On June 1st Microsoft announced the global availability of SQL Server 2016.
Let’s see what’s inside.
- Always Encrypted
Features designed to protect sensitive data inside databases. Encrypted data is accessible only for data owners, but not for data administrators. Multiple keys to encrypt/decrypt data are used together with Driver that ensures the transparency of encryption to client app.
- Row-level security
Row-level security controls access to table rows based on specified characteristic (e.g. group membership).
PolyBase allows combining and quetying relational data (from SQL Server) and non-relational ones (Azure blob storage and Hadoop) directly from T-SQL.
- JSON support
SQL Server 2016 adds support for JSON data – you can import JSON data, export data as JSON and query JSON data.
- New Reporting Services web portal
A new modern portal for Reporting Services! One space for Reports and Mobile Reports, KPIs, Excel and PowerBI files.
- Modernized reports
Report Builder gets a lot of improvements – new charts, new design, custom parameters panel and more.
- Mobile reports
Reporting Services brings us a new fantastic features – Mobile Reports. Get data from a range of data sources and design reports for mobile devices (Apple, Android, Windows). Mobile Reports can also be viewed in web browser.
- R Service
This is a new service in SQL Server. We can now use R language for data science operations.
- Stretch database
Stretch database allows storing cold transactional data in Microsoft Azure. Data is online and accessible for viewing.
- Much more…
The complete list of new features and changes is really amazing. Explore all changes at What’s New in SQL Server 2016.
Microsoft made some change to SQL Server editions.
- Express edition
Free edition with limited functions and performance (1GB memory per instance process and up to 10GB database size)
- Standard edition
Basic data management, business intelligence and high availability
- Enterprise edition
Premium features, unlimited virtualization and top level business intelligence
- Developer edition
Fully functional edition (same features and limits as Enterprise edition) for development purposes. Totally FREE.
- Web edition
Low cost edition for web hosting
SQL Server and SharePoint Server
There are a lof of new great features but which one we can use in SharePoint? In the next few posts I will show you some of the possibilities.
In the beginning I will focus on Reporting Services and other BI capabilities (i.e. Mobile reports) and how we can use it to leverage SharePoint (both 2013 and 2016).
- SQL Server 2016 is generally available today – official release info
- SQL Server 2016 Release Notes
- What’s New in SQL Server 2016
- Download SQL Server 2016 Evaluation
- Download SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS)
- SQL Server 2016 RTM Enterprise on Windows Server 2012 R2 – Azure Virtual Machine
- SQL Server 2016 datasheet (PDF)
- Hardware and Software Requirements
- Wide World Importers sample database