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Who wants to be a DBA? Quick rules of thumb

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In this session, we cover several important behaviors which improve outcomes and increase credibility for DBAs. Our discussion includes documentation, testing drills, solution scope, business savvy, risk, customer service, automation, sharing, and lifetime learning.

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Who wants to be a DBA? Quick rules of thumb

  1. 1. WHO WANTS TO BE A DBA? Ensure Better Outcomes using these Quick Rules of Thumb for the Accidental DBA Kevin Kline • Technical Evangelist, SQL Sentry • SQL Server MVP since 2003 • Twitter, FB, LI: @KEKline • Blog:
  2. 2. YOUR CO-HOST • Richard Douglas • Sales Engineer at SQL Sentry • Blogs: • • • Twitter: @SQLRich • Email: • Slides:
  3. 3. FREEBIES! • SQL Performance: • Team Blogs: blogs.sqlsentry.comArticles: • Educational and Product Videos at sqlsentry.tvVideos: • Trial Downloads at • Free Plan Explorer at • Get our series of SQL Server Performance Tuning eBooks at $10 value each, for free!eBooks: • To schedule a one-on-one demo yourself, go to • Or email us at SalesEngineering@sqlsentry.comDemos: • Free query tuning advice at Answers.SQLPerformance.comServices: • Twitter: @SQLSentry | Facebook: | LinkedIn: SQL Sentry, LLCCommunity: The Hairy Execution Plan Contest starts in April!
  4. 4. Book a one-on-one demonstration at! FREE!
  5. 5. • Introductions • Practical Rules of Thumb Which Improve Outcomes for DBAs oDocumentation | Testing | Scope | Savvy | Risk | Service | Automation | Sharing | Lifetime learning • Q&A Previous webinar slides and video at AGENDA
  6. 6. • Well, more like general guidelines… • Help you become well-rounded, respected, and professional. • Experience and circumstance may supersede these rules of thumb. THE RULES
  7. 7. • Insurance • For thoroughness’ sake Note- taking as: • Manuals • Scripts • White papers • Et al Hoarding is Good: GET OUT YOUR PEN
  8. 8. Don’t reinvent the wheel. Reuse scripts and methodologies developed by the best in the business. Document processes. Build checklists. Be a clutch player. • Run frequent drills • Don’t panic! LUCK FAVORS THE PREPARED
  9. 9. Maintain your focus across diverse technical and functional areas Control scope: Remember the purpose for each task and how it effects the business (FOREST) Focus on effectively performing the steps to achieve your specific goal (TREES) Use the best technique or feature for the job (WEEDS) But remember “the perfect is the enemy of the good” FOREST, TREES, AND WEEDS
  10. 10. Technology is only part of your job. Technology is only there to make the business successful. Business requirements dictate which technology to use and how to apply it. Avoid technology fads. Talk to the users and get to know their needs. They are your true customer. Learn the natural ebb and flow of the business cycles. KNOW YOUR BUSINESS
  11. 11. Risks! Choose less risky options wherever possible – HA/DR strategies, technology choices, Analyze, test, and then apply. Everything you roll out might have to be rolled back. Plan for that worst- case scenario. Tests! Prepares you to react rapidly and effectively to problem situations. Sets the limits of the system. Identifies areas to keep an eye on. MEASURE TWICE, CUT ONCE
  12. 12. Do NOT infer service quality by how often the phone rings. Build strong quantitative performance metrics so you know, beyond any doubt, how the system is performing. QUANTITATIVE SERVICE METRICS
  13. 13. Frees time for more enjoyable tasks Works whether you’re present or not Reduces errors Saves time AUTOMATION
  14. 14. • Sometimes leads to delegation. Encourages reciprocation. Practice In-person sharing • You hired me … but get my network for free. I don’t know every answer. But we might know every answer. Get active in the local/online community. • FAST - Twitter? #sqlhelp #sqlpass #sqlserver • HIGH QUALITY – Interactions SHARE YOUR KNOWLEDGE
  15. 15. New releases: both full versions and service packs More than just databases: XML & JSON, cloud, storage technology, BI, virtualization Industry standards: legal (HIPAA, PCI, and SOX), ANSI, ISO, TPC CONTINUING EDUCATION
  16. 16. SUMMARY
  17. 17. QUESTIONS Kevin Kline Twitter, FB, LI: @KEKline Blog: kevinkline Slides: KKline84 Richard Douglas Twitter: @SQLRich Blog: hor/RichardDouglas Slides: LRich