Bring it on 2012

Well, I’m about a week and a half late with the whole New Year blog post but I figure better late than never.

So just a little recap of my year. 2011 was the first year I started blogging about SQL. It was pretty rewarding and I hope to do more of it this year. When I got in the zone things just flowed but when work or other life distractions got in the way things slowed down a bit.

Last year I was able to learn a good bit about:

  • Powershell, Powershell, Powershell – I am still at the beginning of my journey but some of the things I have done so far have saved me so much time.
  • Access (unfortunately) – some critical systems got tossed my way that were dependant on access. I had to learn how to deal with them. It wasn’t fun but it was awesome once everything worked (for that week).
  • Big DBs – This year I got to work with some monsters. It’s been a good oppurtunity so far. It makes tuning even more fun.
  • Indexes – used, needed, overlapping, and of course…fragmented.
  • DBCC commands – Just when you think you know some of these, you learn a new one that totally changes how you work.
  • Twitter – this is the first I have ever used twitter. I used to think it was the stupidest thing in the world. I started using it a bit and holy crap, a whole new world opened up. I can’t believe the people I have interacted with on there. SQL has a great community and I hope I can give back a little more this year.
  • Double Hoping and SPNs – every DBA needs to go through this at least once.
  • Extended Events – Profiler? Who needs that?

Overall it’s been another great year to be a DBA. I like what I do and just want to get better and increase the awesome meter.

This year I’ll be focusing a lot on powershell, puffy clouds of computers, 2012 of course, extended events, and probably get another cert or 3. I WILL also present 1 or 2 times this year. Something I have never done before. If you got advice, send it my way.

The other area I am hoping to dip more into is BI. I have a feeling that there will be a big industry swing once 2012 comes out for really good BI people. I’m hoping to jump on that wagon.

I will also be moving to the states in the near future. That is going to be a whole new world of adventure that I am ready for.

So 2012, bring it.

Double Hop of DOOM

I recently had to battle through THE DOUBLE HOP OF DOOOOOMMM!! It was a very rewarding experience and I think every DBA should battle this beast at one time or another in their career.
So what is a double hop?
Let’s take a step back, what’s a single hop?

mmmmmm hops

A single hop is where you have your SQL server (let’s call it Server 1 for now) with a linked server (Server 2) set up. The hop is where you connect to your linked server. You “hop” from your local SQL instance to the linked server. Piece of cake.

Now the double hop is where you have a client connecting to Server 1 but wants to access the linked server (Server 2). This becomes a bit of a headache when you are using windows authorization. I was trying to access Server 2 from the client and kept getting the great “NT AUTHORITY\ANONYMOUS LOGON”. After lots and lots of reading I realized it was more of a Active Directory issue than a SQL issue.  Here is the best article I’ve found that explains how this all works.

So how after battling active directory for a couple of days, I finally broke through the wall.

Here is what you need to know:

  • Figure out what an SPN is and how to use SETSPN (the above article does a great job)
  • Add an SPN for both servers
  • Add an SPN for your service account – (this is the one that got me)
  • Enable Delegation for your servers in AD
  • Enable Delegation for your SQL SERVICE ACCOUNT
  • restart SQL services.

It was a bit of a battle but we were able to break the anonymous wall and access the legendary linked server. Best advice – keep reading, keep playing with the SPNs.