TechEd India 2006: Notes from field June 28th, 2006

Vinod Kumar

Whew !!! All 6 down :) … TechEd 2006 in India comes to an end and have to say it was one blast of an event. So here are the detailed blog blast to summarize all the sessions I did. And for people who did come I presume you loved as much as I loved talking about them. So this will be the third time I am writing the topics, but I think this is worth mentioning in this summary blogroll.

So here we go!!! The TechEd in India was in 6 different cities (Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Chennai and Bangalore). It has got better and better as we started moving from one city to another. And the crowd has been pouring too from city to city. Thanks a ton folks for the support and the overwhelming response. I am completely thrilled.

Day 2 – Session 1

I started Day 2 on the data track with a session on 64 bit and SQL Server – An Introduction. This was more of a session that enabled people to understand what the 64 bit architecture is, what are the things they gain by moving to 64 bit, what are the pitfalls they need to lookout for, what are the various subcomponents of SQL Server will benifit because of this transition, best practices and more. I also take a moment or two to talk over the memory pressure and the VAS architecture and how 64 bit responds. Also talk was revolving around the WOW (Windows on windows) aspect that we need to lookout for when we run 32 bit applications on a 64 bit hardware. So a lot was talked on these lines. Some of the important links I referred for this session include:

Windows Advanced Server, Limited Edition FAQ
List of Limitations in 64-Bit Windows
NUMA understanding
Using AWE
Max memory with sql server 2000 / win2003 x64
Be Aware: 4GB of VAS under WOW, does it really worth it?
Analysis Services Configuration and Performance: AS 2000 Performance Guide

Apart from these the Intel’s website has also information on the Itanium architecture (EPIC), x64 architecture and the multi-core architecture reviews. I did get a lot of information from the whitepapers published over there.

Exhausting and loaded with information type of session. I would prefer such sessions as the first session for the day because you have the complete concentration of people. I am sure you can expect a couple of snoring if the same was post lunch :) … Well jokes apart, let us move to the next session…

Session 2:

So here I was staying back on the podium for the break to finish as I had a back-to-back sessions scheduled. Now this session was very different from the previous one. I was talking on “SQL Server Monitoring Tools The Key to Running 24×7 SQL Deployments”. Now that was a topic that strangely a good amount of crowd did turn up. But generally confused to what I might talk. Everywhere I asked for the expectation, people reacted with Profiler and perfmon as the tool to monitoring and they get blank. So I did talk on the new profiler enhancements like ShowPlan XML, Deadlock Chain and lastly the auto-correlation using data from Perfmon. These were the three features I discuss on the profiler section. Next I move to show the use of DDL triggers and why one would be using this. Then set the stage for the same example using async technique called “Event Notification”. I also show a code with database level notification and a server level event notification. Next I move to an interesting candidate called “WMI provider for SQL Server”. I use the computer management example and show how we can administer SQL using WQL language. I think this was an area hardly anyone has looked at. I strongly encourage people to start looking at the WQL and the WMI interface to get the max out of this scripting language. I am sure people who attended the session will know its power by now. Next I talk over the SSMS (SQL server Management studio) with the log viewers and how these are far more efficient than the old Enterprise manager world. Then it was turn for DMV’s where I show the use of reports on top of them and then illustrate how DMV’s can help us is getting vital information like how many indexes were not used since the start of the database etc. The session was light-weight on the slides as I had done most of the talk and moved to the demo. I hardly had any verbatim on the slides. But I hope the audience enjoyed the same (do tell me if you liked this style of session than the normal PPT run sessions). As usual, information loaded and lots of demo unlike the first session … Here are some interesting links I referred for the session:

Troubleshooting deadlocks in SQL2005
Detecting and Ending Deadlocks
SQL Server 2005 BOL has a good reference on the WMI provider. So urge you to take a look at that for sure.
Typical example: How to change the SQL Server 2005 service accounts by using WMI

Session 3:

Then, after a small break I return for the next session on the Mobility Track. This was the first time I was venturing on the Mobility track, must confess that it is really fun working on these device based applications. Was very satisfying once I got a handle of the same after couple of weeks of playing around. But I learned a lot of DONT’s in the process. I am sure people who had a glimpse of the session demo would understand how the demo was aimed and the common mistakes we make and how small changes can bring large change in the response and total time of a query. I talk on various topics like: Profiling for CF, when to use base table cursors, parameterized queries, usual Dataset Vs Datareader, optimizing data readers, using SqlCeResultSet, Creating useful indexes, schema tips, using efficient join conditions, indexing pk-fk’s,  indexing orderby / group by columns etc. There is quite a lot of rambling on these session for a post lunch session before I get to the demo section where we view the time enhancement we get by adopting these recommendations. Even though I saw very limited crowd attending the Mobile track I did see some interesting crowd in all the cities who work on them. Hope you got mileage from the session. So here are some links that I did go and have a look:

SQL Server Mobile Technical Resources
Query Performance Tuning (SQL Server Mobile)
Database Design and Performance (SQL Server Mobile)
SQL Server Mobile Programming Reference

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Whew, that took me a while to get a snapshot of what I did this time at TechEd India. I am sure people would want to hear more interesting topics. So feel free to pen down what you expect from me next time around or what can improve to give you a much more better experience at TechEd. I am all ears to hearing to your candid feedbacks both positive and negative.

Lastly, thank you – thank you – thank you for attending my sessions. Hope you had fun. See you soon next year at the TechEd …

BTW, as a closing note do feel free to scribe about your experience over blogs and what you feel was good and can be done better. If you still have some burning questions that I missed out during the session feel free to drop by at the http://forums.techedindia.com and post. Will be more than happy to help …

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