SQL Server 2008

The Next-Generation of Microsoft's data platform!

Azure: Data Mining in the Cloud

SQL Server data mining has always been somewhat of an overlooked, niche technology. There are several logical reasons for SQL Server data mining’s slow adoption. First, there are few companies that take the time to consider if they can benefit from the technology (OLAP tends to be the technological “stop point” in modern day). Furthermore, there are few Information Workers (IWs) and technology professionals that are trained in data mining concepts. Finally, SQL Server data mining requires the availability of an installed SQL Server Analysis Services instance. I do believe that over time the first two reasons for SQL Server data...

MSFT Exam 70-455

This morning I passed my next exam, 70-455. This exam is the upgrade to SQL Server 2008 for existing MCITP BI professionals on SQL Server 2005. The exam's corresponding study guide can be found here: http://www.microsoft.com/learning/en/us/exams/70-455.aspx The exam provides 'scaled-down' versions of both the SQL Server 2008 TS/TP exams.

Change Data Capture w/o the SQL Server 2008 Relational Engine

With the arrival of SQL Server 2008 we gained access to a new feature called Change Data Capture (CDC). CDC enables you to constantly stream change data to a consuming process, most notably Extract, Transform, and Load (ETL) applications. In the SQL Server environment the ETL tool used is of course SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS). As a side note, one thing that has bugged me since studying CDC in SQL Server 2008 over the last several months has been Books Online (BOL) statement’s about CDC as a SSIS feature. There are a few instances of such statements, for example...

SQL Server 2008 RTM Today

My friends over at SQL Server Magazine posted this today...SQL Server 2008 RTM! http://www.sqlmag.com/Article/ArticleID/99953/99953.html Microsoft continues to up the 'ante' in the Business Intelligence space, cheers. Update: Official Press Release: http://www.microsoft.com/Presspass/press/2008/aug08/08-06SQLServer2008PR.mspx    

SQL Server 2008: RC0 New Features

Well, the new SQL Server 2008 build Release Candidate 0 (RC0) has been available for a bit now and I have had some time with the new build. The word "build" brings up a good point actually, before we go any further I want to review the last few SQL Server 2008 version numbers. You can retrieve your SQL Server 2008's database instance's version number using either @@Version or the serverproperty function, for more information see one of Euan's old posts here .The last few SQL Server 2008 versions are as follows: November 2007 CTP: 10.0.1075.23 February 2008 CTP:...

SQL Server 2008: Release Candidate 0 (June) Available!

Fellow SQL Friends, a colleague of mine notified me today of SQL 2008 (June) RC0's availability at: SQL Server 2008 RC0: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=35F53843-03F7-4ED5-8142-24A4C024CA05&displaylang=en SQL Server 2008 RC0 Feature Pack: http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=089A9DAD-E2DF-43E9-9CD8-C06320520B40&displaylang=en Cheers Derek

SQL Server 2008: Deprecated & Discontinued Features!

With the impending arrival of Microsoft SQL Server 2008 come several new enhancements. These enhancements can be categorized as new capabilities, old constraints removed, and improvements in scalability. In the SQL Server community (including this blog) you can find numerous amounts of information on the new features found in SQL Server 2008…however you seldom see much on deprecated features. Deprecated features are abilities of the new release which are either being removed completely or are being replaced by a future build of the software product. Discontinued features on the other hand are software features removed in the new release of...

SQL Server 2008: PowerShell (PSH) Integration

  Before I get into this new SQL Server 2008 feature I want to briefly review why we have a new command-line in the Windows platform…In the current Windows ‘landscape’ we have a variety of technologies that can be used to programmatically administer various Windows data stores: 1.       MS-DOS and Batch Files 2.       Windows Script Host 3.       VBScript/Jscript & COM Object Models 4.       CLR Languages & Managed Object Models This current Windows programmatic administrative environment is a mess to say the least and when you need to incorporate multiple data stores into a single ‘script’ it can be more challenging. What is needed is a single...

SQL Server 2008: SSIS Data Profiler Task

Finally, we have a Data Profiling Utility w/SQL Server !!! With SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) 2008 you will have access to the new Data Profiler task. The SSIS 2008 Data Profiler Task is an easy and effective method to profile your target source systems (tables & views) prior to building ETL solutions consuming their data. With the Data Profiler you can perform a variety of available 'profiles' against a SQL Server 2000 or later database using an ADO.Net connection. The output of the choosen profiles can be saved to an external XML file for viewing using a new standalone utility called the...

SQL Server Magazine May 08' Cover Story: Does SQL Server 2008 BI Merit Upgrade?

Long time no blog! I authored this month's (May 08') cover story on an interesting topic...Does SQL Server 2008 BI enhancements warrant an upgrade? It is quite the question and to be honest I dont think a 'one size fits all' reply would do the question justice AT ALL! For example, the scalability/performance enhancements found in the relational engine (ie Partioned Table Parallelism & Star Join Query Optimizations) are not applicable for a BI/SQL Server environment if the current cube processing/queries to the underlying schema are performing very well as is! If you do not perform any data profiling nor have...

Revisiting my book, "Professional SQL Server 2005 CLR Programming"

With the upcoming arrival of SQL Server 2008, the topic of CLR Integration (SQLCLR) is coming up alot again. Probably the biggest reason to use SQLCLR is to replace existing Extended Stored Procedures (XPs). According to SQL Server 2008 Books Online XPs continue to be a deprecated feature: "This feature will be removed in a future version of Microsoft SQL Server. Avoid using this feature in new development work, and plan to modify applications that currently use this feature. Use CLR Integration instead." Alot of folks are pinging me about my last book, "Professional SQL Server 2005 CLR Programming" due to SQL...

SQL Server 2008: The Data Collector

Based on CTP6 (Feb 08' build): Drop me a line and let me know your thoughts and experience with the new Data Collector subsystem! Its nice to get a few minutes to post a blog, things have been busy (which is good) .  More to come on some other things in a bit... I want to take a few minutes of your valuable time to give you a brief overview of the new SQL Server 2008 Data Collector (DC) subsystem. This post will be 1 of 2 on the topic of the Data Collecotr with the 2nd part serving as a more detailed tour of...

Migrating DTS to SSIS 2008

Hi Guys, I've pushed two solid posts on DTS to SSIS 2005 or 2008 on Scalability Expert's App Compat blog as of late. We have done some good work in the SQL2008 space and the blog contains some of our results, thoughts, etc... The DTS to SSIS posts are: The Key SQL Server 2008 BI Migration: DTS to SSIS 2008, Part 1 of 2 The Key SQL Server 2008 BI Migration: DTS to SSIS 2008, Part 2 of 2 Enjoy and please feel free to ask any...

SQL Server 2008: GroupBy Enhancements

Microsoft SQL Server 2008 introduces several enhancements & changes to how we group and aggregate relational result sets in TSQL. What follows is a simplistic listing and overview of the grouping/aggregate changes we are seeing in Microsoft SQL Server 2008 CTP5: 1.       New GROUPING SETS Operator 2.       ROLLUP & CUBE Operator Syntax Changes 3.       New GROUPING_ID() Function   GROUP BY Operator Addition: GROUPING SETS The first and most noted change in how we can perform relational grouping is the GROUPING SETS operator addition to the GROUP BY clause. This new operator allows you to perform several grouping set in one query. The older equivalent of this functionality is...

SQL Server 2008: Change Data Capture (CDC)

UPDATE #3 Another question I have received in the feedback portion of this blog post could be summarized as follows: "How does SQLCDC handle new columns being added to a source table being monitored/captured by SQLCDC?" I'll first address the inverse of this question. How does SQLCDC handle columns that are removed from a source table? The awnser is that SQLCDC does the best it can by not altering the source table's corresponding Change Table schema so as to not break any downstream consuming applications/services. And thus any columns dropped from the source table remain in the change table with NULLs being inserted...

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