DBA, coconuts and daikiris

I kid you not! For years I”ve been dreaming of holding a position in some french southern territory piece of atol preferebly as a dba. Although I”m quite pleased with my work (in case my boss reads this.. Hi Nico!), one day it will happen I tell you!

Picture this: you get up in the morning around 8:30, 24 degrees celsius, a light breeze. A few small fishing boats along the coast. You”re wife nicely tanned wearing a bikini pouring hot coffee for you.

You start working from home around 9 or in case you need to go to work imagine you”re driving a nice convertable to the office where you can sit behind your desk wearing only but shorts, no shoes and you”re favorite t-shirt.

I was curious what kind of IT jobs I could find on the Bahamas, French Guyana, Guadeloupe and so on but nothing, just really nothing. It looks almost they don”t have any computers over there. So, I”ll probably stay where I am for the moment. We”ll talk again when I”m fourty.

Oh boy…

DBA: what to know

It came accross my mind today what a dba needs to know to do his job.
Many have written about this but so has half the globe about SP2 for SQL Server 2005.

Not only do you need to master general sql server dba stuff but also

  • You need to have a very good understanding of hardware (RAID, SAN, …)
  • Windows Server administration
  • IIS when you”re dealing with Reporting Services for SQL Server 2000
  • Master security (IIS, SQL Server, Reporting Services)
  • Excel in clustering, load balancing
  • DTS, SSIS (ETL in general)
  • Very often SSRS. Maybe not that much when it comes to developing reports but certainly the setup, configuration and administration
  • SQL
  • Programming skills for T-SQL
  • At least some basic database design skills
  • Visual basic.NET since SQL Server 2005 came out (try to do some descent work in SSIS if you don”t know how to program…)
  • Scripting (VBScript)
  • Troubleshooting performance issues (SQL Server, OS, hardware, applications,…)
  • You need to know how to handle projects
  • Be commmunicative with other departments

In my opinion,being a dba is one of the most dificult occupations you will find in a IT department. I still wonder where people find the time to master all this knowledge.


A 102 kg DBA which is about to loose 20 kg

Yes, spring has finally started. Time to put the car in the garage and go to work with my bike mostly to loose some weight.
I weight 102 kg (I”m normally at 80 Kg).

I”m afraid I will have to get up around 05:30 AM to get at work in time. By car it usually takes about 10 minutes but I guess it will take me about an hour or so by bike because I live on the other side of the river and bikes are not allowed in the tunnels. So I need to ride along the left bank all the way down to the bottom until I reach Aartselaar on the right bank. I was told there are two boats crossing the river every 15 minutes.

So I guess I will loose about 20 kg in no time.
No more laughing at the fat dba anymore!!!!!

I will post a picture of me in my speedo”s when I”m at 80 kg :o,,)


Custom date formats

Some DB2 twat in China thought he had it going all the way with a custom date format which is nowhere used on this crap ozon – too much CO2-globe. I had to set up a DTS (yes, I”m still using 2000) which imports enough data to keep the job running for 10 hours.

The query I had to write was complex enough it had to be debugged on…DB2. You see, I”m familiar with T-SQL but not with what I had to write today.

Yes, it”s quite possible by writing standard SQL but I mean, what the frack! I”m a SQL Server dba. Can”t they just use normal standard date formats like anyone else??!!

Even als a SQL Server dba you have to deal with DB2 and Oracle and don”t get me started when you need to talk to one of those dba”s! It usually ends up in screaming.


Enterprise Manager slow when expanding databases

Someone of the BI gang came up to my desk the other day complaining the Enterprise Manager was deadly slow when opening a database. We both went to his desk and yes indead, it took ages whilst looking at the status bar which said: “Establishing connection and checking security settings” or some sort.

Well folks, for the ones who din”t know yet (as myself), check out this KB: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx/kb/889696

That”s what I call a superb KB!


Import Gupta SQLBase database into SQL Server

It almost took me two days but I made it to import a SQLBase database into SQL Server. It looks like a lot of people in user groups had problems as well, that”s why I don”t bother anymore posting my problem, it”s not getting answered anyway.

So for all you lot out there dealing with the same issue, here is what I did:

Now, first go to the Gupta website and download the SQLBase 9.0.1 Driver Pack for Windows from http://www.guptaworldwide.com/Products/SQLBase_Prod_Drivers_Download.aspx .

Make sure you reboot after the drivers have been installed. Next make a DSN to the SQLBase database engine. The information you need to enter is quite straight forward but keep in mind that you need to enter a UNC path to the sql.ini file of the machine where the database engine is installed at.

Next, within a DTS you should be able to import data by choosing a Gupta DSN or Gupta OLE DB Provider and voila!

It doesn”t look that dificult at all but it still took me two days to get it working.

Now that I know a little SQLBase, I have to say it”s a quite interesting product. I think I might fiddle with it for a while.


My mind to your mind