PASS Virtual Summit 2020 Conference Sessions

Whether you are a SQL Server Database Administrator or Infrastructure Architect, you should be attending this year's PASS Summit 2020 conference, held virtually from November 10 to 13th online.

I am thrilled to deliver a preconference boot camp called ‘Amplify Your Virtual SQL Server Performance‘ , to be held live on Monday, November 9th.

Session Description: Virtualization has been the norm in data centers for years. However, implemented incorrectly, your SQL Server performance can take a massive dive. Are you sure that your SQL Servers are running at optimal performance? This full-day boot camp covers all aspects of performance engineering for virtualized SQL Servers on all virtualized platforms, including VMware and Hyper-V.

We will review critical topics such as virtualization layers, VM construction, NUMA, resource scheduling, query parallelization and physical server alignment, “right-sizing,” and storage performance-oriented presentation. New features such as SQL Server containers and hybrid cloud architectures will be demonstrated. Backups, high availability, and disaster recovery guidelines will also be reviewed. Most importantly, this seminar informs you on methods and terminology to improve your collaboration with your infrastructure team in order to streamline your critical SQL Server performance.

Next, as part of the "Modernizing with SQL Server" Learning Pathway, I'm presenting a 100-level session called "10 Cloudy Questions to Ask Before Migrating Your SQL Server".

Session Description: Cloud adoption of database-related services continues to accelerate, but the choices for which service to select – IaaS, DBaaS, and PaaS – all impact the features available to your applications. Selecting a service is a critical first step in the migration process, and selecting poorly can lead to cost overruns and significant time spent going down the wrong path. The questions you do not ask or consider prior to a migration can make or break your cloud experience. The most important ten questions to answer, such as your availability requirements, database-level dependencies, migration strategies, and other critical concerns, will all be discussed so that you are ready to move to the cloud with confidence in your platform of choice.

Register for this conference today! This is my personal favorite conference of the year for Microsoft data platform-specific content. I know you'll get as much out of it as I do!

https://youtu.be/nPZCARbsOMA

VMworld 2020

Heraflux is proud to present with Oleg Ulyanov, Senior Solutions Architect from VMware, at this year's virtual VMworld 2020 conference. The session is HCP1720 Architecting SQL Server Workloads on the VMware Hybrid Cloud Platform. This event is FREE for the general attendee pass. You should check this out!

Session description: Microsoft SQL Server is one of the most common RDBMSes running on the VMware hybrid cloud platform. In this session, you will learn how to plan a hybrid cloud platform to host SQL Server workloads, what to consider when designing a highly available SQL Server solution, and how to efficiently and effectively deploy SQL Server in a VM. We will also provide an introduction to SQL Server licensing on a virtual environment.


VMworld 2020 – Top 10 Database Sessions (Part 2)

Whether you are a SQL Server Database Administrator, Infrastructure Architect, or any other member of IT managing SQL Servers in a virtualized environment, you should already be registered for this year’s VMworld 2020 conference, to be held next week – September 29 to October 1. I have compiled my list of the top ten favorite sessions for the SQL Server-on-VMware topic at the show. In no particular order, the second five of my top ten include:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kxDqv-9Vsbw

The first five sessions of this top ten list is located here.

Register for the conference today! The General Pass is free and the conference is next week! What are you waiting for?


VMworld 2020 SQL Server session preview

VMworld 2020 - September 29th to October 1

Join me, David Klee, Microsoft Data Platform MVP and VMware vExpert, for a preview of my session at VMworld 2020 called Hybrid Cloud Architecture for SQL Server Workloads: Deep Dive (HCP1721). The conference this year will be held online from September 29th to October 1, 2020.

I'm proud to be joining Oleg Ulyanov and Shawn Meyers in presenting this session in a pre-recorded format so that you can stream the video at your convenience throughout the entire conference.

Check it out and register today for the FREE General Pass!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UEcAwVjhrqM

Technical Sessions at P21 WWUG Connect Conference 2020

We are looking forward to seeing you at the virtual and free 2020 Prophet 21 Worldwide User Group Connect conference, starting Friday August 14th through Friday September 11th!  It is outstanding to be involved in the event for a fifth consecutive year!

David Klee, Heraflux’s Founder and Chief Architect, has a total of seven conference presentations and will be co-leading two roundtable discussions.

The dates and times for David’s sessions and roundtables (recommended early sign in to roundtables as there are limited virtual seats) are below:

Monday August 17th

  • Infrastructure, Cloud, and Virtualization Health Checks (Part 1) from 11:30-12:30pm EDT
  • Roundtable on Open Technology from 2:30-4:00pm EDT

Wednesday August 19th

  • Infrastructure, Cloud, and Virtualization Health Checks (Part 2) from 11:00-12:30pm EDT
  • SQL Server Health Checks from 2:30-3:30pm EDT

Thursday August 20th

  • P21 High Availability and Disaster Recovery Fundamentals from 2:00-3:00pm EDT

Friday August 21st

  • SQL Server Health Checks (Part 2) from 11:30-1:00pm EDT

Monday August 24th

  • Cloud – No Way, All In, or Kind Of? (Part 1) from 11:30-12:30pm EDT
  • Roundtable on Virtualization from 2:30-4:00pm EDT

Tuesday August 25th

  • Cloud – No Way, All In, or Kind Of? (Part 2) from 2:00-3:30pm EDT

If you are not available to attend a session but have questions for us, please contact us about scheduling a meeting.

Many thanks again to the Prophet 21 Worldwide User Group event coordinators for including Heraflux Technologies in the 2020 Connect user conference.  We are looking forward to virtually seeing our many customers and other attendees.

Thank you!

The Heraflux Team

 

 

 


SQL Saturday Iowa City 2020

I’m proud to support this year’s SQL Saturday in Iowa, originally scheduled for June 6, but rescheduled to August 1 due to COVID-19. More details are coming soon!


Webinar - SQL Server Business Continuity - Know Your Options

I’m proud to announce a new webinar that I’ll be presenting at 1pm Eastern on Thursday, May 21st, in conjunction with MSSQLTips and SIOS called “SQL Server Business Continuity – Know Your Options“.

SQL Server database business continuity, including high availability and disaster recovery, is not an easy topic to engineer for. The business must work with the IT teams to define service-level agreements, statistically significant scenarios to plan for, and then decide on a budget.

What are the questions you should ask before starting to build servers? Are the questions different if you are running SQL Server in the cloud vs on-premises? What haven’t you thought of that will threaten to disrupt your strategy during a real disaster? This conversational webinar will discuss all of the scenarios and topics that you should consider for enterprise business continuity planning and strategy before, during, and after building your SQL Servers. Be better prepared for the possibility of disruption to help save your business with the strategies discussed!

I look forward to seeing you there! RSVP for this free webinar here.


Clumio’s Rapid Recovery is Amazing for SQL Server

Clumio’s Rapid Recovery is amazing, and you should know more about it.

You might not have heard of Clumio before. Clumio is an upstart SaaS-based backup solution for both cloud and on-premises environments where the storage endpoint is in the cloud instead of a storage platform in your own datacenter. I’ve been exploring their offerings, since I’m a data nerd and always intrigued by these sorts of things. I gave their Rapid Recovery architecture a solid once-over with the flagship SQL Server availability solution architecture called Availability Groups.

The physical environment that I performed the tests on consists of:

  • Two HPE DL380 Gen9 servers
  • VMware vSphere 6.7, latest update
  • Pure Storage //M20 all-flash SAN
  • 10GbE iSCSI connected storage
  • VAAI is active in the vSphere architecture

The SQL Server testbed VMs were configured as the following.

  • Four total virtual machines
  • Two SQL Server 2019 Enterprise edition and two SQL Server 2016 Enterprise edition VMs
  • vHardware compatibility level 15
  • 4 vCPUs, 16GB RAM
  • Six hard disks, spread amongst multiple VMware Paravirtual SCSI controllers, for a total of 500GB of consumed space per VM
  • Windows Server 2019 Datacenter operating system
  • A fileshare witness for the Windows Server Failover Cluster was configured on a third VM

Two SQL Server Availability Group pairs were configured, each on 2016 and 2019 respectively. The database VMs were then setup with Clumio to replicate their backups to the cloud, and my Internet provider is fast enough that I was able to replicate this up to the cloud within a day.

Now, let’s get a stream of end-user traffic to change some data. I used the HammerDB synthetic database benchmarking tool to generate a workload in a database called ‘tpcc’. I built an initial database at 400GB on each primary instance of the Availability Group with the benchmarking utility so we had some pseudo-real data to work with. Once constructed, I set up a pair of users on a standard workload on a 24-hour timer to continuously insert a stream of data changes into this database, all while Clumio was backing up the servers on a periodic basis.

After a day, I shut down the VMs, and went to the Clumio web-managed interface to restore these VMs into new VMs for database validation. I first instructed Clumio to restore the first VM in each Availability Group replica pair, then the second.

Each restore took 4.5 minutes to restore the entire virtual machine and have it running and active in VMware. Four minutes to restore a 500GB VM of active database data? That’s absolutely incredible, even for an on-premises solution. Given the fact that this is a cloud-native solution is almost unbelievable if I had not witnessed it myself. I’m floored at just how quick this performed.

But did SQL Server come up? Short answer – yes! Restoring a SQL Server Availability Group solution, especially given the Windows Server Failover Cluster (WSFC) configuration underneath, is a delicate but straightforward process.

I first restored the first of the two VMs. The presence of the file share witness allowed the WSFC to come up properly without issue. The first of the two AG replicas also turned right on successfully with no errors in the error logs. The second VM was then restored, and because the restoration point was from the same point in time as the first replica, the databases on the secondary replica were successfully able to come back online and re-synchronize with the primary replica.

It. Just. Worked.

If the second VM had been restored from a different point in time, the database synchronization inherent to the AG could have caused a database transaction log pointer mismatch, and would have meant that the secondary AG database copies would have needed to be re-synchronized. Nothing in this process of re-synchronization is any different than if the database servers had been restored in a more traditional backup and restore process, and is quite normal for DBAs to need to re-sync as needed for these sorts of scenarios.

The process was repeated both on the SQL Server 2019 and 2016 servers, and worked as advertised each time.

During the initial backup streams, there were never any issues while taking database transaction log backups, including dropped transactions or application-level errors.

The speed of restoration process exceeded anything that I could have envisioned. The magic performed in the Rapid Recovery process made this restoration process quick without the need for additional fast storage in your own datacenter. I’m thrilled to have explored this, and am quite eager to continue to work more with the technology!


Omaha Global Azure Day 2020

All around the world user groups and communities want to learn about Azure and Cloud Computing! David Klee from Heraflux is presenting at this great event.

This year, all communities will come together once again in the seventh great Global Azure event! Each user group organizes their own one to three day Azure event the way they see fit and how it works for their members. The result is that thousands of people will get together to learn about Azure and join together online under the social media hashtag #GlobalAzure!

Omaha Azure User Group was formed to promote a community of people that are interested in understanding the benefits of Azure and to learn from others how they are leveraging the platform to solve business problems. Omaha Azure User Group has been a part of Azure Tech Communities as of November 2019. For more details, please visit – https://globalazureday.omahaaug.com/

Omaha Azure User Group will also participate in the Global Azure event this year and organize a full day Azure event for Omaha Azure family to learn about Azure together! The Global Azure Day 2020 – Omaha will take place online on April 25, 2020, thanks to COVID-19. The event is open to IT professionals, architects, developers, administrators, and anyone who is interested in Azure. There are no registration fees for the event and its a free event hosted by community members for community.


Presenting at Omaha Azure User Group this Wednesday

This Wednesday, February 26th, I will be presenting a new session entitled "All Things SQL in the Microsoft Cloud" for the Omaha Azure Users Group, starting at 6pm Central time. It is held at the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska office at 1919 Ak-Sar-Ben Drive (that's Nebraska spelled backwards for those of you not from the area).

Session Details: Microsoft’s SQL Server database platform has been the foundation of enterprise applications for decades. The adoption of the cloud has started to change the data landscape, and you should be prepared. Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform brings many compelling reasons to move your databases to the cloud, but what do you need to know to have a successful migration? Should you pick Azure SQL Database, Managed SQL Instances, or a SQL Server running in a VM in the cloud? How do I size the new service to maximize performance while minimizing cost? What should I expect in the cloud? What about a hybrid architecture? This interactive session will discuss the similarities and differences of operating a SQL Server in the cloud and will demonstrate many tips and tricks for properly selecting and managing the databases in the cloud.

I look forward to seeing you all there! Bring your questions, and make sure to RSVP at the Meetup group today!