Available Now: Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 4

Service Pack - @SeniorDBA

Microsoft’s SQL Server development team has delivered the final service pack release for SQL Server 2012. This latest service pack is now available for download on the Microsoft Download Center and will be available to Visual Studio Subscriptions, MBS/Partner Source, and VLSC. SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 4 (SP4) contains a roll-up of released hotfixes as well as more than twenty improvements centered around performance, scalability, and diagnostics based on the feedback from their customers and the SQL community.

SQL Server 2012 Service Pack 4 includes:

  • All fixes and Cumulative Updates (CUs) for SQL Server 2012 up to and including SQL Server 2012 SP3 CU10.
  • Scalability and performance improvements for SQL Server.
  • Additional monitoring capabilities through enhancements in DMV, Extended Events and Query Plans and the ability to clone the database including statistics with DBCC CLONEDATABASE.
  • New improvements based on Connect feedback items filed by the SQL Server Community.
  • Some of the improvements originally introduced in SQL Server 2014 SP2 and SQL Server 2016 SP1.

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Troubleshooting RDP connections to an Azure VMs

RDP - @SeniorDBA

One of the most important aspects of placing your computers on Azure is the ability to connect to them using the Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) to your manage your Windows-based virtual machines (VM). The issue with RDP can be with the Remote Desktop service on the VM, the network connection, or the Remote Desktop client on your host computer. We will attempt to guide you through some of the most common methods to troubleshoot and resolve common RDP connection issues.

The steps are displayed in the general order, but you should try reconnecting to the VM after each troubleshooting step.

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Free Download: SQL Server Management Studio 17.3

SQL Server

SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) is an integrated environment for accessing, configuring, managing, administering, and developing all components of SQL Server. SSMS combines a broad group of graphical tools with a number of rich script editors to provide developers and administrators of all skill levels access to SQL Server.

Microsoft has announced the latest release of SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) in October. This release features improved compatibility with previous versions of SQL Server and a stand-alone web installer.

Get it here:

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10 Facts About Deploying Microsoft Office 365

O365 - @SeniorDBA

Microsoft Office 365 is a popular choice for enterprises that want a cloud-based suite of productivity and collaboration applications. The latest version of Office 365 gives you access to online Microsoft Office solutions anytime and anywhere on multiple Operating System platforms.

Microsoft’s marketing description of Office 365:

Microsoft Office 365 now includes Office 2016 and gives you the full Office experience. With access to the latest Office applications as well as other cloud-based productivity services, whether you need Office for home, school, or business, there is an Office 365 plan to meet your needs.
Our Office 365 subscription plans include Office 365 Home, Office 365 Personal, Office 365 University, and Office 365 for Mac. With each plan, you can install the 2016 versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote (Access, and Publisher are also included only for PC users). When a new version of Microsoft Office is released, you’ll get instant access to it so your applications are always up-to-date – and because Office 365 is optimized across your devices it’s easy to get anywhere access to your stuff on your laptop, phone, tablet and more.

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Detailed SQL Server Version Information

SQL Server - SeniorDBA

Microsoft’s SQL Server database engine has gone through various versions over the many years it has been one of the most popular solutions for database design. Some of the versions also support databases created under the older versions of the engine. This table helps you understand what support is available from those various SQL Server versions.

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Rebuild and Restore Master Database in SQL Server

database - @SeniorDBA

The Master database is important to your SQL Server instance. This database records all the system-level information for your SQL Server system. This includes instance-wide metadata like logon accounts, endpoints, linked servers, system configuration settings, and records for the existence of all other databases and their file locations.

SQL Server cannot start if the Master database is unavailable. The core information of master database is recorded in a physical file called master.MDF files, and the transaction logs are stored on to the masterlog.LDF file. This means the all user and login details for the instance and the information about all the other databases on that instance are stored on the master database.

If anything happens to the master database you can’t start or use your SQL Server instance. As a Database or System Administrator, it is essential that you to know the symptoms that may indicate the corruption or damage in your Master database so you can troubleshoot those types of issues correctly.

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Understanding StorSimple

StorSimple - @SeniorDBA

Microsoft is selling an appliance named StorSimple, that can be used for archiving files, a network backup target, or even as a file server. Microsoft bought the company named Xyratex, a former subsidiary of Seagate, to acquire this solution. This appliance was originally not very useful, because:

  • It shared storage via iSCSI only so it didn’t fit well into a virtualization stack, especially Hyper-V which has moved more to SMB 3.0.
  • The file storage engine that decided which files stayed local vs. were moved to the Azure cloud was almost useless.
  • The physical appliance required space in your server rack, when virtualization is the focus for most solutions.
  • While the box was free, it did require a purchase of an enterprise agreement and paying for moving files out of Azure as some files were accessed.

Microsoft has improved StorSimple over the years and now the product is much more useful.

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