Articles tagged Database

The Comeback of Migrations-Based Deployments

With database deployments, not all script-based processes are equal. Some use change scripts in a free-and-easy way, and some, which are normally called 'migrations-based approaches', have more discipline around them. In this article, Redgate Product Manager Elizabeth Ayer covers 'migrations', and shows some of the benefits that have come with new tooling which is specifically designed to assist the change script processes.… Read more

Database Lifecycle Management for ETL Systems

Few databases are self-contained. They take data from other sources, and publish them to downstream consumers of data. These ETL processes tend to grow in an unplanned organic way and so tand to cause trouble both in production and in deployment. Database Lifecycle Management systems allow all the teams to come together to ensure that ETL systems meet all requirements.… Read more

Creating a Date Dimension in a Tabular Model

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As well as its multidimensional model, SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) now has a tabular model of database that either runs in-memory or in DirectQuery mode. The in-memory analytics engine allows the users of Excel or Power View to base reports on tabular model objects. Having shown how to handle date-based information using the Multi-dimensional model, Dennes now turns his attention on the in-memory tabular model.… Read more

Database Migrations: Modifying Existing Databases

It should be simple to upgrade a database to a new version. It certainly can be, but if you need to preserve the existing data and you have made changes to the design to the tables then it can get complicated. If you are deploying changes to a heavily-used OLTP system on which an organization depends, then you need to understand, and be familiar with, the issues that can effect a database migration. Matthew Skelton explains the basic approaches.… Read more

When AUTO_UPDATE_STATISTICS Doesn’t Happen

When your SQL Server database is set to have its statistics automatically updated, you will probably conclude that, whenever the distribution statistics are out-of-date, they will be updated before the next query is executed against that index or table. Curiously, this isn't always the case. What actually happens is that the statistics only gets updated if needed by the query optimiser to determine an effective query plan.… Read more

Issue Tracking for Databases

Any database development project will be hard to manage without a system for reporting bugs in the code, anomalies and incidents from live environments, and for keeping track of new features. Matthew Skelton discusses the critical role of an integrated issue tracking system in database lifecycle management.… Read more

Better Ways to Build a Database

The purpose of a database build is simple: prove that what you have in version control can successfully create a working database. And yet many teams struggle with unreliable and untested database build processes that slow down deployments and prevent the delivery of new functionality. Grant Fritchey explains how to achieve an automated and reliable database build that is only as complex as the database system it needs to create.… Read more

Documenting SQL Server with PowerShell

SQL Server instances are generally poorly-documented. How easily can you tell if something has changed? How easily can you check that there is adequate space for growth? Are you up-to-date with licenses? What errors are happening? Who has accessing the system? Before PowerShell, it was difficult to be on top of all this. Now you can, with the help of Sander's database documenter.… Read more

Database Continuous Integration

Have you ever longed for a way of making the delivery of databases more visible, predictable and measurable? Do you ever wish that they would be of better quality, quicker to change, and cost less? Grant Fritchey explains some of the secrets of doing Continuous Integration for Databases to relieve some of the pain-points of the Database Delivery process.… Read more

Releasing Databases in VSTS with Redgate SQL CI and Octopus Deploy

You can still do Database Lifecycle Management (DLM) workflows in the hosted version of Team foundation Server (TFS) in Visual Studio Team Services (VSTS) . If you are doing your database development in SSMS, you can use a mix of tools to set up the functionality in VSTS. Jason Crease demonstrates how to build and deploy a simple database into the test environment using SQL CI, SQL Source Control, Octopus Deploy, tSQLt, SQL Cop and SQL Release, all with the minimum of hassle and effort.… Read more

Five Online Database Modelling Services

To design, or redesign, a database of any complexity, the Entity-Relationship modelling tool becomes essential. The specialized tools that have dominated the industry for a long while are expensive and are installed on a workstation. Now that browser technology has progressed so rapidly, the online database modelling tools have become viable and are starting to attract the attention of database designers. Are they good enough to use now? Robert Sheldon finds out.… Read more

SQL Server System Views: The Basics

When maintaining or refactoring an unfamiliar database, you'll need a fast way to uncover all sorts of facts about the database, its tables, columns keys and indexes. SQL Server's plethora of system catalog views, INFORMATION_SCHEMA views, and dynamic management views contain all the metadata you need, but it isn't always obvious which views are best to use for which sort of information. Many of us could do with a simple explanation, and who better to provide one than Rob Sheldon?… Read more

Maintaining T-SQL Code Quality Using SQL Code Guard

Sometimes you need some functionality in your database build process that isn't quite available. Visual Studio Database projects don't have great ways of reviewing SQL code for potential errors, but is it possible to adapt a good command-line tool like SQL Code Guard that does the job well? Lukasz shows how to do it by using NuGet packages to integrate such tools with the project and the build process.… Read more

Wherever I Lay My Hat: Release Management in TeamCity with Redgate DLM

Where you have multiple services, applications and databases in your environment, and perhaps with high levels of scrutiny and governance, you'll probably want a Release Management system for deploying database and application code together: You can, alternatively, use a separate Release Management component. But for simpler applications, you can use your existing build system such as TeamCity to deploy changes. Using a database deployment example, Richard Macaskill shows how.… Read more

Microsoft Azure DocumentDB

DocumentDB is a late-entrant in the Document-oriented database field. However, it benefits from being designed from the start as a cloud service with a SQL-like language. It is intended for mobile and web applications. Its JSON document-notation is compatible with the integrated JavaScript language that drives its multi-document transaction processing via stored procedures, triggers and UDFs.… Read more