SQL Server is something that most people in IT roles will touch one way or another in the course of their working lives. It is the engine behind many line of business systems, SharePoint, ERP and CRM systems.
Having the basic skills to correctly install, configure, backup, recover and troubleshoot SQL Server issues is important and something that is often just assumed. Over the past 16 or so years I have seen many examples where this assumption is wrong. To make matters worse, troubleshooting is often focused in the wrong areas leading to time consuming and expense solutions to often simple problems.
A few things everyone should know about SQL Server:
- How disks should be configured when performance is required
- Databases and Log files should be on dedicated disks
- How to setup a maintenance plan and why you should
- SQL Agent service defaults to manual startup
- How to backup
- How to recover to a point in time
- The difference between Full and Simple Recovery models
- How to use SQL Profiler to identify poor SQL code
- Basic SQL queries
- Licensing options and SQL Server Editions
This is by no means a complete list, but is a good step in the right direction for anyone who manages SQL Server environments.
I first touched SQL Server back in the early 1990’s with version 4.21 and since then I have use ever version right up to the current 2008R2 edition. Recently I decided to formalise this experience and become a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist: SQL Server 2008 Implementation and Maintenance. This was a rewarding experience and I learnt many new and useful things.
If are you are going to certify, I recommend reading “The Real MCTS SQL Server 2008 Exam 70-432 Prep Kit” and a bit of hands on experience to pass this exam.
The 70-432 exam is oriented towards IT Pro’s, but I think it would look great on the CV of a developer, SharePoint consultant or specialist for any SQL Server based application.
70-432 Certification Home Page