Archive for November, 2017

PowerShell Function to Automate Availability Group Failover

November 18, 2017 1 comment

I’ve been working with Availability Groups (AG) since their release in SQL Server 2012 and have always wanted to leverage PowerShell to administer them.  Recently I received a request to develop an automated process for failing Availability Groups over gracefully prior to server patching.  Believe it or not, but a hard shutdown of the primary replica is NOT the best way to force AG failover.

The function takes a replica name as input and queries system tables for Availability Groups running as secondary that are online, healthy, and synchronous.  For each AG found, the function generates an ALTER AVAILABILITY GROUP statement.  If the -noexec parm is set to 0, the command will be executed.  If -noexec is set to 1, the command will be written out to a file.

When writing the function, I started out trying to use the native PowerShell Availability Group cmdlets.  After several false starts, I found it easier to develop the T-SQL code in Management Studio and use Invoke-Sqlcmd to execute the code.  The code is available below.  I hope you can put it to use.

Author: Frank Gill
Date: 2017-11-17
function Invoke-AgFailover {
Checks specified instance for healthy, synchronous Availability Groups running as secondary and
fails them over
Checks the instance passed in for healthy, synchronous Availability Groups running as secondary and
fails them over.  If the instance is not hosting secondary replicas, a message will be output.
If there are AGs running as secondary, a message will output for each, including AG name, destination,
and failover duration.
Invoke-AgFailover -Instance YourSecondaryInstance -NoExec 0;
Any Availability Groups running as secondary on YourSecondaryInstance will be failed over.
Invoke-AgFailover -Instance YourSecondaryInstance -NoExec 1;
If Availability Groups are running as secondary on YourSecondaryInstance, T-SQL commands for each AG failover
will be generated and written to C:\AGFailover\failover_YourAgName_YYYYMMDD_HHMMSS.sql.
The instance to check for secondary replicas.
Set to 1 to generate T-SQL script for failover.
Position = 1,
HelpMessage='Which instance do you want to check for secondary replicas?')]

Position = 2,
HelpMessage='Set to 1 if you want to execute the database restore.  Otherwise ')]
<# If the $noexec is set to 1, create file path to hold out files #>
if($noexec -eq 1)
$rundate = Get-Date -Format yyyyMMdd_HHmmss;
$outpath = "C:\AgFailover";
if((Test-Path -Path $outpath) -eq $true)
Remove-Item -Path "$outpath\*" -Recurse;
New-Item -Path $outpath -ItemType Directory;

<# Create query to check for failover-eligible AGs #>
$query = "SELECT g.[name], ar.replica_server_name
FROM sys.dm_hadr_availability_replica_states r
INNER JOIN sys.availability_replicas ar
ON ar.group_id = r.group_id
AND ar.replica_id = r.replica_id
INNER JOIN sys.availability_groups g
ON g.group_id = ar.group_id
WHERE r.role_desc = N'SECONDARY'
AND r.recovery_health_desc = N'ONLINE'
AND r.synchronization_health_desc = N'HEALTHY'
AND ar.availability_mode_desc = N'SYNCHRONOUS_COMMIT';"

<# Execute failover-eligible query #>
$secondaries = Invoke-Sqlcmd -ServerInstance "$instance" -Database master -Query $query;

<# Output message if there are no failover-eligible AGs #>
if($secondaries.Count -eq 0)
Write-Output "There are no Availability Group replicas available to fail over to $instance."

<# If eligible AGs exist, loop through them #>
foreach($secondary in $secondaries)
$secreplica = $secondary.replica_server_name;
$ag = $;


<# If $noexec is set to 0, execute the AG failover
and output a message when complete #>
if($noexec -eq 0)
$starttime = Get-Date;
Invoke-Sqlcmd -ServerInstance "$instance" -Database master -Query $query;
$endtime = Get-Date;
$duration = (New-TimeSpan -Start $starttime -End $endtime).Seconds;
Write-Output "Failed Availability Group $ag to replica $instance in $duration seconds";
<# If $noexec is not set to 0, write a file out to the path built above for each AG #>
$comment = "/* Run against instance $instance */" ;
$comment | Out-File -FilePath "$outpath\failover_$ag`_$rundate.sql" -Append;
$use = "USE master;";
$use | Out-File -FilePath "$outpath\failover_$ag`_$rundate.sql" -Append;
$query | Out-File -FilePath "$outpath\failover_$ag`_$rundate.sql" -Append;

TSQL Tuesday #96: Folks Who Have Made a Difference

November 14, 2017 1 comment

T-SQL Tuesday
I started working as a SQL Server DBA in November of 2007. In November of 2010, I attended my second PASS Summit in Seattle. At the time I was working for a large insurance company, and our Microsoft sales rep had scheduled a dinner for my team at 6pm. The afternoon of the dinner, I went to see Paul Randal (b|t) do a 90-minute Spotlight Session called DBA Mythbusters scheduled until 6:15. About 15 minutes into Paul’s session, I texted my boss to let him know I would be late to dinner. The information Paul presented and the way in which he presented made me not want to miss a minute of the session. Walking out of the Convention Center that night, I remember thinking, “I want to do that! I want to teach people about SQL Server!”

The following March, I attended my first SQL Saturday in Chicago. For the session after lunch, I wanted to see Brent Ozar (b|t) present about SQL Server storage. By the time I got to the room for Brent’s presentation, it was SRO. Two doors down, Jes Borland (b|t) was giving a presentation called Make Your Voice Heard! In it, Jes provided advice on blogging, presenting, and leveraging social media to increase visibility within the community.

Attending Jes’s presentation introduced me to the force of nature known as Jes Borland. Her unbridled enthusiasm for the SQL community gave me the motivation to start teaching people about SQL Server. Within a year I started this blog and started presenting at PASS Local Chapters. I am blessed to have become friends with Jes. She continues to inspire me both professionally and personally.

In April of 2011, I attended SQL Skills Immersion Event on Performance Tuning and Optimization – Part 1, taught by Paul Randal and Kimberly Tripp. Since then I have been fortunate to become friends with the two of them. Their involvement in the community never ceases to amaze me. To close I will share my favorite story about the strength of the SQL community.

I attended PASS Summit 2015 with a co-worker who was a first timer. At the Tuesday Welcome Reception, I saw Paul and Kimberly across the room. My colleague and walked over, and as we were waiting to say hello, Paul turned, looked at my colleagues badge and said, “Michael, first timer, how are you! I’m Paul Randal!” Paul welcoming nature and openness to new members of the community is something that I try and emulate on a daily basis.

I volunteer with PASS because I will never be able to give back as much as I’ve gotten. Paul and Jes are two individuals that have given me an enormous amount through the years and I thank them for it.

Categories: PASS,

Validate SQL Server Database Mail Settings

November 13, 2017 1 comment

In my last post, I shared a script to automate the migration of SQL Server Database Mail settings. In this post, I show how to send test e-mails from all Database Mail profiles on an instance. The migration I was working on contained 21 Database Mail profiles. The following script will send a test e-mail from each profile to confirm successful configuration. I hope you can put this code to use in your migrations.

USE msdb;


/* Drop and create temp table
   and declare local variables */

CREATE TABLE #profiles
,ProfileName SYSNAME);

/* Update @recipient 
   Set @noexec = 1 to print the EXEC sp_send_dbmail statements
   Set @noexec = 0 to execute the statements immediately */
DECLARE @profilename SYSNAME,
@sqlstr NVARCHAR(2000),
@loopcount INT = 1,
@looplimit INT,
@noexec INT = 1,
@recipient NVARCHAR(255) = N'';

/* Insert Database Mail profile names into temp table
   and initialize the loop limit variable */
INSERT INTO #profiles
FROM sysmail_profile;

SELECT @looplimit = MAX(RowId) FROM #profiles;

/* Loop through the list of Database Mail profiles and 
   execute sp_send_dbmail for each one */
WHILE @loopcount <= @looplimit

	SELECT @profilename = ProfileName FROM #profiles WHERE RowId = @loopcount;

	SELECT @sqlstr = CONCAT('EXEC msdb.dbo.sp_send_dbmail  
		@profile_name = ''',
		@recipients = ''', @recipient, ''',  
		@body = ''Database mail succeeded for ', @profilename, ' on SQLWEBDB-01.'',  
		@subject = ''Database mail test for ', @profilename, ';''');

	SELECT @loopcount += 1;

	IF @noexec = 1

		PRINT @sqlstr;


		EXEC sp_executesql @sqlstr;