7 Best Practices For An Effective Database Performance Monitoring


Database monitoring plays a crucial role in an application's maintenance. Without solid monitoring, database outages can quickly go unnoticed, which can cause you to lose money and, eventually, customers. Finding these issues in time will ensure that your application stays accessible and healthy.


Once a database is created, your work isn't done yet. You still need to keep different data management practices to keep data quality high and data performance on target.


Therefore, setting goals for your database and helping your team support the database administrator will let you get the most out of your new and existing database.


Why do You Need to Invest In Database Monitoring

There are several reasons why you should consider investing in database monitoring and why database management support is essential:


  • Decrease organization costs.
  • Shift from reactive to proactive monitoring. You can significantly decrease the number of issues.
  • Enhance the performance of your database and application.
  • Analyze logs and then use this knowledge to enhance performance.
  • Get better insight through the database's health and performance metrics.


Best Practices for Database Performance Monitoring

How you approach data performance monitoring will mostly depend on the performance issues you want to resolve. Therefore, there is no one size fits all solution to this. Still, there are several best practices that you can apply to enhance overall database speed and accuracy.


We've put together a list of database performance monitoring practices:

1. Monitor the resource consumption and availability

One of the first things you need to do is check whether all databases are online at regular intervals. You can do this during business and non-business hours. It is the most basic and important test that you need to do, and everything else will come after this.


There wouldn't be a need to do manual checks. An excellent monitoring tool will automatically alert in case of an outage.

2. Track slow queries

One of the key benefits of monitoring database performance is tracking slow queries. Let's say that you're running an app, and every single time the user logs in, the query is sent to the database, which checks the login credentials.


If the query is slow, it can hurt the database's overall performance. To make things worse, if this query is regularly used, it can significantly impact the application's overall performance.


That's why you must monitor your most expensive queries. That way, you can work on them to enhance the overall performance of your application. Try focusing on the most frequently used questions, as this usually impacts your application.


One of the simplest ways to monitor slow queries is by tracking the time needed to complete a query. You also need to measure the resource usage for queries. It would give you plenty of insight into database query performance.

3. Keep track of database schema changes


In the same way, you should regularly track the changes in your database since they can significantly impact the overall performance.


Aside from that, it's not always easy going back to the previous scheme when the existing scheme affects performance. Ideally, it would help if you were using versioned scheme updates. That way, it's easier to roll back.


You can also utilize a staging database that replicates data production, first trying out the new scheme to measure its performance. It's better to upgrade to a new scheme and detect any performance issues. Aside from that, since most databases support versioned schema updates, they're relatively easy to use.

4. Monitor database logs

Database logs play a crucial role in proactive monitoring. These logs often contain important information which isn't available in performance metrics.


For instance, the second metric or the average number of queries won't reveal what particular queries are incessantly running slow.


The database log will display all the queries running the database to know how long each will take to finish.


Gather all logs from the database environment to get the best results. It includes everything from your backup logs up to the maintenance routine logs.


The more logs you gather, the better. How long you'll keep these logs will depend on several factors. Legal compliance, for instance, may require database logs to be available for many years.

5. Conduct regular health checks

Conducting regular health checks for your database is as vital as scheduling them yourself.


Although not all databases have the exact maintenance needs, tailor health checks for the specific functional requirements of the database. For instance, life-critical databases need more regular checks than non-critical databases.

6. Keep track of insights

Generating and interpreting insights is quite common in the business world. For instance, a company wants to know the most frequent point of contact with customers via phone, email, or social media. In the same way, you also need to keep track of insights related to your database.


Monitoring your database's different metrics is key for detecting any potential performance issues.


7. Examine throughput

Throughput is the ability of one infrastructure to send data to another. However, there's a lot of confusion between internet speed and throughput. Let's say you want to carry out a Google Calendar download.


The application size is 200Mb, and your internet speed is 40 Mb/s. It should take at least five seconds to download, in theory.


However, this is not always in practice, though. That's because throughput also considers other factors. Monitoring is essential to ensure that your database can send queries and data to its full potential.


The Bottomline

Database performance monitoring is vital for your application's overall health and performance and its underlying infrastructure. Slow queries can hurt your application's overall performance.


That's why it's crucial to identify any slow queries quickly. That way, you can improve on them. Database performance monitoring will allow you to detect any issues or problems quickly.


It also ensures high availability and quicker response times, which is essential for today's end users, who demand nothing less than 100 on the apps that they're using.

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