Database maintenance refers to the upkeep of a database to enhance its performance. This requires a number of strategies such as database integrity checks, optimization of the index, and data backup. Database maintenance involves the implementation of scripts and also database maintenance plans.
Failure to implement a proper maintenance plan means that there is a risk of a database failure, slower performance, or the database going corrupt. This obviously has a huge impact on the business. Along with data backups, a proper maintenance plan is hence essential. The MS SQL Server database maintenance must be performed consistently but is time-consuming.
Database maintenance and development
There are a number of built-in maintenance options available within SQL Server that you can implement easily to maintain your hosted databases.
Some of the core maintenance tasks that should be implemented consistently are rebuilding the index, keeping statistics updated and de-fragmenting indexes.
Schedule batch runs that execute at specific time-periods.
SqlBak, for example, gives you the option either run a custom written batch script or you can also run a Windows batch file. This offers you the flexibility to continue with the existing maintenance plans that your organisation follows. Further, SqlBak is powerful enough to handle complex maintenance plans.
The maintenance options combine a variety of administrative tasks or enable you to perform certain individual tasks.
The database maintenance functionalities available in SQL Server also eliminate empty databases and compress the data files as well as update the index statistics automatically to improve performance.
Let’s say that you need to perfect the performance and storage capacity of the SQL Server index, then using the fill factor will help you achieve this objective.
- If you have frequent updates, then the fill factor should represent a value that will accommodate these changes.
- The fill factor value represents the quantity of index page that is required to absorb future index growth. However, this option impacts the overall database performance.
Improve search performance
A well-indexed database also reflects in the improved search performance. You can also use the maintenance options to carry out internal checks on systems or software to verify that there has been no corruption of data. It is also important to backup data including transaction logs as part of restoration activities.
The Maintenance Plan Wizard
You have the option to either use the Maintenance Plan Wizard to automatically run tasks or run it manually. While the wizard provides you limited options since you work within defined boundaries, such as default options, the manual option, on the other hand, provides you a wider field to customize properties during the build.
The Schedule option in SQL Server enables you to run defined maintenance plans as an SQL Server Agent job. The latter performs a host of functions including page reorganization and rebuilding of indexes, index statistics update, and consistency checks, including the back-up of data. In the same breath, it is also important to keep in mind that performance is also affected by the database design, well-written SQL code, updated statistics, and accurate index.