At Tech-Ed 2011, Quest Software, Inc. announced a new version of its SQL diagnostics product, Spotlight on SQL Server Enterprise. The new release features integration with Project Lucy, a Quest initiative aimed at providing deep analytical insight based on collective intelligence gathered anonymously from the community's SQL Server performance data. Spotlight on SQL Server Enterprise is being showcased this week at Tech-Ed in Quest booth 403.
With this latest release, of Spotlight on SQL Server Enterprise Quest is providing the ability to take advantage of Project Lucy within the application, integrating a web experience with the Spotlight on SQL Server user interface; and the company has also automated the ability for users to take the data and upload it to Project Lucy. Alongside Spotlight's traditional user interface, DBAs can access a mini-toolbar within the product to leverage Project Lucy's SaaS capability that troubleshoots SQL Server performance problems based on SQL trace files securely uploaded by SQL community members.
The advantage, Eric Brown, senior product manager, Quest Software, tells 5 Minute Briefing, is that Project Lucy's primary purpose is to analyze server performance and report back on common SQL Server issues, whereas Spotlight is all about monitoring and there is some level of analysis but not deep analysis in the product, so the combination of the two fords the gap for customers.
They can upload the data to Project Lucy and view it whenever it is convenient, and then because the kind of data that Project Lucy is analyzing is "reasonably complicated" to view, explains Brown, "We munge all that data and provide a very useful and readable report back, which speeds up the fixing of any performance issues." Once a diagnosis is made, then it is just a matter of supplying the fixes.
According to Brown,
"Integrating Spotlight with Project Lucy gives DBAs two flavors of analysis: one based on the actual health of your environment, and another that's based on your peers' experiences and what the community collectively sees as important when analyzing SQL Server performance. Putting these two pieces together will help users draw more meaningful conclusions from performance data, and manage issues more effectively."
The new release of Spotlight supports the latest features of Microsoft SQL Server 2011, code-named "Denali," and also provides VMware memory diagnostics that allow DBAs to better monitor SQL Server performance on virtual machines.
"Keeping current with Microsoft technology has always been one of our strengths and we are continuing to do that with Denali support," says Brown. "When they RTM, we will be ready to go for customers who are adopting that new technology."
From now until June 30, Quest is giving away $50 Amazon gift cards each day to people within the SQL community who try out Project Lucy. Users are entered into the daily drawing each time they upload a SQL trace file. All entries will be entered into a master drawing on June 30 for the chance to win an Apple iPad2. For contest details, go to www.projectlucy.com/50, or stop by Quest booth 403 at Tech-Ed.