Prerequisites Before the Class

Hi, Brent here! I'm really excited to welcome you to Fundamentals Week.

To prep, watch How to Think Like the Engine.

Before we get started, I need to make sure that we've covered the basics. In my free 75-minute How to Think Like the Engine class, you'll learn the foundations of clustered and nonclustered indexes, statistics, memory grants, and sargability.

That alone doesn't guarantee that you'll be able to keep up in class, of course - but if you hadn't at least learned this much before starting, then you'd have been totally screwed, hahaha.

Want to follow along with the demos?

You'll actually have homework & labs during the classes. To follow along, download a Stack Overflow database. I'll be using the medium-sized 50GB StackOverflow2013 database, but if you've got a different one handy (either the smaller 10GB or larger 300+GB one), that's fine too - the same concepts will still apply. If you're on a slow desktop/laptop, feel free to use the small 10GB StackOverflow2010 database.

Attach it to any supported version of SQL Server, can be Standard, Enterprise, or Developer. (Sorry, SQL Server 2008 and Express Edition won't cut it here.) If you want a free development or evaluation version of SQL Server, hit up

During Fundamentals of Columnstore, I use a much larger 200GB+ Stack Overflow database. You don't have labs in that class though - you don't have to follow along with that one unless you really want to. If you do, here's how to set up a VM with the large Stack Overflow database.

Attending live? Join the chat room.

To ask questions and talk to the other attendees, go to to get an instant invite, then join the #BrentOzarUnlimited channel. This way attendees can help each other with their questions during the live labs.

Audio will come through your computer speakers, so you'll want clear speakers or a set of headphones. (You don't have to worry about a microphone or webcam - other attendees won't see or hear you.)