September 2009 - Posts

SQLBits is not around to make money, it's here to build the SQL Community. What that means is that when start to cover our costs then there is no point in charging people more. We've reached that point and so what we've done is push back the end of the early bird to the end of October.

This means that if you need a little longer to convince your boss you should go to the best SQL Server conference around, then you now have 4 more weeks.

I look forward to seeing you all there and hope you can convince your boss its well worth your while. It must be the best value training you can get for SQL Server.

Oh and if you can't get your boss to open his wallet then don't forget it's still free to come on the Saturday.

If you are umming and ahhing about registering for SQLBits. Get in quick as the early bird ends on Wednesday.

If you are going to the Data Management Conference today then I will see you there and if you are lucky ther migth be some interesting giveaways with regards to SQLBits. So come and see us, I think a group of us will be in an "Ask the experts" type area.

Oh and don't forget to get your pictures for the SQLBits mugshot competition. We will be deciding on the winner at our committee meeting tonight (Tuesday). There have been some great entries so far.

Just a gentle reminder that if you are considering coming to SQLBits then you need to register and pay by next Wednesday in order to get the £100 early bird discount.

Don't forget that if you book 6 places on the full conference then you get a 20% discount.

The numbers are looking good so it will be another great SQLBits.

Also don't forget the Mug Shot competition for a chance to win a free ticket and accomodation for the whol conference. The entries are building up, but there is still a great chance to win.

If you've been considering going to SQLBits and looked at hotel prices for the Celtic Manor. You might have found the Thursday or Friday night cheaper using laterooms etc. The Hotel have kindly agreed to match the price on these sites as long as they have allocation left. Whats more if you've already booked and said you are coming to SQLBits then your room price should have been reduced.

So now you can get a superior double inc breakfast on Thursday and Friday for only £99.

There should be quite a few of us staying in the Hotel so I look forward to seeing you there.

This price will only be available whilst they have allocation so get in quick.

If you are registered on the site you can now vote on the sessions you want to see at the next SQLBits.

Click here to make your vote

ts vital that you vote so that you get the sessions. If you don't we've no idea it you would prefer index tuning or piano tuning.

So please spend some time looking for the sessions you really want to see. If you are coming on Friday and Saturday its even more important you vote as we have some scope to repeat sessions if they are very popular.

So get voting

Dear SQL Server Widow,

As a partner of a SQL Server Professional, I am sure you may be aware of the quirkily named SQLBits conferences organized in various parts of the country twice each year. Your partner may have disappeared for a weekend and returned enthused and eager to try out the many new things he has learnt, all SQL Server related unfortunately. Up to now this may have been a bit of a chore having to put up with them going on about this, but now that doesn’t have to be the case.

The next SQLBits conference, cunningly called “SQLBits goes West” will be at the luxury Golf and Spa resort, the Celtic Manor. Perfect for a relaxing weekend away.

If your partner books before the 30th September they will save up to £200 on the registration fee. That’s £200 that you could use on one of the Spa Experience days provided by the resort. You could just choose your own combination from the range of therapies, massages, holistic treatments on offer; including the Rasul Mud Ritual, Dry Floatation and Hydrotherapy, Facials, Manicures and Pedicures.

So make sure they signs up at so you can get treated to the relaxing weekend you are entitled to at one of the top Health Spas in the UK.

Yours faithfully,

SQLBits Committee


If you want a free trip to SQLBits then you;ve got 1 extra week to submit entries. We've only got 5 entries so far and so the chance of winning is very high.

To have a look at the current entries and submit your pictures go to the Mugshot competition page

So far we've got a mug on holiday

and one in a field of cows


If you are thinking of coming to SQLBits and need to get approval make sure you do and get registered before the 30 September when the early bird discount ends

You also need to make sure that we get payment before then as well.




SQL 2008 & R2

Combined Discount *
Thursday & Friday

Community Day

Early Bird











Last Minute





Extra Discount - 20% off when 6 or more people book for the combined event.

Click here to go to the SQLBits registration site 

10. We’re going West (Newport, to be exact)! Which is great news if you live in Wales or the South West and you get fed up with all the tech conferences being held in London or the Thames Valley. Even if you don’t live in the local area, its only 1hr 45 from London and Birmingham and with Cardiff airport it’s easy to get to from anywhere in Europe.

9.    SQLBits has grown to three days. We have a day of pre-conference seminars on Thursday November 19th; on Friday November 20th we have a special SQL 2008 and SQL 2008 R2 day; and on Saturday November 21st we have our flagship free community conference. That’s probably all the SQL Server education you’ll want or need this year.

8.    Meet other SQL Server professionals. Are you the only DBA in the village? Do people think you’re talking about your private life when you say you’re a “BI consultant”?  Do you have to pretend to be an estate agent or a lawyer at parties to avoid the stigma of being seen as an IT geek? At SQLBits you’re among friends: no-one will mind you talking about clustered indexes or the finer points of MDX syntax.

7.    Attend an advanced technical training course. Got some budget for a training course, but don’t want to spend it on yet another basic Microsoft Official Curriculum course where the instructor only read the course notes the night before? Our pre-conference seminars are run by world-class SQL Server experts and will give you the knowledge you need to do your job.

6.    Win some swag, drink some beer and eat some pizza. It’s not all work, work, work at SQLBits: we have great giveaways, there are loads of opportunities for socialising and there’s beer, pizza and games at the end of the day. And if you like golf, you might be interested to know that the venue, Celtic Manor Resort, has three championship courses and is playing host to the 2010 Ryder Cup.

5.    Check out the latest SQL Server-related products. Don’t have time to download and test the latest tools and utilities? Our sponsors will be happy to demo them for you and provide eval versions. They’ll probably also have loads of those cheap plastic promotional freebies that your kids love.

4.    Find out what’s coming in the next version. Our new SQLBits Friday event will give you the lowdown in what’s new in SQL 2008 and what’s coming in SQL 2008 R2 (including Madison, Gemini, and changes in Reporting Services), so you can plan for the future more effectively.

3.    Bring the family. Want to come to SQLBits, but feel guilty about leaving the family at home? No need, they can come too! The venue has its own swimming pools, a spa, tennis courts and restaurants as well as the golf courses. Repeat after me: “It’s not a conference, darling, it’s a luxury weekend break...”

2.    Deep technical content. We won’t make you sit through hours of marketing guff from some sales guy who doesn’t know a database from a spreadsheet - SQLBits is all about SQL Server professionals sharing their hard-won technical knowledge with the community. We’ve got big names like Donald Farmer (program manager on the Analysis Services/Gemini dev team) and Thomas Kejser (from the SQLCat team), and MVPs like Simon Sabin, Allan Mitchell and Chris Webb speaking.

1.    Did we mention that SQLBits Saturday is FREE? Yes, as always, the SQLBits community day on Saturday November 21st is free to attend. Top-class speakers, a massive selection of sessions and 100%SQL Server focused – and you pay nothing. That’s 100% cheaper than most tech conferences!

       To register go to the SQLBits registration site 


I'm really excited about Unisys sponsoring SQLBits for a number of reasons. Firstly they are new sponsors and our first hardware sponsors. What this means for you as attendees is that we can demo some amazing stuff.

How many times have you seen presenters say, "Sorry I can't demo this because I don't have a 64way server and 1000 disks in front of you, all I've got is this laptop". Well hopefully UNISYS wil be able to demo some really huge scale stuff live.

Hopefully Henk van der Valk will be able to show some of this in the sessions he's submitted. I was in a session at PASS Europe where him and Thomas Kejser did demos on a 96 core machine. This was probably the nest session I've been to in years.

So if you are wondering whether SQL Server can scale then you must come to SQLBits and we will show you.

To register for SQLBits click here