SQL Server 2012 Release Date Approaches

Microsoft is on a roll. Last week we saw the beta release of the ASP.NET MVC 4. Next is the virtual launch event of SQL Server 2012 on March 7th. Though the final beta for SQL Server 2012 has been out for some time, IT admins and users are anticipating the new release. More than a simple update to SQL Server 2008 R2, the 2012 release includes entirely new features.

Some of the more talked about features are:

  • Increased focus on Business intelligence (BI) – New tools allow non-analyst to examine data and look for patterns while reducing the amount of time required by IT to manage the data
  • Improved performance for large databases with ColumnStore Index – Faster queries by using compression and pattern recognition
  • Single development environment – The SQL Server Data Tools (SSDT) creates a unified development environment for all applications whether destined for a server or the cloud
  • Improved high availability (HA) using AlwaysOn – Codename for a set of features that improve replication and management of databases, AlwaysOn improves performance, speeds recovery, and simplifies management
  • Support for the minimal installation of Server Core – SQL Server 2012 is the first SQL version that is supported on a Server Core installation allowing organizations that require SQL server to take advantage of improved security and lower management requirements of Server Core
  • Cloud ready – These new features and updates mean deploying SQL environments to a private or public cloud are as easy as creating them on a single server

All sounds interesting doesn’t it?

Take a look at this video where regular IT administrators and DBA’s discuss how SQL Server 2012’s features are going to help them. The video is from last fall’s BUILD conference, but the features discussed are included in the upcoming release.

At the risk of sounding a tad bit pro-Microsoft (we wouldn’t want you to get that impression!) it appears they’ve put a lot of work into making the 2012 release of SQL Server address the needs of businesses and administrators.

Sure it isn’t perfect. The ColumnStore index suffers from the same issues any indexing paradigm does. Time will tell if adding non-analyst business intelligence tools really adds anything to a company’s bottom line. As with anything, the devil is in the details.

Is it all the usual Microsoft hype, or do you think there’s real value in the latest SQL Server release?

Share your opinions and ideas with us here.