WHILE PUTTING TOGETHER THE PROPOSAL that eventually became this book, the aim was to write a troubleshooting guide that covered the additional tools available from the SQL Server community.

It soon became clear, however, that to effectively talk about the tools, so many digressions were necessary to explain the results that the flow and impact were interrupted. The decision was made to alter the approach to include architectural information, not just on SQL Server, but on the whole platform on which SQL Server depends.

If you're troubleshooting an apparent "SQL Server" issue, you need to be able to troubleshoot the underlying operating system and storage as well as SQL Server, so we wanted to bring together and simplify the architectural details of these components too.

A fair amount of Windows and storage internals information is available already, but very little of it that condenses and filters the right material to be easily consumed by SQL Server professionals. The available material is either too light or too in depth — with nothing to help bridge the gap.

Combining this need with the need for practical internals information on SQL Server, a look at building a troubleshooting methodology, and relevant information on all the extra tools, three goals for the book were established:

  • To provide in-depth architectural information on SQL Server (and the environment on which it depends) that is easy to consume

  • To introduce a troubleshooting approach using the same techniques ...

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