Being critical without being a crank

Published On: 2017-11-20By:

Tweets, facebook posts and blog posts can be powerfull things.  The have the ability to sway peoples opinions of others, to drive people to buy software, to sell stock, and to make bad decissions.

Posting cranky posts just to get clicks views and retweets does nothing useful but show that all you care about is showing that you want to stir the pot.

SQL Server 2014 Service Pack 1 Sucks and It's All Your Fault

An example of a non-constructive tweet

There are lots of ways of being constructive without fanning the flames.  In the above tweet the author just craps all over someone, I assume the people who made the service pack, with no context or any followup at all.  I get that it’s only a tweet with 140 characters, but there’s ways to get context.  In our next example we see exactly how.  We have a thank you to Microsoft for the lovely lapel pin/magnet, but a warning to people who aren’t used handling rare earth magnets that they need to be kept away from kids.  As it’s a longer post (from Instagram)  there’s a link though to the origional where the rest of the post finishes with “These are dangerous.”. The warning is still given, but without just crapping all over the fact that somone went through the trouble of sending these out to the MVPs.

I love that the new MVP label bling comes with a magnet. Bug please be careful. Keep it safe from kids and pets.

A constructive post

I think my message here is, think before you post.  Think how it’s going to impact others. Not just those you want to have read it, but those who did the thing that you’re writing about. Maybe rephrase how you’re going to post that snarky post and it’ll have more of the desired impact.  I can almost guarantee that the first tweet had no useful impact on the SQL Server product team, where as the second post would have had much more impact to the MVP team when designing the next round of awards.


The post Being critical without being a crank appeared first on SQL Server with Mr. Denny.

Do Not Pass GO!

Published On: 2017-11-15By:

What is the GO statement and why is it so important to use? When do I have to use it? When do I not use it? These are questions that have passed through my head from time to time while writing T-SQL within SQL Server.

First What Is It and When Should I Use It?  

The GO statement lets SSMS (the interface) know when it’s the end of the batch. It basically defines the scope of what you are trying to send to the Database Engine. The below example sends two separate statements. The first statement changes the database context to run the next statement under, followed by the execution of the SELECT running against the database Demo. Simple, yes.







I’ve been caught out by this behavior in the past. Using GO in stored procedures can be tricky. There are times when you want to run a batch of statements together, but if you put a GO into the procedure and compile it you will notice that you lost any code that came after the GO. The GO signaled to that my ALTER or CREATE Procedure statement was done. It then ignored all the statement below it as part of the stored procedure.

Another Gotcha which can be both good and bad depending on your need. A Variable’s life span ends after each GO statement. If you declare a variable, run a statement to populate that variable and use that variable you can no longer use it once you send a GO.



SELECT @MyName='Monica'



PRINT @MyName + 'Again'

Cool things to do with GO

This is learned by chance just messing round. Did you know that if you put a number after GO it will run those statements that many times? This can be handy for generating a lot of load against a database for demos.

  FROM [AdventureWorks2014].[Person].[Address]
  GO 5

Don’t like the word go, change it. Yep you can change it to anything you want. Tool> Options> Query Execution

Change it to RUNNOW.

Let’s Try


SELECT @MyName='Monica'



HMMM Why didn’t that work… because I ran it in an existing Open Window (Session).  Let’s try that again.

TADA! Much better.


SELECT @MyName='Monica'



Now that you know what it does, feel free to advance to GO and collect your $200. Enjoy.

8TB SSD in Azure vs. 8 1TB SSD in Azure

Published On: 2017-11-13By:

With the 8TB SSD drives that Azure has, which makes the most sense to use multiple 1TB SFastSDs or the 8TB SSD drives?  Well that depends.  The 8TB SSDs give you 7500 IOPs and 250 MB/sec, but if I take 8 1TB SSD drives I can get 1600 MB/sec of throughput and 40,000 IOPs in the same amount of space.

Of course I need to stripe the 8 disks together in Windows, but there’s no cost for that. The cost of 8 1TB drives is slightly higher than 1 8TB drive by 114 pounds in the case of this screenshots.  But given the performance difference it’s a cost worth having.

So why would I want the 8TB drive, because I have a GS5 that needs 1/2PB of storage. There’s no “easy” way to do that with 1TB drives.  If/when we get P70+ drives things will get really interesting.







The post 8TB SSD in Azure vs. 8 1TB SSD in Azure appeared first on SQL Server with Mr. Denny.

Speaker Idol 2017—A Judge’s Tale

Published On: 2017-11-09By:

Not to sound too much like Juan Antonio Samaranch, but 2017 was truly the best Speaker Idol I’ve ever had the pleasure of judging (and I’ve been judgy at all of them). I would foremost like to thank Tom LaRock (b|t) for stepping in as an emcee while Denny Cherry was ailing. Tom did an excellent job of keeping the contest flowing, and his stage presence and sense of humor kept our audience (and judges) entertained. I am also taking the opportunity of this post to document two new rules that we are introducing to Speaker Idol for 2018. (I think the official rules may be in a OneNote somewhere, or it’s just tribal knowledge between Denny and I):

  1. Contestants, or any representatives of contestants may have no written or internet communications related in any way to the judging of the contest with judges during the period of the competition. (Which is defined as the moment the first speaker idol contestant speaks, until the final decision of the winner is announced). Penalty is disqualification and removal from final.

This means  if you won, you aren’t allowed to ask (or have anyone else ask) the judges what you did right/wrong in your talk. I would extend this rule only to round winners, but since runner ups have the ability to wildcard into the finals, or if a round winner does this they could automatically be promoted, the rule applies to everyone. You are free to ask judges for their feedback after the competition, but the for the most part, what we say to you on stage is our feedback. If it was really bad, we might be a little nice, but you likely know it was really bad. You can still say hi to a judge at the conference, but don’t ask them how you could improve.

2. No gifts of any value may be offered to judges within a 90 day period before and after the competition.

I chose 90 days somewhat arbitrarily for this, because I don’t think we name contestants 90 days before Summit. And if you care enough to buy judges 30 year old scotch 3 months after the competition, more power to you. If you want to give a judge a sticker, or a business card, outside the competition room, that is acceptable. Nothing more. Sticker or business card. No free training. Or logins to your site. 

That’s enough about rules. Let’s talk about the competition.

The Level of Quality was High

As judges, we’ve never actually had to calculate scores before. For this years final round, we actually flipped over the sign in front of the room and objectively scored our top two on the following:

  • Slides
  • Delivery
  • Content

Everyone who made it to the final was good. Really good. Each of them would be a fine speaker at Summit. So what were the differences? When competitions are there close, scoring comes down to very minor factors like body movement on stage, ticks in delivery, and making the most of your time. Another factor is taking feedback from the earlier rounds and incorporating it into your presentation. Almost all of our contestants improved from their preliminary round—if you made it to the final, congratulations you did and excellent job.

Why the Winner Won

There’s a saying I’ve heard in sports, particularly amongst hitters in baseball, and quarterbacks in football, and I can tell you it also holds true in bike racing, that as you become more experienced, everything around you seems to slow down and lets you observe more of what’s going on in the moment, than someone who is less experienced. The same thing applies to public speaking—when you first do it, you feel nervous, and rushed, and you don’t feel like you can just relax and be yourself. The biggest difference between our winner, and our second place competitor, was that Jeremy was relaxed, delivered his content slowly, so that it could be easily consumed, and conveyed a complex technical concept in a manner that was easily understandable. Both presentations were excellent, Jeremy’s simply rose above.

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