Microsoft® SQL Server® 2008 R2is an extension of Microsoft's SQL Server 2008 information management, access and delivery platform, adding even higher mission critical scale, more efficient server management, and expanded reporting and analytics for self service Business Intelligence (BI). It also includes many new features of particular interest to developers.
SQL Server 2008 R2 introduces to new premium editions for very large datacenters and data warehouses:
- SQL Server 2008 R2 Datacenter provides the highest levels of scalability for large application workloads, virtualization and consolidation, and database infrastructure management, supporting more than eight physical processors and memory limits up to the OS maximum.
- SQL Server 2008 R2 Parallel Data Warehouse is a highly scalable data warehouse appliance-based solution which uses a massively parallel processing (MPP) architecture to support data warehouses of tens or even hundreds of terabytes. It includes advanced data warehousing capabilities like Star Join Queries and Change Data Capture.
Benefits of upgrading from Microsoft SQL Server 2008
- Analyze streaming data in near real-time with StreamInsight
StreamInsight is a powerful platform you can use to develop complex event processing (CEP) applications within SQL Server 2008 R2 to process incoming data at high speed. It has been designed to handle large volumes of streaming data brought in from sources such as RFIDs and sensors and weblogs, enabling your applications to detect meaningful patterns, trends, exceptions, and opportunities in near real time.
- Improve the quality of your data and access a "single version of the truth" with Master Data Services
Master Data Services allow administrators to create a master data hub as a repository for your most important application data and to maintain it in a consistent, up-to -date state, ensuring that all your applications that need this data access a "single version of the truth." A web portal allows secure, role-based access to the master data so that authorized users can browse, edit, author, audit and approve it.
- Simplify application development, deployment, and management with Data-tier Applications
A data-tier application (DAC) contains all of the database and instance objects used by your application, providing a single unit for authoring, deploying, and managing your data-tier objects instead of having to manage them separately. Using a DAC allows you to integrate data-tier development more tightly with the development of your application code.
- Manage multiple servers more efficiently using Multi Server Administration
SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) has always been useful for managing a single SQL Server, but new features in SQL Server 2008 R2 make it easy to set up and enrol server instances, turning SSMS into a powerful tool for managing multi-server environments. The new control point explorer provides a dashboard view of all the servers under management, and administrators can drill down for utilization views of server instances and applications to make management easier and more efficient.
- Enhance your organization's BI capabilities with improved SQL Server Reporting Service
SQL Server 2008 R2 Reporting Services is a complete, server-based platform which enables you to deliver relevant information whenever and wherever it is needed. It can draw data from local sources, or connect to SQL Azure to create reports from applications run on Microsoft's cloud platform. Users can save report parts to a Report Part Gallery, and other users can then re-use them to make up their own reports (if they have the necessary permissions.) The new Reporting Service supports maps and geospatial visualizations with integration to Bing maps and can also use SharePoint lists and PowerPivot models as data sources.
- Put powerful BI tools into the hands of all users without losing control of data or security
SQL Server 2008 R2's PowerPivot Add-in for Excel® allows users to create "self service" BI applications drawing from multiple data sources in Excel, and to share models and reports with colleagues through Microsoft Office SharePoint® 2010. An important benefit is that the IT department can maintain control over these models and reports to ensure that data is consistently managed and up-to-date, and that they are only accessed by authorized users.
Benefits of upgrading from Microsoft SQL Server 2005
If your organization is currently running Microsoft SQL Server 2005 then you will also get the additional benefit from the large number of significant features that were introduced with SQL Server 2008:
- Reduce purchasing requirements by optimizing hardware with the Resource Governor
The Resource Governor, introduced in SQL Server 2008, helps solve the problem of poor application performance on older hardware, especially at peak times. It does this by enabling you to give priority to selected applications and to limit the resources that other workload groups are allocated, ensuring your selected applications always offer acceptable performance levels without the need to spend money upgrading your severs.
- Cut storage requirements and speed up backups and with compression
The data compression technology introduced in SQL Server 2008 can reduce your application storage requirements by as much as two thirds by compressing your tables, hardware indexes, partitions and backups. It can also speed up the backup process by reducing the number of writes required to complete one.
- Consolidate your applications on to fewer systems
Using multi-database support you can consolidate databases with similar security and compatibility requirements into a single SQL Server instance, using the Resource Governor to ensure that each one runs in line with to your performance requirements. If you have databases with different security or compatibility requirements you can also cut costs using multi-instance support to consolidate them onto a single physical server.
- Reduce your hardware, power and licensing costs though virtualization
Using Microsoft's Hyper-V hypervisor, introduced in SQL Server 2008, it's easy to virtualize and run multiple SQL Server virtual machines on a single physical machine. That means you can purchase and maintain less hardware, reduce power and cooling costs, and free up valuable data center space. You can also make significant licensing cost savings only one Windows license and one SQL Server 2008 R2 license is required per physical processor running in each host server, regardless of the number of virtual machines that run in them.
Microsoft Platform Ready program
If you are planning on developing an application for SQL Server 2008 R2 then the Microsoft Platform Readyprogram can provide valuable help and resources to ensure that your project is a success.
The program provides support during the three key phases of the process: development, testing and marketing:
- Development: You can download training resources and platform documentation including the Windows Server 2008 R2 Application Quality Cookbook and get support from the Windows Server 2008 R2 developer communities on the Microsoft Developers Network (MSDN) to help you in this phase. Microsoft Partners can also visit the online technical communities, with a guaranteed 8-hour turnaround time for all issues.
- Testing: To help your application qualify for Microsoft's "Works with Windows Server 2008 R2" logo program the program includes Microsoft's Software Certification Toolkit. This can identify possible compatibility and readiness issues and confirm your application meets the recommended requirements and test cases. Once qualified, your application can be listed on the Windows Server Catalog (Server Compatibility Center).
- Marketing: When your application has qualified, you can use the program's marketing toolkit. This contains customized marketing materials for your application including templates for emails, press releases, business letters, postcards and web banners. If you are a Microsoft Partner Network member you can also list your application on the Microsoft Pinpoint Marketplace.
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