How I Solve 95% of All SQL Server Outages
4.5 (88 ratings)
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How I Solve 95% of All SQL Server Outages

Learn How To Troubleshot Any Down SQL Server With One Free Script
4.5 (88 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
752 students enrolled
Created by Mike West
Last updated 9/2015
Current price: $12 Original price: $20 Discount: 40% off
3 days left at this price!
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  • 1 hour on-demand video
  • 4 mins on-demand audio
  • 3 Articles
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion

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What Will I Learn?
  • Be able to troubleshoot the vast majority of produciton down situations.
  • Understand how organic transactions flow through a well tuned SQL Server.
  • You'll have a well defined, simplistic process approach on how to approach any outage.
  • Answer any interview question on the topic of production outages with conviction.
  • Speak the proper vernacular when discussing performance tuning, wait statistics and SQL Server incidents.
  • Accurately analyze performance related outages.
View Curriculum
  • Before you begin you will need to a strong fundamental grasp for SQL Server
  • Using the industry vernacular on SQL Server DBA levels, the course is intended for junior level SQL Server DBAs and above.
  • You’ll need to have SQL Server installed on a laptop or environment where you can run the demos.
  • All of the demos are written in transact. All versions from 2005 forward will work however, ideally you’ll be using 2012 or 2014.
  • You’ll need to have local administrative permission on this environment to install one small application.
  • All the tools, scripts and code needed for this course are included in the cost of the course. There are no additional fees.

Recent Review:

"This was one of the most useful classes I have taken in a long time. Very specific, real-world examples. It covered several instances of 'what is happening', 'what it means' and 'how you fix it'. I was impressed."  Steve

What do I mean when I use the words “real world?"

This course is about learning a very specific skill that's one of the most important ones to becoming a senior level SQL Server DBA and that is - Where do you begin troubleshooting production issues?

I'm going to give you the starting point and we are going to work through several examples of real world scenarios where a SQL Server was down and how I brought back online.

You'll learn the language of performance tuning.

All industries have their own vernacular and the SQL world is no exception.I'll be introducing some new terms and scripts that are very specific to performance tuning and optimization.

These scripts and how I apply them are worth the cost of the course.

Performance tuners are like mechanics. Our goal is to keep the SQL engine as tuned as it possibly can be.

One stored procedure to rule them all!

In the real world, the elite SQL Server DBAs don't use canned tools. Many of the greats have a library of scripts and they use ONE of these every single day.

If you don't have a script library started then I'll show you how to set one up and GIVE you your first few scripts.

When I'm called into troubleshoot a struggling SQL Server I always use ONE script first.

This script was developed by one of the world's leading experts on SQL Server and used by many of the world's leading experts on SQL Server.

This is a hands on course.

You will simulate a OLTP application and learn what to look for when issues arise. All of the demos are written in transact. Everything is included in the price of the course. Set up for the course is easy. Installing the tools will take several minutes.

The most important part of our course will be working through the real world examples. All my lessons will have very specific instructions. The set up for all of the lessons is simply to cut and paste the transact code into SQL Server Management Studio.

The vast majority of the course will be working through the demos and analyzing how to troubleshot production down issues and what steps can be taken to bring the server back online.

The course will also include lectures but the lectures will be short and pragmatic. SQL Server is one of the most complicated pieces of software in Microsoft's suite. This course will provide you with the single most important facet to analyzing real world outages. Where do you start?

If you want to be one of the most skilled SQL Server DBAs then you MUST learn how to use this script effectively!

Start now! Enroll today.

Who is the target audience?
  • Those with a fundamental understanding of SQL Server.
  • If we use the collegiate scale this course would be a 300 level course.
  • While I appreciate your enthusiasm beginners should wait until they’ve had a couple of years of experience under their belt before working through this course. It will be here when you’re ready.
  • The ideal student would be a mid to senior level SQL Server DBA with three or more years’ experience as an operational DBA.
Compare to Other SQL Server Courses
Curriculum For This Course
21 Lectures
3 Lectures 03:10

I recommend you take the course serially but you do have options.

Preview 01:31

This Quick Quiz Will Help You Cement What We've Covered So Far.
10 questions
6 Lectures 20:36

A very high level look at the why this works.

Preview 03:09

Setting up our load generator that will allow us to simulate a lightly used real world OLTP system.

Setting Up Our OLTP Load Generator To Simulate a Real SQL Server

A very quick and high level overview of Wait Statistics Analysis and how we will incorporate it with our approach.

We Must Learn The Basics of Wait Statistics Before We Can Master Tuning.

Additional information on the author of the script sp_whoisactive.

One of The World's Greatest SQL Server Machanics Created This Free Tool.

A very simple process flow.

The One Minute Process Flow and how we can easily apply it to our approach.

Installing the Tools
8 questions
Lessons From the Field
9 Lectures 44:39

A hard one right out of the gate. How we can alleviate IO subsystem stress.

How SQL Can Thrash a SAN and How We Can Easily Fix it.

Why limiting file growth on a production box isn't a good idea.

Restricting File Growth is a bad Idea so We Should Fix it Right Now.

Memory pressure creates false IO issues.

Without The Right Amount of Memory We Can Pressure the SAN.

A quick way to delete a large amount of data without interrupting the organic flow of data.

Deleting in an OLTP Application is Problematic. If You Must, Delete This Way.

Every production box should have a minimum of 4 tempdb DATA files. (Not log files)

Resolving Tempdb Latch Contention is Very Easy. Add this Easy Button Fix Now.

A simple example of how our approach can be used with showplan analysis.

Using Showplan Analysis in Conjunction With Our Approach

Running Adhoc queries in production is not a good practice.

The Explicit Ad Hoc Blocker and Why All AdHoc isn't Great for OLTP Boxes.

How to discuss this approach in an interview.

Learn How To Correctly Answer Interview Questions on Fixing SQL Outages.

Starting the script library.

What's in Your Script library and Why You Need One of It's empty.

Lesson From the Field
9 questions
Final Thoughts
3 Lectures 10:25

Some additional content.

Thank You For Taking This Course and a Few Additional Learning Resources.

Recapping what we've learned in the various lessons.

Wrapping Up What's We've Learned and Where to Go Next.

Please take a minute to provide me with feedback. Thank you!

I Really Want Your Feedback. Help Me Get Better and I'll Repay That Generosity.
About the Instructor
Mike West
4.2 Average rating
3,020 Reviews
49,796 Students
42 Courses
SQL Server and Machine Learning Evangelist

I've been a production SQL Server DBA most of my career.

I've worked with databases for over two decades. I've worked for or consulted with over 50 different companies as a full time employee or consultant. Fortune 500 as well as several small to mid-size companies. Some include: Georgia Pacific, SunTrust, Reed Construction Data, Building Systems Design, NetCertainty, The Home Shopping Network, SwingVote, Atlanta Gas and Light and Northrup Grumman.

Experience, education and passion

I learn something almost every day. I work with insanely smart people. I'm a voracious learner of all things SQL Server and I'm passionate about sharing what I've learned. My area of concentration is performance tuning. SQL Server is like an exotic sports car, it will run just fine in anyone's hands but put it in the hands of skilled tuner and it will perform like a race car.


Certifications are like college degrees, they are a great starting points to begin learning. I'm a Microsoft Certified Database Administrator (MCDBA), Microsoft Certified System Engineer (MCSE) and Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT).


Born in Ohio, raised and educated in Pennsylvania, I currently reside in Atlanta with my wife and two children.