Peter Larsson Blog

Patron Saint of Lost Yaks

The one feature that would make me invest in SSIS 2012

This week I was invited my Microsoft to give two presentations in Slovenia. My presentations went well and I had good energy and the audience was interacting with me.

When I had some time over from networking and partying, I attended a few other presentations. At least the ones who where held in English. One of these was "SQL Server Integration Services 2012 - All the News, and More", given by Davide Mauri, a fellow co-worker from SolidQ.

We started to talk and soon came into the details of the new things in SSIS 2012. All of the official things Davide talked about are good stuff, but for me, the best thing is one he didn't cover in his presentation.

In earlier versions of SSIS than 2012, it is possible to have a stored procedure to act as a data source, as long as it doesn't have a temp table in it. In that case, you will get an error message from SSIS that "Metadata could not be found".
This is still true with SSIS 2012, so the thing I am talking about is not really a SSIS feature, it's a SQL Server 2012 feature.

And this is the EXECUTE WITH RESULTSETS feature! With this, you can have a stored procedure with a temp table to deliver the resultset to SSIS, if you execute the stored procedure from SSIS and add the "WITH RESULTSETS" option.

If you do this, SSIS is able to take the metadata from the code you write in SSIS and not from the stored procedure! And it's very fast too. Let's say you have a stored procedure in earlier versions and when referencing that stored procedure in SSIS forced SSIS to call the stored procedure (which can take hours), to retrieve the metadata. Now, with RESULTSETS, SSIS 2012 can continue in milliseconds!

This is because you provide the metadata in the RESULTSETS clause, and if the data from the stored procedure doesn't match this RESULTSETS, you will get an error anyway, so it makes sense Microsoft has provided this optimization for us.