MicrosoftSQL Server 2012 Proposal
AnSQL Server as a relational database management system will help thecompany, ESL Inc., to store and retrieve data after receivinginstructions from other software application within the company’ssystem. because of the growing size of the company and the number ofservers coming on board, the company will require a system that canbe used by a server on the same computer or by other servers acrossthe network but as it is deemed secure by the company. The designedserver will help the company to keep track of its internal andcustomer data that it had previously done using spreadsheets, accessdatabases, and manual records. As the size of the company grows, theamount of data that requires tracking also grows making it difficultfor the data to be handled manually and facilitating a computerizedsystem that will make this simple and efficient. This paper providesa recommendation to start using Microsoft SQL Server 2012 by the ESLInc.
Therecommendation will include the various aspects of the project thatwill foresee an informed installation, as well as maintenance of therecommended system. The type of the SQL server recommended isdescribed in terms of the installation and the minimum requirementsfor installation. The technique of ensuring data security is alsodiscussed in the paper to provide an assurance that the data will besecure after adoption of the new system. The method of monitoring theperformance of the database is also discussed in details in thepaper. The best backup plan for the server recommended is alsodiscussed in details. The process of integration of the server withthe existing system and the mode of usage are also discussed.Finally, the paper will explain the risk that is associated with theproposed server and how the risks will be addressed (Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
Type of SQL Server and Installation
Thetype of the SQL server that is recommended in this proposal is theMicrosoft SQL Server 2012. There are other versions of the Microsoftservers and others from different companies that the company couldadopt. However, the Microsoft SQL Server 2012 has been recommendedbecause of its capabilities that correspond to the needs of the ESLInc. some of the advantages that the identified server will come withare discussed below. These advantages are the possible reasons thatthe server was chosen at the expense of other previous editions. Theserver will have the support for Windows Server Core that is astripped-down version that places a far lower demand on the resourcesof the computer compared to a full installation. The server will havea powerView capability that will help generate mash-ups of businessintelligence reports. The server will come with enhanced editing toallow the user to customize their audit logs to include a wide rangeof events with better flexibility. The other advantage is theDistributed Replay capability that will help a workload to be to betaken from a production server and to be played on another server totest it under realistic conditions prior to deploying (Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
Theinstallation of the Microsoft SQL Server 2012 has minimumrequirements that the company must provide. They requirements can begrouped as either hardware or software. The hardware requirementsinclude a minimum of 6GB of available hard-disk space, a super VGA(800*600) minimum resolution, 512 MB minimum memory, and a minimumprocessor speed of *86 processor: 1.0 GHz. The software requirementsinclude .NET 3.5 SP1 for the Database Engine, Reporting Services,Master Data Services, Data Quality Services, or SQL Server Managementstudio. NET 4.0, Windows PowerShell 2.0, and Internet Explorer 7 oranother latest browser (Petković,2012).
TheMicrosoft SQL Server 2012 should be installed through the SQL ServerSetup installation wizard in all the required desktops. It isimportant to identify all the drives to which the databases will bebacked up to ensure that there is enough space. The drive to be usedfor data or log files is then usually identified a SAN storage on adifferent drive from the operating system and the SQL serverinstallation. A dedicated server account is created for each of theservices to be installed. A Deny logon locally right is assigned tothe service accounts. Finally, a port number for the SQL serverinstallation is chosen for security purposes. These steps are verynecessary to be followed to ensure that the system that is going tobe adopted is high class and can perform to the required levels.Failure to establish the minimum requirements will mean that thequality of the services provided will be compromised (Petković,2012).
Ensuring Data Security
TheMicrosoft documentation offers a great job in the covering of bestpractices for the database programmers, however, this is notsufficient for the company to rely on for the data security becauseit is not up to the task of defending against the modern day threats.The database threat is majorly from the persons inside theorganization and thus it requires an authorization of the person whocan access the system. In this regard, I recommend that ESL Inc. go astep ahead to comply with the security measures as discussed here.The company should host the SQLS2012 database on a dedicated server.The server may be local or in the cloud. Although this procedure iscostly, the dedicated server will protect the system from securityleaks and breaches. Secondly, the Operating System should behardened. The hardening might include changing the default ports,hiding the SQL instances from showing in the network, allowing onlynetwork protocols that are needed, and granting CONNECT permissiononly on endpoints to logins, an SSL certificate should be installedfrom a trusted CA and not SQL Server’s self-signed certificate(Bruchez,2012).
Anotherthing that the company should do is to control Admin Access to theDatabase and increase Role Based Access Control. This is controllingnot only the individuals who have access to the database, but alsohow administrators access these databases. This should be madepossible through Administrator Privileges Control, Removing theBuiltin Groups, managing Non-Administrative users among othermeasures that can be put in place. The other step is encrypting thedata between App and SQL Server 2012. There are various objectivesthat should be achieved by this step to ensure that the data do notland into the wrong hands. Another important step is to reduce thepotential attack surface. These are the potential entrances for anattack. It should be worthwhile to enable the features that areessential for any given database. The company should as wellimplement a strong authentication. All these measures will ensurethat the data that is stored and that is being processed by theserver does not leak to unauthorized hands, or it is not distorted bywrong hands (Bruchez,2012).
Monitoring the Performance of the database
ESLInc. will require to assess how the server is performing themonitoring of databases. The effective monitoring will include takingperiodic snapshots of the current performance to single out theprocesses that cause harm, as well as gathering data continuouslythroughout the time to track the performance trends. MicrosoftWindows operating system and the Microsoft SQL server will providethe company with various utilities to help view the current conditionof the database as well as tracking the performance as conditionschange. In this section, the proposal recommends the best tool formonitoring the performance (Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
Thefirst tool is the sp-trace-setfilter. The tool will track engineprocess events like the start of a batch or a transaction allowingthe monitoring of server and database activity. The example ofactivities includes fatal errors, login activity, and deadlocks. Thedata of SQL Server Profile can be captured in an SQL server table ora file to analysis. The events can also be replayed step by step tosee what happened (Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
MonitorResource Usage is the other tool that can be used for systemmonitoring. It will help the company track resource usage like thenumber of buffer manager page requests in use making it possible tomonitor server performance and activity through the predefinedobjects and counters and user-defined counters to monitor events(Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
Openactivity monitor is the last tool that the company could employ. Thistool will display the information about the process running on a timeof SQL server, blocked processes, locks, and user activity. Severalother tools exist that can be used although the above recommendedtools are the most basic and capture the basic monitoring activitiesas desired (Mistry,& Misner, 2012).
Backup plan for Microsoft SQL Server 2012
Hardwarefailures, malicious attacks, software or user errors, or issues withthe system happens daily in organizations leading to a corrupteddatabase. Since the occurrence of such a risk cannot be protected, itcan be prevented. An efficient and reliable SQL server system shouldhave surety of the recovery of the data in the original form of allthe data that has been lost or damaged due to system error oraccidents. The assurance will be offered through creating a backupplan that when implemented will ensure that the data is safe fromloss or damage without recovery. The backup will be important in thatit will restore the backed-up copy in the case of system or hardwarefailure that bring about the damage of the database. The backup planwill be scheduled database backup using the maintenance plan in SQLserver 2012. The enabling of the service is easy because there is amaintenance plan wizard on the application.
Thebackup plan should planned and documented prior to the adoption ofthe system. Identification and classification of areas of thedatabase management system by corruption risk level and importanceare done in advance. The plan should also be tested and verified inappropriate environment and time case. During this step, it isimportant to understand that a failed backup system is as good as ano backup system.
TheSQL Server provides a maintenance plan feature through SQL ServerManagement Studio that executes strategies easy and automatically.The database backup task can also be created manually. Although theSQL Server has the advantage like GUI and native schedule support,there are several disadvantages that the company should be cautiousabout. Both the database back up maintenance plans as well as thecorresponding jobs should be maintained to preserve consistency inthe case of process collision. There is no collision detection thatwould result in task failure due to a collision if concurrent tasksare scheduled on the same database at the same time.
Integration of Microsoft SQL Server 2012
Forthe purpose safeguarding against the loss and damage of the dataduring the migration from the current method of data management tothe Microsoft SQL Server 2012, it will require that ESL Inc. adopt anintegration that will ensure a smooth migration. The company canconsider using the SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) to performa broad range of data migration tasks. This platform will help indata integration and workflow application. The advantage is that ithas a data warehousing that is fast and flexible to extract data,transform it, and load it. The tool will also help to automate themaintenance of SQL Server database as well as updates tomultidimensional cube data. The tool will allow the user to createpackages that can move data from a single data source to a certaindestination without transformation. The tool is the best because itcan move data from a variety of source types that include text files(Knight,2013).
Risk of Microsoft SQL Server 2012
Thebiggest risk of the Microsoft SQL Server 2012 is its vulnerability toevents of the data insecurity. The security of data requires that theuser will download updates for the software. However, in most cases,the security updates are not applied. The Windows Updates are notapplied regularly leaving the system at the mercies of attack.Various update miss is exposing the system to health issues and mightcorrupt the entire system altogether. These constant updates make thesystem vulnerable because it lacks rigidity. A secure plan shouldensure that it is easy to identify a risk because there lacks acomprehensive patching policy.
Agood Server system should be reliable, efficient, and cost-efficientfor deploying. The ESL Inc. want to replace the spreadsheets, accessdatabase, and manual records as a system of keep track of themajority of its internal and customer data. Microsoft SQL Server 2012is an ideal system because it addresses the challenges that thecompany is facing in tracking of the data, and it meets thecharacteristics of a good server system as explained. A strength ofthe system is that it will help the company with Enhanced Auditing.The users will be allowed to customize their audit logs in order forthem to accommodate a wide range of events with better flexibility.The other advantage of the system is that it has an easy andeffective integration process offered by Microsoft. The integrationtool will ensure that the data can be integrated to the new systemeasily and without chances of loss of data and distortion. The otheradvantage that made the system suitable is because it has thecapability for the data recovery operations even after the user failsover multiple databases and read secondary copies (Jorgensen,Strate, & Cherry, 2012).
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Mistry,R., & Misner, S. (2012). IntroducingMicrosoft SQL Server 2012.Redmond, WA:
Petković,D. (2012). MicrosoftSQL Server 2012: A beginner`s guide.New York: McGraw Hill.