Steve Simon

How to enhance your reports with SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS)

November 18, 2014 by

Introduction

A few months ago, I was working on a few SQL Server reports for a client. The one request that I had received (from this client) was to ensure that the finished reports were as ‘all encompassing’ as possible, as they wanted to conduct a considerable amount of Business Analytics, via the reports.

Knowing this, I decided (where possible) to attempt to construct the reports so as to enable the firm to do their ‘what if’ scenarios with a minimal amount of time and effort.

The screen shot below is a sample of the final report AND we are going to look at the steps necessary to create this report. Stay with me!!!

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Steve Simon

Share your data!… Loading SQL data from SharePoint

November 12, 2014 by

Introduction

In the process of doing the round of PASS SQL Saturday’s, I have often been asked how to load data into SQL Server from SharePoint. Naturally and at first glance it should be a ‘no brainer’ however the gotcha is normally related to a security issue. Over the past few days, I have been working on just such an issue. But wait, I am getting ahead of myself!

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Boris Hristov

Slipstreaming SQL Server 2012 and 2014

November 12, 2014 by

Let’s say that you care about your SQL Server environment, but let’s also say that you care about your time too. You are actually one of those people who always strive to do more with less. Now let’s say that you frequently have to install new SQL Server instances or probably you are in the middle of a project in which you have to provide the .iso file of your SQL installation to the System Center guys for them to deploy VMs with SQL Server pre-installed on them. However, because you don’t want to first install the RTM version of the product and then manually patch the instance with the Service Packs, Cumulative Updates or Hotfixes that you think are needed, you are searching for a solution to somehow “embed” all of those fixes into the installation itself! This way, once the instance is installed, it actually has everything already applied. How can you do this and is it possible at all?

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Régis Baccaro

Automating database tests with Visual Studio and Team Foundation Server

October 31, 2014 by

This is the third post in the series about database development and testing using SQL Server Data Tools and Team Foundation Server.

Post 1: Continuous Integration with SSDT and TFS

Post 2: Unit testing with SQL Server Data Tools

You can run test in Visual Studio to test the quality of your build. In VS 2012 and 2013 there are 5 kind of tests that are available for the user Read more »

Daniel Calbimonte

SQL Server Database Snapshots

October 30, 2014 by

Introduction

MS SQL Server 2005 and later versions include the Database Snapshot feature to have snapshot of the database for reports, as a copy in different periods.

The Database Snapshot can be created multiple times and it can only be created using the T-SQL.

In this article, we will show how to create a Database Snapshot, how to see the snapshot created in the SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS), how to recover objects dropped or data removed using the snapshot. Read more »

Steve Simon

How to clean data using Data Quality Services and SQL Server Integration Services

October 29, 2014 by

Introduction

A year or so ago, I worked for an online web grocery software house located in the northern United States. At that time I had my ‘baptismal’ exposure to ‘genuinely dirty data’. Granted most of the data entry was done manually and many times from offshore. The point being that I could not fathom just how many ways there were to spell the brand name of a major cereal manufacturer. Why is this such an issue? The answer is fairly straight forward. Imagine the scenario that you are trying to ascertain the dollar value of breakfast cereals sold in the country from the local supermarket standpoint all the way up to national sales. Imagine this utilizing a SQL Server Multi-dimensional cube. The ‘eagle – eyed’ reader will recognize that the results will not aggregate correctly should our aggregation attributes have a plethora of different ways of being spelt. Read more »

Derik Hammer

Backup testing with PowerShell – Part 2: Reporting results

October 22, 2014 by

Now that Karla’s restore process is mature, it is time to pre-stage the means of reporting on these events. Two major actions have been taken for each database tested. First a restore operation occurred. The restore operation validates that the backup file is well formed and that there is nothing wrong with the data which would cause a failure. Next CheckTables was executed to thoroughly inspect for data corruption and any consistency errors. Each of these two actions will have their own methods of providing evidence of successful completion. Recall the requirements set by Karla, in part 1 of this series, for the reporting piece. Read more »

Derik Hammer

Backup testing with PowerShell – Part 1: The test

October 21, 2014 by

Karla is a production database administrator and she has a lot in common with you. Being responsible for database backups and recovery, she has implemented a well-structured automated backup system. Maybe she’s using Ola Hallengren’s Maintenance Solution, custom T-SQL stored procedures, or a set of PowerShell scripts. She has heard the saying, “a DBA only needs one thing, either a backup or a resume, but never both,” and is confident that she won’t be dusting off the resume any time soon. Read more »

Steve Simon

Quick and dirty server monitoring with SQL Server Reporting Services

October 8, 2014 by

Introduction

A few month back, I found myself in a position where the client wanted a ‘monitoring tool’ to utilize on a daily basis to ascertain the status of SQL Server Systems and to continually monitor disk space capacity. Being a typical Monday morning quarter back and utilizing my favorite SQL Server Tool, SQL Server Reporting Services, I came up with the following ‘ah-ha’ solution. Read more »

Kenneth Fisher

Intro to Auditing in SQL Server

September 30, 2014 by

In the world of information, auditing serves an important purpose. It helps to provide an assurance that the data involved is accurate and safe. The level of assurance of course depends on any number of factors including the level of trust in those performing an audit (or collecting the data for the audit), the frequency the data is collected, and the types of data collected.

Any time the collection of data is this important to a process you can bet that a DBA is going to be involved. We get asked to create and run queries to pull data (frequently ridiculously complex queries, and rarely some simple ones). You could almost make it into a joke. Read more »

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