memory dump

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I usually don’t write posts just to mention a link to another site.  Except when I’ve come across articles which are so good that I want everyone to know about them.  Here are a couple of articles in that particular category.

What Does Microsoft Do With Those Memory Dumps?

The first one is written by Adam W. Saxton, a member of the Microsoft Customer Service and Support (CSS) SQL Server Escalation Services team.

The subject of the post is an issue that developers of Reporting Services reports may come across: “InvalidReportParameterException with Data Driven Subscription”.  The report complains about an invalid parameter while the parameters seem to be okay, visually.  Then the author goes on to describe the actual issue: trailing spaces!  If you’ve been doing BI for a while, this is a quite common issue.  Adam also shows the difference between the LEN() and the DATALENGTH() functions.

But that’s not the reason that I’m mentioning that article here.  The best part starts following the Summary chapter, and is entitled Techie Details.  In that extra chapter he shows how the CSS team uses those crash memory dumps which I’m sure you’ve all seen now and then. 

I won’t give you any details about that, just have a look at the article.  If you’re a developer, there’s some very valuable information there!

I am definitely looking forward to seeing his pre-conference session at the SQL PASS European Conference in Germany this year: Tackling Top Reporting Services Issues!

Some Crazy Code Samples

The second article that I’d like to mention here is written by Phil Factor, a regular at the Simple-Talk site.

This article is called Laying out SQL Code and mentions some database naming conventions and T-SQL coding layout, as the title already implies.  Even if you’re not interested in that (although as a serious developer you should be!!), the article is worth the effort of reading just for its code samples.

Here’s my favorite one:

CREATE TABLE "╚╦╩╗" ( "└┬┴┐" nvarchar(10))
DECLARE @ nvarchar(10)  set @='═'
INSERT  INTO "╚╦╩╗"
        ( "└┬┴┐" )
        SELECT  replicate(@,5)

SELECT  *
FROM    "╚╦╩╗"

And just to prove to you that this really is valid code, here’s the result:

Result of crazy query

So, how about that database for that plumbing company? :-)

BTW: when running that code without paying attention to the details (such as what DB your SSMS is connected to), you may end up with something like this:

Silly table stored in master DB - that's not a best practice! 

So you may want to clean up after running the query using this statement:

drop table "╚╦╩╗"

Have fun!

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