T-SQL Tuesday #12 – Why are DBA skills necessary?

I  was recently invited to a client site where I hadn't been in a couple of months. I could smell the neglect as soon as I examined the server:

  • Error logs ripe with deadlock events
  • Horrific sql in stored procedures
  • Agent jobs failing
  • Database maintenance jobs disabled due to lack of space to perform index rebuilds.
  • The databases had also been shrunk several times leading to excessive fragmentation in the tables indexes.

Contrary to what you thinking, this wasnt a company staffed by morons on a non critical application, it actually had some pretty talented developers (including a database specialist) working and managing a high throughput OLTP system. However, a developer is a developer and the mindset is different to a DBA.

No decent DBA in there right mind would disable Sql Server maintenance jobs and shrink a LIVE database without immediatly rebuilding the indexes. Steps would have been taken to order extra space as it became low. Innefficient stored procedures would have been rejected before they entered the LIVE environment. 

What im trying to say is Dev guys and Ops people have different priorities and while a Dev is happy to churn out as much code as possible an Ops DBA is busy conserving and preserving the revenue that is coming in along with the maximising the investment on server hardware. I also dont think its totally a personality thing, I have quite happily fitted into both roles at different times but rarely within the same company. If you wear a hat, wear it totally....





Published Monday, November 1, 2010 5:18 PM by blakmk
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