sexta-feira, 29 de abril de 2016

Novo livro com lançamento previsto para 5 de Maio, 2016

Novo livro com lançamento previsto para 5 de Maio, 2016.

terça-feira, 19 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] SQL Server 2016 cloud backup and restore enhancements

This post was authored by Eli Fisher, Program Manager, SQL Server.

By backing up to the cloud, you can easily store a copy of your data offsite, allowing you to take advantage of cost-effective storage options. In SQL Server 2016, we have added significant enhancements to our backup technologies, making it easy to leverage the cloud for backups.

Backup to URL

With traditional on-premises backup strategies, storing backups can be difficult for reasons such as storage management, storage device failure and making backups geographically redundant. SQL Server Backup to URL allows you to easily backup directly to Microsoft Azure Blob Storage, removing the need to manage hardware for backups while also giving you the benefit of storing your backups in flexible, reliable and virtually bottomless storage.

In SQL Server 2016, we now support the use of block blobs to make this tool even more helpful.

  • Backup striping can be used to support backup sizes of up to 12 TB.
  • Faster backup and restore when using backup striping.
  • You can use shared access signatures to create SQL backup credentials that limit SQL Server’s access to a specific container, rather than the whole storage account.

Managed Backup

Currently, automating backups for multiple databases requires developing a backup strategy, writing custom code and scheduling backups. Using SQL Server Managed Backup to Azure, you can easily create a backup plan by specifying the retention period and the Microsoft Azure storage location. SQL Server Managed Backup to Windows Azure does the rest – scheduling, performing and maintaining the backups.

In SQL Server 2016 we have enhanced this feature to make it even easier to back-up your databases.

  • Full, bulk-logged and simple recovery models are all supported.
  • System databases can be configured for backups.
  • Backup striping can be used to support backup sizes of up to 12 TB.
  • Customer backup schedules can be specified to ensure your backups are created when it is best for your workload.
    Getting started with SQL Server 2016 Managed Backup is simple with our configuration guide.

You can also configure Managed Backup on a SQL Server Azure Virtual Machine with our Auto Backup feature. Simply follow the screenshot below when creating your virtual machine.

Creating a VM

File-Snapshot Backup

With traditional SQL Server backups, you need to stream entire copies of your databases and their logs into backup files. This can be both a time consuming and resource intensive process. When storing SQL Server Data Files directly in Azure Blob Storage, File-Snapshot Backup allows you to backup and restore data quickly, and with minimal impact on performance. As data in the blob changes over time, the snapshots continue to point to the data at the time when the snapshots were created.

Backup to Azure Blob Storage

Not only does this feature fully support point-in-time restore, but, unlike traditional point-in-time restore (where you need all the transaction log backups from the most recent full or differential backup before the point-in-time), File-Snapshot Backup only requires the backup before the point-in-time and the backup after the point-in-time. The image below compares using File-Snapshot Backup with what is required to restore to a place in the last log backup of a backup chain using traditional streaming backup. Note the difference in the number of backups required for File-Snapshot Backup.

Backup to Azure with File-Snapshot

To get started with File-Snapshot Backup, please follow our tutorial on Using Azure Blob Storage service with SQL Server 2016 databases and check out the File-Snapshot Backup Channel 9 video below.


With SQL Server 2016, we improved our hybrid backup feature set to help you be more productive and secure. With SQL Server Backup to URL we support much larger databases and provide you with more secure storage account backup configurations. With SQL Server Managed Backup we have made it easier to customize your backup configurations and backup your system databases. File-Snapshot Backup allows you to take nearly instantaneous backups and very fast restores of SQL Server Data Files directly in Azure Blob Storage.

Next steps

See the other posts in the SQL Server 2016 blogging series.

Try SQL Server 2016 RC

from SQL Server Blog

sexta-feira, 15 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] SQL Server 2016 Release Candidate 3 now available

We are excited to announce that our fourth and final SQL Server 2016 release candidate, SQL Server 2016 Release Candidate (RC) 3, is now available for download.

Our SQL Server Release Candidates represent important milestones in the release of SQL Server 2016, as the product is now essentially feature complete, and means that a very rich set of capabilities is now available. These include real-time operational analytics, rich visualizations on mobile devices, built-in advanced analytics, new advanced security technologies and new hybrid scenarios that allow you to securely stretch data to the cloud.

SQL Server 2016 RC 3 is the last of our publicly-available release candidates. You can try this in your development and test environments, and it is available for download today.

In SQL Server 2016 RC 3, enhancements consisted primarily of bug fixes. We continue to refine the product for general availability. For the current release notes, see SQL Server 2016 Release Notes.

SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services mobile reports and KPIs in the Android app for Power BI

We are also happy to announce a preview of the Power BI app for Android, with support for SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services. With this update you can seamlessly bring your on-premises data to your Android phone and stay on top of your business from anywhere with out-of-the-box mobile reports and KPI tracking. Read the Power BI blog post to learn more or click here to get started.

Download SQL Server 2016 RC 3 today!

To learn more, visit the SQL Server 2016 preview page. To experience the new, exciting features in SQL Server 2016 and the new rapid release model, download the preview and start evaluating the impact these new innovations can have for your business.


Join the discussion of the new SQL Server 2016 capabilities at MSDN and Stack Overflow. If you run into an issue or would like to make a suggestion, you can let us know at Connect. We look forward to hearing from you!

Try SQL Server 2016 RC

from SQL Server Blog

quarta-feira, 13 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Keep data virtually forever with Stretch Database in SQL Server 2016

This post was authored by Joe Young, Sr. Program Manager, SQL Server.

Stretch Database in SQL Server 2016 allows users to keep as much data as they need, for as long as they need, without incurring business service level agreement (SLA) risks or the high costs of enterprise storage. Unlike typical cold data solutions, by leveraging the endless storage and compute capacity of Azure your data is always online and most applications don’t require changes. DBAs only need to enable the database for stretch.

As organizations continue to accumulate massive amounts of data in their transactional systems, much of it eventually becomes cold, and therefore infrequently accessed. Overtime, individual tables can grow to millions or billions of rows and up to terabytes in size.

Stretch Database

For business and regulatory compliance purposes, users need the data to remain online and accessible on-demand. Storage administrators and IT managers are continually looking for ways to meet business goals with inadequate IT budgets. Meanwhile, DBAs are pulled in different directions by these conflicting goals, trying to keep database performance and availability within business SLAs as the database grows, even as maintenance windows and budgets continue to shrink.

Core scenarios

  • Stretch entire table: If you currently already have a dedicated table for cold data, you can stretch this entire table. For example, you may have an Order_details and an Order_details_history table where the Order_details_history table only contains cold data moved from the Order_details table.
  • Stretch cold rows: If you have hot and cold data in the same table, you can stretch just the cold rows from the table to Azure. You only need to define which rows are cold (usually by date or status) and SQL Server will take care of the movement.


With Azure SQL Stretch Database, you can leverage Azure on your terms:

  • Get as much enterprise-class storage as needed, when it is needed. Automated backup and geo-redundancy are available by default.
  • Scale compute and storage resources independently based on workload requirements—and only pay for what is consumed.
  • Centralize access control via integrated security for customers who federate their on-premises Active Directory with Azure Active Directory.
  • Leverage existing knowledge and tools such as SQL Server Management Studio, SQL Server Data Tools, T-SQL and PowerShell, while adding enhanced experiences via Azure portal.

And the best part is, most applications will require no code changes in order to take advantage of Stretch Database.

Base requirements

Stretch Database is only available in SQL Server 2016, so users will need to first upgrade their existing SQL Server database to 2016. It works with RC0 or later, which can be downloaded here. Customers will also need an Azure subscription to create a new SQL Server Stretch Database. Any subscription admin, co-admin, owner or contributor account will have this privilege. If you don’t currently have an Azure subscription, sign-up for a free trial subscription. Implementing Stretch Database generally requires little effort if your database does not have unsupported objects or features.

How it works

To get started, first identify either a cold table that you wish to stretch entirely or a table where you will stretch the cold rows. The actual process to enable Stretch Database is simple and can be accomplished via a SQL Server Management Studio wizard or via T-SQL. Details and step-by-step guidance is available on this documentation page.

As part of the Stretch Database process, SQL Server establishes a secure connection to Azure to create a new server (if you choose to do so) and a new Stretch Database (occurs each time a database is stretched). Once you have a table enabled for stretch, SQL Server will create a new table in the Stretch Database created earlier and begin migrating data silently in the background.

SQL Server always performs Stretch Database tasks over a secure channel and validates the target certificate; nothing is ever sent to Azure in clear text. It ignores user defined settings for this specific area to ensure users cannot accidently configure Stretch Database in an un-secure manner.

Data is trickled to Azure instead of a high volume migration. This ensures minimal impact to the production database. The entire system is online and applications continue working against the database throughout the entire process. Enabling Stretch Database does not incur downtime.

Enabling Stretch Database

Queries against a Stretch Database do not change. If the query needs to retrieve data from the remote database, the query processor automatically executes the query and pushes appropriate filters (WHERE clause) to the remote database for execution. Only required rows are returned and joined with local data, if any, and presented to the application/user. If the query does not require data from the remote database, the query processor will not execute the query remotely. This avoids the overhead and latency of the Azure roundtrip.

When Stretch Database is enabled, you can monitor its activity and progress in different ways. We offer Dynamic Management Views (DMVs) that provide current migration activity or schema update status. You can also view the overall status via the Stretch Database Monitor in SSMS (figure below). Full details are documented here.

Stretch Database Monitor in SSMS

After a period of time when a large percentage of the cold data has moved to Azure, you will see that important maintenance operations like backup/restore will take less time and fewer resources. This is because the cold data in Azure no longer affect these operations.

So, how big of an impact can this have? As for impact, that really depends on how large the tables have gotten and what your business SLAs are. The largest single table we’ve found working with customers is 45 billion rows (and growing), with about 99% of that being cold data. All of it needs to be online and query-able at any time, although actual access to cold data is rare. Imagine you were the DBA and were tasked with index maintenance for that table. If that weren’t big enough for you, the largest partitioned table we found with a customer is 1.3 trillion rows (and still growing rapidly).

While these are pretty extreme examples, they do show what the future holds. Most users today are well below the billion-row range, but still face similar challenges.

Next steps

Download the latest release of SQL Server 2016 if you haven’t already done so, and check out Stretch Database running against the new Stretch Database service in Azure. Share you experiences with us and let us know what works and doesn’t work for you.

Finally, if you have a really large table or even a lot of moderately large tables, we’re very interested in working with you. Talk to us in the comment section or on MSDN.

Learn more

For more information and to get started, check out the following links:


See the other posts in the SQL Server 2016 blogging series.

Try SQL Server 2016 RC

from SQL Server Blog

[From Technet] Microsoft releases the latest update to Analytics Platform System (APS)

Microsoft is pleased to announce the release of Analytics Platform System (APS) Appliance Update (AU) 5. APS is Microsoft’s scale-out Massively Parallel Processing fully integrated system for data warehouse specific workloads. Powered by industry-leading SQL Server as its core engine, APS leverages PolyBase, the tool that allows for integrated querying between relational and non-relational data technology, for Hadoop/Big Data integration.

The AU5 release offers customers greater Transact-SQL (T-SQL) compatibility to aid in migrations from SQL Server and other platforms as well as improved connectivity and integration with Hadoop. The AU5 release also includes support for faster data loading scenarios through both first party Microsoft and 3rd party tools. These features continue to provide greater alignment with SQL Server and bring significant value to our customers.

APS hardware partners Dell, HPE and Quanta Cloud Technology will ship APS with AU5 starting this month. Specific shipping dates will vary depending on the hardware partner’s factory process.

This update delivers several new capabilities and features, including:

PolyBase/Hadoop enhancements

  • Support for Hortonworks (HDP 2.3) and Cloudera (CHD5.5)
  • String predicate pushdown to Hadoop for improved performance
  • Support for National/Government cloud storage and public Azure data sets
  • Apache Parquet file format support

Data loading

  • BCP support for additional data loading scenarios
    • Supports the bcp.exe command line interface for simple data import/export scenarios
    • .NET SqlBulkCopy class support for custom application integration
  • Support for SQL Server Native Client OLE DB and the Bulk Copy API unlocking access by many 3rd party ETL, reporting and analytic tools

T-SQL compatibility improvements to reduce migration friction from SQL SMP

  • sp_prepexec: A common dynamic query preprocessor model that allows customers to simplify migrations
  • SET NOCOUNT and SET PARSEONLY set statements used across a variety of customer’s scenarios
  • IS_MEMBER() and IS_ROLEMEMBER() in support of Windows Authentication
  • CREATE TABLE as HEAP option allows customers to explicitly define heap, in addition to clustered index, or clustered columnstore index tables which aligns DDL with the SQL

Data Warehouse service

Based on early testing and feedback, we are seeing a performance improvement of up to 30% for short running queries.

In addition to the above, we are also offering an early preview of Adaptive Query Processing which can automatically re-optimize query execution mid-flight. Please note that Adaptive Query Processing is currently in beta. Any customers wishing to participate in the beta should contact their support representative.

Please visit the Analytics Platform System portal to learn more.

from SQL Server Blog

terça-feira, 12 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Beyond end-of-support: Seeing value in modernization

This post was authored by Tiffany Wissner, Senior Director, Product Marketing.

Today is the last day of extended support for SQL Server 2005. Starting tomorrow, companies running SQL Server 2005 will no longer receive security updates or hotfixes from Microsoft. We started on this journey eighteen months ago, with our first discussion on the end of support for SQL Server 2005, and sharing information about how to upgrade. If you haven’t migrated your SQL Server 2005 databases to a newer version of SQL Server, now is the time to put in place a plan for action.

While we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that these customers will now run a much greater risk for business disruptions, increased maintenance costs and security and compliance issues, there is another hidden cost to running an older system that can potentially be much larger over time — lost opportunity.

In 2016, the world looks much different than it did in 2005. With our smart mobile devices, much more powerful hardware, intelligent applications and cloud computing, an older database solution can be a limiting factor to an organization’s competitiveness. Modern systems like SQL Server 2014 or the soon-to-be-released SQL Server 2016 give organizations the flexibility to deploy on-premises or in the cloud, to manage modern apps and create a host of business scenarios that simply weren’t possible a decade ago.

“From our unique vantage point of successfully running SQL Server modernization programs for diverse customers two things clearly stood out. First of all, modernization comes with better performance and scalability. Secondly modernization drives a culture change. Companies start treating data as an asset and the SQL Server ecosystem helps them to make smarter decisions with actionable insights with an immediate positive business impact, with the integration of Power BI, R Server, Azure Machine Learning and Cortana giving insights that were previously not available.” – Debu Dasgupta, Vice President of Technology and Microsoft Evangelist, Cognizant Technology Solutions

Recognizing this, many companies have already undertaken their upgrades from SQL Server 2005 to more modern platforms. We recently worked with Spiceworks to survey hundreds of these customers to understand where they were in the process, which platforms they were migrating to, obstacles, costs and other factors. The report found that the majority of SQL Server 2005 customers are either fully or partly migrated.  With data on fellow customers’ upgrade plans and durations, and the benefits these customers achieved through upgrade, it is a great read for companies still considering the move.

Case in point: Pact Group

A SQL Server upgrade can be a powerful business differentiator. Australian packaging manufacturer Pact Group has acquired 44 companies since 2002, and has a five-year plan to continue its aggressive expansion — averaging four new acquisitions each year.

To facilitate the plan, Pact has moved its SAP stack, which was running older Oracle and SQL Server databases, into Microsoft Azure, Windows Server 2012 R2 and SQL Server 2014, resulting in several benefits. For one, they’re now working under a consumption-based model hosted on Microsoft Azure, providing massive scalability and enabling them to incorporate acquisitions without the associated cost of provisioning on-premises IT.

The company’s ability to spin up virtual machines has gone from two weeks to just minutes. Now Pact can respond quickly with near-unlimited capacity when managing a merger, then scale back when it’s complete, paying only for what they use. Further, each of Pact’s main platforms in now mirrored in the cloud, giving them a true disaster recovery solution for the first time. They’ve also reduced database storage needs by 75%, from 10 terabytes to 2.5 terabytes.

Looking ahead, the company is exploring the platform’s ability to integrate with a variety of sensors, an IoT approach with the potential to create valuable new efficiencies and insights.

The path forward

What Pact has been able to accomplish would not have been feasible if they’d remained on their legacy, on-premises SAP systems powered by older versions of SQL Server, Windows Server and Oracle. By upgrading its systems, the company has literally enabled its own business plan, put itself on the path for continued growth, and opened the door for new possibilities down the road.

Not every company is a large multinational like Pact, but the benefits of elasticity, agility and connectivity that enables a rich new flow of data are largely the same for organizations of all shapes and sizes. And of course security and compliance are important concerns wherever you do business.

With all this in mind, Microsoft strongly encourages customers currently using SQL Server 2005, SQL Server 2008 or SQL Server 2008 R2 (the latter two will sunset in 2019) to review their technology needs and see how an upgrade to a modern database platform can make a real transformation in your business.

For a deeper run-down of the benefits of SQL Server 2014, take a look at a blog post from Takeshi Numoto, Corporate Vice President of Cloud + Enterprise Marketing from last October.

If you’re just getting started, these informational blog posts will serve as great resources. You can also visit the SQL Server 2005 upgrade page for more information on planning and executing your migration, along with options for your new database strategy. The analyst firm Directions on Microsoft has also issued a paper on planning your data platform upgrade: “Migrating from SQL Server 2005,” available here.

As always, Microsoft and our partners are still here to help you complete your migrations. Many of our partners have been helping customers modernize their SQL Server install base, and they say customers are recognizing new value in their updated solutions.

“We see the EoS of SQL Server 2005 as a big opportunity for large organizations. Data being the fabric of the digital enterprise, modernization starts with the designing the data layer as appropriate on the cloud or on to the latest on-premises solutions. We are excited about our partnership with Microsoft on SQL Server 2005 modernization program to help large enterprises create a digital data farm migration roadmap.” – Eravi Gopan, Head, Microsoft BU, WIPRO LTD

from SQL Server Blog

segunda-feira, 11 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Mark your calendar: Satya Nadella to keynote Microsoft Ignite in Atlanta

Satya Nadella at Ignite 2016

We’re pleased to announce that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella will deliver the opening keynote at Microsoft Ignite 2016 in September. During the keynote, Satya will provide his unique perspective on the technology trends shaping the future of business and enabling powerful new ways for people and organizations to work.

And that’s just the beginning…

We’re working to deliver an amazing line up of product experts, top Microsoft executives and industry visionaries at Microsoft Ignite, making it the event for IT decision makers and professionals to get hands-on learning and industry insights. Stay tuned for more Ignite conference news in the coming weeks.

Join us.

Register now to join the IT community in Atlanta, GA from September 26 – 30.

from SQL Server Blog

quinta-feira, 7 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Deliver modern reports with SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services

This post was authored by Riccardo Muti, Senior Program Manager, SQL Server Reporting Services.

Why should you upgrade your reporting platform? You might think of it as a cost of doing business considering your operational processes that depend on it, but recent research suggests that it can be a strategic investment as well.

Forrester Research recently noted that “Companies with richer, more accurate information about their customers and products than their competitors will gain substantial competitive advantage” (Forrester Research, The Forrester Wave™: Enterprise Business Intelligence Platforms, Q1 2015). Indeed, a modern reporting platform is critical to delivering valuable information to the right people in the right format.

Today’s leading organizations have realized the return on this investment and are continuing to invest to stay ahead: the fastest-growing companies (those growing faster than 15% year-over-year) planned to invest 38% more of their IT budgets in business analytics and reporting than did their slower-growing competitors.

Historically, organizations needed to produce reports in the traditional form of paginated documents, ideal for exporting to Word or PDF or for printing. They needed to produce “fixed” layout documents that always looked “exactly so,” even though people may have been using different computers and screen resolutions to view them. Organizations still face these needs, but with many enterprise reporting platforms developed years ago, designing modern-looking reports can be a challenging and tedious task.

Meanwhile, technological shifts have influenced the way we work and organizations’ reporting requirements have grown more varied and challenging. Business users are doing more and more on their mobile devices and need to view reports on smartphones and tablets while they’re away from their desks. Solutions originally designed for PCs, however, often deliver a suboptimal experience. If you’ve ever tried to view a report layout designed for a landscape-orientation PC screen or for an 8.5″ x 11″ document on a smartphone, you’ve probably found the experience cumbersome.

SQL Server Reporting Services

Since its introduction 12 years ago, SQL Server Reporting Services has emerged as a market leader and key component of Microsoft’s business intelligence platform – the most-adopted enterprise BI platform, based on a 2014 survey (Forrester Research, 2015). Countless organizations run their operations on Reporting Services and rely on it to deliver information critical to their success.

SQL Server 2016 overhauls Reporting Services to provide a modern, on-premises solution for deploying and managing reports within your organization. You can continue to create traditional, paginated reports (what you’ve always thought of as Reporting Services reports), plus you can now create mobile reports that are optimized for smartphones and tablets. To top it all off, you have a modern web portal where you can view all your reports in one place.

SQL Server Reporting Services

Modern paginated reports

SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services modernizes and enhances paginated reports in several ways. As a report designer, you’ll find modern styles for charts, gauges, maps and other data visualizations, enabling you to create beautifully modern reports more quickly and easily than ever. In addition to the pre-existing chart types, you’ll find two new ones – Treemaps and Sunburst charts, which are ideal for visualizing hierarchical information. And as you design parameterized reports, you now have direct control of the position of each parameter so you can arrange them the way you like, including across several columns to make the best use of wider screens.

Daily Store Report

To design reports, you’ll find modern versions of familiar tools. For example, Report Builder now sports a modern look-and-feel. And if you’re a developer who prefers designing reports in Visual Studio, you can now do so in Visual Studio 2015, where you can take advantage of Visual Studio projects, source control and more. When developing report logic or custom extensions to the platform, you can now write or integrate with code using the .NET Framework 4.6. When it comes to development environments, Forrester ranked Microsoft’s BI platform the strongest, with a 5.00 rating on a five-point scale (Forrester Research, 2015).

You’ll find a number of new features when viewing reports as well. In addition to exporting reports to Word, Excel, PDF and other formats, you can also export them to PowerPoint presentations. Report items become individual PowerPoint objects, so you can move and resize them to customize your presentation. Likewise, in addition to monitoring important metrics and trends by delivering reports to your email inbox, you can now pin report charts, gauges and maps to your Power BI dashboards.

Responsive mobile reports

Responsive Mobile Reports

SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services introduces mobile reports to address the need for responsive-layout reports that adapt to different screen shapes, sizes and orientations. Mobile reports dynamically adjust the content depending on whether you’re using a phone, tablet or PC, and even as you rotate your device.

Mobile reports are built on Datazen technology that Microsoft acquired in 2015 and on the idea that a “mobile-first” approach, designed from the outset for mobile devices, delivers the optimal experience for viewing reports on phones and tablets. You can create mobile reports using the SQL Server Mobile Report Publisher app and view them using either the Power BI mobile app or your browser. (A preview is available today in Power BI for iPhone and iPad, and coming soon to Power BI for Windows and Android).

Paginated reports and mobile reports are complementary; you can choose the type of report that best fits your needs on a case-by-case basis. When you need to generate and deliver a precisely-formatted document, you’ll want a paginated report; when optimizing for phones and tablets, you’ll want a mobile report.

We’ll take a closer look at mobile BI in SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services in an upcoming post.

A modern web portal to view all your reports

Web Portal

With SQL Server 2016 Reporting Services also comes a modern web portal where you can view and manage all your reports – both paginated and mobile, in one place. Built from the ground up on HTML5 technology and designed for modern browsers, it works great across Edge, Internet Explorer 10 and later, Chrome, Firefox and Safari.

The web portal also introduces features such as key performance indicators (KPIs), a way to monitor important metrics and trends at a glance:

Monthly Sales

You can now favorite the KPIs and reports that matter most to you and see them in one personalized view without the clutter. As an organization, you can even customize the web portal with your logo and color scheme.

A roadmap for the future

Reporting Services features prominently in Microsoft’s reporting roadmap as the on-premises solution for delivering reports to users. SQL Server 2016 advances that roadmap with the overhaul of Reporting Services into a modern reporting platform and the addition of mobile BI. Looking beyond SQL Server 2016, you’ll be able to publish Power BI Desktop reports to Reporting Services as well, providing an on-premises solution for self-service BI.

Try it now

Download SQL Server 2016 RC and try the new Reporting Services today. It works with current and previous versions of SQL Server Database Engine, so whether or not you’re upgrading your databases, you can upgrade to a modern reporting platform. To learn more, read the Reporting Services team blog, join the conversation on Twitter: @SQLServerBI (#SSRS) or check out the video below.

See the other posts in the SQL Server 2016 blogging series.

Try SQL Server 2016 RC

from SQL Server Blog

terça-feira, 5 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Security and flexibility with SQL Server 2016’s hybrid cloud solutions

The cloud is now a fact of business life, and adoption is growing fast. Findings from a 2016 survey by RightScale found 95 percent of respondents are now using the cloud. Perhaps more noteworthy is the increase in hybrid cloud adoption from 58 percent to 71 percent year-over-year.

The fact that the cloud has become so ubiquitous — coupled with the fact that data is driving business success, raises the question: What is the best way to extract the highest value from both the cloud and a data platform?

In other words, does it make more sense to get native cloud capability built into your data platform with SQL Server 2016? Or does it make sense to spend a lot of extra money cobbling together cloud capabilities onto Oracle and to pay for costly support in order to piece it all together?

Microsoft has invested heavily in the former option, building cloud capabilities into SQL Server. SQL Server 2016 is architected to work smoothly with the cloud in a hybrid environment that helps organizations realize the benefits of hyperscale cloud. And SQL Server and Microsoft Azure work better together because the Microsoft hybrid cloud technology provides a consistent set of tools and processes between on-premises and cloud-based environments. This means that SQL Server 2016 is designed to work in a hybrid cloud environment in which data and services reside in various locations.

As a result, it is now much easier to move databases to the cloud. The list of scenarios supported in the SQL Server 2016 wave includes Stretch Database, Always Encrypted, faster hybrid backups and high availability, and disaster recovery scenarios to back up and restore on-premises databases to Microsoft Azure and place SQL Server AlwaysOn secondaries in Azure.

Upcoming blogs from engineers working on these capabilities will cover the technical details. To set the stage for those drilldowns, it’s important to have an overview of the business implications of some of the hybrid cloud functionality built into SQL Server.

Stretch Database – built-in innovation, only in SQL Server

The mounting cost of storing ever-expanding amounts of data is an issue facing most organizations. In fact, many companies don’t accurately know the actual cost they’re incurring for data storage per gigabyte per month. Hardware, maintenance and software required for data storage are generally tracked, but the time DBAs invest is not.

And that time could be significantly affecting how much bandwidth employees have to perform productive, non-maintenance tasks and strategic efforts. (To learn more, see Joe Yong’s Channel 9 presentation, “Stretching On-Premises Databases to the Cloud.”)

To appreciate the impact on the DBAs’ time, consider that it’s not uncommon for a single Online Transaction Processing (OLTP) table to have a billion unpartitioned rows, or considerably more. This means that backup and restore times could require many hours, especially if the data set includes cold data (i.e., infrequently accessed data) that needs to be brought back online to complete a full database restore. Because business users require IT to retain cold data, this situation can mean increasingly high storage costs and the likelihood that IT and business will have to deal with an inability to meet Service Level Agreements (SLAs) for operations, such as database indexing and backup and restore.

To address this productivity hit and to transparently offer near-infinite capacity with low TCO storage, Microsoft has introduced the revolutionary SQL Server 2016 Stretch Database, which no other database vendor can provide today or in the near future.

Giving real-world and community context to the business impact of this unmatched technology, SQL Server expert and consultant, Mike Lawell of Linchpin People, explains: “Stretch Database is a feature we’ve all dreamed about but couldn’t imagine ever being implemented. It will allow production databases to offload ‘older’ [cold] data to an ‘archive’ location in the Microsoft Azure cloud without losing access to the data. This is huge for the clients that refuse or are unable to let go of their data. Many enterprises need quick access to their data for compliance reasons, and now they can now push that data up to the cloud. This will save large amounts of money in storage cost and still allow ready access for compliance audits.”

Always Encrypted

As data becomes the center of digital business, IT security has to be focused on data. For more information, see the July 10, 2015, Forrester report (The Future Of Data Security And Privacy: Growth And Competitive Differentiation Vision: The Data Security And Privacy Playbook). With this focus, organizations need to think of data security and privacy as a way to differentiate themselves from their competition. For example, companies that can assure that customer and business data are secure have a competitive edge over companies that don’t make data security a priority. So to remain competitive,  business and technical decision makers need a data platform with built-in security, and they need a strategy that takes advantage of such capabilities.

SQL Server has built-in security that includes Always Encrypted, a feature that gains important new and unique enhancements in SQL Server 2016. With Always Encrypted, SQL Server is the first data platform that provides query-able encryption. Now, data can be encrypted while at rest and in motion (both on-premises and in the cloud), and the new Transparent Queryable Encryption lets users query that data while it is encrypted, with very little overhead.

With Always Encrypted, SQL Server 2016 helps organizations guarantee that the data and the corresponding keys are never seen in plain text on the server. Always Encrypted capabilities ensure that DBAs and other high-privileged but unauthorized users cannot access sensitive data stored in a SQL Server database.

As we believe the cited Forrester report highlighted, excellent data security can help organizations compete. And if there is any doubt about the importance of advanced security technology, consider the results of a recent independent study by King Research, “Enterprise Application Security Market Research Report.” For this study, more than 400 InfoSec professionals rated the importance of various criteria for selecting security products on a scale of 1 to 10. Respondents rated “Security Advantage by Using Superior Technology” at a very high 7.5 on that scale.

SQL Server 2016 Always Encrypted technology helps protect your data at rest and in motion, on-premises and in the cloud, with master keys sitting with the application, without application changes. SQL Server provides superior data platform security technology that can serve as the foundation for a comprehensive data security strategy to help your organization compete.

Simplify operations

As upcoming technical blogs will explain in detail, SQL Server 2016 enhances the built-in administrative tools that work with the cloud, including backup to Azure, migration of on-premises SQL Server to Azure and the ability to easily add an Azure node to an AlwaysOn Availability Group in a hybrid environment.  In addition, SQL Server has several options for backing up to Azure, including managed backup, backup to Azure Block Blobs and Azure Storage snapshot backup. SQL Server 2016 has made enhancements in each of these backup options.

Built-in value

All of this built-in cloud functionality makes SQL Server the industry leader in value. Microsoft continues to build in innovation so that organizations do not have to purchase expensive add-ins in order to get the benefits of the cloud with security, simplicity and consistency across on-premises and the cloud.

See the other posts in the SQL Server 2016 blogging series.

Try SQL Server 2016 RC

from SQL Server Blog

segunda-feira, 4 de abril de 2016

[From Technet] Preview the Microsoft JDBC Driver 6.0 for SQL Server

We are pleased to announce the second community technical preview release of the Microsoft JDBC Driver 6.0 for SQL Server! The updated driver provides robust data access to Microsoft SQL Server and Microsoft Azure SQL Database for Java-based applications.

What’s new

Always Encrypted

You can now use Always Encrypted with the Microsoft JDBC Driver 6.0 for SQL Server Preview. Always Encrypted is a new SQL Server 2016 and Azure SQL Database security feature to prevent sensitive data from being seen in plaintext in a SQL instance. You can now transparently encrypt the data in the application, so that SQL Server will only handle the encrypted data and not plaintext values. If a SQL instance or host machine is compromised, an attacker can only access ciphertext of your sensitive data. Use the JDBC Driver 6.0 Preview or ADO.NET driver to encrypt plain text data, store the encrypted data in SQL Server 2016 CTP (and above) or SQL Azure Database. Likewise, use the driver to decrypt your encrypted data.

Internationalized Domain Names (IDNs)

IDNs allow your web server to use Unicode characters for server name, enabling support for more languages. Using the new Microsoft JDBC Driver 6.0 for SQL Server Preview, you can convert a Unicode serverName to ASCII compatible encoding (Punycode) when required during a connection.

Table-Valued Parameters (TVPs)

TVP support allows a client application to send parameterized data to the server more efficiently by sending multiple rows to the server with a single call. You can use the JDBC Driver 6.0 Preview to encapsulate rows of data in a client application and send the data to the server in a single parameterized command.

Azure Active Directory (AAD)

AAD authentication is a mechanism of connecting to Azure SQL Database v12 using identities in AAD. Use AAD authentication to centrally manage identities of database users and as an alternative to SQL Server authentication. The JDBC Driver 6.0 CTP allows you to specify your AAD credentials in the JDBC connection string to connect to Azure SQL DB.

AlwaysOn Availability Groups (AG)

The driver now supports transparent connections to AlwaysOn Availability Groups. The driver quickly discovers the current AlwaysOn topology of your server infrastructure and connects to the current active server transparently.


We are committed to continuously update the JDBC driver to bring more feature support for connecting to SQL Server, Azure SQL Database, and Azure SQL DW. Please stay tuned for upcoming releases that will have additional feature support. This applies to our wide range of client drivers including PHP 7.0, Node.js, ODBC, and ADO.NET which are already available.

from SQL Server Blog