Thursday, November 20, 2008

Microsoft hires DeWitt and starts Jim Gray Systems Lab in Madison Wisconsin

I just read this exciting news (a bit old apparently but I did not know) that Microsoft has hired David DeWitt to head the newly founded Jim Gray Systems Lab in Madison Wisconsin. Why is this exciting you say? Well, two reasons: first, xSQL Software has strong ties to Madison Wisconsin and to the database department that DeWitt headed for many years; and second, because this is a great move on Microsoft’s part. What makes this very interesting is the fact that in his new position DeWitt works for the Data and Storage division that makes SQL Server rather than working for the Microsoft Research division – in practical terms that means that his ideas and work have a much higher chance of being applied in the real world applications that Microsoft makes.

We wish DeWitt and the Jim Gray Systems Lab great success!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

xSQL Documenter 2.0 released

We just released a new version of xSQL Documenter that adds supports SQL Server 2008, Sybase SQL Anywhere as well as new features and enhancements. Here is what's new on xSQL Documenter 2.0:
  • Support for SQL Server 2008
  • Support for Sybase SQL Anywhere 10.0 and up
  • Adds a “choose objects” page in the GUI where you can specify what object types you want to document.
  • Support for all DBMS platforms in the "exclude objects" GUI. Previously this GUI supported only SQL Server.
  • Support for arbitrary HTML in database comments – see /pt command line switch.
  • Analysis Server: support for XML comments in MDX scripts. This enables documentation of calculated members.
  • Support for cross database and cross server dependencies (through linked servers)
  • Support for column dependencies (which columns of which table a stored procedure selects or updates.
  • SQL Server: support for XML comments on objects that don't have their DDL stored on the server, such as tables. This is implemented with extended properties.SQL Server: add extended properties filter. Using this you can restrict by name the extended properties that are fetched by xSQL Documenter.

xSQL Documenter generates compiled CHM and html database documentation for virtually all DBMS platforms including SQL Server, DB2, Oracle, MySQL etc.

You can read more about xSQL Documenter and download your copy from:

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

xSQL Data Compare custom comparison keys

A conversation with a customer yesterday brought to light the potential confusion with the custom comparison keys that xSQL Data Compare allows the user to define "on the fly". The customer was worried that defining a custom unique key would change the structure of the table - so here is some clarification:
  • when you define a custom comparison key for a table in xSQL Data Compare the database schema (structure) is not affected - no changes are made to the schema;
  • the custom comparison key can include multiple columns from the table in question;
  • the key must be unique - that is the combination of the values of the columns included in the key should uniquely identify a row in that table.
  • the comparison key defined on one of the tables in the comparison should match the comparison key defined on the other table - the rows from both tables in the comparison are paired based on the key values.
xSQL Data Compare provides for comparing and synchronizing the content (the data) of two SQL Server databases. It supports SQL Server 2000, SQL Server 2005 and SQL Server 2008 and it is completely free for SQL Server Express and its predecessor MSDE. xSQL Data Compare can be downloaded as part of xSQL Bundle from:

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Don't forget to vote today

To all US citizens - don't forget to vote - it is more important than almost anything else you may have to do today. We would even offer you a free license for any of our products if you voted today but that would violate federal and state laws - we learned that from the Starbucks example (Starbucks was advertising a free tall coffee for anyone who had the "I voted sticker" but they are now giving free tall coffee to anyone who asks for it otherwise they would be in violation of the law).

And remember your mail-in ballot must be received by the county election officials before the polls close otherwise your vote won't count. So, don't drop the ballot at the post office today - you are too late - instead, hand-deliver it to any precinct in your county (the one where you are registered to vote).

Monday, November 3, 2008

SQL Server 2008 penetrating faster than the predecessor

We have not conducted any rigorous research on this but based on our empirical data it appears that there is a lot more excitement about the SQL Server 2008 release than there was for the release of SQL Server 2005. Our user base today is orders of magnitude larger than it was when SQL Server 2005 was released but proportionally we have been receiving 3 times as many inquires about support for SQL Server 2008 nowadays than we were receiving then for SQL Server 2005.

A survey conducted by SQL Server Magazine showed that about 81 percent of the participants are still on SQL Server 2000 and only about 40 percent are using SQL Server 2005. I am willing to bet that one year from now over 50% of those same people will be already using SQL Server 2008 - there are just too many cool and very useful features in SQL Server 2008 that make it really hard to pass.

All xSQL Software tools support SQL Server 2008.