A while back I wrote about a way to enable email alerts for deadlock conditions with SQL Server. I outlined how, in order to set up these alerts, I ended up having to tweak SQL Server's internal sys.messages table via sp_altermessage—something I wasn't too excited about (given how I mentioned that I don't typically recommend doing so and that I felt this was a bit of a "gateway script").
Happily, Wayne Sheffield (Twitter/blog) saw my article, noticed that I was trying to use a hammer in an unnatural way, and recommended I use a gas-powered brad nailer instead. Or, in other words, Wayne was nice enough to email me with a much better and cleaner solution.
Wayne's solution is quite spiffy, doesn't require any modifications to system tables, and is drop-dead easy to implement. (Of course, I double-checked that the solution works as expected, without any hiccups or problems—which it does.) Listing 1 contains Wayne's ingenious script.
-- Tested SQL 2005 - 2012. DECLARE @perfcond NVARCHAR(100); DECLARE @sqlversion TINYINT; -- get the major version of sql running SELECT @sqlversion = ca2.Ver FROM (SELECT CONVERT(VARCHAR(20), SERVERPROPERTY('ProductVersion')) AS Ver) dt1 CROSS APPLY (SELECT CHARINDEX('.', dt1.Ver) AS Pos) ca1 CROSS APPLY (SELECT SUBSTRING(dt1.Ver, 1, ca1.Pos-1) AS Ver) ca2; -- handle the performance condition depending on the version of sql running -- and whether this is a named instance or a default instance. SELECT @perfcond = CASE WHEN @sqlversion >= 11 THEN '' ELSE ISNULL(N'MSSQL$' + CONVERT(sysname, SERVERPROPERTY('InstanceName')), N'SQLServer') + N':' END + N'Locks|Number of Deadlocks/sec|_Total|>|0'; EXEC msdb.dbo.sp_add_alert @name=N'Deadlock Alert', @message_id=0, @severity=0, @enabled=1, @delay_between_responses=0, @include_event_description_in=0, @category_name=N'[Uncategorized]', @performance_condition=@perfcond, --@job_name=N'Job to run when a deadlock happens, if applicable' -- or @job_id=N'00000000-0000-0000-0000-000000000000' GO EXEC msdb.dbo.sp_add_notification @alert_name = N'Deadlock Alert', @notification_method = 1, --email @operator_name = N'General'; -- name of the operator to notify GO
Under the hood, this script uses a SQL Server performance condition to specify alert logic—which is pretty visible/obvious in the script. If you want a better way to see how Wayne tackled this issue, you can crack open the alert in SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) and take a peek at it, as Figure 1 shows.