SQL Server

  • SQL Server 2019 - What’s New?

    sql server 2019 performance

    During the 2018 Ignite conference, Microsoft released the public preview for SQL Server 2019. There are several enhancements that have been made to SQL Server release to help transform the Microsoft data platform, and more importantly, to improve the user experience.

    Most of the improvements are linked to the relational database engine, especially since the BI stack development is no longer directly connected to the database engine release. This is more or less the same thing that happened with SQL Server 2017. In fact, there’s only one major feature being introduced, among a host of minor enhancements.

    Database Performance Enhancements

    Over the years, Microsoft has made a tradition of tweaking each release to improve performance. More often, these are seen either as updates that assist all users, while in some cases these only edge case features.

    One of the notable optimizations was introduced in SQL Server 2017. As soon as a query is executed in a database, there’s a memory threshold that’s required for operations like data sorting to be done, hence delivering the required results to the user. The engine allocates a specific amount of memory to each query depending on the statistics that the data maintains.

    For example, a query that will require 5 billion rows to be joined will certainly require more memory allocation than one that needs to join only 50 rows. There are instances where the statistics might not be correct, and as a result, this ends up in performance concerns or concurrency.

    In SQL Server 2017, Microsoft found a fix for this problem, situations where continued execution of a query automatically adjusts the processing memory required to execute the query, depending on the runtime statistics of the execution before it. While this was a good idea, there was one challenge – this would only work for queries in batch execution mode. These are queries that must use a columnscore index.

    The problem with columnscore index queries is that they are only ideal for an analytical workload, instead of transaction processing. Fast forward to SQL Server 2019, and Microsoft has made dynamic memory grants accessible for all queries.

    Moving along with batch execution mode, the feature that can process huge chunks of data, in almost 1,000 rows and allows a speedy execution of aggregate functions like standard deviation, sums and averages were only available for columnscore indexes.

    In SQL Server 2019, Microsoft has introduced batch mode over row store. Limited testing results for the early releases have been impressive, especially with test results for aggregation queries.

    One common data warehouse performance concern arises connected to distinct counts for a single item. In a database, generating a distinct list is typically very expensive, especially when dealing with values on a very large table. You can see the cost replicated in BI operations because of the need to present a report for things like the number of products that each customer buys, or the sales records for each product. In SQL Server 2019, Microsoft has added a unique feature, “approximate count distinct.” This feature makes use of statistical functions to provide near-accurate data when in use and delivers results faster.

    The adoption of persistent memory is one of the other hardware and performance benefits that Microsoft has introduced. This is an effective storage feature at the block level. It’s effective because it writes at the RAM speed.

    In the database realm, this is a special feature. This is because more often database management software is hindered based on the underlying storage speed. In SQL Server 2016, Microsoft started offering support for persistent memory (NV-DIMM) as it’s referred to at the end of the transaction log. Building on this, any writings to a database should be handled faster in subsequent releases.

    Microsoft has since extended support for these devices in the release of SQL Server 2019, especially for Optane DC NV-DIMMs and on the Windows Server 2019. With this extension, any database project can now be stored on persistent memory like normal block-based storage.

    Microsoft didn’t leave out Linux users when rolling out SQL Server. For Linux, Microsoft created a unique enhancement that allows you to map database files to the memory directly. With this, there’s no need for kernel calls to the storage stack, which is memory intensive.

    The storage engines on Linux and Microsoft might not be the same, but it’s increasingly evident that Microsoft is working towards the creation of databases that offer the best performance, by living fully in persisted RAM.

    Security

    • Always Encrypted Using Secure Enclaves

    Always Encrypted offers protection for all sensitive data both in memory and over the wire through decryption and encryption at each endpoint. This, however, creates processing challenges from time to time, including the inability to filter or perform computations. For this reason, the entire data set must be sent across before a range search, for example, can be performed.

    What is an enclave? This is a protected memory segment that handles the delegation of filtering and computations. In a Windows database, enclave security is based on virtualization. In this case, the data is encrypted in the engine and remains encrypted. However, when it’s within the enclave, it can still be decrypted or encrypted. All you need to do is add ENCLAVE_COMPUTATIONS to the master key. You can simply check the “allow enclave computations” checkbox in SSMS to make this happen.

    This allows you to encrypt data almost immediately. This is faster and more efficient than the former way of encryption which used an application or the Set-SqlColumnEncryption cmdlet, to move all the data from the database, encrypt the database and then send back all the data.

    Given this update, you can perform range searches, wildcard searches, orders and so forth. You can also perform in-place encryption within the queries without worrying about security. This is because the enclave is designed to allow decryption and encryption on the same server. Within the enclave, you can also execute an encryption key rotation.

    For many organizations that have been struggling with encryption and other data management concerns, this is a game changer. There’s still some work going on to perfect all the optimizations, especially those that are not enabled by default. To learn how to turn them on, navigate to the topic and enable rich computations.

    • Certificate Management in Configuration Manager

    Managing TLS and SSL certificates has always been a challenge for a lot of database managers. Usually, they end up performing lots of tedious work and running unique scripts simply to maintain or deploy certificates across the entire enterprise.

    In SQL Server 2019, updates have been made to SQL Server Configuration Manager. This allows you to validate and view any of the certificates of interest easily, find those that are almost expiring and synchronize the deployment of certificates in all the replicas of an Availability Group (from the primary), or all the nodes in a Failover Cluster Instance (from the active node).

    These operations should work just fine for anyone using an older version of SQL Server, especially if you run them from a SQL Server 2019 version of your SQL Server Configuration Manager.

    • Built-In Data Classification and Auditing

    For SSMS 17.5, SQL Server added the functionality for data classification within the SSMS. This enables users to identify columns that have sensitive information or those that might not conform to the compliance standards in use such as GDPR, PCI, SOC, and HIPAA.

    This wizard will then run an algorithm that identifies and reports columns that might have such challenges, but you’re still free to add some on your own. From here you can make adjustments to the suggestions, or remove some of the columns you are uncomfortable with from your list. The classifications created are then stored through extended properties. This is an SSMS report that uses similar information to show columns that have already been identified. Keep in mind that the properties might not be visible outside this report.

    A new command was created for this metadata in SQL Server 2019. The command, ADD SENSITIVITY CLASSIFICATION is also available in the Azure SQL Database. What this does is that it confers the ability to perform the same procedure as you would with the SSMS wizard. However, the information will not be stored as an extended property. Other than that, the data is audited in an XML column, data_sensitivity_information. All the information that would have been accessed during the audited event is contained here.

    Troubleshooting

    • Lightweight Profiling on by Default

    This enhancement has been around for a while and experienced several tweaks down the line. It was first introduced with SQL Server 2014 as DMV sys.dm_exec_query_profiles. Their role is to help users who are running queries to collect diagnostic information on all operators involved in the query. With this information, it’s possible to determine the operators who performed the most tasks, and why. This is ideal for auditing.

    Even if a user is not using this query, they would still be able to get a glimpse into the data for whichever session they are interested in, as long as STATISTICS PROFILE or STATISTICS XML was enabled. Alternatively, this is also possible through the extended event, query_post_execution_showplan. However, the problem with this event is that it usually strains performance.

    In Management Studio 2016, functionality was added, enabling it to show real-time data movement in an execution plan according to the information from the DMV. Therefore, regarding troubleshooting, this was a very powerful tool. Plan Explorer is another option that comes in handy for replay and live capabilities when visualizing data through query duration.

    In SQL Server 2016 SP1, it was possible to allow a lightweight version of the data collection process for all the sessions. To do this, execute the extended event query_thread_profile or use the trace flag 7412. This allows you to access important information about a session of interest without necessarily having to explicitly enable anything in the session. This applies more so for anything that has a negative effect on performance.

    For SQL Server 2019, the thread profile is already enabled by design. You don’t need, therefore, to have an extended session or trace flag running in an individual query. For all concurrent sessions, you can easily look at the DMV data at any given time. This can also be turned off using the LIGHTWEIGHT_QUERY_PROFILING database scoped configuration. However, the syntax cannot work with CTP 2.0, but there are plans to have it fixed in the new release.

    • Clustered Columnstore Index Statistics Available in Clone Databases

    To clone a database in the current SQL Server models, you will only get the original statistical object from the clustered columnstore index. If there were updates made to the table after creation, these will not be affected.

    In case you use the clone to tune queries or any other performance tests that need cardinality estimates, the use cases will not be valid. The workarounds for this limitation are not very easy to remember, and they might also be very expensive.

    The updated stats are available automatically in the clone in SQL Server 2019. Therefore, you are able to test any query scenarios and find a workable plan depending on the actual statistics, without having to manually run STATS_STREAM on each table.

    • New Function to Retrieve Page Info

    For a very long time, DBCC PAGE and DBCC IND have been used to collect information on pages that make up a table, index or partition. However, these are unsupported and undocumented commands. Automating solutions on problems which need more than one page or index might be a very tedious process.

    After that, sys.dm_db_database_page_allocations was introduced. This is a dynamic management function (DMF) which returns a set that represents all pages in the object in question. The function creates a predicate pushdown issue that might prove to be a concern with larger tables. For this to collect information on one page, it will have to read the whole structure, and this can be very prohibitive.

    SQL Server has also brought a new DMF, sys.dm_db_page_info. This DMF returns all information on a given page without unnecessary overheads to the function. To use this function in the current builds, you will have to know the page number that you are looking for beforehand. This might be intentional, but it’s a performance guarantee.

    For more information on Microsoft SQL Server, or to speak to a SQL licensing expert, contact Royal Discount at 1-877-292-7712 for a free consultation.


  • SQL Server 2008 End Of Life - Backing Up to Azure

    sql support life azure

    Technology moves fast, so much so that the newest versions of software often become out of date in a matter of a few years. Older versions of Microsoft products can be daunting to manage from a support and licensing perspective. While 2008 versions of Microsoft products were innovative and new at the time, some of these products are now nearing the end of their support life. SQL Server 2008 is now several versions back so many clients are wondering what to do for their upgrades. Other SQL Server customers who still retain databases on the 2008 version may not even have decided on their precise upgrade plans. Here's the latest news from Microsoft which may assist with decisions regarding SQL Server 2008.

    Support Concerns

    Licensing and support for SQL Server 2008 was originally intended to last 10 years. We are now into that end-of-life support so what are the options for organizations still running databases on this now decade-old version?

    SQL Server 2008 brought a number of new innovations to the marketplace for databases. These new features were incredibly useful for database development at the time, so much so that many businesses have not needed to upgrade some of their databases to the newest versions. In fact, some of these clients still on the 2008 platform may not feel there is an immediate need to upgrade their databases. There may be other factors involved with such a decision such as budgetary concerns. Organizations may still be trying to determine how to upgrade their databases to the latest SQL server platform and may need more time to make all the decisions necessary.

    However, Microsoft does intend for support of SQL Server 2008 to end. This means that software and security updates will no longer be available after the support life for this product ends. While organizations are not necessarily caught flat-footed with this reality, actually completing the upgrades before the end of licensing support may well prove daunting to some organizations.

    Originally, Microsoft planned to deal with end-of-life support issues regarding products such as SQL Server 2008 with a Premium Assurance Program which was implemented last year. This program was intended to add six years of support licensing to the current ten-year limit. The intention was to provide continued compliance and security to existing databases though at an increased cost of five percent which would have maxed out at twelve percent over current licensing costs.

    Previously Existing Options

    But Microsoft has made a more recent change that affects even this Premium Assurance Program with a recent announcement. Previously, there were several options available for organizations choosing to continue using this older version of the SQL server platform. Options for SQL Server 2008 customers who wanted to remain on this version ranged from simply accepting that there would be no future security updates. The downside of this option is that databases may no longer be compliant in various industry requirements.

    Another available option has been to simply upgrade to a newer version of SQL though at some costs unless an organization already used a product assurance program. But with this option, businesses choosing to upgrade the 2008 version might face additional costs with licensing or further upgrade support while not being entirely prepared for such a change for some databases.

    The last option for current business and organizational clients of SQL Server 2008 has been to purchase a custom support license which can also be costly. This third option requires that companies provide a migration plan of some sort to Microsoft rather than keeping open-ended support available for an indeterminate amount of time when newer versions provide better solutions.

    The Latest Option: Cloud Migration with Free Security Support

    Since there are any number of detrimental effects from remaining on the 2008 SQL version, Microsoft has chosen to offer yet another option which many businesses may find extremely helpful. The recent announcement by Microsoft has been to allow product platforms like SQL Server 2008 to be migrated to Azure Cloud Services. Essentially, Microsoft is offering organizations the opportunity to remain under software support for the 2008 version until 2022 if the workload is migrated to Azure Cloud Services. The actual security support and updates are free of charge on the cloud platform and does not require that a company provide a migration or upgrade plan.

    The opportunity is quite useful for many businesses and organizations as this even allows them to use Azure stack which is Microsoft's version of the on-premise cloud system. This option is quite a flexible and useful offer for many businesses and a way for them to move into cloud computing even with this older SQL version. Microsoft is even allowing those customers who purchased the Premium Assurance Program to migrate into the Azure cloud platform on a grandfathered basis since this plan will be discontinued.

    Additional Benefits

    Now corporate and organizational customer can take advantage of Azure Cloud Services for older databases. All Azure features will be available that are relevant to SQL Server 2008. Security across the environment is consistent and provides telemetry for any intrusions. A myriad of backup features are additionally available which can also cut costs as customers look to upgrade these databases to newer versions. Workloads can be more easily managed and even scaled over the next several years while migration planning can continue.

    Additionally, the hardware for currently hosted SQL Server 2008 databases may be aging out of their lifecycles. Consequently, hardware replacement will create higher costs for new equipment, continued security and other business consistency concerns. Azure provides a less expensive way to maintain aging databases until they can be migrated to newer platform versions. Instead of struggling along with both hardware and software concerns, businesses now have the option of implementing Azure versions of their SQL databases where the hardware is no longer a concern since the cloud service keeps all of the instances up-to-date and secured. Business consistency is also addressed when migrating to Azure for this additional time period of support. Azure provides stable backup systems and support for additional security compliance needs.

    With all the additional benefits of Azure cloud services, SQL Server 2008 customers will find that implementing a workload migration to this new option can be highly beneficial as their decisions about upgrades are made over the next several years. Since the security support will remain free, there is an important savings already built into using Azure cloud services to host these older databases. Azure provides business consistency with less concern for hardware changes as well as a high level of cloud-based features which can be beneficial in assisting with upgrades to newer database platforms. Companies and organizations can easily find that their migration concerns are eased by shifting SQL Server 2008 workloads into the Azure cloud. Since Microsoft's cloud services through Azure are proven to already cut costs, Microsoft has generously offered a highly beneficial means of retaining security support for several years to come, one which is far less expensive compared to other immediate options and concerns.

    If you are currently running an outdated version of Microsoft SQL Server and want to explore options, you don't want to leave anything to chance. Contact the Microsoft licensing experts at Royal Discount - your source for all things MS SQL.


  • How To Install SQL Server 2017 (Complete Guide)

    sql server 2017 install guide
    Microsoft SQL 2017 is the latest version for Microsoft's flagship database server platform. This latest version of the SQL server software boasts some newer features which provide a wider range of performance, security and other options which should be explored with upgrades in mind. Let's take a look at the installation process for SQL server 2017 and then some of the options which are available during installation as well as those that can be leveraged to gain further insights regarding improvements with the 2017 version.

    1. Choose an Installation Path

    There are three main installation paths which you can follow to begin making use of SQL 2017.

    • A downloaded trial version can be used for 180 days before Microsoft requires that you purchase either a Standard or Enterprise license. For many people exploring the latest version of SQL server, this will be plenty of time to examine exactly what an upgrade to the 2017 version will require.
    • However, there is a developer version which is available for free also including all of the options that a trial version offers. Using the developer version allows for an indefinite period of time to fully learn and appreciate all that is offered in the latest version of SQL server.
    • Lastly, there is a fully free version, but it does not offer the entire scope of features so many high-end users will not find it valuable to test, develop or plan for an upgrade.

    For the reasons already mentioned, the developer version may be the best choice for an initial installation path so that all of the improvements can be fully explored without worrying over the end of a trial-period. This particular version will also allow for workload testing as well as use of all business intelligence and programming features. The only drawback to the developer version is that it cannot be used in a production environment.

    When installing SQL server 2017 it is important to understand that there are tools which are no longer available during the initial installation phase. As such, you may find that you will need additional time install more tools on top of the database engine and the various options chosen. For instance, SQL Reporting Services are installed separately as are the SQL Server Management Tools and SQL Server Data Tools (more about some of these are discussed further along in this post).

    2. Configure Database Options

    Once you begin an installation, there will be choices as to which initial licensing you will be using. For the sake of this article, let's consider that the developer version is being used so that all of the available options can be considered. Beyond the licensing choice, there will be a number of options to be considered, among which are the following:

    • Replication which can be used to emulate how the database will be managed including backup and mirroring. This is an important choice to consider but it is not specifically new to most database administrators.
    • Machine learning services (In-Database)
    • Installation of R and/or Python (both can now be installed on the same server instance) for programming enhancements, which also lends itself to this developer version.
    • Which query options will be used for searches including full-text or semantic extractions.
    • Data Quality Services which are important for standardizing and preventing duplication of data. This option is also important for implementing a data scale-out master with workers across several servers or instances.
    • Polybase options are available at this point of the installation which can allow for NoSQL queries.
    • Analysis services options for Business Intelligence integration are also in the mix during the installation.

    3. Setup Additional Features & Reporting

    Most of the main features have now been offered as choices during the installation, but there are additional options which can be considered based on needs. Advancing to the next steps in the insulation will provide choices for these options:

    • Client tools are available for backward compatibility with earlier SQL versions in relationship to Data Quality Services. Again, these are services which can be important when using master and worker instances across several servers.
    • SDK resources for developers are also available for installation which are additionally useful in the developer version in order to understand all the programmatic, security and performance improvement prior to using the 2017 version in production mode.
    • Distributed Relay is a feature available that is very much like the SQL profiler, except it can be distributed over multiple servers. This is used in much the same way to capture traces for security and performance when gathering information for upgrades and testing. Additionally, this is where you want to make considerations regarding this tool since it allows you to simulate workloads to further advance understanding of development and upgrade issues.
    • SQL client connectivity SDK is available for installation that provides OLEDB and ODBC connections using programming languages including .Net, Java, PHP and others.
    • Master Data Services provides the means to organize important data into models while creating rules for access and control.

    4. Configure Instances & Security

    It is important to remember that multiple instances of SQL can be used on the same server which is critical for a variety of best practices development on the SQL Server 2017 platform. Among the considerations which can be simulated are workloads, replications versus mirroring, or the separation of instances while measuring performance impact.

    In regard to security issues, the developer mode also includes the full options for SQL server authentication within Windows. Hammering out all security issues is important to achieve before making the shift to the newer SQL version and the developer version includes all of the authentication options. Windows account authentication in SQL is available to implement as is the mixed mode which is a feature allowing for the creation of logins and passwords within the SQL server environment.

    5. Setup Data Directories & Filestream

    While you are finalizing all of your decisions with your installation, be sure to check all of the data directories. It is here that you can choose the locations of your various data files and log files. A best practice is to place these various types of files on different drives in order to ensure top performance and implement good security as well as provide for effective disaster recovery planning.

    There are a few other considerations to be made while installing SQL server 2017. FILESTREAM provides for storage of non-structured data within databases. If you are looking for ways to operate in data mining mode then you will be interested in using the Analysis Services configuration which provides for creation of fast queries and report results. When considering data mining modes, you must choose between tabular and multidimensional, the former being more memory intensive. If you have plenty of storage space then multidimensional mode may be the best choice since it has the least performance impact.

    6. Install SQL Server Management Tools

    After installing the main database server engine, you will need to go back to the setup window and choose to install the SQL Server Management Studio which can further assist with tuning an SQL instance. Additionally, you can consider installing SQL Server Data Tools which are important for using Business Intelligence tools, a major plus to the newer Microsoft SQL server platforms, especially the 2017 version.

    Before installing SQL Server 2017 it is important to plan and understand what you need to accomplish with an initial installation of the newest version. The mentioned options and features in this article are meant to be considerations as a guideline for development and planning new SQL instances as well as migration of existing databases from previous versions. Making use of all the available tools for planning are as important as considering what new features can be implemented for database improvements.

    To learn more about Microsoft SQL Server, contact our experts at RoyalDiscount.com or call 1-877-292-7112 today and get a free licensing consultation.


  • SQL Server Performance: 2014 vs 2016

    sql server 2014 vs 2016

    Is an Upgrade Useful?

    Database performance is always an issue, especially when considering upgrades. Microsoft just provided a new version in 2014 of SQL Server and then another version in 2016. The 2014 version of SQL Server included some newer technology innovations that were long overdue and improved overall performance. Now the question could be raised what are the real performance differences between the 2014 and 2016 versions? Is an upgrade to the newest version of SQL Server worthwhile?

    An IT manager might well sit down with database administrators and discuss these very issues. Technical terms, code, queries and much more are likely to come out of the conversation, many of which may well leave many managers without specific database experience confused on the issue. There are some basic performance factors which can be provided that may well assist many non-database experts in their understanding of performance issues and improvements.

    One of the main factors to consider is that the SQL engine for the server version remained basically the same since 1998 when SQL version 7 was in use (specifics detailed below). With the 2014 version the engine for SQL Server was upgraded to take advantage of hardware technology improvements, so just having this version in use is a good move forward.

    But with the 2016 version there were additional changes to the SQL Server engine which made its processing better integrated with current technology so that it provides far faster processing of database functions. Some observers in the industry have likened this to cars and local transportation needs. You can have a very fast car but unless the actual infrastructure is upgraded then traffic flow may be an issue regardless of how great the car may be. Microsoft has taken the approach of improving the SQL Server engine so that it takes full advantage of technology changes to hardware.

    Likewise, when it comes to cloud-based database services, Microsoft introduced the service-based version of SQL Server 2016 to run natively in Azure. This means that all of the changes to the SQL Server engine are fully integrated on the Azure hardware platform and further means that a shift to cloud-based databases may well provide the best performance, especially for growing databases. Additionally, with newer versions of SQL in the future, databases will be much easier to upgrade from Azure for continued improvements to performance and integration.

    Comparing Performance - 2014 vs 2016

    • What should you be concerned most about when thinking of performance improvements with the latest version of SQL Server? For that answer we turn to what was changed with version 2014 which, as hinted at above, involved the server engine - specifically the cardinality estimator. Without getting into too many technical concerns, the cardinality estimator is basically the core of the query optimizer. Within this core, the cardinality estimator works with statistics within the database for best functionality. If the estimator grows less accurate, then queries are slower. The upgrade of the cardinality estimator in the 2014 version, which had not been upgraded since 1998, was a big step forward. In this regard, the 2014 version is a major improvement in performance over older versions.With the 2016 version of SQL Server, there are even more improvements to the functions of the cardinality estimator which provides even better performance. However, there may need to be testing with older databases to verify which compatibility version can run in this latest version of the SQL Server.When it comes to the compatibility levels that are available in the 2016 version you will find that if you must run an older compatibility level you may lose some of the latest feature functionalities. The good news is that if you must run the older version of the cardinality estimator there is a command line configuration which will allow you to run all of the latest features of the 2016 version with the older estimator.
    • There are a few more features which can be very beneficial to migrating to this latest version of Microsoft's SQL Server. Multi-threaded insert – select statements can now be used. Memory optimized tables can also now be multi-threaded.
    • Additionally, statistics within the database are now updated more frequently which creates a higher level of estimates for better performance. Just as an example, previous behavior for a table of 1 billion rows would have been triggered for update after changes to 200 million changes in a database. With SQL Server 2016 these updates are now triggered at 1 million changes which creates more accurate estimates of statistics within the database for much faster queries.
    • With relational databases, tables can now be linked to each other for improved data integrity using foreign key constraints. Previously there were limitations to the number of key constraints which could be used, that number being 253. With SQL Server 2016, foreign key constraints now have a limitation of 10,000. For a relational database, this means that thousands of tables can now reference to a single user table and take advantage of data integrity in a much broader range. It is important to note that this is for relational databases only.
    • The importance of the foreign key constraint changes and, as mentioned above, the number was limited with SQL Server version 2014 due to the extensive computing cost. However, Microsoft has reduced the cost to resources and increased the number of foreign key constraints by introducing a new version of the referential integrity operator. Again, without being too technical, the referential integrity checks within a database are now done within the new query execution operator. The result is much faster performance for the internal workings of databases running on SQL Server 2016.

    These are just some basic points of performance improvements Microsoft has made between versions 2014 and 2016. For a more in depth understanding of what these and other features in the latest version may mean for your database performance, you may need to consult with experts who can examine and explain more of what may be needed in consideration of migrating to SQL Server 2016 to provide the best experience to clients, customers and users of your database offerings.

    Conclusion

    It may be confusing to determine how to apply IT budgets when it comes to various upgrades, especially when considering those for databases. However, it is important to keep in mind that as databases grow in size they may not just outgrow storage availability but also processing capabilities.

    Keeping current with the latest versions will likely provide many benefits to existing databases which have already been upgraded. There may be additional factors to consider as to whether these databases are working fully integrated with the most current versions of SQL Server. In this case, it can be highly beneficial to consult with professionals who can adequately determine current health, configuration, and modes in which a database may be operating. A full investigation of organizational databases will be increasingly important to determining how performance in the latest version of Microsoft SQL Server can be improved as well as maintained for upcoming versions and possible migration to cloud-based services.

    To learn more about Microsoft SQL Server, contact our experts at RoyalDiscount.com- your online source for cheap OEM, Retail & Cloud products.


  • Choosing between Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Standard and Enterprise Editions

    sql server plan comparison

    When Microsoft released SQL Server 2016 there were a number of changes and improvements to the flagship database. However, when considering the two main editions, Standard and Enterprise, organizations must account for a long list of features before choosing between them. Let's take a look at the main differences between the two editions regarding these available options.

    First, it is important to understand the intentions behind the two different editions. The Enterprise edition provides high end data-center availability, incredible performance, a wide array of business intelligence, unlimited virtualization and user access to data reporting. The Enterprise edition is well worth the higher licensing cost for large enterprises because of how much it offers.

    Meanwhile, the Standard edition of SQL Server 2016 offers many of the same features with limitations. This edition is intended to provide smaller organizations with all the necessary tools and features at a lower cost and less need for IT staff. The Standard edition is a highly effective version for business customers looking for budget relief.

    However, there are those customers who may need to further examine SQL Server 2016 features in order to effectively make choices between the two editions. This is where a careful examination of all the features coupled with licensing can save some companies cost, while others may quickly find they need far more database computing power.

    Since the SQL Server 2016 database engine is designed for far faster performance, the needs of an organization fall into the specifics designed into each edition. Digging further into the details can provide an assessment which enables Microsoft customers to make the best-informed decision for both immediate and long-term needs. Here are some highlights when to consider among the many options and features of SQL Server 2016 when choosing an edition:

    Scale Limits

    When it comes to scale limits, SQL Server 2016 Enterprise edition provides either unlimited memory or up to operating system limits. However, the Standard edition has a variety of memory limitations which must be considered when designing database applications. It is most important to remember that Standard edition is limited to the lesser of four sockets for 24 cores when it comes to the database engine, analysis services or reporting services. Other components may also be limited in the Standard version so it's important to check for those limitations. But, it is also an important to realize that both Standard and Enterprise editions have a maximum relational database size of 524 PB. 

    RDBMS High Availability

    Comparing RDBMS high availability between the two editions, users will find that there is plenty of overlap available when it comes to features. There are a number of features that are not available in the Standard edition, some of the most important being the lack of always-on availability groups, online page and file restore, online indexing, online schema change, fast recovery, mirrored backups, and hot add memory and CPU. 

    RDBMS Performance and Scalability

    Almost all of the RDBMS performance and scalability features are available in both Enterprise and Standard editions with the exceptions being: resource governor, partition table parallelism, NUMA aware and large page memory and buffer array allocation, and I/O resource governor. 

    RDBMS Security

    SQL Server 2016 Standard edition strongly mirrors RDBMS security from that of the Enterprise edition except for transparent database encryption and extensible Key management.

    Replication

    The Standard edition also comes with many of the same replication features as that of the Enterprise edition, the exceptions being: Oracle publishing, peer-to-peer transactional replication, and transactional replication updateable subscription. 

    Management Tools

    The management tools available in the Enterprise edition are exactly the same within the Standard edition.

    RDBMS Manageability

    Standard Edition possesses many of the same RDBMS manageability features, though there are some which are not included that are available in the Enterprise edition. These features are: parallel indexed operations, automatic use of indexed view by query optimizer, parallel consistency check and SQL Server Utility Control Point. 

    Development Tools

    SQL Server 2016 Standard and Enterprise editions provide the exact same development tools which is a strong benefit either way.

    Programmability

    Almost all of the available programmability features of the SQL Server 2016 Enterprise edition are available in the Standard edition with the exception of advanced R integration and R server (standalone). This means there are a wide array of programming options available even in the Standard edition. 

    Integration Services

    Basic integration services are available in both additions, but advanced sources and destinations as well as advanced tasks and transformations are not available in the Standard edition 

    Master Data Services

    Master data services are only available in the Enterprise edition, making the higher cost a consideration for those organizations in need of these features. Contact one of our specialists for more details. 

    Data Warehouse

    There are several integration services features not available in the Standard edition which include: star join query optimizations, scalable read only analysis services configuration, parallel query processing on partitioned tables and indexes, and global batch aggregation. 

    Analysis Services

    The Standard edition does not provide support for scalable shared databases or synchronize databases, while AlwaysOn failover cluster instances only supports two nodes. 

    BI Semantic Model (Multidimensional)

    Standard edition of SQL Server 2016 does support many of the same business intelligence semantic model (multidimensional) features as the Enterprise edition. Check with one of our specialists for more details.

    BI Semantic Model (Tabular)

    Business intelligence is an important inclusion within the Standard edition of SQL Server 2016. The Standard edition supports all of the same tabular models as the Enterprise edition except for Perspectives, Multiple partitions, and DirectQuery storage mode. 

    Power Pivot for SharePoint

    The Standard edition of SQL Server 2016 does not provide any support for Power Pivot for SharePoint so if this is a major consideration for an organization the Enterprise edition may be the choice since SharePoint is a powerful Microsoft product in wide use. 

    Data Mining

    While the Enterprise edition of SQL Server 2016 does support a wide array of data warehouse features, the Standard edition only supports standard algorithms and data mining tools (Wizards, Editors, Query Builders). 

    Spatial and Location Services & Additional Database Services

    All features and options for spatial and location services as well as additional database services are the same between SQL Server 2016 Enterprise and Standard editions. 

    Other Components

    StreamInsight HA is not available in the Standard edition.

    Conclusion 

    Choosing between Microsoft SQL Server 2016 Standard and Enterprise editions encompasses a wide array of factors. It is very important to remember that with the 2016 version, Microsoft included Business Intelligence features for the Standard edition to provide non-enterprise class customers with these useful options at a limited availability. Likewise, the Standard edition widely mirrors the Enterprise edition in terms of available features, only with limitations to scalability.

    Purchasing an Enterprise edition license most frequently means unlimited scalability for many features not available for the Standard edition. Customers must consider between the two when needs might require the higher-end edition. However, it is also easier than ever to upgrade the Standard edition to the Enterprise edition so expected database growth can also be accounted for with the possibility of business growth. Customers who choose a Standard edition will find it easier to grow as necessary by moving into the Enterprise edition when necessity requires a change.

    To learn more about SQL Server, contact the licensing experts at RoyalDiscount.com- Your online source for cheap OEM, Retail & Cloud products.


  • Top 5 SQL in Azure Database Features

    sql in azure database
    SQL in Azure excels with the presentation of Microsoft's industry-leading database product. New features from the latest versions of SQL Database Server are also implemented in the Azure product with even greater results than single-server implementations - with all the advantages Azure offers. Here are five reasons SQL in Azure can improve business databases in an environment where online availability of database-driven products can make all the difference when compared to competitors.

    1. Scalability and Resource Management with Elastic Pools

    Scalability monitors alert you to the need of growth or retraction with ease all with cost in mind. Performance drives rising or shrinking needs and, thus, cost. Single databases can move into higher service levels without waiting or downtime. Larger databases can be moved into pools for best performance. Elastic performance pools allow for rising and falling demand based on the business-intelligent heuristics. Databases managed in an elastic pool can be set to minimum and maximum performance counters that ensure no single instance hogs resources, ensuring that all databases are able to perform. Elastic pools automatically adjust to expected changes in workloads based on the intelligent optimization from performance tuning. The pool performs in balance around the learned cycles of fluctuation for best operation combined with cost efficiency.

    Four workloads available in Azure SQL databases allow for creation of a robust, yet flexible application environment.  Basic, Standard, Premium and Premium RS each allows for growth of databases without downtime as your database needs increase or decrease. If resource needs change rapidly, database resources adjust to meet these changes which allows Azure customers to pay only for what is needed.

    Small, single Azure SQL database instances can be blended with elastic pools to meet growing needs with cost always in mind. Databases can be mixed and matched depending on workloads, even moved into and out of elastic pools for constant cost efficiency which equals savings for businesses. Reporting from Azure and access through the Azure portal provide instant information and access for business management.

    Determination of database changes and needs are achieved with Azure SQL Database monitoring and tools. The built-in performance monitoring and alerts provide actionable information for financial decisions regarding databases both large and small. Database Transaction Units (DTU) and elastic DTU provide specific information upon which to base business decisions.

    2. Performance Tuning

    Azure SQL Database service provides a built-in intelligence which learns database patterns. Such telemetry information informs business management of adaptation options of database resources for constant performance tuning coupled with best business decisions. Azure customers always know how their databases are performing.

    Automatic performance tuning is now the new staple of database management. Tools and monitors always adjust for changes and alert owners of necessary needs points of attention. Development resources are maximized while management of SQL resources are highly automated.

    Newer batch processing features such as interleaved execution, batch mode memory grant feedback and batch mode adaptive joins further add to Azure in SQL's enhanced performance features. This new tuning enhancement employs both the learning and adaptive models for increased performance, with the interleaved execution addresses multi-statement table-valued functions.

    3. Security

    Advanced security adds additional layers of protection including audit logs, data encryption (both at rest and in motion), data-masking to non-privileged users, row-level security and compliance certification. Security also provides high levels of authentication with Active Directory integration. Keys can even be stored within Azure for ease of access.

    Adaptive threat detection is available with SQL in Azure presenting a new layer of security that identifies any harmful intrusion attempts. Suspicious activity is always marked with recommendations offered to mitigate breach attempts within the database.

    4. Business Consistency Features

    With Azure SQL Database service is ways available with its responsive SLA-based support system which keeps all resources up at all times. Available across a wide range of datacenters, the service is patched, secured and backed up. Business continuity concerns are met with a range of option including active geo-replication, and failover groups.

    Automatic backups are performed in full, differential and transaction logs while allowing for point-in-time restores over the retention of the automatic backup. High performance and load balancing are achieved with the use of failover groups which can take advantage of geo-replication among a number of Azure data centers.

    Software agents, tapes and hardware are by-passed for highly available and flexible backups including failovers for maximum availability. Companies find yet another way to reduce cost while ensuring database availability.

    5. Scalability of Azure SQL Database

    As with all products in the Azure cloud platform, cost efficiency is further enhanced with scalability. Azure customers can easily forecast, budget and adjust cost based on reporting. Databases can be adjusted as necessary with cost in mind. Increases in demand are never a hassle since databases can be assigned more resources through telemetry reports from efficient monitors - all presented in the Azure Resource Manager

    Bonus features at your fingertips:

    Azure Key Vault Integration with SQL Server IaaS VMs - encryption keys can now be stored in Azure, eliminating additional management costs and support overhead.

    V12 Portability - migration strategies are a thing of the past as SQL in Azure provides the ability to move databases across the cloud, off it or into such services as IaaS and Paas.

    Query Store - database metrics are stored in this handy location for access to performance. With the Query Store, historical data about databases can be compared for additional information necessary for management decisions.

    Polybase in the Cloud - allows for joining Azure Blob Storage to SQL Server tables for non-relational queries across cloud implementations.

    Azure SQL Database provides all the latest features of the database server engine with all the features of Azure mingled into a highly useful product for best performance, lowest cost, and flexible scalability. Comprehensive business consistency from backups and security coupled with development tools, alerts and monitors add more than worthy value. To learn more about Microsoft Azure SQL Database, contact our experts at RoyalDiscount.com - the Microsoft Licensing and Cloud experts. Get answers - Call today at 1-877-292-7712.


  • How SQL Database in Azure Works for You

    Microsoft's latest version of SQL is an industry standard being adopted for its incredible new features. However, Microsoft also included SQL Database as a service in Azure which includes integrated features of both while improving cloud databases with high performance with cost efficiency in mind.

    How SQL Database Works as a Service

     SQL as an Azure service works much the same as it does as an implementation with on-premise server installations. It retains all of it relational database features using relational data, JSON, spatial and XML. The difference lies within Azure itself where the service provides dynamic scalability, automatic performance-tuning, backups, security and much more. Here's how the service works.

    Whether you have one or thousands of databases, Azure's SQL database service works constantly with the fine-tuning of the database, learning the workload demands of a database to best manage it. Built on the same SQL coding as that of server-based implementations, the Azure version goes far beyond in the cloud-based environment. Such performance reduces the overhead of management while putting incredibly fast transactions into operation for businesses of all sizes using any variety of databases and applications. This leaves clients with the best performance while they can develop their applications for the market.

    Speed is everything to a database and Azure delivers it with up-time, security, backups, scalability and cost efficiency. Intelligent optimization is the key function surrounding all these features. The Azure SQL database service constantly accounts for performance which alerts you to problems and best growth recommendations, while monitoring for any intrusions that need attention as well as backing up the data whether it's full, differential or transaction logs.

    Scalability and Resource Management with Elastic Pools

    Scalability monitors alert you to the need of growth or retraction with ease all with cost in mind. The performance drives rising or shrinking needs and, thus, cost. Single databases can move into higher service levels without waiting or downtime. Larger databases can be moved into pools for best performance. The performance pools are elastic groups of databases which allow for rising and falling demand based on the intelligent heuristics of the service. A database managed in an elastic pool can be set to minimum and maximum performance counters to ensure that no database hogs resources. Additionally, the elastic pools provide automatic adjustment to expected changes in workloads based on the intelligent optimization of Azure SQL Database services. The pool performs in balance around the learned cycles of fluctuation allowing for best operation at the most efficient cost.

    There are four basic workloads available for Azure SQL databases:  Basic, Standard, Premium and Premium RS. Each allows for growth of databases without downtime as your database needs grow. As resource needs change, even rapidly, a database can growth to meet business needs while you pay for only what you need.

    Adaptability is the measure of Azure SQL database as single instances can be blended with elastic pools to meet growing needs with cost in mind. Databases can be mixed and matched depending on workload needs, even moved into and out of elastic pools for constant cost efficiency which equals savings for businesses.

    Determination of these changes and needs are achieved with Azure SQL Database monitoring and tools. The built-in performance monitoring and alerts combine to provide timely information to make financial decisions regarding databases both large and small. Database Transaction Units (DTU) and elastic DTU provide specific information upon which to base business decisions. Additionally, performance tuning can be integrated across a variety of Azure resources such as Azure Storage, Azure Event Hub and Azure Log Analytics.

    Business Consistency Features

    Azure SQL Database service and an incredible SLA-based support system keeps all resources up at all times. Available across a wide range of datacenters, the service is patched, secured and backed up without fail. Business continuity is ensured with automatic backups, point-in-time restores, active geo-replication, and failover groups.

    Automatic backups are performed in full, differential and transaction logs while allowing for point-in-time restores over the retention of the automatic backup. Meanwhile, active geo-replication allows for up to four active replications either at the same site or in a wide range of datacenter locations. High performance and load balancing are achieved with the use of failover groups which can take advantage of geo-replication.

    Built-in Intelligence at Work

     Like having a constant watchdog over your database needs, Azure SQL Database service provides a built-in intelligence which learns database patterns. This telemetry information allows for adaptation of database resources for constant performance tuning coupled with best business decisions. Never be at a loss for information that needs your attention.

    This automatic performance tuning has quickly become a staple of database management. Tools and monitors always adjust for changes while alerting owners of necessary information that needs attention. Development resources are maximized while management of SQL resources are largely automated. The main elements of this performance tuning are automatic index management and automatic plan correction. The former element automatically adds necessary indices or removes unnecessary ones. The latter element addresses plans and fixes those that are out of scope.

    Newer batch processing features are being added such as interleaved execution, batch mode memory grant feedback and batch mode adaptive joins. Each of new features will employ both the learning and adaptive models for increased performance, with the interleaved execution improving multi-statement table-valued functions.

    Additionally, adaptive threat detection has been achieved with SQL Database service on Azure such that a new layer of security is now available to identify any harmful intrusion attempts. Suspicious activity is always identified and recommendations offered for what actions are available to mitigate any attempts to breach or exploit data within the database.

    Security and Tools

    New advanced security provides additional layers of protection including audit logs, data encryption (both at rest and in motion), data-masking to non-privileged users, row-level security and compliance certification. Security also provides higher levels of authentication with Active Directory integration.

    Azure SQL Database also includes helpful tools such as the Azure portal, SQL Server Management Studio, data tools in Visual Studio and Visual Studio code.

    Azure SQL Database provides all the latest features of the database server engine with all the flexibility of Azure mingled into a highly useful product for best performance, lowest cost, and flexible scalability. Comprehensive business consistency from backups and security coupled with development tools, alerts and monitors add incredible value. To learn more about Microsoft Azure SQL Database, contact our experts at RoyalDiscount.com- your online source for cheap OEM, Retail & Cloud products.


  • Microsoft SQL Server 2017 New Features: Speed, Flexibility & More

    Overview

    Microsoft's SQL Server 2017 is now on the scene with more new features which offer faster processing, flexibility of use and cost savings as a result. Version 2016 provided numerous improvements which Microsoft termed as a big leap forward. If 2016 was a big leap, 2017 promises all that and so much more of what corporate customers need at any level. Added performance from Adaptive Query Processing, new flexibility with cross-platform capability and new integrations for statistical and data science analysis, this new version adds solid technology with cost savings. As companies look for nimble hardware and operating solutions, SQL Server 2017 offers database customers just what is needed in a diversified tech climate.

    New Features

    Days of slow queries and transactions will be over with an upgrade to SQL Server 2017. Microsoft packed even their lower-end versions with basic Adaptive Query Processing while the Enterprise (and Developer) boasts Advanced Adaptive Query Processing. Organizations with less demanding database needs will see benefits from the basic services while enterprise-class clients with heavier processing demands can ramp-up their processing with SQL Server too. Adaptive Query Processing speeds queries as much as 100 times faster while transaction also gets juiced by as much as 30 times previous versions. If you have the need, SQL Server 2017 has the speed.

    microsoft-sql-logo

    Improved Statistical and Data Science Analysis

    Microsoft wasted no time and effort in this newest version of SQL Server, adding integrations for R and Python. With advanced analytics, database performance is vastly improved. With all the new information and added graph data support, this latest version leverages BI even more than the 2016 version. Basic features are available in Express and Standard while Enterprise and Developer editions flex their database muscles with the advanced version.

     

    Cost Reduction? You've Got It!

    With the plethora of organizational needs abounding in today's business climate, Microsoft answered the bell with sensitivity toward diverse and changing needs. Customer looking for hybrid solutions as they grow will find that License Mobility provides nimble solutions as needed. If databases need to be moved to VMs on the cloud licensing provides that ability especially with HA use of active-passive licensing. Coupled with faster processing, easier upgrading and superior security, costs are driven down - and that's just the beginning.

     

    Cross-Platform Flexibility

    Open-source database providers may offer flexibility but Microsoft built SQL Server 2017 for even more functionality in many environments. Now available for use on Linux and Docker platforms, SQL Server can run anywhere and requires no third-part support and development while it reduces overall risks with it's industry-recognized security. Couple all these details with Visual Studio that can be coded for Linux and Mac OS and this database version of SQL is just what companies need whether it of the available three production editions: Express, Standard or Enterprise.

     

    Reasons to Upgrade - It's Easy

    SQL Server 2017 includes a solid bridge to upgrade from older SQL versions as far back as 2008 with an upgrade wizard. Additionally, when organizations need to shift over to the cloud or back, databases can be moved with ease using a migration tool. In the case of migration, Mobile Licensing as part of a Software Assurance package keeps cost lower.

     

    New Tools for New Uses

    Microsoft listened to the needs of its customers with its two latest versions, culminating with SQL Server 2017. In 2016, mobile availability and BI were key factors. With 2017, such features are well leveraged with analytics, better processing, development flexibility and platform flexibility all coupled with licensing and security that can better trusted to meet heavy demands. Whether it's on the cloud, on-premises or a hybrid of the two. IT providers can couple with Azure services and power databases like never before. Older implementations have simplified solutions with cost efficiency to upgrade while reducing risks from intrusion to data recovery.

     

    To learn more about SQL Server 2017, contact our licensing experts at Royal Discount.com- You're online source for OEM, Retail & Cloud software for cheap prices.

     

     

     

     


  • SQL Server 2012 vs 2014 Comparison

    sql-server-2012-vs-sql-2014-comparison

    What's the Difference Between SQL Server 2012 and SQL Server 2014?

    Microsoft’s SQL Server is providing its services as a Relational Database Management System (RDBMS) and now has become a compelling choice for the Enterprise RDBMS deployment. Several subsequent versions of SQL Servers have been released by Microsoft. Below is our guide to help you properly and safely license SQL Server.

    SQL Server 2012 Licensing Models

    There are two licensing models in SQL Server 2012:

    1. Core-Based Licensing
    2. Server and Client Access License (CAL) Licensing
    • For Enterprise Edition, you need Core-Based Licensing
    • For Business Intelligence Edition, you are required to have Server and CAL based Licensing.
    • For Standard Edition, you can choose between Core-Based Licensing and Server and CAL based licensing.

    Core-Based Licensing:   

    This mode of licensing is used when the number of users or clients are uncountable. The license is sold for two cores and a minimum of 4 cores licenses are sold for a server. Each process on each machine is required to have a minimum of 4 cores licensed otherwise it is not sold.

    Server and Client Access License Licensing:

    This mode of licensing is used when the number of users or the clients is pre-determined and when you know that the number is never going to grow. In this scheme, each machine that is a client needs a CAL and a server needs a separate license.

    Pricing:

     

    SQL Server 2014 Licensing Models

    There are two licensing models in SQL Server 2014:

    1. Core-Based Licensing
    2. Server and Client Access License (CAL) Licensing
    • For Enterprise Edition, Core Licensing is a requirement.
    • For Business Intelligence Edition, you are required to have Server and CAL based Licensing.
    • For Standard Edition, you can choose between Core-Based Licensing and Server and CAL based licensing.

    Core-Based Licensing:  

    This mode of licensing is used when the number of users or clients are uncountable. The license is sold for a pack of two cores and a minimum of 4 cores licenses are sold for a server. Each process on each machine is required to have a minimum of 4 cores licensed otherwise it is not sold.

    Server and Client Access License Licensing:

    This mode of licensing is used when the number of users or the clients is pre-determined and when you know that the number is never going to grow. In this scheme, each machine that is a client needs a CAL and a server needs a separate license.

    Pricing:

    $875 per Server

    $205 per CAL

    $3399 For the 2-Core

    Have questions about SQL Server 2012, 2014 or 2017 Licensing? Call our Microsoft Certified experts at Royal Discount. We've been helping businesses properly setup their SQL Server environments for over 15 years running. Get in Touch Here - 1-877-292-7712.


  • What's New - SQL Server 2016 Developers Edition

    SQL Server Developer Edition Features & Pricing

    SQL Server Developers Edition is a full featured edition of Microsoft SQL server. Developers prefer this version because it comes will all of the unlocked features, at no cost. Wondering if Developer's edition is right for you? There are many different ways to price & license SQL server. Keep in mind Developer's edition is primarily for building and testing. Learn more about the features and highlights below.

    Developers Edition Vs Standard

    SQL Server Developers Edition comes with all the bells and whistles of Enterprise Edition but in a non-production environment. This means those looking to run applications will need to opt for the standard version. SQL Dev Ed is used for the production, building and demonstration of applications. This version includes the full feature set of the Enterprise Edition. Moreover, Microsoft offers developer edition with no cost whatsoever with Visual Studio. Developers edition allows user to build web/mobile application for various data types.

    SQL Server Features & Licensing

     

    Features & Highlights

     

    ENCRYPTION

    SQL Server comes with an always encrypted feature. With this feature enable, your database is always encrypted with the SQL Server. Access of the database is restricted to the devices calling SQL Server only. This allows the data owner to control who has access to the database and stop the nosy Administrator from poking around. This is a welcome security edition.

    JSON SUPPORT

    SQL Server Developers Edition also supports JSON (Java Script Object Notation) just like the enterprise edition. JSON support enables you to exchange JSON data between applications and SQL database engine. Moreover, Developers can turn the relational data into JSON formatted data.

    QUERY STORE

    With the query store feature, SQL Server saves historical execution plans for the queries. It also saves the query statistics that go along with these historical execution plans. This great edition will help you to track performance of queries over time.

    ROW LEVEL SECURITY

    SQL Server comes with row level security which allows database engine to restrict access to rows based the SQL Server Login. Implementing this feature will exempt application developers from maintaining code to restrict data access to some logins.

    TEMPORAL TABLES

    A temporal table hold the old version of the records within a base table. SQL Server Developers edition now automatically manages moving old row versions to the temporal tables whenever the records are updated.

    R- SUPPORT

    Microsoft incorporates R-programing language in SQL server to support advance analytics against big data sets. This allows the Database administrators to run their existing R code inside the SQL Server database engine, thereby eliminating the need for exporting the database to perform these advance analytics.

    PolyBase

    PolyBase is a nifty feature that allows user to query distributed data sets. By using polybase user can write adhoc queries which join relational data from SQL Server with data stored in Hadoop or SQL Azure blob storage.

    DYNAMIC DATA MASKING

    This feature allows to obscure confidential columns in a database from users which are not allowed to view the. Dynamic Data Masking allows you to identify how to obscure the data. For instance, By using this feature you can define a mask that can limit a user’s view to only some digits of Credit Card Number.

    For more information on SQL Server, or to speak to a free licensing expert click here.