Re-Imagining an SSIS IDE

Re-Imagining the SSIS development environment. oooh: ahhh: SSIS is a powerful and versatile tool for extracting, transforming and loading data into or out of SQL Server. The development environment, BIDS and now SSDT allow developers to create, edit and debug SSIS package. I struggle with the actual IDE. The thing that I find is that the IDE is designed around a series of dialog boxes, tabs and a graphical map of the package as a whole.

gdpr - panic part 3

In part three of this short series Part one is: Part two is: This is part three: In part two I started looking at previous enforcement action taken by the ICO, Talk Talk (3!!! times) and the historical society: In this part, we will start by looking at the Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance PLC from January 2017: Royal & Sun Alliance… The RSA has a data centre in Horsham, West Sussex - I only mention this as I live nearby.

gdpr - panic part 2

Welcome GDPR friends :) Part one is: This is part two: Part three is: In this part, I am going to have a look at previous action the ICO has taken to give some context to the scary sounding 4% turnover or millions of pounds you will receive if you do something wrong. We obviously can’t predict exactly how an enforcement action will go, but we can think about the sort of things we should be doing, before during and after a breach.

gdpr - panic part 1

GDPR is coming (or if you are reading this in a few weeks then gdpr is here, what do you need to know and where do you start? This post is based on how gdpr will apply to the UK. I have nothing against the EU, but in the UK it is the ICO which governs GDPR. Each country is allowed to add specific requirements, and each country does so if you are looking for how GDPR applies to another country the ICO can’t help you sorry.

Azure ARM template function internals

I have been working with azure arm functions for quite a while and they are exceptionally useful but also quite a pain to work with, visualizing what it is that the functions will resolve to is often hard. If you haven’t used an ARM template, ARM templates are JSON documents which are effectively a whole load of properties made up of a name and a value. The value can either just be a value or it can include arm template functions.

xSQLServer is dead long live SqlServerDsc

I have had a problem with DSC in Azure Automation for a few months now, there was a change made to the xSqlServer DSC resource which meant that the paths internally were too long to be compiled on Azure Automation, I don’t even really want to think why because the fact that path lengths are an issue in 2017 (almost 2018!) makes me want to cry, so if you want to know more look at:

What The Tool? Multiple choice quiz to help you choose a tool for SQL Server

There are a few different choices for tools to use when it comes to SQL Server, while the “experienced” amongst us have used query analyzer, enterprise manager and probably ssms it isn’t always clear what tool you should use. If you consider sql operations studio and vscode it is a literal minefield of possible options. I was quite pleased with how my tool worked out and so I thought I would build a simple multiple choice quiz to help people decide between SSMS, SSDT, SOS, VSCode + mssql add-in:

My Azure ARM template development workflow

Writing infrastructure as code is pretty nice and I enjoy the declarative approach of defining what you want and letting the tooling take care of the how. I guess this is because of my background as a SQL developer. What I don’t like so much is the development experience and if you don’t get this part right it can be a right pain. What are the challenges? The first real challenge is writing the correct json for each thing you want to create.

ARMED - Where is the source?

ARMED, where is the source? For quite a few years I’ve been putting everything I wrote on github and made most of it open source with a permissive license like MIT or Apache2. If anyone asked then I would be happy to change any licenses, whatever they wanted but with this new extension I haven’t put it on github. Basically it is freeware, I wrote it in TypeScript which compiles to JavaScript so if you want the JavaScript you can just read it, I prefer reading and debugging TypeScript but as it isn’t compiled to machine code the extension effectively ships with the source.

ARMED - ARM resource dependency graph inside VSCode

I think the title sums it up, I have published a new version of ARMED the arm helper extension for VSCode. This version includes the ability to see a graph of the resources and how they relate to each other: There are a couple of limitations at the moment this knows about child resources and also resources referenced via dependOn, if you have an implicit reference using “resourceId” then I don’t pick it up (yet).