Microsoft’s cloud-connected on-prem database: SQL Server 2022 rolls out in non-public preview


SQL Server 2022’s “hero capabilities”

Credit score: Microsoft

At Microsoft’s Ignite digital occasion this week, the corporate is saying the non-public preview of SQL Server 2022, the following model of its three-decades-old relational database administration system (RDBMS). Although SQL Server is primarily an on-premises software program product, Microsoft is nonetheless calling SQL Server 2022 “essentially the most Azure-enabled launch of SQL Server but.”

Additionally learn: At Ignite, Microsoft enhances its cloud database, warehouse and lake providers

Whereas the earlier launch (SQL Server 2019) centered on core options like Azure Information Studio, Massive Information Clusters, and help for Java saved procedures, this launch focuses closely on rounding out Microsoft’s hybrid cloud story. This ensures SQL Server 2022, even when it runs on-premises, can combine with numerous providers accessible solely within the cloud.

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Hyperlinks to Managed Occasion and Synapse

These cloud-connected options embody integration with Azure SQL Database Managed Occasion — the Microsoft-managed, cloud-based deployment of the SQL Server field product. This integration serves each excessive availability/catastrophe restoration (HA/DR) functions in addition to makes migration to the cloud a easy, near-zero-downtime expertise. One other Azure SQL affinity functionality is SQL Server 2022’s implementation of the ledger function in Azure SQL Database, which was introduced in Could of this 12 months, bringing the identical blockchain capabilities to SQL Server.

Microsoft can also be utilizing the 2022 launch as a automobile to introduce an SQL Server model of Azure Synapse Hyperlink. Much like its counterpart for Cosmos DB, Azure Synapse Hyperlink for SQL Server 2022 replicates knowledge from SQL Server into Azure Synapse Analytics, letting prospects keep away from the accountability of making their very own knowledge pipelines to push operational knowledge into the info warehouse. There are essential variations between the Cosmos DB and SQL Server implementations, although. Whereas Azure Synapse Hyperlink for Cosmos DB basically replicates knowledge right into a columnar storage repository that may function an extension to the Synapse knowledge lake, the SQL Server counterpart pushes the info immediately right into a Synapse devoted SQL pool that serves the platform’s knowledge warehouse workloads.

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Governance and efficiency

SQL Server 2022 additionally options integration with Azure Purview, which assures that the cloud-based knowledge governance platform encompasses SQL Server knowledge, bringing knowledge saved on-premises into its governance scope. That scope even contains propagation of Purview insurance policies for centralized administration of administration operations.

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On the efficiency facet, SQL Server 2022 provides help for multi-write replication, creating corresponding a number of learn replicas. This facilitates SQL Server Question Retailer’s enablement of question hints for the a number of replicas, bettering efficiency with out requiring a rewrite of Transact SQL (T-SQL) code. One other function, known as Parameter Delicate Plan Optimization, robotically permits the era of a number of energetic cached question plans for a single parameterized assertion, accommodating totally different knowledge sizes primarily based on supplied runtime parameter values. SQL Server 2022 additionally sports activities scalability for giant reminiscence servers and excessive concurrency eventualities.

Hyperlinks past Azure

Different options embody a brand new model of PolyBase (SQL Server’s massive knowledge connectivity answer) that makes use of REST APIs to connect with knowledge lakes along with utilizing the ODBC drivers — on which the final model of PolyBase was premised. For now, this API-driven connectivity extends to each Azure storage and object storage platforms suitable with Amazon S3 (together with S3 itself). Microsoft characterizes this as offering knowledge virtualization “for any knowledge lake.” The entry will probably be handier this time round as effectively: PolyBase will now work with the OPENROWSET command, offering advert hoc entry to exterior knowledge, as an alternative of requiring definition of exterior tables earlier than knowledge could be queried. With the 2022 launch, SQL Server will now additionally help database backup to/restore from any Amazon S3-compliant object storage system.

Additionally learn: Microsoft’s PolyBase mashes up SQL Server and Hadoop

As well as, there are a number of T-SQL goodies in SQL Server 2022. These embody an enhanced set of features for working with JSON knowledge; new time collection capabilities much like these in Azure SQL Edge (which themselves are primarily based on Azure Stream Analytics); and different new features primarily based on customer-voted objects. 

Microsoft says SQL Server 2022 options improved ANSI SQL compatibility, in addition.

SQL Server on Linux: A Canonical instance

One other piece of SQL Server information pertains to not the 2022 model, however to the presently launched 2017 and 2019 variations. Each of those releases had a powerful deal with the flexibility to run on Linux — and in containers. Maybe to underscore how critical a dedication that’s, Microsoft and Canonical (makers of the favored Ubuntu Linux distribution) introduced yesterday the provision of a set of fully-supported SQL Server on Ubuntu Professional digital machine photographs.

Consequently, based on Canonical’s press launch, “Prospects on Microsoft Azure can launch absolutely supported cases of SQL Server 2017 or SQL Server 2019 — Internet, Commonplace, and Enterprise editions — on each Ubuntu Professional 18.04 LTS and Ubuntu Professional 20.04 LTS.” The press launch additional explains that “prospects obtain help on your entire answer, together with safety updates and joint technical help from Canonical and Microsoft.” The digital machine photographs can be found within the Azure Market.

There are some good efficiency optimizations in these VM photographs as effectively. For instance, the photographs are configured to make use of Direct I/O and Compelled Unit Entry (FUA) for synchronization with underlying NVMe SSD drives. Additionally, the Ubuntu Professional 20.04 LTS model of the VM contains help for prime availability eventualities via Corosync, Pacemaker, and a specialised fencing agent for Azure. Lastly, as on Home windows, SQL Server working on these Linux VMs can make the most of persistent reminiscence (PMEM) when it is accessible. 

Extra to come back

Whereas Microsoft is saying new capabilities throughout its knowledge platform, there have been sufficient new options in SQL Server 2022 alone to require this devoted publish. In the meantime, it is nonetheless early days, so we do not have particulars on attainable enhancements to different areas of the product (Machine Studying Providers, for instance). We’ll little question have extra protection as soon as SQL Server 2022 strikes to public preview.

I will shut this publish by reiterating a degree I made in protecting SQL Server 2019: Regardless of the platform’s legacy, SQL Server practitioners proceed to obtain updates to the core platform and accessible variations of newer applied sciences from across the database and analytics world. In different phrases, regardless of SQL Server being older than a number of the individuals utilizing it, Microsoft perpetually modernizes the platform.

Microsoft is a buyer of Brust’s advisory agency, Blue Badge Insights. He’s additionally a Microsoft Information Platform MVP.

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