I'll be over in Dublin doing a usergroup meeting on Thursday evening at the Microsoft office.

The subject of the talk is

“Almost all queries have to do two things, get data and join it together. In this session we will look at the aspects of these that most people think they know but in reality don’t. “

If you think you know SQL then you should come along and we'll see if you are right


Hope to see you there.

Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)

I’m growing my first ever moustache for Movemb http://uk.movember.com/

You can see my mo space and pictures of the thing growing on my lip here http://uk.movember.com/mospace/6154809

If you would like to support me then please do make a donation and make this worth it.


Were not even half way through the month and not sure how I’ll get to the end. Please contribute to keep me motivated not to slip with the razor.


If anyone knows where I can get a brown suede suit I’m looking for doing impressions of Donald Sutherland in Animal house.

Check out my page http://uk.movember.com/mospace/6154809 to see how I’m progressing.

Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)

We are growing our data team at Wonga. If you are working in the SQL Server space and would like to join the one the fastest growing tech companies in Europe then please get in touch (http://sqlblogcasts.com/blogs/simons/contact.aspx)

We have positions for production DBAs, Data QA analysts and SQL generalists (with a BI tendency). We also have generalist production support roles


Wonga is currently 3rd in the Times Tech Track 100 having been 1st last year. Being in the top 3 for two years running highlights our rapid growth.


Data is core to what we do so if you want to be part of a cutting edge team then Wonga is the place for you.


Contact me to have a chat about joining the team.


No agencies.

Posted by simonsabin | with no comments
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I’ve been running SQLBits for 5 years and have always had a desire to make the SQL community better. I’ve often thought about running for the board but have never stood up

Just over a year ago I was at a meeting with some SQL leaders about growing PASS globally. At that meeting a friend of offered to help the board from an international perspective. I thought he was mad.

James runs his own business, has been managing the sponsors for SQLBits and has 3 kids to look after, no way would he have the time for PASS as well.

How wrong could I be.

Since that point James has jumped into the role with the board with both feet. There was some controversy when the board gave him a board position at the start of the year you can read James response here http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/PASSBlog/entryid/404/PASS-Board-Appointments-Response-to-Feedback.aspx whether you agree with the action James has made a big difference in structuring PASS for global growth. http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/GlobalGrowth.aspx and http://www.sqlpass.org/Community/GlobalGrowth/Resources.aspx

The SQL community is very strong in many countries like UK and USA but in many other countries the community needs developing and that what James is passionate about.

So why should you vote for James?

If you’ve read James application then I would suggest you do http://www.sqlpass.org/LinkClick.aspx?fileticket=2m4BjucrP8Y%3d&tabid=6746&mid=13061

James is passionate about the community

He’s been working with SQLBits for a number of years now. He’s not in this for, he’s in it to make build a truly world wide SQL organisation.

James listens well

In his role as coordinator of sponsors he has shown how he listens to people.

Anyone that has been to SQLBits will testify to the fact that by no means is it overly commercial yet sponsors love the event. This is because James has listened to the commercial requirements of the sponsors and balanced that with core requirements of the conference i.e. the delegates. This is what I feel makes SQLBits unique.

James is honest and selfless

As mentioned in the application, about 12 months ago James and I were planning on going into business together. I was offered a position at a client which I was going to dismiss but I didn’t because of James. Even though it had a serious impact on James business plans he provided me with impartial advice and helped me make the decision. Something for which I will always be grateful to James for.

He’s a nice guy

Just look at how he celebrated becoming an MVP http://consultingblogs.emc.com/jamesrowlandjones/archive/2008/10/07/and-then-there-were-three-sql-mvps-conchango.aspx

Just avoid him if he takes you to a wine bar as he’ll start buying stinky cheese.

If you want to read more about James then read here http://www.sqlpass.org/Elections/Candidates/JamesRowlandJones.aspx

Don’t forget to vote today.

Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)
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I fear something has gone wrong with the estimation in this plan.





Thats what you get with bad estimates combined with xml operators

Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)

If you’ve downloaded Excel 2013 and been working with it you may have noticed the new cell transition feature. Not sure why they put it in, it feels a bit like the aero interface which I understand has been dropped in windows 8.

What you may have found is that the transition is buggy, Excel hangs, of the transition is jumpy.

Well I found the fix on http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/office/forum/office_home-excel/hardware-acceleration-problem-with-excel-2013/894da202-48c0-4442-a371-955587c1b7c0

For me I did have Powerpivot for Excel enabled and disabling it made everything run smoothly.

Do disable the AddIn

1. go to File | Options

2. Select AddIns on the left

3. In the bottom of the right pane select “COM Add-ins” from the Manage drop down and Click Go


4. Make sure there is no tick next to “Power pivot for Excel”, if there is then un tick it and click Ok.


You may get an error saying you can’t enable it for this version of access but thats fine, it should now be disabled and your cell transitions should work fine.

Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)
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I’m looking for 2 SQL people to join our data team. I need people that are keen to develop an exciting data platform with strong SQL skills. Desirable skills are MDX/SSAS, data warehousing and working in finance industry.

The role is a full time role based in London.

If you are interested then let me know either via my http://sqlblogcasts.com/blogs/simons/contact.aspx or via twitter @simon_sabin https://twitter.com/intent/tweet?screen_name=simon_sabin&text=Read your blog send me details.

No agencies please.

Posted by simonsabin | 3 comment(s)

One of the most enjoyable things about SQLBits is reading all the blog posts/reviews after the event. We are normally fortunate enough not to have pissed anyone off and so the posts are generally positive.

Most pieces are from attendees however this piece is from a wife of a sponsor http://iknowmarketing.wordpress.com/2012/04/02/events-community-vs-commercial/.

Its a nice piece for us as it highlights how we work and that how we focus on making the event personal for all those involved. We deal with everyone ourselves, sponsors, delegates, speakers, the venue, everyone.

We’re always contemplating involving outside companies to help but we always come back to wanting to keep the personal feel.

If you’ve attended I hope you enjoy SQLBits. Please make sure you complete the feedback

Individual day Feedback


Overall Conference Feedback


Posted by simonsabin | 1 comment(s)

If you are contemplating attending then I hope the following will convince you,

The ten reasons to attend

1. 90 hours of pre con content from the best speakers around the world..Choose from 15 full day deep dive session for only £300. (full conference is only £475) http://sqlbits.com/information/TrainingDay.aspx

2. 73 sessions over Friday and Saturday on all aspects of SQL Server, including many on SQL Server 2012. http://sqlbits.com/information/Agenda.aspx

3. Best opportunity to network with like minded professionals. We expect to have over 1200 attend through the 3 days, we have two excellent events in the evening for you to relax and discuss the days activities (or not).

4. Meet the product team. The people that are responsible for building SQL Server. We have 24 people from Microsoft including Quentin Clark, Mark Souza, Conor Cunningham, Gert Drapers. 8 from the core product team, 5 from SQLCAT and hopefully 4 from CSS. http://sqlbits.com/information/PublicSpeakers.aspx

5. Learn about SQL Server 2012 from the people that have already implemented it. You will hear from both Microsoft and independent consultants on their experiences.

6. The most SQL Server 2012 content in Europe this year

7. Attend the SQL CAT clinic and get your problems answered. With all the SQL knowledge we will have present someone will definitely be able to help.

8. Speak directly to vendors in one place. We have a large selection of vendors in our exhibition space. Most vendors make products that make your life easier. Having them all in once place saves you a huge amount of time by enabling you talk to them all in one place. http://sqlbits.com/

9. Learn what SQL Server 2012 can do for you. With “Always on”, column store, programmability changes and SQL Server Data Tools there is a huge amount in SQL 2012 to make your systems run faster and let you develop solutions faster.

10. Its the best SQL conference in the world. Everyone we speak to says that SQLBits is the conference they want to come back to. The atmosphere, the content, the people, all make it the best conference to attend to learn about SQL Server


We are getting registrations at an unprecedented rate and even though we have double the capacity of a normal SQLBits we expect to be full by mid February. Thats only 3 weeks away.

If you want to attend you must register now to avoid disappointment.


Register Now

Posted by simonsabin | 3 comment(s)
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I was really happy to have put the agenda SQLBits X live a few weeks ago, and at the same time was amazed at the speakers we’ve pulled in for this event, go and have a look for yourselves.  http://sqlbits.com/information/agenda.

Whilst its not the largest SQL Server Conference in the world many people have said its by far the best. Maybe its because it isn’t too big, maybe its the personal feel that the organisers try to add to the event. We do everything oursleves (within reason) so everything has our personal touch. Whether its the quirky website, the sporadic marketing or the off the wall evening entertainment SQLBits has grown to be an awesome event and SQLBits X will be event better than ever.

We are getting registrations at an unprecedented rate and even though we have double the capacity of a normal SQLBits we expect to be full by mid February. Thats only 3 weeks away.

If you want to attend you must register now to avoid disappointment.

Register Now

Posted by simonsabin | with no comments
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