DBA Rules of Thumb — Dont Panic !

My latest blog entry is from Craig Mullins. He is a frequent contributor to Database Trends and Applications. He is also a twitter fiend. The last time I looked he was in Vegas at a Casino. I have always enjoyed his many article. I feel he has a very common sense approach to the DBA and how he writes about it.. Craig is a DB2 DBA but the lessons learn always carry across.


Monday, October 20, 2008

DBA Rules of Thumb, by Craig Mullens

Database administration is a very technical discipline, but it is also a discipline in which the practitioner is very visible politically within the organization. As such, DBAs should be armed with the proper attitude and knowledge before attempting to practice the discipline of database administration.

Just as important as technical acumen, though, is the ability to carry oneself properly and to embrace the job appropriately. With this in mind, I wrote a series of blog entries on DBA Rules of Thumb over at my Data Management Today blog… and I thought the information I wrote there may be helpful to my DB2 and mainframe readership here, so I’m sharing the eight rules of thumb (with links) here on my DB2 Portal blog:

  1. Document Everything!
  2. Automate Ingelligently
  3. Share
  4. Don’t Panic!
  5. Focus Your Efforts
  6. Invest In Yourself
  7. Diversify
  8. Develop Business Acumen

What do you think? Did I miss anything important?

P.S. Just a reminder that I will be presenting a webinar on assuring DB2 recoverability with my colleague, Michael Figaro, this Thursday, October 23, 2008 at 10:30 Central time. If you are at all interested in the topic, be sure to register today – and attend this Thursday!

My favorite on this list is “Dont Panic”. Amen ! ! ! !


I followed the link on this one, I could not resist…

DBA Rules of Thumb, Part 4 – Don’t Panic

A calm disposition and the ability to remain cool under strenuous conditions are essential components of the makeup of a good DBA. So number four in our series of DBA rules of thumb is “Don?t Panic!”

I used to have a big orange button with the words “Don’t Panic!” on it hanging up in my office. Fans of Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy will recognize the phrase, and I think I got the button in a software game based on those books back in the 1980s. I gave it away a long time ago to a friend when I left one of the company’s I was working at as a DBA. He needed it more than I did at the time! But I always kept that mantra in the back of my head as I continued along my journey as a DBA.

Problems will occur ? there is nothing you can do to eliminate every possible problem or error. Part of your job as a DBA is to be able to react to problems with a calm demeanor and analytical disposition. When a database is down and applications are unavailable your environment will become hectic and frazzled. The best things you can do when problem occur is to remain calm and go about your job using your knowledge and training.

As the DBA you will be the focus of the company (or at least the business units affected) until the database and applications are brought back online. It can be a harrowing experience to recover a database with your boss and your users hovering behind your computer terminal and looking over your back. Be prepared for such events because eventually they will happen. Panicking can cause manual errors ? the last thing you want to have happen when you are trying to recover from an error.

The better you perform up-front planning and the better your procedures, the faster you will be able to resolve problems. And if you are sure of your procedures you will remain much calmer.

Following these basic maxims will make database administration a much more manageable task within your organization.

To read the entire posting…… DBA Rules of Thumb


DBA Rules of Thumb

I loved the list he came out with. He is so right, dont Panic. I recently write an article for Database Trends and Applications. When Atlas Stumbles – Lessons for Preventing DBA Burnout. The job of a DBA is hard enough, imagine how easily it is to Panic when your database goes down and you know your company is depending on you the Lone DBA to get it back up and running. 

A great way to help prevent DBA Panic, is to get the DBA some help. A relationship with a good remote DBA firm, would be a way to get your organization some additional DBA bandwidth in a cost effective manner. It would get your DBA their nights and weekends back. It would significantly reduce DBA stress, helping prevent DBA panic from happening.


Posted by Michael Corey CEO & Founder Ntirety









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