Often SQL Server is deployed as the database engine powering POS terminals for retail clients. Several factors make this type of deployment unique, including:
- Often hundreds to many thousands of SQL Server instances are deployed.
- Often these are deployed on workstation class hardware
- Often SQL Server Express is deployed limiting the native database administration and scheduling features available
- Typically, due to the large scale of deployments organisations are focused on keeping operational cost per unit as low as possible.
While often the data on these hosts is replicated to a central server class system, there is still a need and desire to apply sound and stringent operational management practices across the large POS fleet of SQL Server instances. Specifically, in a typical deployment organisations wish to:
- Ensure POS related databases are backed up regularly. While the data may otherwise be recoverable, loss due to database failure may still result in the POS terminal being unavailable impacting store operations.
- Ensure POS related databases are secure, as per the organisational security policies for this type of database. If personal and/or financial data is being recorded with the POS database organisations may also have legal requirements to keep this data secure.
- Ensure POS related databases are patched to organisational operational standards, potentially including SQL Server service packs, cumulative updates and hotfixes.
- Ensure capacity is monitored and requirements to increase capacity are raised with appropriate notice.
- Detect corruptions as early as possible to prevent live database being entered into a corrupt repository.
- Ensure that offline systems are identified and brought back online as early as possible.
RockSolid is the perfect management solution for SQL Server deployed in this configuration. RockSolid is specifically designed to manage large deployments of SQL Server and provide a framework for applying standardised policies combined with automation processes which:
- Automatically configure SQL Server environments as per operational policies
- Automatically deploy SQL Server backup and maintenance processes as per operational policies
- Allow administrators to enable automated issue resolution processes which attempt to resolve most common operational issues
- Automatically resolve over-allocations of disk space causing capacity issues
- Predict capacity and other resource exhaustion dates and escalate to administrators with sufficient notice.
- Schedule and automatically deploy SQL Server patching across hundreds, or thousands of nodes.
The following topics relate to the methods in which RockSolid can be configured to apply automated management for such environments: