SQL Server Profiler   «Prev  Next»

Lesson 1

SQL Server Profiler

SQL Server Profiler is used to trace down the SQL statements that are generating performance problems. While you can run it at any time, you normally will only use it to trace down problems or to periodically ensure that your system is running correctly. SQL Server Profiler is one of the graphical tools that can be used to monitor SQL Server. It can keep track of everything that is happening on the SQL Server, including SQL sent from the client, clients connecting, clients disconnecting, locks, and errors. It provides you a real-time snapshot of what is happening on SQL Server.

Learning Objectives

By the time you complete this module, you should be able to:
  1. Identify the key features of SQL Server Profiler
  2. Create a trace
  3. Identify the events that SQL Server Profiler can track
  4. Identify the information that can be traced
  5. Run a trace
  6. Replay a trace
  7. Use the Index Tuning Wizard
  8. Use the Trace Wizard

Extended Events used as replacement for tasks formerly performed by SQL Server Profiler

SQL Server Administrators primarily use "Extended Events" as the replacement for tasks formerly performed by SQL Server Profiler in SQL Server 2022 (and earlier versions).
Why the Shift to Extended Events?
  • Performance: Extended Events are designed with a lower performance overhead than SQL Server Profiler. This means they have less impact on the server's workload while capturing data.
  • Flexibility: Extended Events provide a finer-grained control over what events to capture and what data to collect. You can be very selective, reducing the amount of irrelevant information.
  • Modern Architecture: Extended Events are better integrated into the SQL Server engine, making them a more future-proof solution.

How to Use Extended Events
You can access and manage Extended Events in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS):
  1. Object Explorer: In Object Explorer, expand "Management" -> "Extended Events" -> "Sessions".
  2. New Session Wizard: Right-click on Sessions and select "New Session Wizard". This wizard guides you through creating a session, selecting events, and specifying what data to capture.
  3. Live Tracking: You can start a live session to monitor events in real-time.
Important Notes
  • Some Familiarity: While the Profiler interface was relatively straightforward, Extended Events might have a steeper learning curve.
  • Resources: Microsoft provides excellent documentation on Extended Events to help you get started.

Additional Considerations
  • Commercial Tools: Some third-party tools exist specifically for SQL Server tracing and performance analysis, offering additional features and a more refined user experience than the in-built Extended Events.

The next lesson introduces you to the key features of SQL Server Profiler.

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