define lock escalation
A lock escalation occurs when the number of locks held on rows and tables in the database equals the percentage of the lock list specified by the maxlocks database configuration parameter. Lock escalation is the process of converting a lot of low level locks (like row locks, page locks) into higher level locks (like table locks) to reduce the number of locks.
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Lock escalation occurs when there are many locks at a particular level in the database and they are escalated to a higher level. Example: many locks at the row level, this is just escalated to one bigger lock on the entire table.