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  SQL Server Tips by Robin Schumacher

Error Log Analysis

Information on system bottlenecks would not be complete without addressing error log analysis. As with every other database engine, SQL Server records informational and system error messages in a rolling, versioned file that can be easily viewed through a number of different avenues such as Enterprise Manager/Management Studio, Windows Event Viewer, etc. There are occasions when SQL Server records messages that alert the DBA to problematic system bottlenecks that require immediate attention, so there needs to be an easy way of identifying them.

When looking at error logs, there are a couple of approaches to take in analyzing activity:

  • Have any actual errors occurred?

  • What kind of daily volume/activity has the log experienced?

To check if any errors exist in the current SQL Server error log, the following procedure, up_bn_error_log_count, which provides a simple count of error messages in the current log can be run.

  • up_bn_error_log_count

    -- Script is available in the Online Code Depot

Sometimes error counts and analysis of errors is not enough. Perhaps an informational event that affected performance repetitively occurred in the logs for a particular day that was missed. A good way of finding these cyclical, repetitive events is by doing a daily volume analysis over the log to see if any day exploded with messages compared to the others. The following procedure, up_bn_log_daily_volume, will break down message volume by day so one can easily see such a thing:

  • up_bn_log_daily_volume

    -- Script is available in the Online Code Depot

The above book excerpt is from:

High-Performance SQL Server DBA
Tuning & Optimization Secrets

ISBN: 0-9761573-6-5
Robin Schumacher  


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