PASS Tuesday Key Note – Part 3

November 3, 2009 at 12:25 pm (PASS, SQLServerPedia Syndication) (, , , , )

Now up is Ted Kummert of Microsoft.

He’s giving us a good overview of some of the technology coming up. He’s showing us his Top 5 reasons to be at PASS

  1. You are part of the world’s largest gathering of SQL Server Professionals – way too true. why aren’t you here?
  2. You can take your questions directly to the “Source” – Yes, this is very useful
  3. We’ve got Wayne & Rushabh – Instead of Arnold Schwarzenneger at the Oracle conference. Eh
  4. You can work hard & play hard at Gameworks – Oh lord, we’re in a DOT COM. Please no.
  5. You will build skills & knowledge on the #1 Database in the world – Yes.

Most of these are pretty good reasons to be here. #1 and #5 especially.

The Information Platform Vision. Ah, it’s no longer called the Data Platform Vision. That’s the kind of change that get’s DBA’s worked up. However, it’s true.  The desktop, the servers (SQL Server), and the cloud (Azure). They’re still stating the SQL Server is the foundation for the information platform. IBM is now a FastTrack partner. R2 is going to scale to 256 processors. R2 is also going to go to 100’s of TB (yikes).

We’re hearing about one companies experience with upgrading to 2008.  They were very interested in partitioning and data compression. Data compression not only saves space, but you’ll see performance improvements. I’ve seen the most improvement in indexes, but I’ve talked to people who are also seeing a lot of enhancements on the data performance (fewer pages in memory means more data available in memory means better performance).  They went through a full production upgrade with lots of users, lots of data, lots of servers, over a weekend.

Now Mr. Kummert is going at EmpoweredIT with information about Application & Multi-Server Management.  Dan Jones is coming up for a demo on multi-server management. They’re going to show a feature complete build of the multi-server management system in R2. This should be good. He’s showing how it works, right out of the gate. Setting up instances for management right in front of us. Oops. Damn I hate that. The demo is tanking a bit. But they’re plowing through.  The servers validate ahead of time so that you know if it’s going to work ahead of time. The dashboardfor the control point looks good. So they’re going to enroll other instances. Kimberly Tripp talked about this last night. If you’re really interested in hearing about this, you should track her down. She’s got some good insights to the product (hardly a surpise, I realize). Setting the policies for monitoring and management are pretty easy. It’s slick and simple. Not bad. Now they’re moving into the application management.

I have to run though. Have to get ready for my session.

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PASS Tuesday Key Note – Part 2

November 3, 2009 at 11:52 am (PASS, SQLServerPedia Syndication) (, , , )

Bob Muglia opened with January 13, 1988, when the Microsoft Sybase Ashton-Tate SQL Server program was launched. Apparently Bill Gates was very nervous about the speech at the time, but Steve Ballmer jumped up and down like a chear-leader. WOW. He’s holding a box with 51/4 and 31/2 inch floppy disks (yeah, I’m old enough to know what he’s talking about, kids, ask your grand-dad). Mr. Muglia just said that there were limitations to the product. That’s an odd thing to hear from a software company. Nice to hear it though.

He’s showing how 128 differnt machines can be added to the system. They’ve got some kind of load generator that is maxing out 128 processors. Then they jumped it up to 192 processors. You’d be surprised how little space 192 processors takes up. Microsofts goal is to grow the product and make it available for BI applications. Good news for their future. They now hold the world record for TPC-E at 2012 tbsE AND the price performance record at the same time.

They’re announcing the CTP of SQL Server 2008 R2 to be delivered this month. They’re adding new versions of SQL Server too, SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter and SQL Server 2008 R2 Parallel Data Warehouse (formerly called “Madison”).

Mr. Muglia is showing how the data center is changing, largely through virtualization. The demo is on Live Migration through the Virtual Machine Manager. They’re migrating SQL Server from one node to another. They’re pretty insistent that HyperV can compete with VMWare in performance, especially in I/O.  They’re moving the virtual machine while under load, without losing connections. Ooooh, aaaaah, special. That really does make a change in how you can manage a system.

Mr. Muglia is now showing how private clouds are changing the environment. Windows Azure is now going to be displayed. He’s trying to differentiate between client/server, web and service oriented architectures. They’re all way to much the same. Now clouds… they’re different. But, not that different. Structured or unstructured data, is still data. You’re going to access & store a lot of it the same way as you did before. He’s also talking about public clouds and how they’re going to expand and change the environment. But, hey, Microsoft doesn’t care how you use the cloud, they’ve got something to sell you for it.  35 to 100 THOUSAND servers inside these clouds. Yes, you can defend running everything yourself when you’re running at a scale like that.

To say the least, all these changes in technology, even if the data is still roughly the same, are absolutely going to require you to grow and change within your role as a developer, DBA or sys admin.

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PASS Summit Tuesday Keynote – Part 1

November 3, 2009 at 11:25 am (PASS, SQLServerPedia Syndication) (, , , )

Set up and and ready to go. Wayne Snyder is going to open the ceremonies and the key note will be from Bob Muglia and Ted Kummert of Microsoft. There are almost 3000 registrants here this year. They’re in from 46 different countries. It’s really an amazing collection of people. Between twitter, the blogs, the people, the show… it’s not good for anyone’s ADD.

Cool intro with the quick history of the previous locations of the PASS Summit. Wayne’s talking about newsgroups as the source of information “back in the day” of 1999 and SQL Server 7.o. Wayne’s showing the growth over the last three years. 1528 in 2007, 2445 in 2008 and 2200 this year. That’s pretty amazing since most conferences are running 50% down this year, PASS is only down 9%.  That’s great! To the 40 some-odd percent of new people, Wayne asked, “Where the heck have you been for 10 years.” 98 MVP’s at the conference this year. Wow! Again. 400 Microsoft employees are at teh summit. They’re a healthy percentage of the people in the room. That’s pretty wild.

Wayne’s showing the status of PASS as an organization. We’ve got chapters all over the world, up to 200 different chapters (please come see us at the Southern New England SQL Server Users Group). Ah, up to the death of the sigs and the birth of the Virtual Chapters. It’s funny how that name change has actually made a difference in the same things that were being done before. Wayne’s going on about the 24 hours of PASS now. It’s a VERY successful event. They’re doing it again next year. I hope I can take part again. 50,000 registries from 70 countries.

WOO HOO! SQL Server Standard is announced. First complaint. He should have spent more time on it. But maybe that’s just me.

Lots of sponsors, Dell, EMC, Microsoft, nuts, he moved the slide, there were more. They are EXTREMELY important to this event. At the least, you should go and talk to them.

Steve Jones is quick. That’s all I can say. He’s quick.

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PASS Summit 2009 Day – 0

November 3, 2009 at 2:07 am (PASS, SQLServerPedia Syndication) (, , )

Monday at the PASS Summit. It’s always a big day. This year it’s the eve of the Summit and the launch party is held. I started out the day with an impromptu breakfast with a bunch of great guys, bloggers I was interested in meeting or guys I’d known previously. Then it was off to the conference. I attended a series of Microsoft Insiders sessions. It’s one of those things you’re not supposed to talk about. I’ll say this though, MVP’s speak their mind, or at least SQL Server MVP’s do.

In the afternoon I went to two sessions with small talk expert Don Gabor. The first session was for the PASS Volunteers. It was a lot of fun and I really learned a lot. The second session was for people who had paid for the privilege and was twice as long as the first at two hours. Mr. Gabor went into a lot more detail in the second session. I came away feeling much better about my chances of actually being able to talk to people and learn from them and maybe even build a bit of network, connecting people to each other. If you get the chance to read his books or hear him speak, I highly recommend it.

That was the end of the working part of the day. The Summit was kicked-off with the welcome reception party.  It was a good night. They gave out prizes for people who referred a friend to the summit. They then gave out the new Blogger awards. I didn’t catch all the awards because I was getting ready for the next event (more on that in a minute). I think they’ll be posted here soon. Apparently I was runner up for something, but I couldn’t hear from backstage. Backstage you say? Yes, backstage. I was busy getting ready for the Celebrity Quiz Bowl.

Yes, somehow my named bubbled up on a list (probably labelled sucker) to be in the quiz bowl with some actual luminaries. I was teamed up with Joe Webb (great guy, by the way). We were competing with two other teams. The first was Kevin Kline and Brent Ozar, neither a slouch. The final team… well to call them ringers would be incorrect. You know how boxers and other fighters try to punch up, go up a weight class if they can to fight the bigger, more challenging opponents… Yeah well, imagine a bantam weight in with a heavy weight. Well that was us vs. the team of Paul Randal and Kimberly Tripp. We were punching up something like six weight classes. It was a stomp. A spanking. A massacre. It wasn’t even remotely close. BUT, it was really fun. It was quite the honor to share a stage with all those people, people I’ve been learning from for years (well, OK, I’ve learned from Brent Ozar, but not for years). It was a great party. The food was good and everyone I talked to (stretching my new networking muscles) had a good time. Then it was time for the next party, SQL Server Central.

It’s a PASS Summit tradition, one that I hope lasts a very long time, for Steve Jones, editor at SQL Server Central, to host a gambling party. I went again this year. I’ve hit every one since Dallas, so I think that makes this my 5th. It was a great time again tonight. I met several regulars from SQL Server central, some I knew previously and some I had met earlier in the day or yesterday and a few were brand new. Again, it was a great opportunity to chat with people you had only every communicated with through typing, shake their hands, look them in the eye… Really, it’s a big part of what the Summit is all about.

No extra-curricular activities for me tonight though. I’m presenting tomorrow, so it’s off to bed.

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