I would like to have feedback from the serverfault community about my database administration career.
I used to use mainly Linux for 14+ years. I worked as a network administrator at a small ISP, being responsible to install, configure, and maintain a dozen servers. I have a few small open sourced projects coded in C and Perl. I must admit that my knowledge of Linux servers is broader than Windows servers.
In the last 5 years somewhat my career has changed a little: I have been the so-called "accidental DBA" on SQL Server. My job requires me to administer production SQL Servers, do a lot of T-SQL coding, and deal with performance tuning, troubleshooting and general database mantenance issues.
I have been an IT generalist, and I feel the need to specialize in something. I have just decided to go on to a DBA career. Five years being a part time accidental DBA made me thirsty for being recognized as a professional DBA and gain deeper knowledge of databases systems.
I must admit that I like SQL Server very much, for some reasons:
- It is a solid product. In those 5 years I had never had a serious issue. My disaster recovery plan is used only for testing and training.
- The official documentation is throughout, vast. There are lots of books, articles, forums, and a great community.
- T-SQL programmability is decent.
My decision must go now on what product I should specialize in. As a Linux guy, going into SQL Server as a professional DBA makes me feel that I am throwing my past experience out the window, as I understand that I must "breathe" SQL Server and a purely Microsoft world to be truly good at it. Besides the reasons shown above, I know that 5 years with production experience on SQL Server makes a lot of difference.
I have less experience with another DBMS:
- I use PostgreSQL with some software I coded, and I like it. Unfortunately, I think that it would narrow my job possibilities, since it is less widely used than SQL Server. The number of jobs posted can show this.
- Never had experience with Oracle and DB2. They are nice because they are solid, widely used and multi-platform and run under Linux.
I know that it is a difficult decision, but I ask you for some advice to help me decide my DBMS product of specialization. Should I go deeper with SQL Server or learn another DBMS?
Your help will be much appreciated.