5 Ways the Management Pack for Microsoft SQL Server Helps DBAs

by bluemedora_editor on September 16, 2016

Blue Medora has become the leader in VMware vRealize Operations management packs for databases. For administrators running their Microsoft SQL Server instances on VMware, Blue Medora’s vRealize Operations (vROps) Microsoft SQL Server Management Pack is the perfect solution. In this blog, we will examine 5 ways that Blue Medora’s Management Pack helps the enterprise database administrator.

I want to begin by looking at some of the dashboards offered in this management pack. Whether you’re troubleshooting an issue in the environment or looking for information on its configuration, dashboards offer a quick, customizable way to view this data.


1. MS SQL Server Overview Dashboard

The MS SQL Server Overview is recommended as a first-stop dashboard for quickly viewing if there are issues that need immediate attention. Utilizing heat maps, this dashboard indicates red for SQL Server Databases, Microsoft SQL Servers, and SQL Server Always On Availability Groups that are having issues. If the heat map is showing all green, then the overall health for those objects are in good standing.
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Figure 1: MS SQL Server Overview Dashboard


Clicking on the heat map will allow you to dive into the specific SQL Server object and discover more details on the issue and dive into the specific SQL Server object and more details on its properties and the issue.

2. MS SQL Database Dashboard

The next dashboard we’ll take a look at is the MS SQL Database dashboard. This dashboard gives us much more detailed information on the health, alerts, names, status, and performance of the selected Microsoft SQL Server. By selecting a SQL Server from the list in the top-left widget, the dashboard will automatically update its widgets to reflect your selection. These details help the Microsoft DBA get a better understanding of the SQL Server and how it’s performing.

If this particular SQL Server is having an issue, the Alerts List widget keeps a list of all active alerts related to that SQL Server. Diving into these readily available alerts is simple and can help immensely when troubleshooting.


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Figure 2: MS SQL Database Dashboard



3. MS SQL Server VM Relationship Dashboard

While there are many more great dashboards to check out in the Microsoft SQL Server Management Pack, I wanted to highlight one final dashboard: The MS SQL Server VM Relationship. I recommend this dashboard because it is great for viewing how this SQL Server affects the rest of your virtual environment. By selecting a SQL Server in the top-left list, the rest of the dashboard will populate to show you the related virtual machine hosting the SQL Server and details of that virtual machine.

On the right half of the dashboard you’ll notice it compares, side-by-side, the alerts, health, performance, and throughput of the SQL Server to the related Virtual Machine. This is great for quickly comparing the impact the SQL Server is having on the Virtual Machine with the impact the Virtual Machine is having on SQL Server.

In the bottom-left, there’s an object relationship view. This is great for a high-level view of the relationship of this SQL Server to the rest of the systems in your vROps relating the SQL Server to the rest of the stack such as Virtual Machine, Datastore, host, compute (such as Dell PowerEdge or Cisco UCS), and networking.


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Figure 3: MS SQL Server VM Relationship Dashboard



4. All Metrics Page

Navigating to the All Metrics page in vROps, we can view some of the more detailed information on SQL Server performance. Viewing performance in the All Metrics page is great for a number of reasons. It can allow you to select all the metrics you want to see and compare them, it allows for time-range selection, and it allows for simple viewing of trends. Notice, in the view on the right, I can easily move the slider to show only the date range of data I want to view. Also, the data can be saved as a screenshot or downloaded as a CSV for easier viewing.


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Figure 4: All Metrics page



5. Detailed Reports

The fifth way the Management Pack for Microsoft SQL Server can help Microsoft DBAs is by generating detailed reports. Reports in vROps are simple to create and allow for a range of configurations such as scheduling and custom templates.


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Figure 5: Detailed Reports page


Creating your own report is easy to do and I highly recommend that you experiment by creating a few custom reports. Today, I want to take a look at an excellent report that is shipped with the management pack: the MS SQL Server Environment Overview report. This report is a good one for Microsoft DBAs to schedule for a weekly summary of their Microsoft SQL environment. It gives a summary of the SQL Server instances, database overview, and database size. Having a weekly report of this information is a must when a DBA needs to keep on top of their SQL Server databases and know how they’re performing.


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Figure 6: MS SQL Server Environment Overview report


In this blog post, we covered five key ways the Blue Medora Management Pack for Microsoft SQL Server can help the Microsoft DBA. Exploring the Management Pack further, you’ll see there are many more reasons why this solution is chosen by top enterprise Microsoft DBAs.

If you’d like to learn more about Blue Medora’s Management Pack for Microsoft SQL Server or download a free trial, please visit the product page on our website.

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