Re: OT Discussion- Priority of Performance Tuning...

From: Fuad Arshad <>
Date: Wed, 26 Oct 2011 10:46:23 -0700 (PDT)
Message-ID: <>

I think its timelines and poor infrastructure . i absolutely agree that 90% of performance tuning is politics.
when developers are given 1 week timeline and very little design time to build an app . App UI becomes priority not backend code. I was once told by someone that its Capex that matters not Opex. People want the upfront cost of an app to be low since its capital expenditure for large projects.
the bug fixes and performance tuning gets put into more operational expenditure and sometimes actually hides the true cost of a project. Most of the times developers developer in a smaller environment and have no access to how their app is going to look like to scale . This makes a select * from x an easier solution then a select * from x where x=y since it is only one row.
The problem is as DBA's we have to care about performance. We are the first line of questioning when the business says its slow. They dont say the app is slow they say the db is slow since it retrieval or an update function that is happening .

Often but not DBA's are caught in the cross fire of why wasnt this caught in dev or test but not many realize that a 2 row table with no indexes and a 2 million row with no indexes will have a different data retrieval time. Which is why i believe it is the DBA's business to be concerned about performance even if no one else is.

  • Original Message ---- From: Kellyn Pot'vin <> To: "" <> Sent: Wed, October 26, 2011 12:16:42 PM Subject: OT Discussion- Priority of Performance Tuning...

I am about to approve this comment out on my blog from one of my favorite DBA God's:
"Yep, like Cary is saying " 90% of performance tuning is politics". I am
paraphrasing. Don't hold me to the exact quote or percentage.I don't understand
"priorities for the business may not be the same as a priority for the DBA’s".
If it is not a priority for the business why should it be a priority for the DBA? Politics work both ways. You are skating close to CTD. If nobody else cares about performance why should you?"
I respect his opinion and it did get me thinking about where performance tuning falls in the priority of tasks for most database environments. I commonly am brought into places that have a history of bringing code/designs to production in a short time-span, business requirements and/or revenue demanding that everything works being more important than it working efficiently or performing well, then my job is to go in and correct this "little oversight".

I honestly don't think it's intentional by the business to move poor performing or code that will only be able to sustain the business for a short period of time into production, it's just due to the demands of the business for many companies. This does, however, make performance tuning a lesser priority in many environments, (and keeps me in demand and well employed... :))

As I specialize in this area, I now question the kind DBA's on the list to see if you also find performance tuning a lesser priority in the environments you've worked in. I'm also curious what kind of environment it is, (private sector, retail, banking, government, etc..) Just like disaster recovery and other tasks that DBA's may put a higher priority on, the business, as it does not always directly correspond to revenue, does not view as part of the goal...

Please feel free to email me directly if you wish to remain anonymous..  

Kellyn Pot'Vin
Sr. Database Administrator and Developer

Received on Wed Oct 26 2011 - 12:46:23 CDT

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