SQL Server 2019 CTP 2.1: A first look

Microsoft’s flagship database is an important tool, with on-premises and in-cloud versions offering powerful storage and analytic tools. It is become a significant application for data scientists, providing a framework for building and testing machine-learning models. It is a lot in SQL Server, coupled with a new release is capable of showing where Microsoft thinks your details needs comes over the next several years.

The latest CTP for SQL Server 2019, version 2.1, is here available to help you to evaluate and try out the next release outside your production environments. Like its predecessor accessible Windows and Linux versions, although there’s now added support for containers and Kubernetes. Adding container support, using Docker and therefore the Linux type of SQL Server, is an interesting option mainly because it will allow you to build SQL Server into massive Kubernetes-based analytic engines realistically work across Azure-hosted data lakes using Apache Spark.

Laying out

The current preview installer grants the option of an installation, fast and fast, or perhaps a more detailed customized install. The pioneer option takes less disk space, which is the files needed to run that basic install, while a custom install reduces the entire SQL Server 2019 install media. For a lot of basic developer tasks an abandoned installation suffices, although we’d recommend a custom installation within the a full evaluation. It is possible to download installation media if you’re planning on installing on longer than one machine to test SQL Server’s cluster features.

After downloaded the most suitable media, the familiar SQL Server installer walks you thru the process of choosing options, checking for prerequisites and also configuration changes you’ll want to make. It’s a really straightforward process, you might you’ve configured the available choice of options installation is easy and fast. We were capable of getting a standalone test system moving in under 20 mins.

Machine learning

Machine learning is an essential part of SQL Server 2019, and it now includes integrated tools for building and testing machine-learning models. You can install it with support in your popular R and Python languages, which implies data science team may function inside the database, preparing and testing models before training them on your data. Microsoft is utilizing its own R Open distribution additionally, the Anaconda data science Python environment, to include additional numerical analysis libraries, of them the popular NumPy.

There are the option of installing SQL Server 2019 currently being a standalone machine-learning development environment. Local instances of SQL Server on developer workstations have the opportunity to use familiar R and Python tooling to do the job directly with training data sets, without having affected production systems or using server resources.

Really BIG data

Using data at scale is certainly an issue, with a small number of database engines intended to work as a member of a distributed architecture. With SQL Server 2019 you are able to build what Microsoft is calling Big Data Clusters, simply by using a mix of SQL Server and Apache Spark containers as well as Kubernetes using SQL Server’s existing PolyBase features. With public clouds supporting native Kubernetes then you can certainly deploy Big Data Clusters on Azure, on AWS, is without question GCP, as well as on your very own new infrastructure. Integration having the Azure Data Studio tools makes it easier to build, run, and share complex queries.

Microsoft’s target data science scenarios fits well with all the company’s intelligent cloud/intelligent edge strategy. Info is essential to building machine-learning tools, by running R and Python code in your own database you reach deliver complex queries in the SQL Server command line, using familiar tooling to put together and test code before deploying and running it. Microsoft is delivering sample code through GitHub, showing techniques to mix relational data with big data. It’s also sharing sample architectures that relate you how to make this becoming basis for building machine learning systems overlaid on other open-source technologies like Kafka.

With the hood

There are various change beneath the surface too, with improvements onto the SQL Server database engine. The one that might appear trivial is support for UTF-8. Earlier versions that are required to store non-English character sets was mandated to use UTF-16, which meant that Unicode string data would take 22 bytes per character. Switching to UTF-8 still supports most Unicode, but cuts storage requirements to 12 bytes per character. For anyone storing a large amount of string data you’ll now need less disk space ?a and you’ll use the familiar CHAR datatype and never NCHAR.

Other additional features, like static data masking, pay attention to securing and sanitizing data in order that it can be used without affecting regulatory compliance. Applying static data masking to columns from a database export allows developers to employ real-world data while preventing sensitive information from leaking. You don’t have way to retrieve the conventional data, as it’s a one-way process. Earlier versions of SQL Server introduced dynamic data masking, which is only for the original database. By exporting with static masking there’s little or no risk of developers accidentally unmasking or affecting live data, while letting them produce code that will be put into production devoid of changes.

Inside a database level, while you’re building indexes it’s easy to stop and also. If a disk is filling, it is easy to pause an index operation, increase the storage for the volume, following resume from which you left off. Don’t start again on their own, saving time and compute. In addition the option to restart after failures, again save your time once you’ve corrected the error that caused a catalog operation to crash.

A cross-platform database

SQL Server isn’t really only a Windows tool, will be Linux edition is getting your hands on plenty of the latest features with this release. Even an most important update is support for SQL Server Replication, which allows you to build distributed SQL databases more efficiently, especially in addition to the Linux release of the Distributed Transaction Coordinator. As more modern applications are developed on Kubernetes, tools similar to these simplify scaling.

Tooling remains important, and there’s a new release on the SQL Server Management Studio. Database admins will discover it sports new security measures, with a familiar look. However it’s probably of your time start looking inside new Azure Data Studio, which works across on-premises and cloud instances, with development and management tools including monitoring dashboards. Data scientists are able to use its built-in notebook tools to experiment with queries, such as open-source Jupyter Notebooks. There is also the option to produce Azure Data Studio to operate and operate new SQL Server scenarios, like Big Data Clusters.

With SQL Server 2019 Microsoft is proving that regardless if relational databases have been available a long time, there’s still room for improvement plus for innovation. By building a database engine that fits like every SQL Server worked as a chef in the past, perhaps the same time supporting hiring machine learning and massive-scale big data, it’s delivering a program that’s able to upgrade what you should have so to support you like you work with computer data securely, on-premises while in the public clouds. All you should do is download it and then determine what it is able to do for you.

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