What is SQL Server database continuous integration (CI)? – a high level conceptual overview and walk thru of the steps in a SQL database CI pipeline

If you’ve never automated builds in SQL Server before and but are still CI-curious, then this quick high-level overview, should introduce to you the basics and maybe even lead to you wading into the water a little deeper

First, continuous integration means that you will rapidly iterate changes, so that each time a change is formally made, usually by a source control commit, then the target system, a database in our case is automatically destroyed and recreated with the change. Furthermore, the entire test environment is recreated with a combination of static and test data, any automated tests and/or reviews are conducted, and the build is fully documented.

July 26, 2018

How to automatically process SQL Server databases with Unit tests

In order to begin this process, first the tSQLt, (SQL Server database unit testing framework) has to be installed on the database which will be used for unit testing. This can be done manually in SSMS by right-clicking the selected database in the Object explorer, find the Unit tests menu and select Install tSQLt.

January 13, 2017

How to automatically create synthetic test data for a SQL Server database

ApexSQL Generate is a tool that can populate SQL databases with test data using multiple generators for each column. It supports a full range of SQL data types and has an ability to recognize them in a loaded SQL database and provide real-world test data based on contained data types. It can generate: randomized test data using the Random generator and various options, and using the Regular expression generator, sequential data using the Incremental generator, and much more.

January 13, 2017

How to format all SQL objects in your database

The Format SQL objects feature allows users formatting one or more database objects with the specified formatting profile, without having to script them first.

There are three ways to invoke the Format SQL objects feature:

January 25, 2016

How to clean up SQL database code by removing unused parameters

Finding parameters and SQL variables that are only defined in the existing SQL Server stored procedures and functions, but never actually used, is not a problem, but for maintaining complex code, with dozens of parameters and variables a tool like ApexSQL Refactor can be used, which is a free SQL Server Management Studio and Visual Studio add-in, and useful SQL query formatter.

March 9, 2015

SQL query basics – How to improve readability by formatting commas, spacing and alignment

The previous article covered SQL query readability basics such as capitalization strategies and their implementation in SQL formatter by ApexSQL. This time, commas, spacing, and aligning will be detailed. One of the quickest ways to wreak havoc among developers is to start a discussion about how commas should be treated within the code, particularly in a SELECT list. Let’s look at how commas can be treated in ApexSQL Refactor.

February 27, 2015

SQL query basics – How to improve readability by formatting capitalization and object naming

Many development teams spend an inordinate amount of time arguing over styling and formatting preferences. Although these preferences are often subjective, at the end the code should be consistent. Since styling comes up frequently during code reviews, it is a good idea to have a strategy in place for dealing with it. This article series will address several SQL readability strategies as well as provide examples that demonstrate different ways you can format T-SQL in ApexSQL Refactor. Let’s begin with capitalization and object naming.

February 27, 2015