Is your SQL Server falling behind in terms of performance? Are poorly-written queries slowing down your applications? Before you set out in search of professional help, make sure you’ve tried everything you could to resolve the issues you’re facing on your database.
Many problems related to SQL Server can be handled easily with preventative maintenance, patches, and a few activities performed on a regular basis. You can always depend on our SQL performance tuning tools if nothing works for a particular situation. But before that, read the five important things you can do to fix database performance.
5 Things to Do for Effective SQL Performance Tuning
Given below are five simple things you can do to improve database performance:
Check if your SQL Server is up-to-date
An older query engine out of active development is bound to get you in performance-related trouble every now and then. Moreover, the newer versions have much better diagnostic support and will make things faster in multiple ways.
For starters, they come with new versions of the query optimizer. Although Microsoft provides a few tweaks here and there in its service packs, major version releases contain all the best improvements. Other advantages include:
- Bug fixes
- New CPU instruction sets
- Latest software development techniques
Even a 32-bit to 64-bit upgrade can go a long way in improving database performance. This will help regardless of whether you are performing SQL tuning for Oracle or SQL Server.
Increase the Memory
Maxing out its memory will make a difference in its performance. This is because the database utilizes it to cache data instead of making additional trips to disk. Additionally, you gain more memory for cache query plans and can use it for larger sorts and joins. Another advantage is a potential decrease in disk and CPU utilisation, which further helps with SQL performance tuning. Just remember to raise the memory configuration in your SQL Server so it actually makes use of the new RAM.
Open Task Manager
If things remain slow after you’ve increased memory and upgraded your SQL Server, it’s time to open Task Manager. Sort by CPU, followed by memory, and close any running apps, processes, or software that’s eating up space and you’re unaware of. Configure exceptions for antivirus software, if you have anything installed.
Windows may also be caching data for file system access, stealing RAM from server-side apps such as SQL Server. This can be checked by looking at the Cached number in the “Physical Memory (MB)” tab.
Check the Event Log
This includes both – the Windows Event Log and the SQL Server Log – as they both have potentially useful information. In case Windows or SQL Server are facing any sort of issue, these logs will certainly have more details about it.
You’ll know whether SQL Server is lagging due to hardware-related problems, facing long disk wait times, or dumping core. There may be other services with issues on the server that you can find out about here.
You can also read our post on SQL tuning for Oracle for some useful tips.
See if SQL Server alerts are set up
It is important to ensure these alerts are configured. They will, in turn, help you make sure you’re updated on everything that’s happening in SQL Server. As the person in charge of the database, you need to be aware in case the storage is falling short or other serious errors in SQL Server.