The RDBMS product offering of Microsoft for the enterprise and desktop is the MSSQL Server. Since its first appearance as a product for the PS/2+OS/2 environment in the late eighties, it has evolved through several different versions. These versions have been released roughly at a 2 year interval. The very first product was a joint effort of Aston Tate and Sybase along with Microsoft. The MSSQL Server is the latest version until the general release of the version 2016 happens. The community technology preview product version of the 2016 upgrade has already been released. The SQL Server is a product completely owned by Microsoft.
By 2005 version, all the code owned by the other two companies has been replaced with Microsoft’s own efforts. The Microsoft SQL Server (MSSQL) grew from this codebase via the 2008, 2008 R2 (appeared in 2010) and the 2012 versions. With each of these releases Microsoft kept adding features. A few were dropped that were found to be not useful anymore. MSSQL Server adds features in keeping with the same tradition. The SQL Server 2014 builds on the feature set of the 2012 version. By this time the product was supporting 64 bit environment, support for XML and multimedia data types and many unstructured data through the file stream data type. The latest SQL Server is equipped for business intelligence and analytics support needed by businesses. Deriving business intelligence (BI) predictive and prescriptive analysis, often, up to 80% of the data could be unstructured. In memory operations, that has been built-in by now, is useful in carrying out BI analyses quickly enough.
While you could load small tables into memory in many earlier versions, with sql server 2014 lets you handle complete tables in memory. One can utilize a SSD buffer pool extension feature that can speed up the disk based SQL Server applications. The Microsoft SQL Server also offers AlwaysOn feature. With this feature, high availability of data bases and easy disaster recovery are possible quite easily. This feature of the SQL server 2014 database mirroring is possible, making it very simple for database fail-over Availability groups offered by this feature increases the availability of databases for a set of users. Through the availability groups a failover environment for a group of users could be created. Availability groups help handle failovers together. Failover actions could be automatic, manual or a forced manual failover in the SQL Server. These AlwaysOn features help meet the needs of the AlwaysOn business and the need for quick turnaround of Bi data.
Like all the other server products, MSSQL Server too comes in several versions. The free Express version of the SQL Server provides the opportunity to users to get familiar with the tool. The Express version has two other versions that offer features in addition to the standard limited set of features available for the Express edition. One of these SQL server 2014 Express versions is SQL Server Express with Tools, whereas the other is with advanced services. The tools offered include the basic management studio. The advanced services include full-text search and reporting services.
Microsoft released the first version of the software application MS SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) tool back with the SQL Server 2005 version. By then the base product SQL Server had grown so much in terms of features offered that there was a need for a tool that can help administer, set up, configure and, in general manage functions available to users. From June 2015, this tool was made free-standing and SSMS application started following a release history of its own. SQL Management Studio is essentially a collection of tools. It has graphical tools as well as script editors that work with the components or objects of the main product. This MS SQL Server Management Studio tools lets the database administrators and developers work with administering, configuring and managing these objects. For this purpose the SSMS includes an object explorer. Much in the fashion of the “windows explorer”, this object explorer lets you locate an object and act upon it. The SQL Server Management Studio received a complete makeover with the application being rewritten in Windows presentation foundation (much like the VB 2010). The user interaction with the studio components became much more consistent, simple and standardized.
Azure SQL Database also can be managed with the MS SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS). Tools available are useful whether you need to deploy data bases or data warehouses and other data-tier components in the end user application you are attempting to develop. Monitoring or upgrading of these components also is facilitated in the regular of the cloud version of the SQL Server product. It is possible to download and test the current version of the SSMS directly from Microsoft official website. A comprehensive set of tools in SQL Server Management Studio help you not only manage the database engine per se, but lets you manage the integration services, analysis services functions and the reporting service.
Besides the object explorer described earlier, the SSMS contains other components that helps manage all the database instances you may have running in an application. It is comparatively simple to set up common tasks. These may be functions like setting up keyboard short-cuts, viewing page properties, etc. How to connect to different instances of the database from the MS SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) are described. Methods to connect to analysis services from the studio are available too. The template explorer and the solutions explorer help build applications quicker and with lower error rates. A set of tool included as part of the SSMS will make the visual design of the user applications. Script editors were mentioned earlier. These tools in SSMS help building of queries and scripts interactively. Debugging these script snippets before you run and actual query based on them is also made simple. The latest release of the SQL Server Management Studio supports server versions from 2005 to the latest 2016 releases that include the support for the Azure cloud database. OS support supported by the latest SQL Server Management Studio includes Windows 10. Windows 2008 R2 and server 2012 both in 64 bit versions are supported. Support also continues for W7, SP1 as well as W8.
Each of Microsoft SQL Server products released over time comes in several versions and is directed for different user populations. However, what they have in common is that each new release of SQL Server always contains a version named SQL Server Express. In the 2014 version it is a free product that allows users to download and become familiar with the capabilities of the SQL Server. The SQL Server Express versions do not incorporate the full capabilities of the other commercial versions but do content the main features available for that particular release.
The SQL Server Express product has been available since the release of the server 2000. This particular variant of the SQL Server was specifically addressed to embedded and small scale applications acquired the brand ”Express” since its release with the sql server 2005 bundle. The restrictions imposed on the SQL Server Express versions include a maximum size of 10 GB per database. This limit has progressively increased through the product revisions. It was originally 2 GB in the first avatar of the product as released with the MSDE (first version of the SQL Server product). The database size limit increased to 10 GB from SQL Server Express editions of 2008 R2, 2012 and the SQL Server Express 2014. One is not allowed to use more than one CPU for the SQL Server Express edition products. You could use multi-core devices though. Analysis services or SQL Server agent services are not available for the SQL Server Express product variant (some variants of the Express version are available). Some usage limits exist. The SQL Server Express product variant will not be able to access more than 1 GB of RAM, even though the machine physically has more availability. The SQL Server Express variant with advanced services must have 4GB per instance of the reporting services.
The SQL Server Express editions do contain some of the very useful GUI tools. These include the
However some useful services that are excluded (compared to Standard and other higher level editions) from the SQL Server Express editions include Integration Services, Notification Services. Analysis Services also are not included. All of these are included in higher versions as SQL Services Analysis Services (SSAS). This service enhances the capabilities of OLAP and data mining features. These capabilities thus are going to be limited in capability in the SQL Server Express products. Analyzing and spotting the trends that can only be discerned across tables could not be done in the Express edition. Integration, reporting and analysis services are part of this SSAS package. OLAP, data mining, data warehousing and overall business intelligence capabilities will be limited with these products.
Overall, even though SQL Server Express edition has its limitations, it is a great tool to start to get familiar with SQL Server and its features.
At SQL Server Tutorial we are always happy to help with any questions regarding SQL Server Express or any other related topics. Please don’t hesitate to contact us!
The main product from Microsoft in the RDBMS category has been the SQL Database. The main query language supported is T-SQL which is the ANSI standard SQL extended by MS. MS SQL Server was first created for the PS/2 systems in collaboration with Sybase and Ashton Tate. The first release was in 1989, an updated version was released on average every two years. By the time the SQL Database 2005 version became available, the code base was completely owned by Microsoft and the SQL Database was offered as an independent product. Sybase developed a similar product with a similar sounding name.
Microsoft offers the product in a number of editions, including an Express version that is available for free. It is limited in features but does give you a good feel of what the SQL Database can do. The latest release has been Community Technology Preview which have been made public in April 2016. SQL Server 2016 became generally available on June 1, 2016
The SQL Database 2014 editions have changed over time. The different editions of the SQL Database in any specific release are addressed to different usage scenarios. There are six editions available with the SQL Database 2014. These include an Express edition, Enterprise edition, a Business Intelligence edition, Web edition, Developer edition, and a Standard edition.
The latest SQL Database 2014 has incorporated in-memory that improves performance significantly by letting users’ process complete tables to in-memory. This feature is available in all the editions of the sql database and allows minimizing the time for transporting data back and forth from disc. Even if the applications need to be disk bound, performance is enhanced through the use of extension of SSD buffer pool in the sql database. These solid-state drives can act as a cache between the hard drives and main memory. Full text search capabilities incorporated into the latest editions of the sql database.
Please contact us at SQL Server Tutorial if you have any further questions regarding SQL Server or SQL Server 2014 in particular. We are ready to help!
One of the best places to start looking, if you decided to learn T-SQL, is at its source or Microsoft’s resources. Microsoft offers T-SQL for querying its database, the SQL Server. Thus, one of the first places to look for T-SQL Tutorial would be the MSDN page. These resources have been updated for supporting T-SQL Tutorial for the latest SQL Server 2016. This T-SQL Tutorial takes the approach that the learner is new to writing SQL statements. It teaches such users write simple statements for creating tables in a database and how to insert data into such tables.
Transaction-SQL or T-SQL has extension to the standardize query language. The MSDN tutorial pages or the other popular T-SQL Tutorial pages available on-line focus on all the features of T-SQL. However, they do not focus on any comparison between the extended language and the standard one. The MSDN tutorial clearly declares its aim as giving the user an introduction and feel of the language only. The T-SQL Tutorial coverage does not include the production database complexities. In actual use case, it is recommended to use the SQL Server Management Studio. After going through the T-SQL Tutorial, user can start using the database references to find detailed information.
While practicing this particular SQL database you will learn how to create a database, create and delete tables. Insertion, deletion, updating, reading and deleting data pieces are another set of exercises in this T-SQL Tutorial. Configuring a database, creating a view and developing stored procedures are other functions that one can learn in these T-SQL Tutorial pages. While it is not necessary for the user to know SQL, basic database concepts need to be understood to assimilate the T-SQL Tutorial .
While this is a good starting point, there are several high quality tutorials available on-line that offer a very detailed information. These tutorials give you a complete overview of the T-SQL language.
If you interested in learning more about T-SQL Tutorial please don’t hesitate to contact us!
Microsoft’s SQL Server 2014 was released to the public on April 1 2014. This version of SQL Server has quite a few new features, the biggest one is by far the In-Memory OLTP engine that makes performance boost by up to 20x times. Get the latest version of SQL Server 2014 here:
Noteworthy product features as announced include the following,
Some of the limitations indicated for the CTP1 version of the SQL Server 2014 are listed below.
Downloading of the product and installation is easy. There is only one downloadable package at the site so simply download and install it. The installation is straightforward too. If you are from the early adopter community, this will give you an opportunity to get a good feel of the SQL 2014 version early on. By the time the production version comes along, you could be completely ready for moving your production applications to the new platform that is faster, more secure and has higher availability. If you want to learn more check out our SQL Server 2014 tutorials.
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