Vendor supported databases

Here in my profile I title myself as a blogger and look, I have not blogged since April. Sorry to those 5 people who may actually read by blog.

Ok..So there was a DBA, The Customer, and the Vendor. Sorry have you heard this one.

As a SQL Lumberjack you need to find how very interesting, challenging, rewarding, and overall exciting it can be when your handed a project that will be ultimately be supported by a vendor. If you can’t find that emotional connection I’m afraid your project, which will ultimately be a supported application, will continue to hunt you every time an issue arises. I was recently handed a project to get SQL Server set up so the vendor can install a database. Here were my requirements for the project, keeping in mind I had to work with the vendor through each step.

  1. Install SQL Server 2008 R2 on a virtual box
  2. Create an extract from another database to feed profile information for the new database
  3. Create an SSIS package
    1. Create a OLE DB Source which houses the SQL Command from the previous requirement.
    2. Push the extract to a Flat File Destination
    3. Extract as a text file in tab delimited format
    4. Schedule a job to run the SSIS package twice a day
  4. Create maintenance plans for the database

Regardless if you’re a DBA of a home-grown database or a vendor created database your ultimate job does not change. You are the Default Blame Acceptor if something goes wrong. Remember, your company is paying this vendor money. Don’t be afraid to light up the vendor if you disagree with something. They can create the database, the schema, the index, and the views. That’s fine. YOU, create the maintenance plans, you create the optimization plans, you make the calls on how best increase performance on the database. Here is where art comes in, don’t be afraid to light them up, but you still need to sell them on why it’s best to set up the database in the way you want.

When my vendor created their database and it popped in my server I found things that were wrong, it was not my standard setup for a database. I took action immediately. The recovery model was not full, the auto shrink was true, and the compatibility level was SQL Server 2000 just to name a few. First thing I did was send a detailed email about why I want to change these options. Also, always try to avoid the middle man. You get level one on the phone who know nothing about SQL Server and they will end up screwing up your details. Just tell them you need to talk to the Database Developer.

End the end if you keep the control in your court you will have that emotional connection to the database.


About Erik Disparti

I started my IT career in 1999 and in January 2011 I became a SQL DBA. So far I'm loving every minute of it and learning more and more everyday.
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