Why I am excited about SQL Server 2012

7 03 2012

By now many of you have had the opportunity to hear or see something about the next release of SQL Server.  It is later on March 7, launch day.  I have enjoyed a number of sessions on the SQL Server Launch site.  Many people have talked about what they look forward to in the product, so I thought I would discuss some of the things that excite me.

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SQL Server Integration Services Improvements

I think the updates to SSIS make the best case for early adoption of SQL Server 2012.  If you are currently using SSIS or are planning to use SSIS, the changes to the platform are significant and reduce the overall development time for enterprise class solutions.  And yes, developers will see many changes that will further help productivity, “beyond rounded corners.”

ColumnStore Indexes

As I work with large data stores for reporting and loading SSAS, this index type will greatly improve performance.  Once again Microsoft has made significant improvements for large, set based query operations.

Enhanced Window Functions

I have done a lot of work with window functions in Oracle lately.  I am thrilled to see similar functionality being added to SQL Server.  This allows for more complex aggregations and query results while not sacrificing performance.  Join me during the 24 Hours of PASS to see these functions in action.

Power View

Wow.  This visualization tool really fills a gap within in Microsoft’s BI offering.  I am excited to see this in operation at customers as this is a game changer for the end user.  The replay capability is both cool and very functional.

Extended Events for SQL Server Analysis Services

While I have not worked with extended events in SQL Server 2008 as much as I would have liked to, the introduction of extended events for SSAS will allow us to follow the path taken by many SQL Server DBAs who have used these events.  This will allow us to monitor SQL Server more closely while minimizing the impact we experiences using SQL Profiler.

These are just a few items within SQL Server 2012 that excite me, what excites you?

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