Latest News : SQL Server 2016 announced – New Features and Enhancements
Posted by blakhani on May 6, 2015
From past SQL Server releases, there have been pattern of 2 years release. Here are the release date since SQL 2008 (taken from lifecycle page)
|SQL Server Version||Lifecycle Start Date|
|Microsoft SQL Server 2008||11/6/2008|
|Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2||7/20/2010|
|Microsoft SQL Server 2012||5/20/2012|
|Microsoft SQL Server 2014||6/5/2014|
Looking at this pattern and trend, anybody would have guessed that next release of SQL would be in year 2016. Recent announcement at Microsoft Ignite event confirmed the same. Here is the blog of the announcement made by our CEO Satya. http://blogs.technet.com/b/dataplatforminsider/archive/2015/05/04/sql-server-2016-public-preview-coming-this-summer.aspx
Here are my favorite features taken from sources listed at the end of the blog.
- Enhancement in AlwaysOn Availability Group:
- Round-robin load balancing – In SQL Server 2016, it would be possible to define routing of secondary on round robin basis. This would help in load-balancing. If you have worked with SQL Server 2012 and SQL Server 2014 the you would recall that when read-only routing is defined and application makes connection to Listener via read-only intent, the connection would go to first replica in routing list. In SQL Server 2016, we would have option to route requests to various secondary replica in round robin fashion.
- DTC Support : SQL Server 2016 would support distributed transactions and cross database transactions when database is an availability database. As per earlier documentation, this scenario was unsupported. (Books online, blog)
- Automatic failover based on database health: This was one of the ask from community (refer this connect item). Imagine a situation where databases are part of AG and the drive containing LDF of one database has gone bad. This would cause database to go unavailable BUT availability group would report healthy. This has been taken care in SQL Server 2016.
- Up to 3 synchronous replicas for auto failover: In earlier versions there was only one “auto” failover partner. Here was can have more than one. So in case, two servers are down, still the automatic failover can happen.
- Simplified Add Azure Replica Wizard: This would help in having hybrid deployment of AlwaysOn Availability Groups.
- Stretch Database: This feature allows “hot” part of a table to be in on-premise SQL Server and cold part would be move to Azure SQL Database automatically. Good part is that it would be transparent to the end user.
- Security Enhancements
- Row Level Security: This is another security big win. Now we can control the rows which are visible to user based on the rights given to the logged in user. It is available in SQL Azure Database. (documentation)
- Always Encrypted: Data on the wire would be encrypted.
- Dynamic Data Masking: Data obfuscation to avoid unauthorized access. It is already available in SQL Azure Database. (Video, Blog)
Dynamic Data Masking (Image taken from Channel9 Video)
- Performance Improvements:
- Query Data Store: Query plans can be stored along with various statistics in permanent tables. This would help in finding various query and what was the plan used. Parameter sniffing issue would be easy to track and kill.
- Enhancements in In-memory OLTP: There were some limitations in SQL Server 2014 about In-Memory OLTP and they have been removed.
There are many more features which would help customers in getting breakthrough mission critical performance, deeper insights across any data on many devices and enable the power of hyperscale cloud to unlock new hybrid scenarios. (quote taken from datasheet)
- https://visualstudiomagazine.com/articles/2015/05/04/sql-server-2016-preview.aspx (‘Always Encrypted’ Leads New SQL Server 2016 Features)
- http://www.theregister.co.uk/2015/05/04/microsoft_sql_server_2016/ (Old, forgotten, lonely? SQL Server 2016 will sling you into Azure)
- http://download.microsoft.com/download/F/D/3/FD33C34D-3B65-4DA9-8A9F-0B456656DE3B/SQL_Server_2016_datasheet.pdf (SQL 2016 datasheet)
My Plan: As soon as public preview is out, I would start learning series for SQL Server 2016. This would be similar to what I have done earlier for SQL Server 2014.