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Don Burleson Blog 







SQL Server Health Checks

MSSQL Tips by Donald BurlesonFebruary 18, 2015


BC is a leader in database health checks and we have SQL Server experts to perform a complete SQL Server Health check on your database.  A comprehensive health check involves many areas and ensures that the SQL Server database follows generally recognized best practices.

Are you wrongly blamed for a SQL Server performance problem?  Get a health check.

Our SQL Server experts can quickly identify all potential areas for improvement and document the step-by-step changes required to improve your SQL Server performance.

SQL Server Health Check Activities

A SQL Server database health check involves a complete investigation of the database and the surrounding environment:

  • Backup and Recovery health check - The SQL Server Health Check will validate your backup and recovery procedures to ensure that your SQL Server database can be recovered in cases of hardware or software failure.

  • SQL Server best practices health check - We ensure that your database follows best practices for manageability and configuration.

  • SQL Server Performance health check - A SQL Server Health check will review all of the SQL Server parameters and disk configuration to ensure that your SQL Server database is optimized to make maximum use of all available hardware resources.  This includes a check of the disk I/O sub-system latency (disk bottlenecks) and a review of Network, RAM and CPU utilization.

Inside a SQL Server health check

Within the SQL Server database we must examine many areas of SQL Server performance.  These area of health checks include:

  • Hardware review - We review your complete external hardware to identify potential bottlenecks and areas of contention.  This step examines disk I/O latency (seeking disk bottlenecks) and a cursory review of Network, RAM and CPU utilization.

  • Windows review - We verify your release and patch levels for Windows. We also review SQL Server integrity checking (if installed).  We also check SQL auditing setting.

  • Log Review - We also examine all logs (Windows Event Logs, SQL Server long and SQL Agent logs) for alerts and important messages.

  • Transaction logs - We review the transaction log for optimal size and bottlenecks.

  • Workload analysis - We check the SQL Server sared environment in which many databases compete for memory and background process

  • Disk Utilization check - Disk space utilization needs to be examined. 

    • Files near maximum size - For files where autogrowth is enabled we check whether any database or log is nearing its maximum file size limit.

    • Disk throughput analysis - We also check I/O stall read and writes times, to see timing details regarding read and write throughput problems for each SQL Server data file.

    • I/O distribution analysis - I/O details for databases and files are obtained, and for SQL Server 2005, we drill down and get I/O at the object level.  From a throughput viewpoint, the iostall column should be zeroed in on as it will reveal which files are experiencing the most delays in terms of accomplishing I/O goals.  The higher the iostall, the worse the files are doing.  These files are likely candidates for physical disk relocation or other such actions. 

  • TEMP space - We review tempdb to ensure optimal sizing (disk sorts)

  • Table fragmentation check - Fragmentation is the natural result of table usage, and reorganization of correct fragmentation issues.

  • Server Configuration Options check - BC verifies that all SQL Server configuration parameters are optimized for the system workload.

  • Review Scheduled tasks - Review users and document all auto-start and SQL services options

BC is the USA's oldest and largest providers of health checks.  Don't trust a beginner, choose BC with seasoned, experienced experts.



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Note: This Oracle documentation was created as a support and Oracle training reference for use by our DBA performance tuning consulting professionals.  Feel free to ask questions on our Oracle forum.

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