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2009 January

James Moore

Adopting Scrum


We kicked off a new project a few months ago: rewriting ANTS Memory Profiler.  As part of the project, we decided to give Scrum a try. The team was already reasonably Agile without explicitly adopting Scrum principles, as we had our EAP program in place when developing ANTS Performance Profiler. But hey, why not try something […]

28 January 2009 11:11 am by
John Magnabosco

Tampa SQL Saturday

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This past weekend (January 24th) I attended SQL Saturday #10 in Tampa, Florida. This event was organized by Pam Shaw, the leader of the Tampa SQL Server User Group. The attendance that was a healthy 175 – 200. For those who may not be familiar with the SQL Saturday events: SQL Saturday is a full […]

27 January 2009 11:58 pm by
Tony Davis

Beg, Borrow, Steal before Build


The art of developing an application, or maintaining a database server, really consists of finding ways of postponing or avoiding programming. As Phil Factor points out, most good DBAs and developers are marked out by a propensity for “bone-headed stubbornness and practice beyond the patience of an ordinary mortal“. It’s only when this attitude blinds […]

26 January 2009 10:36 am by
John Magnabosco

Searching Encrypted Data


Frank is a DBA. He maintains a database that contains many columns of data that has been classified as sensitive. He has been assigned the task of protecting this data and has been instructed to use encryption to do so. "No problem" says Frank, "I’ll utilize cell-level encryption. I should have this task completed in […]

23 January 2009 4:25 pm by
Richard Mitchell

When is a Bug NotABug


So we’re coding away – as you do – on our lovely new product (Blatant Plug : Exchange Server Archiver). Things are going well code monkeys are ooking nicely, testers are being evil as only they know how.Now I’m all for thoroughly tested products, things weren’t always this way and I remember when I started […]

23 January 2009 1:08 am by
Phil Factor

Technical Interviews, and tests, have got to stop!


‘Technical Interviews’ have got to stop. They are a disgrace to the IT profession.  Two MVPs who I asked the question ‘Have you ever passed a technical interview’ have admitted ‘Never’.  I’d like more successful developers to confess their inability to remember much more than their name under the pressure of a technical interview.  The […]

22 January 2009 12:40 pm by
Bart Read

An end to IIS profiling woes (we hope)—an early access build of ANTS Profiler 4.3 is now available


Over the past few weeks we’ve been trying to sort out the IIS support in ANTS Profiler to make it more reliable, and to deal with some of the scenarios it didn’t handle, or didn’t handle well.The result of all this work, mainly done by our new developer, Alex, has been incorporated into ANTS Profiler […]

19 January 2009 8:09 am by
Bart Read

Classic Marketing Boo Boos 101: accidentally including a screenshot of somebody else’s product in your promotional materials


Yep. I don’t make this stuff up. Lionel originally posted this on our internal forums, and I cheekily decided it was well worth publishing more widely. Check this out: (Click the screenshot for a larger image.)The original URL is, but I reckon Microsoft will have that changed by the end of the afternoon so […]

19 January 2009 7:42 am by
Phil Factor

Calculating Easter: The longest scientific Project ever?


On Friday, I’d managed to work myself into a rage about something. I then sat down and wrote the following function in TSQL that tells you the date of Easter for any year you wish. Afterwards, I felt sublimely at peace with the world. Perhaps I remain an unreconstructed geek, after all. This is one […]

18 January 2009 10:37 am by
Jason Crease

How big is a string in .NET?


How big is a string in .NET? Typically the size of an object is 8 bytes for the object header plus the sum of the fields.  Consider this simple object:     class ThreeFields    {        double d;        object o;        int i;    } The size of a ThreeFields object is 8 bytes (for header) + 8 bytes […]

16 January 2009 10:32 am by
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