Monday, September 15, 2014

SQL Teams - Working Together...

With so many products coming out of the gate, each product trying to address one part of the BI/Datawarehouse problems, one of the most important aspects is that the teams/folks involved in BI projects work together well. Since BI/Datawarehouse implementation involve cross team interactions , it becomes very vital that the team works together for the bigger picture. One of the classic areas of debate is between the developer and the DBA. Please read the following link about the pain points between developer & DBA, and how these can be resolved. I found this article to be very informative and could provide some tips...the article has been written by David Poole, a Data Architect.
https://www.simple-talk.com/opinion/opinion-pieces/dbas-vs-developers-a-sad-tale-of-unnecessary-conflict/?utm_source=ssc&utm_medium=publink&utm_content=dbavsdev

Thursday, September 11, 2014

SQL Server 2014 - Top Features...

Here is a summarised list of new features in SQL Server 2014 that could be worth an upgrade. There are still a lot of customers on SQL Server 2008, they could take the path straight to 2014 instead of going to SQL Server 2012.
1. New In-Memory OLTP Engine
2. Enhanced Windows Server Integration
3. Enhancements to AlwaysOn Availability Groups
4. Enhancements to Backups
5. Updateable ColumnStore Indexes
6. SQL Server Data Tools for Business Intelligence
7. PowerBI for Office 365 Integration

The New-In Memory OLTP Engine and ColumnStore Indexes are bound to attract the OLTP and OLAP Customer base. Please read through these feature details in the following link. The link gives a more detailed description of the features.

http://sqlmag.com/sql-server-2014/sql-server-2014-important-new-features.

Monday, September 8, 2014

SQL Saturday 2014...

SQL Saturday sessions are in full swing, these are one day events with lots of different topics to listen to and learn from. The SQL Server Saturday BI Edition is going to held in Charlotte on October 4, 2014. The Charlotte BI Group is excited to bring this event to you. The list of topics include: ETL, Data Visualization, Self-Service BI, Data Quality, Master Data Management, OLAP, Big Data, SharePoint, Data Management, as well as plenty for the SQL Server Administrators out there! .
Location: Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC), Levine Campus, 2800 Campus Ridge Road, Matthews, NC 28105 (located in South Charlotte) .

SQL Saturday Link for Charlotte : http://www.sqlsaturday.com/330/eventhome.aspx.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

SPLUNK...Operational Data

In the Data warehousing  and BI world, there are numerous instances where we get text files/excel files as data inputs to a datawarehouse/data mart. As part of the handshake between the Source systems and traget systems we receive log files. These log files would contain summary information about the data being sent. Using the log file the target system would load validate the data being received, once data is validated the loading process would start. There are numerous techniques of doing this type of validation. In certain organizations there could be numerous processes that produce log files to other downstream systems that would need to consume the data. In addition to the log files there are also numerous amounts of machine data produced by different systems and applications that would be need to be monitored so that this type of information can be leveraged by organizations for various business groups. In order to mange this type of monitoring there is a tool provided by SPLUNK, web site: www.splunk.com. The company provides different types of monitoring tools: tools for operational intelligence, Cloud, BigData and Business Analytics. Please review the links below: for additional details.
http://www.splunk.com/view/operational-intelligence/SP-CAAAFVM
http://www.splunk.com/solutions
Tools like SPLUNK provide business an opportunity to make sense of the operational/machine data and leverage positive results.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

SSIS Parameters-SQL Server

Given the nature of today's ETL operations there are lot of complex SSIS packages being built to handle different aspects of Data Processing. One of the key concepts involved with multiple SSIS packages is the passing of parameters between the packages. My friend Pinal Dave, a SQL Server Expert had bought out a excellent post in his famous SQL Server blog. Here is the link to the article.
http://blog.sqlauthority.com/2014/08/07/sql-server-ssis-parameters-in-parent-child-etl-architectures-notes-from-the-field-040/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+SQLAuthority+%28Journey+to+SQL+Authority+with+Pinal+Dave%29.
Enjoy reading the article very informative...

Friday, August 1, 2014

Data Integration

One of the areas that i have increasingly working on these days is the area of data integration. Business/Companies have a variety of database systems and it is very rare that you find companies running out of one database system/platform. There is an increasing need for different database systems/architectures to co-exist. The battle at times becomes very political to replace one database/BI platform with another one in its entirety. This is where data integration comes in and there are lot of tools available in the ,market today in this space. The Gartner report for Data integration tools is available now. Based on the report Microsoft is in the Challengers quadrant, the data integration tools that encompass the Data integration framework as per the study are SSIS and BizTalk server. I have used a lot of SSIS but very rarely i have come across Biztalk servers is my projects. The reason why Microsoft is in in the challengers space is because of the lack of breadth of functionality, quoting the report: " Although Microsoft addresses core data integration requirements, non-bulk/batch data integration styles remain a gap in its offering relative to market demand. Microsoft's product strategy for aligning capabilities to data movement, transformation and orchestration (referred to as "information production") aims to broaden its market positioning". The leaders in the Data Integration Space are 1. Informatica 2. IBM 3. Oracle. Oracle's main data integration tools are Oracle Data Integrator (ODI), Oracle Data Service Integrator, Oracle GoldenGate and Oracle Warehouse Builder (OWB).  One of the weakness in the Oracle integration suite is lack of skill set available with the set of tools mentioned above. Companies like Cisco(Composite Studio) and Actian fall in the visionaries category. Cisco is a new incumbent in the data information management technologies market. Adeptia and Syncsort fall in the niche players category. For the Complete report, please use the link below:

http://www.gartner.com/technology/reprints.do?id=1-1Y495V6&ct=140724&st=sb&mkt_tok=3RkMMJWWfF9wsRonv6TNe%252B%252FhmjTEU5z16e4qWqa3lMI%252F0ER3fOvrPUfGjI4DT8pgNK%252BTFAwTG5toziV8R7HNJc160s8QXBjm

The domain of data integration encompasses a wide variety of services which are increasing by the year.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Nice to Have Books...

With growing online content, downloadble books available for business intelligence, data warehousing, it is always go to have books handy on one's book shelf. When one has to read through several pages sometimes a book becomes very handy. Here is a blog written by SQL Server expert James Serra on what would be the nice to have books, it covers the areas of Data warehouse, Business Intelligence, Master Data Management and Consulting. Please refer to the link below: the list is pretty exhaustive.
http://www.sqlservercentral.com/blogs/jamesserra/2014/07/16/it-books-that-should-be-on-your-shelf/
Some of the books which I have are Ralph Kimball book on data warehousing and Microsoft Reporting Services 2012.