DevOps, CI, CD, ALM… for databases

DevOps, continuous delivery, ALM. Pick your paradigm, the fundamentals are the same, and the database is often ignored. It is ignored despite the fact that it is often the component with the most scope for improvement. It's time we fixed that. The database should not be a bottleneck on delivering customer value.


It’s always a people problem.

I attended DataOpticon yesterday in London. It was excellent. Massive credit to Steph Locke (b|t) for organising and gracious thanks to Microsoft and all the sponsors for hosting. Between sessions, Steph introduced me to a pair of folks who had a technical question. Steph thought I might be able to help. This is amazing.#DataOpticon — Alex Yates (@_AlexYates_) September…


A new chapter

I wasn’t kidding when I tweeted this a few days ago: Yesterday marked three years since my life changing decision to start DLM Consultants. It’s been a good three years. And I suspect the next three years will be even better. — Alex Yates (@_AlexYates_) May 10, 2019 Every syllable of that tweet had been considered very carefully. The…


How to call the Azure DevOps Services API with PowerShell on hosted build agents

The problem My customer has a data warehouse solution. It consists of nine databases with a well defined architecture. They need to be deployed in a specific order – the source database first, followed by various dependant databases in sequence. Due to the tight coupling of the databases, they all exist in the same git repo in Azure DevOps Services, with…


Feedback on the new DLM Workshops

Just a quick note to share my excitement about how well the first iteration of our new and improved DLM Workshops went! The first workshop ran on UK hours earlier this month. It was the first time we hosted the VMs ourselves and the first time we ran a public course using TFS/VSTS and it went really well. We now…


Simple query to return columns that have been classified as sensitive in SQL Server

A few months back, in response to new regulations like the GDPR and a growing concern about data breaches and other data privacy issues, Microsoft released a new data privacy feature in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). Since SSMS 17.5, users have been able to use new classification functionality that sniffs out any of the columns on your database with…

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Speaking Mentors

I’m one of the organisers of SQL Relay and I’m always looking for new speakers. There aren’t enough new people speaking at community events and that’s sad. It doesn’t promote fresh ideas and thinking. On Wednesday evening last week I was thinking about this and I was feeling generous so I casually made an offer on Twitter as I left…