Junk Drawer – A quick and finally simple way to import misc data into SQL

Dale Newman’s post on Junk Drawer caught my eye and I put it on my To Read list (basically one of my browser tabs, mocking me until I got to it). I finally took time to read it and boy am I glad I did. This definitely goes into my Bat Utility Belt of dev/dba tools. 🙂 Frequently I need to throw some data into SQL to query against, join against production data, etc, for instance when someone from another department throws a spreadsheet of staff at me and asks if I can add their email addresses. A quick joinRead More

A Quick Script to Help Update Your Current Student Photos in Destiny from Aeries

At my district we use Aeries, our Student Information System from Eagle Software.  We also use Destiny, our district-wide library system from Follett Software.  Both are great products and, better yet, both are housed on our Microsoft SQL Servers.  This allows us another level of integration since we can get to the raw database for various needs. One way we take advantage of this is how we load our student photos into Destiny.  Destiny takes a zip file, which contains jpeg files of the students as well as a idlink.txt file, which is an index file that ties the jpegRead More

A Great Resource for Different Strategies on Concatenating SQL Results

In every DBA’s career I think having to concatenate results happens at least a few times.  Probably more than we like to admit because we tend to live in table-land.  :)  However, there are those occasions, which are usually driven by some downstream requirement to format output.  Now, I know that formatting should be handled by whatever data viewing method you are using, but sometimes that just isn’t possible or practical.  Other times it may just be that we need to transform data from one system to another and that other system is not as normalized as the tables youRead More

This is just scary. T-SQL with “shapes”

I was reading one quick article on SQL and code formatting.  Now that SQL (2005+ I believe) allows for international characters they gave a pretty scary example of what can be done: CREATE TABLE "╚╦╩╗" ( "└┬┴┐" nvarchar(10)) DECLARE @ nvarchar(10) set @=‘═’ INSERT INTO "╚╦╩╗"     ( "└┬┴┐" ) SELECT replicate(@,5) SELECT * FROM"╚╦╩╗" DROP TABLE "╚╦╩╗" This is no joke.  I just did it and it worked great.  :-0

Map IP Address to a Geographical Location

Here’s a great article on how to get a geographic location from an IP address within SQL Server: http://www.sqlservercentral.com/articles/SQL+Server/67215/ The article is very easy to follow and gives great direction of setting up a user defined function in SQL to give you back a location based on the IP address.  Since SQL servers are very good at processing data quickly this seems like a natural way to get this information.  Once you have the function set up you can easily use it in asynchronous processes like analyzing logs, post processing of customer data, etc.  You can also set this upRead More

SQL Server Integration Services Control Flows

Bret Stateham is giving this talk.  He is a great presenter.  Very animated and speaks clearly.  He also explains complicated details very easily in a friendly manner.  If you have a chance to hear this guy speak definitely take advantage of that! Boy I wish I had a recording of this.  I’d love my two DBA colleagues to see this.  All but two of our SQL servers are 2000, simply because that’s the latest available when the systems were installed.  It works great but you don’t have access to the great tools, such as SSIS, in 2005 or 2008.  I’veRead More

A Journey Through SQL Server Analysis Services

This is given by Ben Aminnia.  He’s really putting an emphasis on planning, which is great.  Lynn Langit said her new book has the first 5 chapters devoted to what needs to be done before you even open BIDS. Ben has an interesting presentation style, at least for this talk.  He’s giving it like his company has an existing Analysis Services project that we are interviewing to possibly take over.  I’m not quite sure yet we are on the driving end (we are really interviewing Ben to see if we want to take the job) or on the other endRead More

What’s new in SQL Server 2008 Analysis Services

Lynn Langit is presenting this one.  Her main career focus is Business Intelligence and has a book coming out.  I’ll have to pick this up. This is an area that has always been of fascination to me yet I don’t know anything about it other than simple data reporting.  Working at the Val Verde Unified School District we have vast amounts of data and could really take advantage of BI.  Hopefully I’ll be able to use some of this with our new SQL 2008 install and start introducing it to various departments.  Maybe we could even use it in ITRead More

ESRI 2008 UC: SQL Server 2008 and ArcGIS

I attended the Intro and Advanced sessions of Administration for SQL Server.  The intro was a pretty straight forward topic of installation and configuration for setting up ArcSDE with SQL Server. The interesting points were how ArcSDE integrates with SQL Server 2008.  As I mentioned in my talk on SQL Server 2008 at the IE .Net User Group storing spatial data in a SQL database is not a new thing, just new to SQL Server.  ArcGIS already has implementations to take advantage of server level spatial handling in Oracle, DB2 and possibly others.  Only in 9.3 are SQL Server 2008Read More

SQL 2008 RTM’d!!!

I’m in the SQL Server SIG lunch at the ESRI 2008 UC. Ed Katibah (Spatial Program Manager at Microsoft) just announced that earlier this morning he received an email that SQL Server 2008 has officially gone RTM (Release to Manufacturing). This is great.  The last few months it’s been stated that SQL Server 2008 would hit the market Q3 of 2008.  I guess this means they are officially on track! Wahoo!