Speaking at SQL Saturday Richmond

December 29, 2009

I am on the Docket!

I received the official email letting me know that one of the two abstracts that I submitted to SQL Saturday Richmond was accepted.  As of now, I am speaking on SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) at 11:00 AM, on Track 1.  I assume that could be subject to change.  My session is titled “Integration Services in the Real World”.

I was a bit relieved to see that only one of the two abstracts that I had submitted was selected.  I had submitted two to improve my chances of being selected (as suggested on the submission site).  However, since this will be my first time speaking at an event such as this one,  I am thankful to only have to prepare for one session.

Integration Services in the Real World

The idea behind the session is to show how SSIS has become an indispensable tool for me as a DBA who is often asked to do things that are not strictly database-related.  In the absence of SSIS, if you ask a DBA to tune a query, restore a database, or grant permissions to an object, the tools are there for those tasks.  However, ask the DBA to create a process that runs every night, extracts user data from a custom LDAP-provider, merges it with data from a SQL database, writes it to an XML file, zips the XML file and then sends it to a service provider via secure-FTP, and you might get a puzzled or dismayed look.  There are ways to do these things without SSIS, but they tend to be clunky, difficult to maintain, and do not always perform optimally.

With SSIS, I have a tool that enables me to meet these types of odd requirements (which are quite common in my workplace) quite elegantly, often with very little code, and free from some of the performance constraints of the alternatives.  I intend to illustrate this by walking through some of my real-life projects.  I will describe how I might have gone about meeting the requirements without SSIS, discuss some of the problems with those approaches, and demonstrate how I accomplished the same thing in SSIS.

My hope is that my presentation will:

  • Encourage folks to consider SSIS as more than just an ETL tool for data warehousing projects.
  • Illustrate some of the advantages SSIS has over other technologies that people may be using to accomplish some of these tasks.
  • Highlight some of the best practices that I have adopted over the past several years working with SSIS.