Slides & Links from SQL Saturday Cleveland

Thank you to everyone who came out to see my presentation Keys to a Healthy Relationship with SQL Server at SQL Saturday Cleveland. I had a great time and I hope each of you learned at least one new thing.

Here are the links I mentioned in the session, as well as a couple that contributed to some of the things I mentioned.

Thank you to everyone who made SQL Saturday Cleveland possible – the organizers, sponsors, my fellow speakers, and all our attendees. Special shout-out to Eric Blinn (blog | twitter) and Paul Popovich (twitter) for finding a way, against all odds, to pull my name three times in the closing raffle.

Upcoming Speaking Engagements

I presented a few times in 2019, and I’m starting off 2020 with several as well. Here’s what’s on the schedule for Q1.

  • 2020-01-06 1Yep, ISO8601 format. That’s how I roll. – I’ll be giving a lightning talk at work titled “What Does a Database Administrator Do, Anyway?” This one isn’t open to the general public (though I might tweak it for use at community events), but The Bobs and “It Depends” both make an appearance in the deck.
  • 2020-02-01 – I’m thrilled to announce that I’ll be presenting Keys to a Healthy Relationship with SQL Server at SQL Saturday Cleveland. This is incredibly exciting while at the same time, nerve-wracking. Cleveland is home to quite a few people who I look up to in the SQL Server community, and being selected to speak there is an honor. At the same time, getting up in front of those same folks…I have to keep reminding myself that they’re my friends, they want me to succeed, and they’re in my corner.
  • 2020-03-27 – I will be presenting Keys to a Healthy Relationship with SQL Server via webinar for SQL Professionals of Chattanooga. I met Heather Durham (twitter), one of the group organizers, at PASS Summit 2019, asked if the group would be open to me presenting remotely for them, and a few weeks later we were setting things up! Travel isn’t always easy for me, so if this works well hopefully I can add more presentations to my schedule.

That’s what’s booked so far for 2020. I’m hoping to submit sessions to a few more SQL Saturdays later in the year. Once I get another session worked out I’ll be presenting that (those? we shall see…) at our local user group and hopefully adding them to my SQL Saturday submissions. I’m shooting for couple more lightning talks and lunch & learns at work as well!

SQL Saturday Boston: I’m Speaking!

It feels like SQL Saturday Albany just wrapped up, but I have another announcement to make. I am proud to announce that I have been selected to speak at SQL Saturday Boston on September 14th, 2019. I will be presenting “Keys to a Healthy Relationship with SQL Server” at 11:15 AM.

Continue reading “SQL Saturday Boston: I’m Speaking!”

SQL Saturday Albany Slides & Demo Code

Thanks to everyone who came out to see dbatools for the Uninitiated at SQL Saturday Albany on July 20th, 2019. I had a lot of fun sharing dbatools with you and hope you’re ready to start exploring on your own!

The slides and demo scripts are available in my GitHub repository.

If you have any questions about the session, please feel free to contact me via:

Speaking: Rochester SQL Server User Group March 2019

Probably a bit late getting this posted but I will be speaking at the March 5, 2019 meeting of the Rochester SQL Server User group (RSVP link). I don’t have a great title or abstract for the talk (yet!), but here’s the gist:

The relationship between DBAs and developers has a long history with challenging moments. Some developers see DBAs as roadblocks. Some DBAs see developers as rogues bent on destroying the database server’s performance. I’ll be presenting both technical and non-technical tips and tricks to help build a better understanding between developers, DBAs, and SQL Server.


It’s been four years since I’ve spoken at a meeting. If this talk goes well, I’ll keep refining and start submitting it for SQL Saturday events.

PSPowerHour v1.0 Wrap-Up

The first edition of the PSPowerHour is in the books and it looks like it was a big success. This one was dbatools-heavy but I chalk that up to the dbatools community having lots of free time because we’ve automated so many of our tasks 🙂

Overall Impressions

I signed in about half an hour ahead of the webcast and was the first one there. Shortly thereafter, I was joined by Michael Lombardi (t, then Jess Pomfret (b|t) and Chrissy LeMaire (b|t). After ironing out a few glitches, we got everyone in the right place and kicked off the broadcast. Everything ran very smoothly, especially considering the number of people involved – Michael and Warren F. (b|t) did a terrific job of orchestrating everything.

While watching and listening to Chrissy, Doug, Andrew & Jess give their demos, I ran through my own in my head a couple times, adding and rearranging a few things as I observed how they were doing theirs. The big dilemma for me was whether or not to run the camera or exclusively screen share (I ended up going with the screen share only). Having not rehearsed my demo enough in the weeks leading up to the event, I was still not sure where to dip into more detail or dial things back and seeing what others were doing helped quite a bit. Having familiar faces & voices ahead of me in the queue put my nerves to rest.

I wasn’t able to watch the sessions after mine in their entirety due to family commitments. Joshua’s Burnt Toast module looks like it’ll be fun to experiment with and add some nice functionality to scripts (I got to see about half of his demo), and I’m really looking forward to catching a replay of Daniel’s demo of PowerShell on the Raspberry Pi – I didn’t realize that it had been ported already!

My Demo

I demoed Invoke-DbaSqlQuery and why one should use it over Invoke-SQLCmd – primarily for protection from SQL injection. Things didn’t go exactly the way I’d practiced; I ran short of time despite feeling like I rushed things and cutting back on some of what I had planned to say. The latter was in part because of the lead-ins from Chrissy, Andrew, and Jess. Because they did such a good job introducing dbatools, I was able to skip over it. But I was able to throw in a teaser for Matt Cushing’s (b|t) demo at the next PSPowerHour.

Running the demos inside a VM and screen-sharing just that VM made things easier for me as opposed to flipping between apps. My scripts will be available on GitHub along with the other presenters’ once the pull request is approved.

I achieved my goals:

  1. I did it
  2. I successfully demonstrated a SQL injection problem and explained why it’s so bad
  3. I demonstrated how to make database queries from PowerShell both more reliable and safer
  4. I learned about some new stuff that I desperately want to experiment with.

Next time around, I definitely need to rehearse more and get my timing down better but overall, I’m happy.

Check it out!

Speaking: PowerHour, August 21st 2018

It’s official! I will be speaking at the inaugural PowerHour online lightning demo event on Tuesday, August 21st at 2200 UTC. I’ll be demoing Better, Safer SQL Queries from PowerShell.

If you’re working with SQL Server from PowerShell, either as a DBA, analyst, or anyone else running queries, you’ve probably used Invoke-SqlCmd. But depending on how you’re building your queries, this can be error-prone or a huge security exposure! With the help of the dbatools module, I’ll show you how to write and run these queries better and safer – and make them easier to work into your scripts to boot.

I’m excited to be a part of this – it’s been far too long since I’ve done a presentation. Please join us on the YouTube channel/stream next Tuesday!

PowerHour – Online PowerShell Lightning Talks!

Earlier this week, the PowerHour was announced. What is it? It’s kind of like a virtual user group. One hour, 6(ish) lightning demos (10 minutes or less), centered on PowerShell. All community-sourced and driven – anyone can submit a proposal for a demo and if accepted, you’ll be slotted into an available spot.

They’ve already set up a YouTube Channel so you can either watch live or catch up later on, and the whole deal is being organized and managed through GitHub. Got something you want to show off? Log an issue using the template!

I’ve submitted my first (but hopefully not last) proposal. Yep, it involves dbatools because that’s my jam.

It’ll be fun for speakers and attendees alike! You can even use your demo(s) for user group meetings or SQL Saturdays – anywhere lightning talk/demo spots are available. Several SQL Server community folks have tossed proposals in and with so many DBAs getting hooked on PowerShell, it’s a great way for these two communities to come together.