Using Query Store to Analyze Database Performance
Are you concerned about how your database is performing for your application? Did you know that there is a built-in feature in SQL Server and Azure SQL that you can use to evaluate your database for potential problems? Query Store has been available since the introduction of SQL Server 2016, and is enabled by default in Azure SQL and Azure SQL Managed Instances, but it has flown under the radar as a performance tool.
Whether you are building a brand new application or modernizing your existing enterprise architecture, one of the most important factors for the performance of your application will be the speed and efficiency of read and write data access. Monitoring your database with Query Store during the lifecycle of development, as well as in production, will bring to light performance concerns, query plan issues, missing or inefficient indices and much more.
After you enable Query Store you just need to give it a few days to collect data on how your database is used. After that you can use Query Store’s built in views to identify problem areas and see recommendations for how you can fix or mitigate the performance issues you are seeing. Two of my favorite views to use are Top Resource Consuming Queries which identifies the queries with the highest values (worst performance) for a given metric of your choice, and Regressed Queries which provides a list of queries that have recently changed for the worse in how they perform.
It is safe, and even recommended, to enable Query Store on your production databases, even on mission-critical ones. You should regularly monitor it to quickly identify problems as they arise and swiftly react to them to keep your databases running in peak condition. The official documentation provides a wealth of more detailed information on how to use Query Store.
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