SQL Server filtered indexes can save space and improve performance if they are used properly. Under what circumstances can they be used? When are they most effective, and what sort of performance gain or space-saving is likely? How does a filtered index affect the choice of execution plan? Seth explores these questions with practical experiments… Read more05 March 2013
When you need to shred just part of the data within a large XML file into a SQL Server table, the most efficient way is to just select what you need via XQuery or by using XPath, before shredding it into a table. But precisely how would you do that?… Read more25 January 2013
Seldom has a SQL Server Service pack had such an effect on database development as when SQL Server 2012 SP1 introduced selective XML indexes. These transform the practicality of querying large amounts of XML data. Seth Delconte demonstrates how and why this feature makes all the difference.… Read more23 October 2012
When the average database developer is obliged to manipulate XML, either shredding it into relational format, or creating it from SQL, it is often done 'at arms length'. A shame, since effective use of techniques that go beyond the basics can save much code, and are likely to perform better.… Read more25 September 2012
XML Indexes make a huge difference to the speed of XML queries, as Seth Delconte explains; and demonstrates by running queries against half a million XML employee records. The execution time of a query is reduced from two seconds to being too quick to measure, purely by creating the right type of secondary index for the query.… Read more10 July 2012
Sparse columns and column sets in SQL Server 2012 provide a way of accomodating the less-structured data that has always proved to be tricky for the relational model. They can be used very effectively where the attributes are sparse for any given entity and very numerous across all entities. Seth Delconte shows how to use them.… Read more
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