Duplicate backup files.

It goes without saying that your database backups are important. The storage and restoring of backups must be carefully described in your disaster recovery (DR) planning and tested regularly. This isn't a post about DR planning. There may be occasions when you need to have a backup file distributed to two locations for safety - a common-sense [...] Read more

Using Azure VM SSD for SQL Server TempDB

I'm a big fan of virtualization, I can't remember the last time I was plugging network cables into the back of a "real" piece of hardware. I currently run a number of SQL Server boxes on Azure VMs. There is a temporary storage solid state D drive available on Azure VMs which is used to store temporary data. Microsoft give a detailed explanation of [...] Read more

Sending SQL Server email notifications without local mail services.

Many organisations are embracing the move to cloud based solutions. One common scenario is a move from on-premises servers to cloud based VMs running as servers (as opposed to a managed service Azure SQL database). You may have also moved all your office email into the cloud using Office 365, the bonus is you don't need to worry about running a [...] Read more

SQL Server Data Classification and GDPR

In February 2018 a new release of the SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) 17.5 was released with a fanfare about the new Data Discovery and Classification functionality. This is an area of increased interest with most organisations currently undertaking detailed information audits in preparation of the changes to the data protection laws with GDPR [...] Read more

Power BI annoyances

We are currently analysing data from multiple sources with Power BI and have a fairly simple data model. We were surprised when we found that Power BI cannot join data using multiple data columns. The answer is to generate a unique compound key across both tables. Here is an excellent blog post with a worked example by Reza Rad. Relationship in [...] Read more

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