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Microsoft® SQL Server® 2008 Bible by Uttam Parui, Mike White, Paul Nielsen

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Chapter 40. Policy-Based Management

IN THIS CHAPTER

  • Declarative management

  • Exploring facet properties

  • Defining policies

  • Enforcing policies

Recently I was on a virtual panel with SQL Server MVPs Steve Wynkop and Chris Shaw (of SSWUG.org fame) discussing what's new with SQL Server 2008. I said the top new developer feature is table-valued parameters, and the top DBA feature is Policy-Based Management (affectionately called PBM). This surprised Chris because he expected me to focus on only developer features, and he wanted to say that PBM was the top new feature. Sorry to steal your thunder, Chris.

But it's true. For SQL Server operations, PBM has the potential to radically alter how DBAs do their job, advance the consistency and quality of the operations up a few levels, and significantly ease managing hundreds of servers.

I'll put it in print here: If you're an operational DBA and you don't get excited about PBM, then you should consider flipping burgers instead. (And as a DB dev type, I don't usually get very excited about an admin feature.)

So, with that introduction, what is PBM?

Traditionally, applying and enforcing server and database settings and configurations across multiple SQL Servers has been a mash-up of log books, checklists, jobs, DDL triggers, scripts, and good ideas on the whiteboard that were never actually implemented.

PBM changes all that by making policies declarative—in fact, during its early life, PBM was called Declarative Management Framework.

SQL is a declarative language, ...

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