question

Slick84 avatar image
Slick84 asked

Does SQL Azure threaten the existence of a DBA?

Since not much administration will be required on a hosted solution, is this something we DBA's should be worried about?

sql-azure
10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

Matt Whitfield avatar image
Matt Whitfield answered

No, it's just an abstraction.

First of all, there isn't much point in putting large scale data systems in 'the cloud' (although I tend to agree with Larry Ellison - it's just a computer, with a network card).

Secondly, just because someone says they will look after your data doesn't mean they will (witness the recent Microsoft fiasco over their Sidekick data loss). So even if you do put your data on someone else's system, and you pay them to take that load off your mind, it's actually pretty sensible to still take your own backups.

Thirdly, I don't think a DBA's role should be to just administer. I quit my job in May to start working on SQL Server tools, but before that I was a lead developer, and everyone working with the databases we developed had a close working relationship with the DBA's. It was important that a DBA's experience could be applied to the development of the database too.

Just my 2p.

3 comments
10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

sp_lock avatar image sp_lock commented ·
I agree Matt... Cloud is basically "outsourcing" and look at the issue with helpdesk oursourcing. Not to mention the call centre's!!! As a DBA myself, I can see the benefits to a company having to forget that they have a mission critical database. Lets face it if my Infrastructure pals didnt have to put up with me bugging them for SAN configs, more memory, etc etc. I think they would love not have me around! But the fact matter is that if a company values the data them IMO a dedicated DBA still has some time to live.
3 Likes 3 ·
David 1 avatar image David 1 commented ·
Cloud is about more than just location however. The cloud provides (or at least promises) on-demand scalability to a degree which in-house and conventional hosting cannot. For example your online services could scale-up to support a 1000-fold increase in traffic during a sales promotion but you won't have to wait while the IT group provisions new servers or waste any money paying for spare capacity when it isn't needed. This ability to align cost with variable demand is what makes cloud very attractive for many people.
2 Likes 2 ·
TimothyAWiseman avatar image TimothyAWiseman commented ·
Matt has beautiful points, but to add one more, at least for the forseeable future there will be both regulatory and control issues with putting certain types of sensitive data into any kind of cloud service. This will gaurnutee that at least certain types of data will require dedicated DBA's for the forseeable future. And to emphasize another, Matt is quite right about a good DBA playing a major role in development as well as administration. That potion will not go away even with the best of cloud outsourcing.
1 Like 1 ·
Kev Riley avatar image
Kev Riley answered

I'm not worried.

Sure there will be some people who will use the cloud for storing data, but there'll still be people using 'real' databases too. Especially those who value the security, performance, resilience and control aspects!

10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

Jeff Oresik avatar image
Jeff Oresik answered

If a company has a dedicated dba, it has a lot of infrastructure already in place. They could skip renewing their SQL Server licenses and sell all the hardware on Craig's List.

It may open up an opportunity to have a hybrid environment where internal users are on local servers and remote users, clients and business partners are on Azure.

SalesForce.com didn't do away with developers(Force.com) or network admins.

10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

Jim Orten avatar image
Jim Orten answered

Has any past advance in programming languages/tools decreased the demand for programmers?

Has any past advance in network technology decreased the demand for network admins/architects?

Has any past advance in hardware decreased the demand for hardware architects?

No.

Same with database advances. I welcome them all.

10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

David 1 avatar image
David 1 answered

Cloud storage isn't about to replace every database. At least not for the forseeable future. To anyone working on database development cloud should be seen as an opportunity rather than a threat. These are interesting times.

10 |1200

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.

Write an Answer

Hint: Notify or tag a user in this post by typing @username.

Up to 2 attachments (including images) can be used with a maximum of 512.0 KiB each and 1.0 MiB total.