Sunday, February 15, 2009

SQL Server Job Interview questions part 3

Que:- What is a NOLOCK? 
Ans:- Using the NOLOCK query optimiser hint is generally considered good practice in order to improve concurrency on a busy system. When the NOLOCK hint is included in a SELECT statement, no locks are taken when data is read. The result is a Dirty Read, which means that another process could be updating the data at the exact time you are reading it. There are no guarantees that your query will retrieve the most recent data. The advantage to performance is that your reading of data will not block 
updates from taking place, and updates will not block your reading of data. SELECT statements take Shared (Read) locks. This means that multiple SELECT statements are allowed simultaneous access, but other processes are blocked from modifying the data. The updates will queue until all the reads have completed, and reads requested after the update will wait for the updates to complete. The result to your system is delay(blocking). 

Que:- What is difference between DELETE & TRUNCATE commands? 
Ans:- Delete command removes the rows from a table based on the condition that we provide with a WHERE clause. Truncate will actually remove all the rows from a table and there will be no data in the table after we run the truncate command. 

TRUNCATE is faster and uses fewer system and transaction log resources than DELETE. 
TRUNCATE removes the data by deallocating the data pages used to store the table’s data, and only the 
page deallocations are recorded in the transaction log. 
TRUNCATE removes all rows from a table, but the table structure and its columns, constraints, indexes and so on remain. The counter used by an identity for new rows is reset to the seed for the column. 
You cannot use TRUNCATE TABLE on a table referenced by a FOREIGN KEY constraint.
Because TRUNCATE TABLE is not logged, it cannot activate a trigger. 
TRUNCATE can not be Rolled back. 
TRUNCATE is DDL Command. 
TRUNCATE Resets identity of the table. 

DELETE removes rows one at a time and records an entry in the transaction log for each deleted row. 
If you want to retain the identity counter, use DELETE instead. If you want to remove table definition 
and its data, use the DROP TABLE statement. 
DELETE Can be used with or without a WHERE clause 
DELETE Activates Triggers. 
DELETE Can be Rolled back. 
DELETE is DML Command. 
DELETE does not reset identity of the table. 

Que:- Difference between Function and Stored Procedure? 
Ans:- UDF can be used in the SQL statements anywhere in the WHERE/HAVING/SELECT section where as Stored procedures cannot be. 
UDFs that return tables can be treated as another rowset. This can be used in JOINs with other tables. 
Inline UDF's can be though of as views that take parameters and can be used in JOINs and other Rowset operations. 

Que:- When is the use of UPDATE_STATISTICS command? 
Ans:- This command is basically used when a large processing of data has occurred. If a large amount of deletions any modification or Bulk Copy into the tables has occurred, it has to update the indexes to take these changes into account. UPDATE_STATISTICS updates the indexes on these tables accordingly. 

Que:- What types of Joins are possible with Sql Server? 
Ans:- Joins are used in queries to explain how different tables are related. Joins also let you select data from a table depending upon data from another table. 

Que:- What is the difference between a HAVING CLAUSE and a WHERE CLAUSE? 
Ans:- Specifies a search condition for a group or an aggregate. HAVING can be used only with the SELECT statement. HAVING is typically used in a GROUP BY clause. When GROUP BY is not used, HAVING behaves like a WHERE clause. Having Clause is basically used only with the GROUP BY function in a query. WHERE Clause is applied to each row before they are part of the GROUP BY function in a query. 

Que:- What is sub-query? Explain properties of sub-query. 
Ans:- Sub-queries are often referred to as sub-selects, as they allow a SELECT statement to be executed arbitrarily within the body of another SQL statement. A sub-query is executed by enclosing it in a set of parentheses. Sub-queries are generally used to return a single row as an atomic value, though they may be used to compare values against multiple rows with the IN keyword. 
A subquery is a SELECT statement that is nested within another T-SQL statement. A subquery SELECT statement if executed independently of the T-SQL statement, in which it is nested, will return a result set. Meaning a subquery SELECT statement can standalone and is not depended on the statement in which it is nested. A subquery SELECT statement can return any number of values, and can be found in, the column list of a SELECT statement, a FROM, GROUP BY, HAVING, and/or ORDER BY clauses of a T-SQL statement.
A Subquery can also be used as a parameter to a function call. Basically a subquery can be used anywhere an expression can be used. 

Properties of Sub-Query 
A subquery must be enclosed in the parenthesis. 
A subquery must be put in the right hand of the comparison operator, and 
A subquery cannot contain a ORDER-BY clause. 
A query can contain more than one sub-queries. 

Que:- What are types of sub-queries? 
Ans:- Single-row subquery, where the subquery returns only one row. 
Multiple-row subquery, where the subquery returns multiple rows,.and 
Multiple column subquery, where the subquery returns multiple columns. 

Que:- What is SQL Profiler? 
Ans:- SQL Profiler is a graphical tool that allows system administrators to monitor events in an instance of Microsoft SQL Server. You can capture and save data about each event to a file or SQL Server table to analyze later. For example, you can monitor a production environment to see which stored procedures 
are hampering performance by executing too slowly. 
Use SQL Profiler to monitor only the events in which you are interested. If traces are becoming too large, you can filter them based on the information you want, so that only a subset of the event data is collected. Monitoring too many events adds overhead to the server and the monitoring process and can cause the trace file or trace table to grow very large, especially when the monitoring process takes 
place over a long period of time. 

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