SQL Server 2016 is Simply Faster… A Lot Faster

SQL SERVER 2016 IS SIMPLY FASTER…A LOT FASTER I had the pleasure to spend some time with my old friend Mark Souza, a general manager in the Data Platform team at Microsoft, while speaking at the SQL Saturday event in Dublin, Ireland in the summer of 2016. Now keep in mind that Mark and I have known each other since the 1990s when SQL Server was just being ported to a brand new operating system called Windows NT. Mark and I were having a laugh and more than a twinge of nostalgia about how much SQL Server has improved over the decades and now sits atop the heap on most analysts' "best database" … [Read more...]

U-SQL and the Azure Data Lake

U-SQL AND THE AZURE DATA LAKE There's a new buzzword on the loose, the data lake. At first glance, a data lake could be easily mistaken for a data warehouse. The two big data concepts have a common focus on analytics and they may, in certain situations, produce roughly equivalent output. But that's about where their similarities end. READ MORE... Originally Posted July 12, 2016 … [Read more...]

Temporal Tables in SQL Server 2016

TEMPORAL TABLES IN SQL SERVER 2016 While temporal data support is something that has existed in the past within other database platforms, it is a newly available feature with the RTM version of SQL Server 2016. In case you haven't heard of temporal data values (or for some, "bitemporal"), here is a brief explanation. READ MORE... Originally Posted June 09, 2016 … [Read more...]

SQL Server on Linux – It’s No Joke

SQL SERVER ON LINUX – IT’S NO JOKE Many thought it was an early April Fool's Day prank, but it was no joke: On March 7, 2016, Microsoft announced the beta release of SQL Server on Linux with the intention of shipping a full release of the product in 2017. READ MORE... Originally Posted May 04, 2016 … [Read more...]

Announcing SQL Server 2017 Release Candidate

ANNOUNCING SQL SERVER 2017 RELEASE CANDIDATE 1 Microsoft announced the first release candidate (a.k.a. RC1) for SQL Server 2017 on Monday, July 17th. Release candidates are not a final and finished product, but they are feature complete. No new features are expected after Microsoft moves into the RC phase, only adding polish (for example, brushing up the documentation and UI) and performance to the existing feature set. The full product release is planned for some time in the second half of 2017. READ MORE... Originally Posted August 09, 2017 … [Read more...]

Microsoft on the Ascent on Business Intelligence and Data Science

MICROSOFT ON THE ASCENT IN BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE AND DATA SCIENCE Microsoft has been on a tear for the past couple of years. It has been pushing forward with a very steady stream of powerful new features and capabilities, even entire product lines, within its Data Platform business. But while Microsoft has been hard at work on this deluge of new technologies, it would be completely forgivable if you haven't noticed. The reason it's OK is that Microsoft is advancing on multiple fronts, both in the on-premises product line and even more dramatically with the Azure cloud-based products. READ … [Read more...]

Adaptive Query Processing in SQL Server 2017

ADAPTIVE QUERY PROCESSING IN SQL SERVER 2017 The next release of Microsoft SQL Server, announced as SQL Server 2017, is available for download in CTP2 at http://tinyurl.com/SQLvNextLinux and offers many cool new features. One set of features that I really like to focus on is adaptive query processing. These new features speed processing of workloads, especially those that have historically been the hardest to tune. READ MORE... Originally Posted July 05, 2017 … [Read more...]

Powerful ETL Technologies in the Microsoft Data Platform

POWERFUL ETL TECHNOLOGIES IN THE MICROSOFT DATA PLATFORM Microsoft first truly disrupted the ETL marketplace with the introduction of SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) back with the release of SQL Server 2005. Microsoft has upped the ante yet again by bringing to market powerful ETL features to the cloud via the Azure Data Factory, which enables IT shops to integrate a multitude of data sources, both on-premises and in the cloud, via a workflow (called a "pipeline) that utilizes Hive, Pig, and customized C# programs. READ MORE... Originally Posted March 03, 2016 … [Read more...]

They Did it Again – The Release of SQL Server 2017

THEY DID IT AGAIN – THE RELEASE OF SQL SERVER 2017 Not only has the Microsoft SQL Server engineering team added more and stronger leadership, outstanding individual engineers and staff members, but it is also radically moving its entire development process into a "cloud-first" ethos. Now, I'd like to show one of the most salient results of this new development process-accelerated product releases. It was only a few years ago (and is still the case for other data management platforms) that a major new release takes at least 2, but more likely 3 years. With the "production-ready" release of SQL … [Read more...]

Machine Learning and the Microsoft Data Platform

MACHINE LEARNING AND THE MICROSOFT DATA PLATFORM If you're into data and databases and you have not heard the term "machine learning," may I suggest that you're not reading enough? This technology is hot and hyped, largely because it is the secret ingredient in many successful Big Data projects. Learn more. READ MORE... Originally Posted January 07, 2016 … [Read more...]