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We host a web application for customers, sometimes they call in and complain of slowness. I was asked to have a list of things to check from network down to the application.

For SQL, can any suggest any quick queries that can be run or any good commercial tools that could be purchased that would quickly determine if SQL is the root cause or is otherwise healthy?

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The Brent Ozar Unlimited First Responder Kit is a good and free place to start. It will walk you through looking for slow queries and comes with a handy worksheet of what to do.

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If you need a commercial tool then SQL Sentry Performance Advisor would likely get you to the bottom of it the fastest; it will capture queries, query times, query plans, and query aborts - but specifically it also has the best visualisation and graphing of the bunch.

It's quite pricey but they have a fully functional trial.

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