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Monday, 11 July 2011

Database Ethics

This article provides a reflection on the ethics required by a database administrator (DBA). This philosophical code of behaviour sets out the principles for the profession. The DBA ethics storyboard is a visualization of the ethics and is shown in figure1.

Figure 1 DBA Ethics Storyboard

Ethic 1 DBA - the role of a DBA requires
• a person who is a database advocate
• being proactive rather than reactive
• having numerous interconnected responsibilities
• clear communication with all the interconnected technologists
• making recommendations to the public
• that if a mistake is made corrective action needs to be taken immediately
• to exercise governance and agility

Ethic 2  DATA
• the data the organizations hold is the most precious asset it has. A DBA must protect it
• the quality of the data should be maintained
• all types of data whether structured or unstructured need looking after
• data is retained and archived appropriately

Ethic 3 SECURITY - a DBA is responsible for
• making data available to authorized users and ensuring data it is inaccessible to the unauthorized user
• identification of sensitive data, managing it securely and auditing access
• patching and a DBA should have a patching philosophy to prevent security issues arising

Ethic 4 ARCHITECTURE - a DBA  should
• ensure good data modelling and design techniques are used 
• use the right database application for the requirements
• have an entity relationship diagram should for each database
• have a master data management process to define and manage entities

Ethic 5 DEVELOPMENT - a DBA should ensure
• the development scripts written are version controlled
• coding standards are followed
• the scripts include a description of the tasks

Ethic 6 AVAILABILITY- a DBA should
• monitor the system to ensure it is always available when it is needed
• regularly review error logs
• manage scheduling and job success rate
• ensure there is a capacity management process in place
• ensure good performance is maintained

Ethic 7 DISASTER RECOVERY - a DBA should ensure
• backups are taken regularly and regularly verify the quality of the said backups
• every database has a documented disaster recovery plan.
• that a recovery time objective and a recovery point objective are defined
• backups are stored offsite
• a server configuration snapshot is stored offsite

Ethic 8 CHANGE - a DBA should
• monitor changes to the system
• follow processes for management.
• have a multiple tier environment to validate changes
• have a risk assessment strategy
• ensure rollback can occur for failed changes
• identify the consequences of a change
• have a verification process to determine if the change was successful

• have a process for problem management

Ethic 10 DOCUMENT - a DBA should ensure
• appropriate documentation is written or obtained
• a summary of essential information such as configuration information be created
• there is a process for keeping the documentation up to date and reviewed regularly
• a self-documenting system is created where possible

Ethic 11 AUDITING - a DBA should ensure there are regular database audits which
• periodically audit each database and provide a health check
• have a predefined checklist to follow
• have a description of the purpose of each check

Ethic 12  BEST PRACTICE- a DBA should
• follow best practice for design, development and administration based on vendor recommendations, practical field experience, database usergroups,  and environmental constraints
• aim for standardization and automation

Ethic 13 IMPROVEMENT- a DBA should
• reflect and iterate throughout the database system
• have a documented database roadmap

SQL Denali links

Microsoft Tech Days UK 2011 

A webcasts from uk tech days sharing details about Denali features

SQL Server Denali CTP3
Download at: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-gb/hh225126.aspx

SQL Server  Denali Resource Center

SQL Server  Denali Upgrade Assistant

What's New (SQL Server Denali)

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

More SQL Server 2008 Reading

More articles to read to expand your SQL knowledge which may help through the administration certification process.

Configuring linked servers for delegation

Linking Servers

Distributed Queries

Guidelines for using Distributed Queries

Troubleshooting SQL Server 2005/2008 Query Performance/Scalability Issues

A cheat sheet for SQL Server developers

Filestream Overview

Using filestream with other SQL Server Features

Administering Servers by using Policy Based Management

Kerberos Authentication and SQL Server

Alter Database Set options

DDL Triggers and Logon triggers

Introduction to Change Data Capture in SQL Server 2008

Enabling change data capture

Examples of Restore Sequences for Several Restore Scenarios

Policy Based Management Security

Generic T-SQL Query Collector Type

Max degree of Parallelism option

Ownership chains

Trustworthy database property

Using Mirrored Backup Media Sets

Verifying backups

Considerations for restoring the model and msdb database

Resource Governor concepts

Distributed Transactions

How it works SQL Server 2005 NUMA Basics

How to Configure SQL Server to use soft NUMA

Alter server configuration

Understanding how to set the sql server I/O Affinity Option

How it works IO Affinity mask should I use it

How it works soft NUMA I/O completion thread. lazy writer workers and memory nodes

Filestream Design and Implementation Considerations

Introducing the sql server 2008 performance data collector