Archive for the ‘Musing’ Category

OT: Things Fashion Stores and Designers just don’t Get

February 15, 2014 9 comments

I have just returned from a trip to Milan, my lovely wife traveling with me. And after a full weekend there, I feel like ranting again. For my trusted readers, if you expect something technical from this, please stop reading now.

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Curious Partition Function Behaviour

January 15, 2014 10 comments

imageJust another short blog today describing a curious issue I found with a query plan this week and a “workaround”.

In our core system, we have a table with two partitions. One partition contains all the work that “has been done” (which has the column WorkItem set to –1) and the other the “work   in progress” (with WorkItem to different values, all > -1).

The reason we have created just two partitions for this table (which is a heap) is that the items that are “work in progress” are often scanned, yet the work that has been done (WorkItem = –1) is the vast majority of the table. This “mini partitioning” is a nice design pattern I often apply to skewed distribution like these. It provides a significant performance boost on table scans. But this week I saw an oddity I have not run into before.

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My Final SQL Server Presentations (until further Notice)

October 26, 2013 9 comments

imageAs my regular readers have noticed, activity on my blog has slowed down lately. My new job at Livedrive is keeping me very busy and excited. It’s the opportunity I have been looking for: right in the middle of the Open Source vs. Microsoft cloud battle (and in a hectic development environment). I am greatly enjoying myself in this space.

However, I have precious little time to blog about SQL Server. And quite frankly, by now I feel there isn’t much more left for me to say on this subject. The time has come for me to move on to other subject areas and master new skills.

How will this affect my public speaking appearances?

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The Curse of Self-Service

August 18, 2013 17 comments

These days, we seem to be high on data and data related trends. My opinion on Big Data should be well known to my readers: it is something that has to be carefully managed and largely a fad for all but a select few companies.

With data being the new black, similar trends grab the attention of modern managers. One of these is Self Service. It seems like such a logical consequence of our advanced data visualisation: democratise the data.

It’s worth noting that the notion of humans making better decisions when well served with information is rather old. Thomas Jefferson said: “whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government”. But what exactly does it mean to be well-informed? Another great statesman, Churchill, said: “The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter”.

In this blog entry, I will argue that is does not follow that humans will make better decisions if we just give them access to more data. In fact, allowing people to self-service their data can be outright harmful.

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More Courses Available – in Sweden and UK!

January 11, 2013 Leave a comment

I am happy to announce that my tuning course and newly developed Data Warehousing course is now available.

Tuning/Scaling Course

imageThe tuning course will be hosted by CrossJoin Consulting in London, UK You can sign up for it here:

You can still make it for the early bird rates. This course is probably THE deepest level course about SQL Server out there. You will learn the nitty-gritty details of xperf profiling, spinlock detection and multi-threaded optimisation.

We are going to be digging deep below the surface of SQL Server here, be prepared for an intensive day.


Data Warehousing Course

imageThe next data warehousing course will be in Kista, Sweden. It will be hosted by SolidQ and you can sign up for it here:

This will be a very unique course with both Davide Mauri and myself teaching. Its a one day intensive training in my usual “no nonsense” style where you learn about data modeling from two of the leading experts in the field. The course extends the ideas I have blogged extensively about here.

There are still seats left, but they are going fast.

I look forward to seeing you there!

Sharing Slides on

October 9, 2012 1 comment

Hey everyone. Just a short post to let you know I am now sharing some of my slide decks from conferences at SlideShare. Here is the URL:

Some things I put there so far:

  • The Fusion Fireside talk I did at SQL Bits (which shows SQL based message queues in action)
  • My Big Data vs. DW deck (as seen at SQL PASS 2012 and other conferences)
  • A deck I created to introduce storage people to databases
    Feel free to use the material, I only ask that you let people know where you got it from.

My old slide decks belongs to MS as their IP, so I can’t share those slides with you. However, you will often find some of that material is available for download at the conference site where I presented it. For example, you can find a lot of my presentations on the SQL Bits website here:

Next week, I will be presenting at IP Expo about the Fusion-io SDK initiative. Exciting times.

First publicly available courses –in Aarhus, Denmark – 23-24 October

August 30, 2012 3 comments

I am pleased to announce that both my Tuning Course and the Data Warehouse Modeling course will be run in Aarhus Denmark. The courses will be held in English, even though they are hosted in the very city I was born.

The course will be hosted by Orangeman, who will be handling the logistics. There are still available spots and if you act fast, you can get the early bird price.

The relevant details:

See you there for some intense days of tuning and modeling.

Joining FusionIo

August 10, 2012 16 comments

imageI am very happy to announce that I have signed a contract with FusionIo and will be joining them as CTO of EMEA from 1st September 2012.

As many of you know, I have worked together with FusionIo on many occasions  and really enjoyed the collaboration. I believe that their products hold the keys to a new era of computing and it is an honour to join their ranks. I will be looking forward to doing a lot of exciting research and customer implementations for them.

This brings me to the work I have been doing since I left Microsoft. Here is how it will transfer:

Consulting Contracts

I have contracts with some customers open. These are all due to terminate before 1st September and I will of course honour my agreements here. Unfortunately, my new job will not allow me to continue the collaboration with these customers on a consulting basis after this. The good news is that my courses will still be available and I will be able to share my knowledge through this channel.

Courses and Conferences

Contributing information to the community is one of my great passions in life. FusionIo has allowed me to continue to pursue this interest. My courses will still be available, although only for a very limited amount of days every month as the course time will be coming out of my vacation days (hint on how to get a discount). I expect demand to be high. There are already  three tuning courses set up across Europe which will be held as planned and a lot of people have made it clear they want more. I will be announcing the exact dates for courses planned on this blog soon and let you know how to join the courses that are open to the public. The material is looking amazing and is using the new format that has evolved at SQL BITS and driven the top scores there. I expect this will be my best presentations yet. I am also happy to announce that my data modelling course is well underway and will be available soon.

I will continue to submit abstracts for conferences and stay in close touch with the community, just like I have always done. And  this brings me to:

Grade of the Steel

I am very excited that FusionIo has an interest in expanding the testing I have done with my Grade of the Steel Project. I will continue to run benchmarks on the latest and greatest storage and provide non volatile memory specific configuration and tuning guidance. Exactly which format the publications will take is too early to say, I will keep you posted on this blog.

Speaking in Dublin on Thursday 5th July

July 1, 2012 Leave a comment

I am visiting a customer in Ireland and the good people in Prodata took the chance to set up a SQL User Group meeting while I am there. I look forward to meeting both old friend and making new ones there.

The subject I will speak about is my “Grade of the Steel” tuning. There will be a Q&A session.

Here is the Official announcement: Thomas Kejser’s Grade of Steel coming to Dublin.

Open for Business!

June 22, 2012 6 comments

Today, 22nd June, is my last day at Microsoft. This means that I will be open for business from Monday 25th June 2012.

imageI will take on short term consulting contracts (including subcontracting if you need it). The knowledge I offer extends all the way from hardware and OS scaling and tuning, to architecture guidance, data modeling and ongoing monitoring and coaching during your implementation process to help build a technically excellent solution. Details of my skills are available here: CV.

In addition to consulting, I will offer a one day course on high scale performance tuning. Course details will follow on this blog next week. I can already now reveal that the course will feature xperf tuning, data modeling tricks, tuning methods and  a deep understanding of how to squeeze out more performance from modern multi-core machines.

If you are interested in purchasing my services, please send enquiries to:

Best wishes