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My current skillset lies towards plain vanilla data warehousing, with < 20k users, our setups are rather simple..

I am looking for ways to enhance my technical skills, however, as much theory as I read, I'm struggling to figure out how I can actually generate workloads of 100k+ transactions/second , or 10k users hitting a report from different parts of the world.

How do people normally gain expertise in large scale database systems outside of what they do at work? (I have a MSDN subscription, so $150/month on Azure to play with)

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I think the TPC-H benchmark (or TPC-DS) might be a good start. The council publishes the tool to generate data and the workload.

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