Microsoft’s new database platform SQL Server 2008 R2 has gone RTM. This means that the code has been locked, and shipped to the DVD pressing company so that they can begin pressing the DVDs.
For those looking on MSDN or TechNet to download the RTM version, hold off. The final version will be released to MSDN and TechNet on May 3rd, 2010 and to Microsoft Volume License customers on May 13th, 2010.
Some of the features you can look forward to in SQL Server 2008 R2 include:
- StreamInsight which provides you a low latency event processing system, which is designed to import data in near realtime. StreamInsight is perfect for processing log files, or telephone call records which are contently processed into the platform.
- Master Data Services allows you to build a single point which holds your business data from multiple applications into a single repository.
- PowerPivot is probably the most talked about part of SQL Server 2008 R2 as this allows end users to enjoy the power of the SQL Server Analysis engine on their desktop so that they can create dynamic data applications where they can slice and dice the data any way they need to, without having to be connected to the SSAS instance.
- SQL Server 2008 R2 now fully supports Live Migration and Virtualization under Hyper-V.
- You can run SQL Server 2008 R2 on some of the largest hardware available, as SQL Server 2008 R2 supports 256 logical CPUs in a single server (with the data center edition).
If you are wondering if you have the RTM release of SQL Server 2008 R2, the build number for SQL Server 2008 R2 is 10.50.1600.1. If you have another build then you don’t have the RTM release.
As part of the release announcement Dave Jones from the Mississippi Department of Transportation gave an overview of how MDoT uses SQL Server 2008 R2 as an early adopter using PowerPivot, Report Builder 3.0 and SSRS to meet internal needs on a highly available clustered install.
We also heard from Ron Van Vanten from Premier Bank Card who is the Directing Officer of Business Intelligence. They manage over 40 TB of data under SQL Server, with a data warehouse which is over 20 TB in size. They are over 150 instances of SQL Server hosting this data. Premier Bank Card is using the self service features of SQL Server 2008 R2 such as SSRS, Report Builder and PowerPivot to empower its business users to make better decisions while reducing overall costs.
The third customer that we heard from was Ayad Shammout of Care Group Systems. Ayad talked a little bit about how PowerPivot was able to help their users quickly and easily learn how to analyze data without having to wait for IT resources.
The Parallel Scaleout Datawarehouse Edition has not gone RTM yet. It has gone into a second RC build, and will be released later this year.
There are some major changes in what each edition supports with SQL Server 2008 R2. Some of these include that Express supports 10 Gig databases. The SQL Server 2008 R2 standard edition will now include backup compression saving customers from needing to purchase a third party solution to get the backup compression which was introduced in SQL Server 2008.
Be sure to check out the SQL Server 2008 R2 official launch site http://www.sqlserverlaunch.com/.