How to Find Long Running Jobs in Microsoft SQL Server
By: Thomas LaRock | Updated: 2017-06-01 | Comments (4) | Related: More > SQL Server Agent
You want to know if a job inside of SQL Server Agent is running longer than it should. This leads to a second problem: how do you define “long”? Well, for me, I use math.
SQL Server persists data inside the msdb database for job history between restarts. Therefore, we can do analysis on the job history data to find if there are jobs running long. Here, we will define “running long” as jobs that are currently running longer than two standard deviations away from the mean (i.e., an outlier).
There are four variables in the script.
@MinHistExecutions - Minimum number of job executions we want to consider. I like to set this to five or seven, giving me a small sample size to serve as a baseline to get started.
@MinAvgSecsDuration - Threshold for minimum job duration. If set to 300, then we are not concerned with any jobs that have a historical average less than five minutes in duration. This also has implications for how often I will want to poll for long running jobs. If we poll more than 300 seconds apart (say, every 15 minutes), then we may miss an outlier because the code will filter for jobs that are currently running.
@HistoryStartDate - Start date for historical average you want to evaluate.
@HistoryEndDate - End date for historical average you want to evaluate. The default values for start and end dates will capture all job history, but you may want to consider using a smaller window, say 90 days.
One result set containing a list of jobs that are currently running and the duration is more than two standard deviations away from the historical average. The “Min Threshold” column represents the average plus two standard deviations (in seconds).
/*============================================= Variables: @MinHistExecutions - Minimum number of job executions we want to consider @MinAvgSecsDuration - Threshold for minimum job duration we care to monitor @HistoryStartDate - Start date for historical average @HistoryEndDate - End date for historical average These variables allow for us to control a couple of factors. First we can focus on jobs that are running long enough on average for us to be concerned with (say, 30 seconds or more). Second, we can avoid being alerted by jobs that have run so few times that the average and standard deviations are not quite stable yet. This script leaves these variables at 1.0, but I would advise you alter them upwards after testing. Returns: One result set containing a list of jobs that are currently running and are running longer than two standard deviations away from their historical average. The "Min Threshold" column represents the average plus two standard deviations. note  - comment this line and note  line if you want to report on all history for jobs note  - comment just this line is you want to report on running and non-running jobs =============================================*/ DECLARE @HistoryStartDate datetime ,@HistoryEndDate datetime ,@MinHistExecutions int ,@MinAvgSecsDuration int SET @HistoryStartDate = '19000101' SET @HistoryEndDate = GETDATE() SET @MinHistExecutions = 1.0 SET @MinAvgSecsDuration = 1.0 DECLARE @currently_running_jobs TABLE ( job_id UNIQUEIDENTIFIER NOT NULL ,last_run_date INT NOT NULL ,last_run_time INT NOT NULL ,next_run_date INT NOT NULL ,next_run_time INT NOT NULL ,next_run_schedule_id INT NOT NULL ,requested_to_run INT NOT NULL ,request_source INT NOT NULL ,request_source_id SYSNAME NULL ,running INT NOT NULL ,current_step INT NOT NULL ,current_retry_attempt INT NOT NULL ,job_state INT NOT NULL ) --capture details on jobs INSERT INTO @currently_running_jobs EXECUTE master.dbo.xp_sqlagent_enum_jobs 1,'' ;WITH JobHistData AS ( SELECT job_id ,date_executed=msdb.dbo.agent_datetime(run_date, run_time) ,secs_duration=run_duration/10000*3600 +run_duration%10000/100*60 +run_duration%100 FROM msdb.dbo.sysjobhistory WHERE step_id = 0 --Job Outcome AND run_status = 1 --Succeeded ) ,JobHistStats AS ( SELECT job_id ,AvgDuration = AVG(secs_duration*1.) ,AvgPlus2StDev = AVG(secs_duration*1.) + 2*stdevp(secs_duration) FROM JobHistData WHERE date_executed >= DATEADD(day, DATEDIFF(day,'19000101',@HistoryStartDate),'19000101') AND date_executed < DATEADD(day, 1 + DATEDIFF(day,'19000101',@HistoryEndDate),'19000101') GROUP BY job_id HAVING COUNT(*) >= @MinHistExecutions AND AVG(secs_duration*1.) >= @MinAvgSecsDuration ) SELECT jd.job_id ,j.name AS [JobName] ,MAX(act.start_execution_date) AS [ExecutionDate] ,AvgDuration AS [Historical Avg Duration (secs)] ,AvgPlus2StDev AS [Min Threshhold (secs)] FROM JobHistData jd JOIN JobHistStats jhs on jd.job_id = jhs.job_id JOIN msdb..sysjobs j on jd.job_id = j.job_id JOIN @currently_running_jobs crj ON crj.job_id = jd.job_id --see note  above JOIN msdb..sysjobactivity AS act ON act.job_id = jd.job_id AND act.stop_execution_date IS NULL AND act.start_execution_date IS NOT NULL WHERE DATEDIFF(SS, act.start_execution_date, GETDATE()) > AvgPlus2StDev AND crj.job_state = 1 --see note  above GROUP BY jd.job_id, j.name, AvgDuration, AvgPlus2StDev
Traditional alerts that focus on job duration are not considering the historical average. As a result, operators are notified a job is running long based upon a fixed amount of time, say 300 seconds. A better method is to do some analysis on the data already stored inside the msdb. This way if an alert is sent you know that action is needed.
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Last Updated: 2017-06-01
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