When we first launched this website in September last year, we had a simple aim – to gather the opinions of potential users of the SQL Server monitoring software we were starting to develop, version 2 of SQL Response. We hoped that by openly asking what people wanted, we could determine what was most important and make the tool people wanted.
Many of the existing SQL Response users had talked about wanting a dashboard view of their environments. We kicked off the project by inviting people to submit their own ideal dashboard, so we could get an idea of what people really meant when they talked about dashboards. The entries we received were impressive and varied, and served to highlight the difficulty of the task we’d undertaken. There was no clear consensus on what constitutes a dashboard – what it should display and how it should display it. Clearly, to make a tool that could meet a broad range of requirements, we’d need to ask a lot of questions and pore over the answers.
That’s what we’ve been doing ever since. On this website alone we’ve posted over 60 blog posts and received over 100 replies. We’ve spent countless hours showing our prototypes to people via remote connection, visiting DBA’s at work and calling people who had something to share with us about what they wanted from the software. We’ve written endless lines of code, raised an army of bugs, sat in meeting rooms for a total of 17,491 man hours (alright, that’s a guess, maybe it just felt that long). We’ve designed, developed, debugged, deliberated and duelled to death (again, wishful thinking). And we haven’t even finished yet!
But, we do now have something to show for all of our hard work, and for all of the feedback generously given by everyone that has supported us throughout this project. So we’re excited to announce the public Early Access Program for SQL Response v2. A handful of people are already using it, but for anyone that’s followed our progress on this blog but not yet tried the EAP, we’d like to invite you to sign up now and tell us what you think.
There is still some way to go, and we’re still gathering feedback and making improvements based on that, so please sign up and share your thoughts. If you’d like to participate in a remote usability session, and be rewarded with Amazon vouchers, then email us and we’ll be in touch.
As for this blog, we’re moving our focus to the SQL Response EAP forum for the moment, so there’ll be less activity here for a while as we address the feedback on the EAP and head towards the final release.
But we would once again like to thank everyone that’s followed our progress and given their input on the software so far. It’s too early for celebratory drinks yet, but… Cheers!