Arizona 2016

wp_20161203_007-1  Had the chance to teach two weeks of SQL Server in Phoenix, Arizona with a weekend off in between the two weeks. I took the opportunity to drive up through Sedona and Flagstaff to stay a night at the Grand Canyon. It was such a surreal experience as if I had stepped into a life-sized acrylic painting. After checking out these pictures I am sure you will add this adventure to your bucket list.

SQL Service Pack released

sp1 Just six months after SQL Server 2016 was released on June 1, 2016, the product has received its very first Service Pack from Microsoft. This Service Pack also contains fixes released in the first three Cumulative Updates. Click here to find a list of all the new features and capabilities. However, I think the biggest announcement to come out of this release is that all the features that were once only found in Enterprise Edition is now available in all editions. Here is a great post by Victor Isakov that discusses this unprecedented move by Microsoft.

IndyPASS November

15027705_1316663855018534_372375365204117190_n Tomorrow night we have Peter Shore presenting an Introduction to Infrastructure for the DBA. It doesn’t matter if you are a Junior DBA, an accidental DBA or all the way up to a Senior DBA, the infrastructure your SQL Server environment runs on is important.  Many among the DBA community came in as developers or perhaps directly into database administration roles it is equally possible that you have been out of the operations world long enough to have fallen out of the loop with what is happening.  This session is intended to provide a full stack infrastructure overview so that you can talk shop with your cohorts in operations to resolve issues and maybe even be proactive.  We will discuss, in an introductory fashion, hardware, network, storage, virtualization and operating system layers.  Additionally, some suggestions as to where to find more information will be provided.

MCT RL Summit 2016

mctrlSwitching gears, hotels, and summits. It looks like about 45 of the 100 MCT Regional Leads showed up to the summit this year. Always a great time to see my friends from around the world. I can’t believe they seriously make fun of my Indiana accent. So far we have discussed the new streamlined certifications which I have blogged about previously. We have also talked about the 27 new courses coming out for Windows Server 2016,  SQL Server 2016 and Exchange Server 2016. I am going to be very busy reading all those books and gearing up to deliver those classes. But I look forward to an exciting and challenging 2017 teaching my favorite topics.

Microsoft Exam Prep

cxpobj-xuaaswkb Are you interested in becoming a Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP)? Getting ready for a Microsoft Certification exam? Then you already know that having the requisite content knowledge is only part of the complete picture. You also need practical, hands-on technology skills and strong test-taking strategies. In this on-demand Microsoft Certification exam prep session, IT Pro and Microsoft Certified Trainer Timothy Warner and Microsoft Learning Senior Content Developer Christopher Chapman help you quickly ramp up on what you need to know to conquer Microsoft Certifications. Find out what they are, who they’re for, and how to become a better test-taker. Take a look at different kinds of questions and how to be prepared for them. Plus, get details on special deals, pricing, and registration, along with next steps in your Microsoft Certification journey.

Speaking about SQL

tsql2sday150x150I can’t believe it, I am finally joining the T-SQL Tuesday blog post party started by Adam Machanic (b|t). This month Andy Yun is our TSQL2sDay #84 host who has selected the subject of “Growing New Speakers”. Specifically, to talk about preparing,  presenting, and speaking at local user groups, virtual PASS chapter, SQL Saturdays and/or the PASS Summit. As a Microsoft Certified Trainer(MCT), this topic really hits home. Click here to read more.

Microsoft Streamlined Certification Paths

mcsp Microsoft is streamlining its expert-level certifications to provide more flexibility and a wider array of starting points towards certification. There will be Four new Microsoft Certified Solutions Expert (MCSE) certifications and One Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) certification.

You will first need to earn a qualifying Microsoft Certified Solutions Associate (MCSA) from one of many qualifying paths and then pass a single additional exam from a list of electives to earn the corresponding MCSE or MCSD.

The MCSA/MCSD you earn will never expire, however each year you will have the chance to re-Earn the certification by passing an additional exam from the ever growing list of electives. This replaces the existing requirement of needing to renew your certification every 3 years and will help you gain new skills on new exams instead of continuing to re-test on older skills over and over again. To find out more, download the list of exams and electives for the Microsoft Streamlined Certification Paths here.

October – IndyPass

indypass

Identifying and Fixing Parameter Sniffing
(Tuesday October 18th, 2016 – 6:00 pm)
Presenter: Brent Ozar from Brent Ozar Unlimited

You swear nothing changed – but suddenly your SQL Server has ground to a halt. Queries are slow across the board. You restart the server, rebuild indexes, or update statistics, and magically the problem goes away – but what really happened, and how do you fix it faster and more permanently? http://indypass.org/

Get Started with Query Store

2308-img123One of the newest features that everyone is talking about with Azure SQL Database or SQL Server 2016 is the Query Store which provides a mechanism of capturing query performance over time and persisting it with the database. I’m still trying to figure it out myself, but a great place to start is from Grant Fritchey who may be a little obsessed with the Query Store and Plan Forcing,