Course Summary


SQL Server Management Studio
Wait Statistics
Index and Statistics
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Information is at the heart of most software systems and the lifeblood of many organizations, so you want the database that stores this information to be efficient and reliable. But as we know, things happen; sometimes bad things. One of the ways that we can prevent bad things from happening is to know about them in advance like the old saying says, "To be forewarned is to be forearmed."

Azure SQL in its many forms has an abundance of features that help you to monitor the state of your databases and database server. Ranging from prebuilt automated monitoring that is augmented with artificial intelligence through to dynamic management views, SQL Server monitors and logs all aspects of the database engine’s operation and configuration. Intelligent Insights and Azure SQL analytics enable you to easily access the wealth of diagnostic and performance data in an easily digestible format.

This course introduces you to the different database monitoring and notification technologies available, how they work, and how to use them. If you have any feedback relating to this course, feel free to contact us at

Azure SQL and SQL Server Query Performance Tuning

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the key elements of database monitoring
  • Learn about the features of Intelligent Insights, Azure's AI-based database monitoring service
  • Create graphical reports using SQL Server Management Studio
  • Understand how wait statistics can show you where threads have to wait and how this can be used to monitor performance
  • View and fix index fragmentation
  • Monitor database storage
  • Implement notification alerts on various database platforms

Intended Audience

This course is aimed at database administrators or anyone who wants to learn how to implement systems that can find potential issues that may disrupt the delivery of their database services.


To get the most out of this course, you should have experience with SQL Server Management Studio, be familiar with reading and writing SQL, and have an understanding of basic database architecture and administration tasks, like indexes and backups.


Course Related SQL Scripts


Let's recap what we have learned about Azure SQL database monitoring. If you wanna keep manual intervention to a minimum, then you can use the standard portal metrics and auto-tuning. Metric graphs can be pinned to a central dashboard or you can stream intelligent insights to the Azure SQL analytics service. This is a one-stop-shop for database performance monitoring that displays a wide range of telemetry, and at the same time, highlighting critical issues based on Azure artificial intelligence and experience.

While SQL Server does not benefit from the same AI, there are plenty of ready-made reports within SQL Server management studio that graphically present important metrics in an easily digestible format. Apart from CPU utilization and disk I/O, much of the database engine's diagnostics relate to wait types. In fact, server wait types are one of the main factors that Azure artificial intelligence uses to measure performance. 

We saw how waiting factors into database engine thread execution, and I hope this has given you a good insight into how the Azure and SQL Server engine works. While there are many wait types, we had a look at a small handful and what performance issues they may or may not be indicative of.

Indexes are a key to a database's performance and we saw how to view index fragmentation and how to fix it, both manually and using a maintenance plan.

Database file size is also an incredibly important metric that we looked at, and then using that as an example saw how we can set up notifications through the Azure portal to be alerted of changes in metrics and configuration.

We ended this course with an oldie but a goodie, database mail, which has been the backbone of SQL Server notifications for many years.

About the Author
Learning Paths

Hallam is a software architect with over 20 years experience across a wide range of industries. He began his software career as a  Delphi/Interbase disciple but changed his allegiance to Microsoft with its deep and broad ecosystem. While Hallam has designed and crafted custom software utilizing web, mobile and desktop technologies, good quality reliable data is the key to a successful solution. The challenge of quickly turning data into useful information for digestion by humans and machines has led Hallam to specialize in database design and process automation. Showing customers how leverage new technology to change and improve their business processes is one of the key drivers keeping Hallam coming back to the keyboard.