Top 10 SQL Server Blogs at Microsoft

By Bill Graziano on 26 September 2007 | Tags: Developer Sites , DBA Sites

I read dozens of blogs every day related to SQL Server and development. I decided to try and list the Microsoft blogs where I find the most valuable content. Plus I included some non-blog SQL Server sites at Microsoft that I think you should know about.

Product Web Sites

The place to start is the Microsoft SQL Server product web page.  It's a great link to many of the other SQL Server resources inside Microsoft.  It also include information on features, the always popular SQL Server Edition Comparison and licensing details.

If you're a developer I'd suggest the MSDN's SQL Server Developer Center.  If you're on the support side I'd look at TechNet's SQL Server TechCenter.  You can also find SQL Server 2005 Books Online and SQL Server 2000 Books Online.  You can even find SQL Server 2008 Books Online but it doesn't look very complete yet.

You can find additional information on the SQL Server 2000 Support Site and the SQL Server 2005 Support Site.  Both sites include an RSS feed of recent Knowledge Base articles that is definitely worth a subscription.  Both sites have "How To" articles, KB articles, downloads and a variety of other resources.

The last Microsoft site is one of the most important.  Connect is where Microsoft gives you a view and a vote into its bug database.  You can file bugs, suggest features and vote on their importance.  As I sat in the MVP sessions at PASS Microsoft again and again referred to feedback from Connect.  If you want your voice heard in the product this is the place. (Thanks for reminding me Geoff!)

SQL Server Blogs

The list of blogs is longer and more varied.  There are additional blogs out there but many don't seem to be updated much at all.  These are the blogs I read that are updated regularly.  The list is in the order they appear in my reader (sort of random).

  • PSS SQL Server Engineers.  One of the great experiences of PASS each year is watching Microsoft's top support engineers present.  Since they mostly deal with actual, running SQL Servers I find their experiences closely mimic the community.  Their blog posts tend to be very practical and highly technical.  If you come to PASS I'd encourage you to visit the PSS Service Center and get to know these people.
  •   The SQL Server Customer Advisory Team (SQLCAT) sits inside the product team and works with Microsoft's largest SQL Server customers and their most interesting installations.  They recently launch a new web site where they provide great technical content.  You can also find information on their old blog.
  • The ADO.NET Team Blog covers all things client related.  Lately they've been posting on the Entity Framework and LINQ including a post titled Entity Framework for DBAs which finally gives the perspective I've been waiting for.  You can view their older posts at the Data Access blog.
  • The SQL Server Release Services also has a blog.  They post on releases, service packs, versions and end of support life issues.  They didn't post much in the beginning but they've been much more active since June.  Of special interest is their post listing when support will end for the various versions of SQL Server.
  • The SQL Programmability & API Development Team posted pretty regularly up until June of this year.  Hopefully they'll get started again as SQL Server 2008 gets closer to release.  They cover a variety of topics including the CLR, procedure cache and XML.
  • SQL Server Engine Tips is published by the relational engine team.  Posting is a little sporadic but the information is great.
  • I don't know exactly who runs the SQL Server Performance blog.  They cover a variety of relational engine performance issues. Their posts are usually very technical.
  • The Query Processing Team was posting until June of 2007.  They had some great posts too!  It seems a number of these blogs went dark about the time the first SQL Server 2008 CTP was released.  Hmmmm.  Hopefully they'll start back up again soon.
  • The SQL Server Storage Engine team also has a blog.  It mostly seemed to be Paul Randall posting.  Here's hoping they keep the blog up now that Paul has left Microsoft.
  • And what list of blogs would be complete without the ever eclectic Euan Garden.  Here you'll find everything from Data Dude to SQL Server Myth Busters -- one of my favorite set of posts.  You certainly get a lot of Euan's character in his blog posts!

The worst part about writing a list is the sites and blogs I left out.  What other Microsoft blogs do you read on SQL Server?  I'll post an update once I have enough new material.

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