Migrating from SQL Server to Azure

By | Azure, Database Technology Trends, SQL Server
Extended support for SQL Server 2008 has ended, and there is no better time to consider a migration to Azure. Continuing to run business applications and workloads on an unsupported platform will open you up to unnecessary vulnerabilities and potential legal issues. The risk is just not worth it. If you have been holding out for fear of complicated processes, there’s good news, Microsoft is making it easier than ever to migrate to Azure and take advantage of the benefits of cloud computing, including scalable resources and always up-to-date security features. With a trusted database solutions partner, your migration can be quick and painless. Check out this guide for more information about migrating from SQL to Azure. Why Migrate – If you are on SQL Server 2008, the answer is clear. Migrating is a must to stay on top of your database health and security. Now you may be asking, why can’t I just upgrade to Server 2019? You absolutely can. But this time is a perfect opportunity to minimize the impact of a cloud migration to reap the benefits of hosting your workloads in a cloud or hybrid environment. Utilizing the Azure cloud allows for scalable database solutions and (more…)
Database Consulting

What are Data Clusters and What Can They do For You?

By | Azure, SQL Server
Learning to effectively manage large datasets is key to optimizing your data analytics. Using data clusters can help optimize your data management. It involves grouping data points with similar characteristics into the same cluster to speed up processing time and improve analysis. Consider starting an analysis project on customer spending habits by gender in different regions. Your time on the project would be maximized if you’re able to use statistical techniques to automatically organize the data into logical groups prior to analyzing. How do data clusters work? Data clustering allows you to partition large volumes of structured and unstructured data/observations into logical groupings. One way it does this is by analyzing all of the data in the data warehouse and comparing each data point with clusters created. You rely upon the clustering algorithms to sort and cluster the data in a logical way. In a perfect world, all data points in the same group should be highly similar in nature, while data points in different groups should be dissimilar. There are several different models and algorithms that guide the clustering process. Here are a few: Hierarchical Method: This method creates separate successive clusters using specific criteria. Partitioning Method: This method (more…)

What’s New in Management Studio Version 17.6

By | SQL Server
Microsoft continues to make great strides in improving SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). Version 17.6 comes with some impressive new features and bug fixes that enhance your user experience. Azure SQL Database Managed Instance Users If you’re using the newly developed Azure SQL Database Managed Instance, a new model of Azure SQL Database, you should definitely consider upgrading to SSMS v 17.6. One of the most notable changes is the added support for some of its most common management scenarios. After you complete the upgrade, you can expect a much more efficient support process if you encounter issues with the following: Databases – Creating, altering, backing up, and restoring databases are all fairly common tasks in database management, which makes their processes easy to support. Object Explorer – All technical issues that arise while using Object Explorer to manage objects in each SQL Server instance are eligible for support. SQL Linked Servers – You can relax when using Linked Servers to connect to other database instances on a remote server, same server, or an entirely different machine. The SQL Tools Team has you covered. SQL Agent Jobs – Your automated execution jobs/tasks usually consist of several steps. Any disruption can (more…)

How to Make Power BI Work for You

By | Database Technology Trends, SQL Server
If you’re searching for software that will enhance your analytics process while making it simpler and more flexible, Power BI is worth looking at. It provides tools that the non-technical users on your team can use to perform analytics with minimal help from the IT team. You can create intuitive models, data visualizations, and dashboards and share them with whoever you want. What is Power BI? –Power BI is a cloud-based analytics software service consisting of a combination of tools (i.e., visualization, self-service data analysis, etc.) that allows users to connect to multiple data sources—no matter where the data resides— and create customized, coherent insights. It’s not exactly new since many of its components were in the market prior to its 2015 release. For instance, Microsoft released Power Pivot as an Excel add-on in 2010. This tool alone is a game changer as it gives analysts the tools to import large volumes of data, create relationships between the data, and perform powerful analysis using PivotTables and Pivot Charts. Using Power BI, you can further manipulate these datasets to perform more complex analyses. Utilize All Components of Power BI – Power BI consists of many components. Users find some more useful (more…)

Make the Most of Microsoft SQL Server with Management Studio

By | SQL Server
Microsoft SQL Servers are an industry leading choice for your workloads, but if you are not using Management Studio you may be making things harder for yourself. The additional service is designed to integrate with your SQL database engine and improve object management, database queries, and other management functionality. What is Management Studio? – SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) was originally released with SQL 2005 and helps users access and manage their SQL instances. It is an integrated management interface that allows you to access your SQL Server, manage objects, write scripts and perform queries with a number of tools and features. It combines tools from Enterprise Manger, Query Analyzer, and Analysis Manager to get this job done. SSMS is easy to use with an intuitive User Interface (UI) and familiar design built on Visual Studio and will help improve your team’s management of SQL Server objects and elements Object Explorer – The interface is intuitive and makes accessing and managing your databases simple and efficient. The Object Explorer is a hierarchical navigation tree that allows you to locate and act upon objects in your environment. These objects can be databases, tables, etc. You can click through the tree to (more…)

3 Top Analytics Tools To Boost Your Productivity

By | Azure, Database Technology Trends, Oracle, SQL Server
Data analytics have become a major focus for companies determined to be competitive in the market. Leaders need to be able to access and analyze timely data quickly to help drive business decisions that will sustain their companies’ competitive advantage. Thankfully, the growing technology market continues to make this possible. Companies already have numerous analytics tools to choose from, and the options will continue to grow. We will now discuss three of the top analytics tools you should consider before making your next strategic move. 1. Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services (SSAS) – SSAS is an innovative processing and data mining tool within the Microsoft SQL Server. It analyzes large amounts of data, provides business intelligence reports, and can be used to create business models to support business decisions. All data is stored within a data warehouse, and users can access to create cubes that allow faster analysis. These cubes are multi-dimensional and can be viewed in various ways. Imagine the data as a pivot table that can be modified using certain dimensions and attributes. Multi-dimensional expression (MDX) is the language used to query a cube. Compared to other leading analytics tools, Microsoft SSAS is less complex and much easier (more…)

5 Ways MS SQL Server Enhances Data Integrity

By | SQL Server
We’ve entered a time in which high quality data is at the heart of operating a successful organization. For many companies these days data IS the business. For others, data is a driver. In both scenarios its critical to maximize your data’s efficacy, and this means being sure you can trust that data. I’m talking about data integrity. It’s essential to be able to trust your data, and that means using a database you can trust that is actively working toward ensuring your data.  Microsoft SQL is a longstanding leader in the game. Their database offers top of the line stability and data integrity. If you are concerned about ensuring your data integrity this database might just be right for you. Why Microsoft SQL Server? – Microsoft SQL Server 2019 features upgrades that will give your organization greater access to large amounts of valuable data quickly. Once it’s released, querying multiple sources of data, both structured and unstructured, will be simpler and more secure than ever. MS SQL preview CTP 2.0 is now available in preparation for the upcoming official release. If you’re interested in experiencing some of the new features beforehand, consider downloading it soon. In the meantime, here (more…)

5 Tips for Managing Multiple Cloud Providers

By | Azure, Database Technology Trends, Oracle, SAP HANA, SQL Server, Sybase
Cloud adoption continues to rise and shows no signs of stopping anytime soon. As companies become more comfortable with the cloud platform as a tool, they are moving farther from on-prem setups. The newest trend shows many groups now using multi-cloud solutions. RightScale 201 State of the Cloud Report found that 81% of respondents have a multi-cloud environment. The organizational average was just under 5 clouds, including production and test environments. Why Multi-Cloud? – Each cloud provider has different strengths and weaknesses to offer. Using multiple clouds lets you take advantage of the best tools and applications for your workloads without limiting your resources. It can also be strategic as companies can shift workloads to their various platforms depending on current prices and availability parameters. Adopting a multi-cloud environment can help take your workload management to the next level, but it can also come with some challenges to prepare for. Here are 5 tips to help you manage multiple cloud providers. Choose Wisely – Don’t be suckered in by low rates and storage fees. Those numbers can (and will) change. The more important factor is to select the clouds that have key features you need. Look at the applications and (more…)

Data Science: Making the Most of your Big Data

By | Azure, Database Technology Trends, Oracle, SQL Server, Sybase
As today’s trends bring more and more data to our fingertips, the next challenge is figuring out what to do with it all. The insights gained from proper data analysis have major implications for business. Proper data analysis takes careful consideration, appropriate infrastructure, and understanding of data science. What is Data Science? This is the process of using data to draw conclusions or predict outcomes. You probably use data science already. For example, a restaurant owner may keep records of which dishes are ordered. Over time, he may notice that chili is ordered more frequently on rainy days than on sunny days. This may encourage him to prepare larger batches of chili when the weather calls for rain. This is a very simple example of data science. You can see how understanding patterns and trends in data can help prepare your business. Data science can contribute to the following business improvements: Streamline Processes – You can use data science to analyze your business processes and identify areas to streamline. Looking at your website usage statistics may show areas where your potential clients are losing focus, or identify slow and frustrating pages in your online ordering forms. Identifying these patterns can (more…)

Expanding the Market: MS SQL Server 2017 and Linux

By | Blog, Database Technology Trends, SQL Server
Microsoft’s exciting cross-platform product, SQL Server 2017, is poised to reach a whole new audience. Recently this industry leader has joined the growing trend of support for open source solutions.  Our team is continually investigating new innovations for our clients, and we wanted to share what we have discovered about new features and performance. Why Now? Linux is becoming increasingly popular thanks to its security, stability, and efficiency.  Its design protects against virus and malware attacks with a complex architecture and secure user account structure.  With more and more businesses choosing Linux, Microsoft realized they were forcing clients to manage multiple environments by keeping SQL Server only on Windows.  Rohan Kumar, then General Manager of Microsoft Database Systems, discussed the decision with Frederic Lardinois for Tech Crunch.  “We had a couple of discussions in the past where it wasn’t approved,” he told Lardinois, but four years ago his team recognized the value of expanding, so they pitched the idea once again. “The biggest surprising part was that we were expecting a whole lot of back and forth. It was really surprising to see how quickly the decisions got made,” recalls Kumar. How? With the company’s support in place, Kumar’s team needed (more…)