The countdown to PASS has officially reset. Good news is we have under 365 days to go until the next PASS. Bad news is we have just under 365 days to go. It’s been great watching the tweets and laughs going back and forth from new friendships made there this year. Although I didn’t have the chance to make it to PASS this year, I want to thank everyone that put so much into making it one of the most eagerly awaited yearly events. Even sitting at the wayside and only reading tweets and the occasional wav from PASS attendees and speakers, I was still able to learn some new things and meet some new people (virtually that is).

Virtually meeting new people is great, but I promise to be at PASS in person next year. Even if I pay my own way there.
So even while the camaraderie of PASS is still fresh I thought a good way to get back in the swing of things is to remind everyone of some great things being built out in the SQL community.

The next big event for me is SQL Saturday in Chicago. Officially this is SQL Saturday #31. I’m very excited about the event being held in this area. I think it will be one of the best SQL Saturday events held so far. Wendy and Aaron are two people anyone would enjoy working with on planning something like this. Both are awesome SQL Server professionals but more importantly, all around good people anyone could get along with.

The call for speakers is open so get out there and submit an abstract. The line up already looks great and I can’t wait. Don’t forget to register early for attending. I have a feeling things will fill up pretty quick.

One and still an awesome compilation of blogs, is Aaron Bertrand’s (@AaronBertrand) listing of bad habits to kick. I’d review them again just to make sure you didn’t ignore at least one that you may be doing.

Series of “Bad habits to kick” by Aaron Bertrand

Let’s not forget SQL University put together by Jorge Segarra and accompanied by several expert SQL pros.

More as been added sense I wrote the initial blog on getting everyone over there so go catch up.

George over here at LessThanDot has been putting together a “best Practices” set of blogs. These are turning out to be really good. I would expect nothing short of expert advice from George. His SQL skills have helped me in my career and I know they can help you. Here is a quick link back to the ones up so far. Look for new ones to come as well

Best Practice: Do not cluster on UniqueIdentifier when you use NewId
Best Practice: Every table should have a primary key
Do not use spaces or other invalid characters in your column names
Always include precision and scale with decimal and numeric
Always include size when using varchar, nvarchar, char and nchar
Don’t prefix your table names with tbl
Don’t start your procedures with SP_

My buddy the Menace @SQLDenis has been hard at work blogging here as well. There are always good things coming from Denis that I don’t miss out on reading. If you don’t have an RSS to his profile here, I recommend it along with George

Denis http://blogs.lessthandot.com/index.php/All/?tempskin=_rss2&author=4
George http://blogs.lessthandot.com/index.php/All/?tempskin=_rss2&author=10

Not to leave the work Tarwn has done on lessThanDot’s redesign out either. You can catch some blogging on his work as he went through the changes from his feed.
Tarwn http://blogs.lessthandot.com/index.php/All/?tempskin=_rss2&author=9

And take a look at all of the blogs the members on lessThanDot put up daily. There is a wide rangeof technology being dicussed and growing every day in content.

Now just to remind myself SQL Server still needs my attention, today I lost an entire instance used for mirroring.

Luckily as all of you DBAs know, we can hide these types of issues from the users. These things are scary as hell while they aren’t up and running, but alas, not a 72 hour stretch to repair. I’m almost done reconfiguring that server so soon we’ll be a happy couple again.