SQL Security and High Availability

 

Security and High-Availability

Introduction

TWM is a company located in three different states in the United States. The company is involved in provision of consultant management services at national level. It has about 95 employees who either work as IT technicians, sales and marketing personnel, human resource managers, and administrators. The company has a database that accommodates information on consultants. The database access need to be controlled by use of a password, where sales personnel are required to key in consultant information, administrators are involved in querying consultants information, while customers access this information using an online interface which provide them with an opportunity to ask questions regarding a consultant. All this information is transferred from a server in each location to the main server in the headquarters where the data is merged. The company is currently experiencing growth and expansion, an aspect that overloads its database server and in this regard, affecting its performance. The company wishes to make a number of adjustments with its database system to ensure high-availability and data security. This paper guides on how the company can achieve this.

Database Growth and Design

The database design is highly influenced by the rate of the database growth or business growth in an organization. Business growth results to increase in a number of stored records and thus, resulting to the growth of the database. This database growth can easily impact the performance since the processing power of the server remains the same despite of a huge growth of the database. This implies that, to maintain a good performance level, considering database growth in physical database design is very important. Planning indexes and tables storage is normally done in the physical design stage so as to enhance performance and simplify tasks of data administration. When structuring physical storage, it is important to consider both the size and placement of indexes and tables. Basically, all database applications performance is bounded on I/O. To enhance I/O throughput, the database design should consider developing tables that are physically separated rather than joining them together. The aim of doing this is to maximize on parallel database write or read (Lingtstone et al., 2010).

Physical database planning also influences the two key database administrators concerns which include data fragmentation and space management. Although a small database can manage to operate effectively with fragmented data, this may not be the case where the data volume is high and where it keeps on increasing on daily basis. Therefore, proper planning is required in the beginning to ensure proper space management technique is employment to accommodate database growth. The design should consider the rate of database growth so as to ensure that all aspects related to enhancing huge database performance such as data compression are implemented during the database design. In this case, the 5% annual rate of database growth will be considered while designing the database to ensure that it caters for volume of database for a longer period of time. This will ensure that the database can still perform effectively even after a huge rate of growth (Lingtstone et al., 2014).

Potential Concerns Regarding SQL Server Upgrading

There are a number of concerns related to upgrading of the SQL server from 2008 windows server to 2012 widows server. One of the major concerns is the version to be installed. The two servers must be of the same version. This also brings in the issue of hardware requirements. Although the two servers have almost identical hardware requirements, server 2008 has a version that can operate in 32 bits server while server 2012 minimum bits is 64. In case the server 2008 was operating in a 32 bits machine, then anew server with a minimum of 64 bits will be required. Therefore, the company will be required to evaluate the 2008 server version used and also the hardware specifications to satisfy that the current server can manage to handle the 2012 server requirements. The other aspect to be considered is the form of upgrading to be done. Basically, the company should ensure that the upgrading process or the migration process does not affect the operation in the company. In this regard, a technique that lowers the downtime as much as possible should be considered. In this case, an upgrade can be done to ensure parallel running of the servers before 2008 server is switched off. This will enhance the testing process and ensure that server 2008 is only switched off after the administrator is sure that server 2012 can support the operations required (Technet Microsoft, 2013).

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