Have You Deployed an Availability Group?

The last few weeks have been interesting, to put it mildly, with both more and less engagement online. I see more people holding video calls, both inside and outside of work, but I also see less engagement at SQLServerCentral, blogs, Slack, and some of the more common community tools we’ve had. I suspect this new way of working is strange, and it’s upset many of the rhythms that people have built over the years.

In any case, one very important and common technology in the SQL Server platform is an Availability Group. This technology has been in the product since 2012, and unlike clustering, it’s relatively easy to set up. Not to say it’s easy, and you do need to develop some skills outside of T-SQL to understand how this works. This week I’m wondering how many of you might never have done this?

Or maybe you’ve done it once or twice and forgotten about it.

While we’re dealing with the various challenges of a pandemic, this is also a time where you might brush up on a few skills or learn new ones. Deploying, configuring, and testing an AG is something that is valuable to both DBAs and developers, and it’s a good skill to bring to your next interview. Every employer wants to know you understand HA/DR.

We have a Stairway Series that can help you along with quite a few articles and blogs that people have written. There are various lab posts as well, including a good one from Ryan Adams, that can help you get started. If you don’t have equipment handy, you can build one in Azure for cheap, and even turn off the VMs when you’re not using them and spend just a few dollars a month on storage. That’s not much cost to build a valuable skill in your career.

If you’ve built a lab, maybe you want to tackle something complex, like the scenarios that Allan Hirt writes about on his blog. If you’ve never done one, maybe try to build one, take notes and capture screenshots, and blog about it. In Word if you want to start a portfolio to send out with your resume, or on your live blog. It might be a good time to start a new blog.

Focusing on a project like this can help shut out some of the noise in the world and engage you in a new way with your career. Hopefully you are doing well, and life is proceeding for you. If not, maybe tackle a project to take your mind away from things, and check out our daily coping tips in the newsletter.

Steve Jones

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