The entire SQL Foundations course is geared towards people who are new to SQL Server or who needed a refresher. The course consists of 6 sessions, each about an hour long, over a 2 day period. Over the course of 2 blog posts, I will be giving a very brief summary of each session. If they sound interesting to you, you can make sure to follow either of the authors, Allan Hirt (blog | twitter), or Ben Debow (blog | twitter) to learn when the next offering will be. I have made a new post for Day 2, which can be found here.
Day 1: Tuesday, August 27th
Overall, I am glad I attended this first day's sessions. I appreciate the fact that both presenters have a way of connecting with their audience and explained the concepts in an easy to understand format.
Session 1: Hardware, Infrastructure, and Operating System Concepts for the DBA
This was a great session - both Allan and Ben discussed multiple topics, such as, Hyper-threading, Memory, Networking, Supportability, Security in general, Standardizing deployments, and the importance of Testing.
Overall, this session seemed to explain the importance of how knowing the hardware and technology that SQL Server sits on, will help a DBA immensely. Sometimes an issue can appear as though it is within SQL Server, when really it is due to underlying factors.
Allan finalized the session talking about the importance of testing. A lot of mistakes can be avoided by testing before making a change in production. Whether it is as big as an upgrade, or a normal patch, or a simple configuration change, testing the change allows you to see what issues may arise.
Session 2: Virtualization and the Cloud for DBAs
This session talked about the cloud and about virtualization technology in general. Again, both Ben and Allan talked about the terminology that is used when thinking or working in the Cloud. It was refreshing to not have to know what the acronyms meant - they were explained beforehand (halleluiah!). The session talked about what success looks like for the private or public cloud. It also gave key concepts to think about, such as possible limitations and it's overall level of maturity.
The summary included a note that when Microsoft has a change, it is pushed to the cloud first. That reality may give a big clue about how permanent Microsoft views the cloud. It seems to be that the cloud is something to learn about so that when you do encounter it - you are prepared!
Session 3: SQL Server High Availability
As it goes, I was taking the sessions in the middle of a work day. I had an emergency that I had to look into, and didn't get to catch most of this session. I know that Allan was the sole presenter, he started out mentioning that this was a topic "near to his heart." By catching bits and pieces, I know he explained what the difference was between High Availability and Disaster Recovery. He also talked about what it would take to deliver an aggressive level of uptime. I know he performed demonstrations during the presentation, and I wished I had been able to participate. I am hoping the recorded session will be made available at a later time. If so, I will expand upon this brief summary.