Flaming Hair And The Apocalypse

Dave Mason SQL Server - Flaming Hair And The Apocalypse

If you're a new employee in the IT world, or looking to join it, let me tell you about a scenario that is bound to happen to you. There will be times when you're approached by someone in a frenzy, their hair seemingly on fire. They'll go on to insist the world will come to an end if you don't handle some task for them immediately. As a fan of your own existence, you'll decide to help out. Far be it for you to cause the onset of the apocalypse and doom mankind. You'll drop whatever it is you're currently working on, complete the task within the mandated time frame, and maybe get a "thanks" for your efforts.

Don't be surprised to hear back from that person weeks or months later, typically in the context of a "Hey, this is wrong" conversation. Why did it take so long to get back to you? Because it obviously wasn't an emergency in the first place. And now for a second time, you'll be expected to drop whatever it is you're working on and help this person who has already monopolized and squandered your time.

Sadly, this is the way the IT world works. I accept it. And you should too. But that doesn't necessarily mean we have to like it.

How do I know these things? Because I've "saved the world" countless times myself. You see, each morning when I wake up, I look out the window and notice that the sun once again rose in the east. I'm enveloped in smugness with the knowledge that the earth continues to rotate about its axis, revolving around the sun, and not hurtling toward a black hole.

Yep, I've saved the world many times. It's true. Y'all can thank me later...


Installing Multiple Instances of SSRS

Dave Mason SQL Server SSRS

Have you ever needed to install multiple instances of SSRS, with each instance "connected" to the same instance of the SQL Server database engine? (By "connected", I mean that the pair of [ReportServer] databases for each SSRS instance would all reside on the same instance of SQL Server. And each SSRS instance would be reporting on data from one or more databases that also resided on the same instance of SQL Server.)

To my surprise, I don't see much guidance for this scenario on the internet. TechNet has an article. It's consistently one of the first search results I get back for variations of "Install multiple instances of SSRS". That article (and a few others) omit a simple installation step/requirement that was a blind spot for me. (More on that towards the end.) I finally figured out what I was doing wrong and eventually succeeded with my task. Let's walk through the steps.


Code Beautifier

One of the challenges I've faced as a blogger is quickly reproducing code that looks good in HTML. I've tried a few different online code conversion sites, and even a C# library. But I never quite got the results I wanted. I found myself revising the HTML to fix up key words, comments, and operators that sometimes got missed, were the wrong color, or the wrong font. All that HTML editing was tedious and time consuming.

What I really wanted to do was copy my code from SSMS, Visual Studio, or the PowerShell ISE and paste it into my blog so I could spend less time as a web dev and more time writing. Since none of the other tools I found gave me the results I wanted, I wrote my own.


The PowerShell Disconnect

Dave Mason - SQL Server-The PowerShell Disconnect

Not long ago, I installed the first instance of SQL Server 2016 in a production environment. I ran some scripts to create standard SQL Agent jobs, including one that resulted in this error:

Msg 14234, Level 16, State 1, Procedure sp_verify_subsystem, Line 28
The specified '@subsystem' is invalid (valid values are returned by sp_enum_sqlagent_subsystems).


T-SQL Tuesday #89: The Times They Are A-Changing

For T-SQL Tuesday #89, Koen Verbeeck (b|t) wants to know how we feel about technology and change. What impact has it had on our jobs, our education, and our psyches? It's a really good topic for us data professionals and Koen gets the ball rolling with some excellent questions.

I touched on this topic pretty heavily not too long ago. Some of you probably already know how I've been feeling lately about all the change happening around us. If I had to sum it up in one word, it would be


Certified And Inexperienced: The Kiss Of Death

Ask someone that has hired a DBA which is more important: real world experience or education? To be fair, most will say their ideal candidate has a good mix of both. But if you can't get both, what matters more? Without hesitation, the overwhelming response is "Give me the candidate with experience." Why is that? Why is the combination of inexperience and certification the kiss of death?


The Mount Rushmore of Lazy SQL Security

Dave Mason - Mount Rushmore of Lazy SQL Server Security

SQL Server security can mean different things to different people. And rightly so. The first thing I always think of is authorization. And that is why I'm stepping onto my soapbox, blogging my frustration into the ether. I see four recurring security blunders that drive me nuts. The blundees (is that a word?) are seemingly oblivious. They react as if everything is fine and anyone that suggests otherwise is unreasonable. Allow me to immortalize their folly, National Memorial-style.


Big Data Processing and McKayla Maroney Face

Dave Mason - SQL Server Big Data

I've been taking a few steps down a path that's new for me. So keep that in mind if you've been down this path too. Because you've likely traveled farther than me and the lens you look through offers more clarity than mine.


NBA League Pass - Long Term Update

I'm a long time Celtics fan living in Florida, so I don't normally get to see them play much during the regular season. I'm relegated to the occasional matchups vs Orlando (my cable provider shows all the Magic games), plus any other games televised nationally on ESPN, NBA TV, or TNT. The rest of you vagabond fans probably face the same challenge. For the 2016-2017 NBA season, I subscribed to NBA League Pass for the first time. It hasn't been pretty.



Dave Mason - SQL Server UnPivot RESTORE HEADERONLY Output

Today's less-than-ugent challenge was to un-pivot the output of RESTORE HEADERONLY. I thought for certain someone else, somewhere, at at some time must have wanted to do the same thing. So I asked the Twitterverse, but no one responded. I guess I'll have to make do myself without the easy button. No worries, though. We can do this!