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Anatoly Shestakov
Anatoly Shestakov

Solarwinds Database Performance Analyzer 15

As long as relational databases have been around, query performance andoptimization has alwaysbeen one of the top issues that every DBA has to spend some amount of time troubleshooting.As much as we would like to make sure the performance of a query is optimal beforeit goes into production, there are many factors that come into play that can preventthis from happening. Inadequate test environments, changing data in production (datavolume or the data distribution/cardinality), lack of testing and even other softwarerunning on the server are just a few factors that can lead to poor query performance.

solarwinds database performance analyzer 15


No one likes getting that call that the application is down or is respondingpoorly and they suspect it is the database that is causing the issue. It would begreat that when you do get that call, you could perform a quick check and see ifthere are issues on any of your SQL Server databases that could be causing thispoor performance.

Also, while it's never fun dealing with an ongoing performance crisis, at leastwith a real-time performance issue it gives you an easy place to start troubleshootingand optimizing SQL queries.But what happens if a user notifies you that reports were running slow or they experiencedpoor application yesterday or even last week? Would you be able to look into ifit was at all caused by a database system or querying issue?

Having reliable, predictable system performance is the goal of every IT professional,not performance problems.This is even more true for a Microsoft SQL Server database administrators given that the datais the backbone of almost every organization. While you could build your own setof scripts using views, events, auditing, etc. to perform these tasks. Building,and more importantly maintaining, these scripts can require a lot of time. Havinga tool that can pinpoint any anomalies with respect to performance is somethingevery database professional would welcome. One product that can do this is theSolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer for SQL Server (DPA). This softwareis capable ofmonitoring multiple platforms: Oracle, MySQL,MariaDB, DB2, SAP ASE, Cloud(Amazon AWS and Azure) and of course SQL Server. In order to demonstrate some of the product features let'swalk through a few typical issues that pretty much every database professional hasseen at one time or another and show how this solution can be used to pinpoint andsolve these issues.

Before we dive into the examples, let's explain at a high level howSolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer for SQL Server (DPA) works. Most ofthe performance data collected by the tool is based on wait statistics. Once persecond, DPA connects to the database and gathers a small subset of metadata relatedto each of the active queries. Collecting only a small subset of metadata meansthere is very little overhead for these once per second calls. At a much lower frequencythe detailed wait statistics and other performance data is collected and backfilledto provide a complete picture of what was happening on your database instance. Also,important to note is that the tool does all of this without any software havingto be installed on your production database server. It instead makes a JDBC connectionfrom a separate server to collect the data and stores the data on a database installedon this server. Performance data is kept for 30 days which gives you the abilityto look for any deviations from your baseline performance statistics by comparingwhat is currently happening in your database with what was going on at any othergiven time in the last 30 days.

DPA solves the issue of having users alert the technology team of issues. DPA provides DBAs and Developers insight into database performance with directintegration with Slack and Teams via alert notifications. DPA can post amessage to Slack informing the team that a simple, yet important report that ranfor over 5 minutes a few days ago. This report usually completesin under 10 seconds. They ask you to take a look to see if there are any issueswithin the database that could be causing this report to run slowly.

Without SQL monitoring tools, database administrators have to create their own solutions for monitoring SQL database performance. This exhausting and frustrating process distracts from more important work, and these manual SQL monitoring solutions could lead to errors. Luckily, SQL monitoring software offers a faster and more effective solution.

A database performance monitor for various databases, including SQL Server, has to work across many servers and connect all the dots from across an entire IT infrastructure. It allows you to manage your relational database management system (RDBMS) and enables the discovery and simple display of SQL Server database performance metrics, which you can then reference to better understand your SQL Server needs, capabilities, and opportunities for the future.

Monitoring your SQL Server performance, health, and usage metrics will help you stay informed and up to date on how your SQL Server is functioning. This is crucial to maintaining optimal SQL Server database performance and provides helpful analytics for identifying performance tuning opportunities and other areas for growth.

The metrics found while monitoring your SQL Server database could also be used to discover and diagnose critical performance issues. Within the vast server metrics collected by SQL Server monitoring, it can be difficult to know where, when, and how to investigate a problem to uncover its root source. Many SQL Server performance metrics could indicate resource contention, error conditions, bottlenecks, and other complications.

Collecting these metrics is only the first step in the process of performance issue diagnosis, a critical aspect of SQL Server database performance monitoring. If you can properly organize and comprehend the vast amount of metrics available to you through effective SQL Server performance monitoring, you can solve current SQL performance problems as well as prepare for future SQL performance issues, and stop them from arising at all.

The easiest and most efficient way to perform SQL Server database monitoring is to invest in a SQL Server performance monitoring tool. These applications are designed to collect important SQL Server metrics and display them using accessible visualizations, which in turn allow you to discover ways to improve overall SQL Server performance.

My number one recommendation for monitoring your SQL Server performance metrics is SolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer (DPA). DPA enables cross-platform database tuning across a handful of SQL Servers including Oracle, Azure SQL Database, Microsoft SQL Server, MySQL, and PostgreSQL. This makes DPA an incredibly powerful tool, as you can compare metrics across your SQL Servers to best understand how to achieve your SQL Server performance goals.

SolarWinds Server & Application Monitor is another fantastic SQL Server database performance monitoring software, which enables you to maintain and optimize SQL Server performance, health, speed, and general functionality. SAM is designed to identify blocked SQL queries and drill down into detail, discovering the reason for blocking. This eliminates the need for complicated in-house tools, and helps you quickly diagnose and resolve SQL Server performance issues before users are affected and become frustrated. Customizable alerts also allow you to stay on top of your SQL Server database performance, and SAM could send you these critical alarms along with actionable insights and other best practices.

By providing a quick view of real-time and historical events and performance data, SQL Sentry SQL Server database performance monitoring features can show execution plan diagrams, query history, and more to help you more easily find and fix potentially problematic queries.

My final recommendation for a SQL Server database performance monitoring tool is Idera SQL Diagnostic Manager for SQL Server. This program can spot issues fast with SQL Server performance metrics, which are continually monitored. SQL Diagnostic Manager is designed to manage availability groups, job successes and failures, and other SQL Server performance metrics across operating systems. Browse through historical data and examine trends in detail with help from SQL Diagnostic Manager, which supports a sliding scale you can use to zoom in on specifics.

Monitoring your SQL Server database performance is an essential aspect of maintaining optimal SQL Server health, capacity, and capability. To accurately and efficiently keep track of SQL Server performance metrics, invest in an SQL Server database performance monitoring software. The best SQL Server database performance monitoring tools will enable you to discover and diagnose critical performance problems and properly address latency issues, bottlenecks, resource allocation decisions, and more.

In my opinion, SolarWinds DPA and SAM are excellent options for SQL Server database performance monitoring software. These tools are designed to comprehensively monitor your SQL Server database performance, providing critical details and historical plus real-time insights into SQL Server performance metrics. Download a 14-day free trial of DPA or a 30-day free trial of SAM today and discover how these SQL Server performance monitors can save you time, energy, and money while optimizing the potential of your SQL Server database.

Did you know 90% of SolarWinds Database Performance Analyzer (DPA) Oracle customers use both Oracle Enterprise Manager (OEM) and DPA to solve performance issues? Based on my personal experience as a DBA in a large financial services transaction environment, this is not surprising. The combination of the OEM and DPA provides the kind of help I needed to better understand database performance issues and save time, money, and frustration. Here are the three key reasons why you should consider using DPA alongside OEM, and why I think it is necessary if you are serious about improving your performance as a DBA: 350c69d7ab


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