Sunday, December 15, 2013

DBA Rules of Thumb - Part 6 (Preparation)

Measure Twice, Cut Once

Being prepared means analyzing, documenting, and testing your DBA policies and procedures. Creating procedures in a vacuum without testing will do little to help you run an efficient database environment. Moreover, it will not prepare you to react rapidly and effectively to problem situations.

The old maxim applies: Measure twice, cut once. In the case of DBA procedures, this means analyze, test, and then apply. Analyze your environment and the business needs of the databases to create procedures and policies that match those needs. Test those procedures. Finally, apply them to the production databases.

  DBAs must be calm amid stress.

DBAs must prepare for every situation that can be reasonably thought to have the potential to occur...

...and when the unthinkable occurs, the DBA remains logical and thorough in collecting details, ferreting out the root cause of the problem, and taking only the necessary actions to remediate the problem.

This Rule of Thumb ties in nicely with the last one (Don't Panic!)... Every action you take should be planned and implemented with a calm disposition. Analysis and preparation are the friend of the DBA. The last thing you want to do is rage into a problem scenario making changes like gunslinger who acts first and worries about the consequences later.

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