Joining Infrastructure

   Posted by: jasoncbunn   in SQL Server

A little over a year ago, our team of DBAs was transferred to report to the director of infrastructure instead of the director of data services or the director of operations, our previous departments.  At the time it was met with a bit of concern from the team.  Data Services brings to mind the goal of delivering data solutions to the organization, building an operational data store or a data warehouse.  Infrastructure was viewed in some ways like keeping the lights on.  Keep the plumbing working.  Not unlike the CEO’s initial impression of infrastructure in The Phoenix Project.

However, over the last year, we’ve come to appreciate the closer connection to the teams that build our servers and provide our storage.  One example is the recent effort to reduce storage allocations for SQL Server.  With the storage team as a separate entity operating “over the wall” so to speak, we ask for storage and it’s received.  We didn’t get involved in the overall picture of the array.  But as a member of the infrastructure team, we’ve learned about the difference between storage subscription and storage allocation.  We’ve worked much more closely with the storage admins regarding I/O concerns and how the inner workings of the SAN function.  The idea of the SAN being “smoke and mirrors” as it was once described, is finally fading away as we develop a better working relationship with them.  I could describe similar situations talking with the server and network teams.  A year later, we’re happy to be part of the infrastructure team, although the change has not been without some negatives as we tend to become involved in some data services projects later than we used to, and often end up needing to challenge some assumptions and the translation from logical ideas to a physical database has been painful at times.

By the way, we did get paged on Easter night.  We were updating our custom job processing engine and ran into a powershell issue.  Turns out that the foreach command in powershell can loop once for a $null object.  That wasn’t tested since we didn’t consider a few servers still have powershell 2.0 running.  It was a feature fixed in powershell 3.0 and described here.



This entry was posted on Tuesday, April 7th, 2015 at 10:45 pm and is filed under SQL Server. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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