03 February 2015
03 February 2015

Managing Test Data as a Database CI Component – Part 1

Constructing a test environment for your databases can be a difficult task at the best of times. Once you've actually acquired the hardware needed and architected the environment, you still have to arrange and securely transport the data. And with the rising demand for fast feedback and continuously integrated processes, having all of this automated and operating at speed is a challenge all of its own.… Read more
16 December 2014
16 December 2014

Database Build Automation – The First Step to Continuous Integration

So you're keen to take the first steps to the continuous integration of your database. You have to start by getting your database into source control. You can then begin to automate your build processes in order to generate and test a database. By doing this regularly, you'll be much better prepared for the deployment process because you'll have solved integration issues when they happen, and facilitated the broader testing process.… Read more
29 August 2014
29 August 2014

Who Broke the Build?

Continuous Integration and automatic builds are fantastic tools for software teams, but only if developers take responsibility for their code. Karsten Kempe explains how to use Team Foundation Server to drive better continuous integration, and walks through a simple (open source) tool he built to make nightly builds more transparent, and more valuable.… Read more
12 September 2013
12 September 2013

A Practical Guide to Microsoft Hyper-V Replica: Part II

A Hyper-V replica installation provides rapid disaster-recovery by asynchronously replicating a VM running at a primary site to a replica site. Know how to prepare for something to go wrong at the Primary Server/Site? In this article Nirmal Sharma presents the Replication options for a Replica Virtual Machine with a focus on Hyper-V Failover. … Read more
16 March 2012
16 March 2012

Test-driven Database Development – Why Bother?

Test-Driven Development is a practice that can bring many benefits, including better design, and less-buggy code, but is it relevant to database development, where the process of development tends to me much more interactive, and the culture more test-oriented? Greg reviews the support for TDD for Databases, and suggests that it is worth giving it a try for the range of advantages it can bring to team-working.… Read more
28 February 2012
28 February 2012

Database Migration Scripts: Getting from place A to place B

We’ll be looking at a typical database ‘migration’ script which uses an unusual technique to migrate existing ‘de-normalised’ data into a more correct form. So, the book-distribution business that uses the PUBS database has gradually grown organically, and has slipped into ‘de-normalisation’ habits. What’s this? A new column with a list of tags or ‘types’ … Read more
22 June 2011
22 June 2011

Yet Another SQL Strategy for Versioned Data

There is a popular design for a database that requires a built-in audit-trail of amendments and additions, where data is never deleted, but merely superseded by a later version. Whilst this is conceptually simple, it has always made for complicated SQL for reporting the latest version of data. Alex joins the debate on the best way of doing this with an example using an indexed view and the filtered index.… Read more
12 April 2011
12 April 2011

VMware Lab setup – A virtualized lab for testing HA and DRS

VMWare VSphere is a virtualisation technology that is best learned by setting up, on a single PC, a VSphere cluster as a virtualisation lab. Once you have it, it will then be a useful tool in many ways. This doesn't need to be an expensive exercise, but can be daunting if you don't have a simple guide to talk you through the process. Here, Sean provides that simple guide … Read more
14 May 2010
14 May 2010

Virtual Machine Storage Provisioning and Best Practises

If you're using virtualization technology, then at some point you'll have run out of (or will run out of) virtual disk space, leading to the provisioning of extra storage; are you confident that you know how to do that? Sean Duffy makes sure you're doing it right, sharing his recommendations and tips in this step-by-step guide. Follow this advice, and you'll be a virtualization veteran in no time.… Read more
09 February 2010
09 February 2010

Using VMware vCenter Update Manager to keep your vSphere Hosts Up-To-Date with Patching

The chore of patching operating systems and applications is taking an increasing proportion of the time of a system administrator, so it is a a relief that at least VMware is keen to make the task easier. VMware provide a tool in vCenter Update Manager to assist in keeping VMware up to date. Jonathan Medd explains all.… Read more