect & Rebuild. It was really fun as session was attended by 50+ enthusiasts and had lots of interaction in online community which is a bit unusual.

Hyderabad Techies is a community which is launched exclusively for developers working on Microsoft technologies in Hyderabad which has 1000+ members.

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Links to Book On Line – Data Mining Algorithms (Analysis Services – Data Mining)

I have quite often received request for the Data Mining Algorithms details. Book Online has wonderful resources for the same. I suggest to read them here.

Data Mining Algorithms (Analysis Services – Data Mining)

The data mining algorithm is the mechanism that creates a data mining model. To create a model, an algorithm first analyzes a set of data and looks for specific patterns and trends. The algorithm uses the results of this analysis to define the parameters of the mining model. These parameters are then applied across the entire data set to extract actionable patterns and detailed statistics.

Read more here.

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Blog Subscription and Comments RSS

Quite often I get email where many readers ask me how to get email from SQLAuthority.com blog. Today very quickly I will go over few standard practices of this blog using you can stay connected with SQLAuthority.com

First the most important is search: I received hundreds of emails and hundreds of comments every day. I try to answer each of them but if you have any urgent question I strongly suggest to search in my custom SQLAuthority.com Search. It searches in all the blogs as well in the comments.

Search @ SQLAuthority.com

If you want to stay connected with SQLAuthority.com using your RSS reader here are RSS feed for the same.

RSS of all the Posts: http://blog.sqlauthority.com/feed/

RSS of all the Comments posted on blog: http://blog.sqlauthority.com/comments/feed/

There are ways you can also subscribe to emails of the blog.

Subscribe to email from Feedburner: http://www.feedburner.com/fb/a/emailverifySubmit?feedId=872428

Subscribe to email from WordPress: (Look for following box in Right Side Nav)

Subscribe to SQLAuthority.com

Subscribe to SQLAuthority.com

Additionally, each post on this blog has subscription available for comments of that post only. At the bottom of each post there is following features which can help you to subscribe to only that post related details.

Post Detail Subscription on SQLAuthority.com

Post Detail Subscription on SQLAuthority.com

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Converting a Delimited String of Values into Columns

This blog post is about two great bloggers and their excellent series of blog posts. It was quite unusual to see two bloggers posting articles that are supporting each other and constantly improving the articles to the next level.

Two blogs which I am going to mention here are as follows: SELECT Blog FROM Brad.Schulz CROSS APPLY SQL.Server() – Brad Schulz and Demystifying SQL Server – Adam Haines. Before continuing this blog post, I suggest you all to bookmark these blogs for future reference.

The whole thing started when Adam tried to answer the question “How to transform a delimited values into columns?” on MSDN SQL Forum. Adam made the first blog post here http://jahaines.blogspot.com/2009/06/converting-delimited-string-of-values.html and then Brad and Adam bounced a few ideas off the wall. Then, Adam started his series on concatenating column values http://jahaines.blogspot.com/2009/06/concatenating-column-values-part-1.html, and http://jahaines.blogspot.com/2009/07/concatenating-column-values-part-2.html.  In part two of the series, Brad wanted to get a deeper understanding of why the results came out the way they did. Adam then started another series on unpacking or parsing out delimited characters, http://jahaines.blogspot.com/2009/11/splitting-delimited-string-part-1.html and here http://jahaines.blogspot.com/2009/12/splitting-delimited-string-part-2.html.  From here, Brad started digging even deeper into the internals of the XML method. Brad has a comprehensive list of the back and forth on this post, http://bradsruminations.blogspot.com/2009/12/delimited-string-tennis-anyone.html and a final post here http://bradsruminations.blogspot.com/2010/01/delimited-string-tennis-again-final.html.

The final outcome is that both the XML method and number table can perform equally, but the XML method has to be coded in a very particular way; otherwise performance will be horrendous. Also, the permanent number table shows consistently more performance than the inline number table; however, on smaller string sizes, the difference here is that most of the inline number tables require more CPU and RAM, whereas the permanent number table requires more IO. For an average developer, the number table solution is probably the easiest of the solutions to implement.

Overall, I strongly suggest to go through the abovementioned posts; you will love it and become their fan. Please note these posts are very easy to understand and if you know a bit of XML only, you will still be able to understand them very well. The above description has been taken with proper consent of the Adam and Brad.

Hats Off to you Guys! You guys inspire me and many SQL enthusiasts!

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)

SQLAuthority News – Microsoft in India – Leadership Profiles

Recently when I have attended SQLAuthority News – MVP Open Day South Asia – Jan 20, 2010 – Jan 23, 2010 I got the chance to attend the keynote by Srini Koppolu Corporate Vice President & Managing Director (Microsoft India Development Center). It was great keynote and very interesting. We all were listening it carefully to the master who developed IDC. While listening him I realize that I do not know other pillars of Microsoft India. Just searching a bit online on MS site I came across following site which has list of all the leaders of the Microsoft India.

I am sure just like me there are many others who wonder about the top leadership of Microsoft India.

I have found following link on MS site where they have listed all the top leaders along with their bio.

MS Leadership

MS Leadership

Microsoft in India » Leadership Profiles

Reference: Pinal Dave (http://blog.SQLAuthority.com)