SQL Server 2014, Std Ed

I have read that percent_complete in dm_exec_requests does not work for CREATE INDEX, and in practice, percent_complete sticks at 0. So that doesn't help.

I currently use the method below, which at least shows me movement (that the index creation is not blocked). But I have zero idea if I am %10 through the process or %99.

I tried the method described here: https://dba.stackexchange.com/a/102545/6229 but it shows a clearly wrong est completion time (it basically shows 'now' for a 60+ minute process that I am 10 min into)

How can I get a clue?

SELECT percent_complete, estimated_completion_time, reads, writes, logical_reads, text_size, *
sys.dm_exec_requests AS r
r.session_id <> @@SPID
AND r.session_id = 58

I think the following query will at least get you quite close. It makes use of a DMV that was introduced in SQL Server 2014: sys.dm_exec_query_profiles (and thanks to Martin Smith for introducing it to me via this related DBA.StackExchange Answer: Progress of SELECT INTO statement :-).

Please note:

  • !! You will need to add SET STATISTICS PROFILE ON; or SET STATISTICS XML ON; in the query batch that is doing the CREATE INDEX (and placed before the CREATE INDEX statement, if that wasn't obvious), else no rows will show up in this DMV for that SPID / session_id !!

  • The IN operator is used to filter out the Index Insert row that, if included, will increase the TotalRows values, which will skew the calculations since that row never shows any rows processed.

  • The row count displayed here (i.e. TotalRows) is double the row count of the table due to the operation taking two steps, each one operating on all of the rows: first is a "Table Scan" or "Clustered Index Scan", and second is the "Sort". You will see "Table Scan" when creating a Clustered Index or creating a NonClustered Index on a Heap. You will see "Clustered Index Scan" when creating a NonClustered Index on a Clustered Index.

  • This query does not seem to work when creating Filtered Indexes. For some reason, Filtered Indexes a) do not have the "Sort" step, and b) the row_count field never increases from 0.
    Not sure what I was testing before, but my tests now indicate that Filtered Indexes are captured by this query. Sweet. Though just beware that row counts might be off (I will see if I can fix that someday).

  • When creating a Clustered Index on a Heap that already has NonClustered Indexes on it, the NonClustered Indexes need to be rebuilt (to swap out the RID -- RowID -- for the Clustered Index Key(s)), and each NonClustered Index rebuild will be a separate operation and hence not reflected in the stats returned by this query during the creation of the Clustered Index.

  • This query has been tested against:

    • Creating:
      • NonClustered Indexes on a Heap
      • a Clustered Index (no NonClustered Indexes exist)
      • NonClustered Indexes on the Clustered Index/Table
      • a Clustered Index when NonClustered Indexes already exist
      • Unique NonClustered Indexes on the Clustered Index/Table
    • Rebuilding (table with Clustered Index and one NonClustered Index; tested on SQL Server 2014, 2016, 2017, and 2019) via:
      • ALTER TABLE [schema_name].[table_name] REBUILD; (only Clustered Index shows up when using this method)
      • ALTER INDEX ALL ON [schema_name].[table_name] REBUILD;
      • ALTER INDEX [index_name] ON [schema_name].[table_name] REBUILD;

;WITH agg AS
     SELECT SUM(qp.[row_count]) AS [RowsProcessed],
            SUM(qp.[estimate_row_count]) AS [TotalRows],
            MAX(qp.last_active_time) - MIN(qp.first_active_time) AS [ElapsedMS],
            MAX(IIF(qp.[close_time] = 0 AND qp.[first_row_time] > 0,
                    N'<Transition>')) AS [CurrentStep]
     FROM sys.dm_exec_query_profiles qp
     WHERE qp.[physical_operator_name] IN (N'Table Scan', N'Clustered Index Scan',
                                           N'Index Scan',  N'Sort')
     AND   qp.[session_id] = @SPID
), comp AS
     SELECT *,
            ([TotalRows] - [RowsProcessed]) AS [RowsLeft],
            ([ElapsedMS] / 1000.0) AS [ElapsedSeconds]
     FROM   agg
SELECT [CurrentStep],
       CONVERT(DECIMAL(5, 2),
               (([RowsProcessed] * 1.0) / [TotalRows]) * 100) AS [PercentComplete],
       (([ElapsedSeconds] / [RowsProcessed]) * [RowsLeft]) AS [EstimatedSecondsLeft],
               (([ElapsedSeconds] / [RowsProcessed]) * [RowsLeft]),
               GETDATE()) AS [EstimatedCompletionTime]
FROM   comp;

Sample output:

                        Rows                 Percent   Elapsed  Estimated    Estimated
CurrentStep  TotalRows  Processed  RowsLeft  Complete  Seconds  SecondsLeft  CompletionTime
-----------  ---------  ---------  --------  --------  -------  -----------  --------------
Clustered    11248640   4786937    6461703   42.56     4.89400  6.606223     2016-05-23
Index Scan                                                                   14:32:40.547
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  • 2
    BTW, this also works well to monitor the progress of implementing page compression too. sys.dm_exec_query_profiles is pretty cool. – Todd Kleinhans Aug 2 '18 at 16:00

Since this topic seems to still be active, I thought it would be worthwhile to note that using the new resumable index operations in SQL Server 2019 and Azure SQL DB (in 150 compatibility mode) provides this functionality. The catalog view sys.index_resumable_operations has a percent_complete column that indicates progress.

In addition to being able to monitor index creation and rebuild, resumable index operations also help by breaking the operation up into small chunks that are committed as the operation progresses. This helps keep the transaction log small, and also may help with things like Availability Groups as the operation can be replicated to any secondary servers. With resumable index operations, you can resume the index create or rebuild on the new primary server after a failover without losing progress, and since the transactions are committed along the way, you won't have the problem of synchronization backing up during long index operations.

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