SQL Agent Overview

The SQL Server Agent is responsible for automation tasks in SQL Server. The Agent, which runs as a Windows service, is responsible for running scheduled tasks, notifying operators of events, and responding with a predefined action to errors and performance conditions. SQL Server Agent performs these functions using alerts, jobs, and operators. Alerts respond to SQL Server or user-defined errors, and can also respond to performance conditions. An alert can be configured to run a job as well as notify an operator. A job is a predefined operation or set of operations, such as transferring data or backing up a transaction log. A job can be scheduled to run on a regular basis, or called to run when an alert is fired. An operator is a user to notify when an alert fires or a job requests notification. The operator can be notified by e-mail, pager, or the NET SEND command.

    Part III: SQL Server Administration
    Part IV: Transact-SQL
    Part V: SQL Server Internals and Performance Tuning
    Part VI: Additional SQL Server Features