2015 Calendar (PASSMN Meetings)

  • PASSMN Meeting: Using XML with SQL Server - XML Data Type Methods and XQuery (Steve Hughes)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: XML is still very prevalent in data movement today. SQL Server supports XML as a data type and extends that functionality with data type methods in XQuery which can be used to query and manipulate the XML data. Some common uses for XML in SQL Server include stored procedure parameters, Service Broker messages, comma separated lists, and extending table design. This session includes demos of many use cases and includes a closer look at the most common methods including Query(), Value(), Nodes(), and Modify(). During the session, the CROSS APPLY operator to return results in a tabular form which is easily consumed in SQL Server.

    About Steve: Steve Hughes is a Principal Consultant Lead at Pragmatic Works. He is currently responsible for guiding the Principal Consultant team and working with other areas in the organization to build out our data and analytics offerings. His area of expertise is in data and business intelligence architecture on the Microsoft SQL Server platform. He was also the data architect for a SaaS company which delivered a transportation management solution for fleets across the United States. Steve has co-authored three books and delivered many presentations on SQL Server and data architecture over the past six years. He also provides insights from the field on his blog.

    5:25-5:35 Closing
  • PASSMN Meeting: SQL Server Databases in the Clouds (Tim Plas)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: Application servers or services running on a cloud platform now have many options for their database engines. We discuss the various alternatives for providing Microsoft SQL Server services to cloud-based applications, particularly for Microsoft Azure and Amazon AWS. Why would you choose one approach over the other? What are the trade-offs on cost, performance, availability, security, ongoing maintenance, required skill sets, etc.

    About Tim: Tim Plas is a Principal Consultant at Virteva, in Mpls MN. His current focus areas are cloud computing, operational-DBA services (esp. HA/DR), server migrations, server virtualization, & storage. His experience over the past 25+ years has been primarily with server / data-center infrastructure, including CTO / co-founder of a successful hosting company. Tim has held a variety of MS certifications since 1994.

    5:25-5:35 Closing
    November's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: An Introduction To Resource Governor in SQL Server (Paul Timmerman)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: Do you have multiple databases with distinct workloads running on a single SQL Server Enterprise Edition instance? Have you ever had a runaway process or bad query from one system bring an entire instance to its knees, impacting a wide range of end users? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then come learn about Resource Governor for SQL Server. We'll spend the first part of this introductory session going over the concepts you will need to know in order to implement Resource Governor successfully. Once we've covered the basics, we'll spend the rest of the session working through a number of demos, reviewing exciting enhancements to Resource Governor in SQL Server 2014, and discussing scenarios in which you can use Resource Governor in your environment right away. Hardware resources are a valuable commodity. Learn how you can control them effectively in a multitenant environment, ensuring they are assigned where they need to be.

    About Paul: Paul Timmerman is a Microsoft SQL Server MVP and the Lead SQL Server DBA at Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Paul has over fourteen years of experience in database administration and is a past Chapter Leader of the Minnesota SQL Server User Group, PASSMN. Paul is an active member of the PASS community and routinely speaks at user group meetings and SQL Saturday conferences.

    5:25-5:35 Tegile Systems
    5:35-5:45 Closing
    September's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: DBCC Commands: The Quick and the Dangerous (Erin Stellato)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: There are many DBCC statements at the disposal of database administrators and developers. Some are used for the greater good; others can wreak havoc in your system. The majority of these commands are informational, but if you're not careful, you can introduce chaos or, worse, lose data you may never find again. In this session, we will explore DBCC commands that are useful for the DBA and developer and cover when to use them and how. Expect demonstrations that provide a practical application of these commands – both documented and undocumented – that database pros can quickly and easily use.

    About Erin: Erin Stellato is a SQL Server MVP and lives in Cleveland, OH. She has over 13 years of technology experience and has worked with SQL Server since 2003. Her areas of interest include statistics, performance tuning, Extended Events, and helping accidental/involuntary DBAs figure out how SQL Server works. Erin is an active member of the SQL Server community, is on the board of the Ohio North SQL Server User Group, and is a regular speaker at conferences like SQLintersection and the PASS Summit. Outside of time with family and friends, she enjoys running, spinning, movies, and all things chocolate.

    5:25-5:35 SIOS
    5:35-5:45 Closing
    August's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Test-Driven ETL? (Merrill Aldrich)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: Data Warehousing and ETL processes have become standard at most businesses, but testing ETL processes remains difficult and less refined than testing in conventional OO application development. This session will offer practical tools, techniques and discussion of how to make ETL development more test-centric, and improve the quality and agility of data warehouse work. We will look at techniques to automate warehouse testing/data validation and how to move ETL requirements toward something resembling test-driven design, even when the data sources span different applications or technologies.

    About Merrill: Merrill Aldrich is a consultant and DBA with RBA Consulting, Minneapolis

    5:25-5:35 Closing
    July's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Strategies for SQL Server Index Analysis (Jason Strate)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: Properly managing indexes for a database is a common use in many environments. When reviewing an index, should it have a single or multiple columns? Should the table be a heap, a clustered index or clustered columnstore index? These considerations are often at the forefront when analyzing your indexes. In this session, we'll look at easy methods for identifying new indexes, we'll review patterns for index consolidation, and discuss how and when to remove indexes. At the end, you'll have a strategy that helps design indexes to improve performance.

    About Jason: Jason Strate is a Microsoft SQL Server MVP. He is a highly-skilled database administrator with a strong background in database/data warehouse architecture and best practices, business analysis, mentoring and leadership. He has recently worked with a number of clients to review and analyze their SQL Server environments and make recommendations related to performance improvement and reliability.

    We will dig into our box of swag
    Sponsored by Kroll Ontrack
    June's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Wait State Analytics (Trent Mera)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: Trent will discuss wait state analytics and how to find which statements hitting your SQL Server will give you the most benefit when tuned. Methods to find bottlenecks at both the server resource and individual statement level will be discussed. Native utilities for accomplishing this will be covered first, and then we will take a look at two Dell Software Tools that use these approaches: Spotlight on SQL Server and Performance Analysis for SQL Server.

    About Trent: Trent Mera has been a Systems Consultant with Quest and Dell Software for 8 years, helping customers to understand, evaluate and use administrative and performance management tools for SQL Server.

    Prior to Quest/Dell, he worked as a development and administrative DBA in the Real Estate, Finance and Defense industry for 7 years.

    Dell Software will be giving away a Dell Venue tablet to one lucky winner!
    May's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Breakthrough Performance for Big Data Analytics - An Introduction to PDW (Mike Fulkerson)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: In this session, we will travel the course of how some organizations are embracing the concept of a Modern Data Warehouse by unifying different technologies for handling large volumes of data. Parallel Data Warehouse, or PDW, is a solution that offers high performance data warehousing using the MPP architecture and ability to reach over and combine data from the Hadoop platform. We will learn how this technology works and offers extreme performance and yet a very easy platform to manage for the DBA, Infrastructure, and Developers alike.

    About Mike: Mike Fulkerson is a Technology Specialist at Microsoft who helps customers plan and design solutions on the Microsoft data platform. He has a diverse background in application development, database operations, data warehouse design, BI, ETL, and network engineering.

    Previous to his current role with Microsoft, Mike held the title of Director at UnitedHealth Group. In this role, he was the technical leader on an enterprise-wide business intelligence initiative using products like APS, SQL Server, and ASP.NET. His past employment includes Northwest Airlines, Bluestem Brands, Sogeti, and Microsoft as a consultant in MCS and before that as a software development engineer in Redmond working on a team that started Expedia.com. He has been working with SQL Server since version 6.5 and extolling the virtues of Microsoft's data platform across a variety of organizations and industries for the past 17 years.

    SQLSaturday MN gave the speakers very unique speaker shirts, instead of the traditional Polo shirt. We will be giving away one of these collectors' items at the meeting.
    April's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Keeping the "Business" in Business Intelligence (Mark Vaillancourt)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: It is no accident the term “Business Intelligence” starts with “Business.” Any Business Intelligence initiative should, likewise, start with the needs of the Business. For many years, BI was seen as a technology project. This is one reason why so many BI initiatives fail. Rather than a Technology Project, BI is a Business Program. It must grow and evolve as the Business grows and evolves. In this session, we will discuss the following:

    • Why BI is a worthwhile investment (using case study examples)
    • What criteria to use in determining the success of a BI initiative
    • Several reasons why BI initiatives fail
    • Critical Success Factors for BI
    So much of the success for BI happens before the requirements are even gathered. Come learn how you can set yourself up for success with Business Intelligence.

    About Mark: Mark Vaillancourt is a SQL Server MVP and a Business Intelligence Enterprise Consultant for Digineer, a Microsoft partner based in Plymouth, MN. He has been working with SQL Server since 2007 and holds the MCITP – Business Intelligence Developer 2008 certification. With a background in Theater and Improvised Comedy, Mark makes sure that his presentations are both informative and fun.

    5:25-5:35 Closing
    March's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: Creating Actionable Intelligence with Power Query (Brian Knight)

    4:00-4:10 Kickoff

    Abstract: The Ola Hallengren scripts cover backups, index and stats maintenance, and checkdb. This will also include an explanation of how Tony has integrated the suite into the maintenance routines at multiple sites, plus the use cases for when the suite is (and maybe isn't) a good fit. And it fits into any budget: it's free!

    About Tony: A SQL Server DBA with 19 years experience in data management and development, dev group management, infrastructure, ERP, and compliance. He has kept the data flowing in industries ranging from collectibles to biofuels, groceries to HVAC.

    Abstract: Learn how to make BI really work for you with Power Query in Excel. In this session, you'll see how to make business intelligence truly actionable for your end users by mashing data together that might seem unrelated at first. You'll find out how to use the Power Query platform to take data from tables in websites and mash it with data in proper relational databases. Then, see how to present the data to end users with Power BI.

    About Brian: SQL Server MVP, MCITP, is the co-founder of SQLServerCentral.com, JumpstartTV.com, and was on the Principal Board of Directors of the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS). Brian is a contributing columnist for many industry magazines and sites. He has co-authored and authored more than 15 technology books. Brian has spoken at dozens of conferences like PASS, SQL Connections and TechEd and many Code Camps.

    5:50-6:00 Prizes / Giveaways
    February's deck is online.
  • PASSMN Meeting: What Are Your Servers Doing While You’re Sleeping? (Tracy McKibben)

    4:00-4:20 Registration / Networking / Announcements

    About Dave: A Development DBA with over 10 years of experience with SQL Server and development technologies, specializing in Business Intelligence and ingenious solutions. Dave has also been an Adjunct Professor at Metropolitan State University for the past 10 years educating students in Database Management and Application Development.

    Dave started giving back to the SQL community a few years ago by presenting at Local PASS Chapters, SQL Saturday Events, and blogging at IngeniousSQL.com

    Abstract: You’re the DBA, the guy in charge, the guy who gets pounced on first thing in the morning with complaints of “my report took FOREVER to run last night, why?”, or “customers are saying the web site was really slow at 3:00am this morning, why?”. You’re expected to be able to answer questions like that. Can you? Do you know what your servers are doing when you’re not looking? By the end of this presentation, you'll be able to answer those questions. You'll come away with scripts to collect information on what your servers are doing, what they're waiting on, as well as scripts to help analyze that collected information.

    About Tracy: Currently a Principal Data Architect with Pearson VUE, crossing over to the development dark side after two decades as a production DBA. He blogs frequently, has spoken at several SQL Saturday events, and is active on social media. When not working with SQL Server, he might be found working on his model railroad, honing his photography skills, running, playing pickleball, or deeply immersed in some sort of home improvement project.

    SQLSaturday MN gave the speakers very unique speaker shirts, instead of the traditional Polo shirt. We will be giving away one of these collectors' items at the meeting.
    January's deck is online, and Tracy has made his materials available.

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