Systems Engineering and RDBMS

Google Apps vs Office 365

Posted by decipherinfosys on July 6, 2011

A nice feature comparison between Google Apps and Office 365:

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Mercury QC Explorer Add-In

Posted by decipherinfosys on June 9, 2011

Ran into this issue yesterday at a client site so thought about posting it in case any of you run into this.  Accessing Mercury’s QC over IE was working fine till the version of IE was upgraded to IE8.  Post that, accessing QC directly using the IE browser was not working due to security settings and restrictions to use the ActiveX components.  HP has a QC Explorer Add-in which allows you to use QC without a web browser.  You can download it from here:

Post the install, just bring it up, type in the address (for QCBin or SiteAdmin – sabin) in the space above, press Go and you are all set.

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List of NoSQL Databases

Posted by decipherinfosys on April 26, 2011

Here is a good list of the NoSQL databases:

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Deep Web

Posted by decipherinfosys on March 16, 2011

Yesterday, while having a discussion with a friend on search engines, the topic of Deep Web was raised. Deep web (or Deepnet) is essentially the part of the internet that is not indexed by the search engines for example the dynamically generated site content. It is an interesting topic – here is the wikipedia link in case you are interested in learning further:

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Converting PL/SQL code into web services

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 25, 2011

Native XML DB Web Services in Oracle 11g makes the conversion of PL/SQL code into web services much easier.  Here are some links on this topic to get you started:

  • Oracle documentation – here.
  • Oracle-Base post – here.

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Back to the Basics: Restoring an Analysis Services Database

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 24, 2011

Not every DBA or Database Developer has had experience with Analysis Services so it did not come as a surprise when a DBA at a client site approached us for quick help in restoring the Analysis Services Database on-to the development environment.  In our back to the basics series of posts, we will be covering this topic today.

Let’s use SSMS to connect to Analysis Services instance first.  In case you have never done that before, when you connect, select “Analysis Services” from the drop-down in the Server Type, the proper Server Name (your instance) and the authentication and you will be connected to the Analysis Services instance in which we will restore the back-up of the Analysis Services Database:

Once connected, right click on “Databases” and select “Restore”:

You will be presented with a very simple “Restore Database” window – most of the items are self explanatory – you would browse to select the location of your backup file (we selected the production backup file in the example below):

Once that is done, you need to then give a name for the restored database (in our example, we are calling it PRODCOPY), select a storage location using the browse button, Allow for the database overwrite if it already exists on the instance, choose to overwrite the security information and if the backup was encrypted, provide the password so that you can move ahead with the restore process:

Once that is done, you would be able to restore the database on that instance and then do configuration changes, data source changes etc.

Another way of doing the restore: In case you are not a GUI kind of guy and like to us scripts, you can also use XMLA.  You can read up on the command here.  You can invoke XMLA by right clicking on the Analysis Services instance and choosing “New Query” and XMLA.  The command parameters are the same as you saw in the GUI option above so add the values appropriately and then execute it in order to complete the restore process.


  • XMLA – here.
  • Backup and Restore Analysis Services Databases – article on by Ashish Kumar Mehta – here.
  • MSDN post on backing up and restoring Analysis Services Database – here.
  • Database Journal Article on restoring Analysis Services Database using Windows Powershell and SQL Server 2008 AMO – here.

Posted in Business Intelligence, SQL Server | Leave a Comment »

Next Release of SQL Server – Denali (SQL Server 2011)

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 23, 2011

MSFT had announced the first CTP of the next version of SQL Server at PASS last November.  Since then, there has been quite some buzz on the new features of the next version.  We were at a client site last week who had just now finished migrating to SQL Server 2008 and will be moving to SQL Server 2008 R2 shortly.  So, it was an interesting discussion with the CIO of the company who was putting together a presentation for the board of directors which showed the technology road-map for the company.  It becomes difficult to justify another migration in 2 years time (assuming they move to Denali in late 2012) unless there are key benefits to the business.

Here are some of the URLs to help you get up-to-speed on Denali:

  • You can download the CTP from here.
  • BOL for Denali – here.
  • What’s new in Denali – here.
  • MVP Michael Otey’s post on the new features in Denali – here.
  • Future SQL Server Editions page on MSFT site – here.
  • Analysis Services Roadmap for Denali – post on – here.

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OVER clause – much needed enhancements

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 23, 2011

For those of us who work in both Oracle and SQL Server, it is always a natural reaction to look for something equivalent in the other RDBMS in our day to day work.  One of the areas in which Oracle has excelled far ahead of SQL Server has been it’s rich support for analytics.  OVER clause capabilities is just one of those things.  MVP Itzik has posted several suggestions/requests on connect for such enhancements – you can see them here.  It also has links from other readers as well which point to the rich functionality of Oracle and DB2 in that regard. You should also read this whitepaper from Itzik and Sujata on this topic.

As per this update on connect, these did not make it in SQL Server 2008 and might be included in the next release – Denali.

This came up again when a client who is responsible for releasing their product on Oracle as well as SQL Server needed to simulate some of that rich analytic function capability in SQL Server.  There are always workarounds available and we have covered some of them in our previous blog posts (example – for first_value(), last_value() workaround) but it is time that SQL Server had that support now.

Posted in DB2 LUW, Oracle, SQL Server | Leave a Comment »

Ghost Cleanup task in SQL Server

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 23, 2011

This topic of “Ghost Cleanup” background process came up while trying to resolve an issue at a client site recently.  In case you have never heard of the ghost cleanup in SQL Server, here is an excellent post by MVP Paul Randal on this topic.  And another post by him on the performance benefits of using a trace flag to turn it off in systems which have heavy delete workloads.

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NoSQL Databases making inroads in mobile market as well

Posted by decipherinfosys on February 23, 2011

Good post by Sean Gallagher on NoSQL databases making inroads into the mobile market – here.

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