Swans and moths

Our 8th Early Access Program release is available today (sign up here if you haven’t already) and things are beginning to take shape. We’ve implemented more features, including support for clusters and more alert details, but we’ve yet to prettify it – it’s not so much an ugly duckling as a soon to be graceful swan. “Did you know,” you will find yourself saying, “that SQL Response v2 can break a man’s arm?!”

But beauty is only skin deep, right? It’s what’s inside that really counts. Okay, there are exceptions, but my point is we’ve made some improvements to the performance of SQL Response ‘under the hood’, and we’re keen to find out what effect that has had. If you’re using the early access software and would like to give us some feedback, we’ve created a short performance survey so we can give our testers more information from the real world.

Yes, the ‘real’ world – the one out there beyond the secure, bulletproof windows of our development bunker; the world we’re rarely allowed out into, and only then under strict and necessary supervision. So, when we were asked if we had exhausted our research on dashboards, we saw an opportunity to get out there again. “Well, there are a couple of them we haven’t yet seen…” we ventured.*

And so it was that soon after that we found ourselves at the Duxford Imperial War Museum to fly Tiger Moths and drive armoured vehicles, all in the name of research (ahem). Here are the dashboards of two 1930s Tiger Moths. No alerting functionality, but it would be pretty hard not to know if you were in trouble flying in the open cockpit of one of these sprightly bundles of spruce and fabric.

Tiger Moth dashboard

Tiger moth dashboard

What did we learn from our research? We learnt that, despite the obvious advantages in military manoeuvres, we probably wouldn’t yet fit caterpillar tracks or wings to SQL Response. But if we did, the wings would be strong enough to break a man’s arm.

Tiger Moth

*In truth, this was an activity day organised for all of us currently involved with Red Gate’s DBA tools, as explained by Brian ‘Maverick’ Harris in the Red@work blog.

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