Cincinnati, OH Questions and Answeres SQL 2005 (12-13-2005)

Good afternoon Cincinnati.  Once again I cannot thank you all enough for coming to my event! We had a total of 668 of you!  It was an amazing event,  and I look forward to seeing everyone again when we come back to Cincy!  I will even allow you to pick on me about my beloved Browns but not for long!  There were a a few questions that I wanted to make sure I answered.  So here the Questions and Answers from the event.  As always feel free to comment if I missed any question or if you need additional information, enjoy!:

Q: Can you Cluster a Witness?
A: Yes, the witness can be on a cluster. However, having the witness on a cluster is not required. Your experience with clustering should determine whether to use clustering.
Note that the witness is not the most important member of the database mirroring session. The witness just answers the question: “Who do you see?” When the partner servers cannot see each other, the partner servers contact the witness to see whether the witness can contact the other partner and verify that a failure has occurred.

Full FAQ here:

Full mirroring paper here:


Q: Is there some good information comparing Microsoft SQL Server 2005 and Oracle?

A: Yes there is some great information that can be found on the Microsoft web site here: 

Also there is a fantastic white-paper comparing both SQL 2005 (beta 2) and Oracle titled: Features, strengths, and weaknesses comparison between Microsoft SQL Server 2005 (Yukon) and Oracle 10g databases.  Even though the author has some preconceived notions about both products not a badly written document.


Q: Where can I get some more information encrypting databases?

A: : The Implementing Row level and Cell level Security white-paper details the following 6 steps to accomplish this type of security:

1. Adds structures for defining arbitrary labeling categories and markings.
2. Allows the user’s label to be defined intuitively through role memberships for basic markings (e.g., Top Secret, Confidential; USA, UK, Task-force Z, etc.)
3. Provides for write-up, write-down, or other control models for writing data.
4. Makes selective use of encryption within the database to provide cell-level security, exploiting the fully internal, self-managing certificate store in SQL Server 2005.
5. Provides formulaic guidelines, such that tools could be developed to automate much of the implementation given basic input choices by developers or administrators.
6. Provides strategies for protecting against certain narrow vulnerabilities in row-level security—vulnerabilities that are shared by multiple vendors’ row-level security solutions.


Q: Where can I find the books online?

A:   You can find a lot of great information in the Books Online, it is a free download and you can get it here.  You will also need to download the .NET framework 2.0 to use the books online.