Monday, May 16, 2011

Features of SQL SERVER 2000 / 2005 / 2008.

Features of SQL SERVER 2000 The feature available in SQL SERVER 2000 are:
  1. Enterprise Manager
  2. Query Analyzer
  3. Server Network Utility
  4. SQL Profiler
  5. Client Network Utility
  6. DTS Packages
For More Information on Features of SQL SERVER 2000. See the article
New Features of SQL SERVER 2005

SQL Server Management Studio
SQL Server 2005 includes SQL Server Management Studio, a new integrated suite of management tools with the functionality to develop, deploy, and troubleshoot SQL Server databases, as well as enhancements to previous functionality.
Online Restore
With SQL Server 2005, database administrators are able to perform a restore operation while an instance of SQL Server is running. Online restore improves the availability of SQL Server because only the data being restored is unavailable; the rest of the database remains online and available.
Database Mirroring
Extend log shipping capabilities with the database mirroring solution. You will be able to use database mirroring to enhance availability of your SQL Server systems by setting up automatic failover to a standby server.
Online Indexing Operations
The online index option allows concurrent modifications (updates, deletes, and inserts) to the underlying table or clustered index data and any associated indexes during index data definition language (DDL) execution. For example, while a clustered index is being rebuilt, you can continue to make updates to the underlying data and perform queries against the data.
Fast Recovery
A new faster recovery option improves availability of SQL Server databases. Administrators can reconnect to a recovering database after the transaction log has been rolled forward.
Standards-based Information Access
Any object, data source, or business intelligence component can be exposed using standards-based protocols such as SOAP and HTTP—eliminating the need for a middle-tier listener, such as IIS, to access a Web services interface that is exposed by SQL Server 2005.

Dedicated Administrator Connection
SQL Server 2005 provides a dedicated administrator connection that administrators can use to access a running server even if the server is locked or otherwise unavailable. This capability enables administrators to troubleshoot problems on a server by executing diagnostic functions or Transact-SQL statements.
Snapshot Isolation
Snapshot Isolation (SI) level is provided at the database level. With SI, users can access the last committed row using a transitionally consistent view of the database. This capability provides greater scalability.
Data Partitioning
Data partitioning is enhanced with native table and index partitioning that enables efficient manageability of large tables and indexes.
Replication Enhancements
For distributed databases, SQL Server 2005 provides comprehensive schema change (DDL) replication, next-generation monitoring capabilities, built in replication from Oracle to SQL Server, merge replication over https, and significant merge replication scalability and performance improvements. Additionally, the peer-to-peer transactional replication feature improves support for data scale out using replication.
New Features of Business Intelligence
Analysis Services
With SQL Server 2005 Analysis Services moves into the realm of real- time analytics. From scalability enhancements to deep integration with Microsoft Office, SQL Server 2005 helps extend business intelligence to every level of your business.
Integration Services (SSIS)
SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) is a next generation data integration platform that can integrate data from any source. SSIS provides a scalable and extensible platform that empowers development teams to build, manage, and deploy integration solutions to meet unique integration needs.
Data Mining
Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Analysis Services (SSAS) provides tools for data mining with which you can identify rules and patterns in your data, so that you can determine why things happen and predict what will happen in the future – giving you powerful insight that will help your company make better business decisions.
Reporting Services
SQL Server Reporting Services is a comprehensive, server-based reporting solution designed to help you author, manage, and deliver both paper-based and interactive Web-based reports.
Clustering Support
Analysis Services improves availability with support for failover clustering, enhanced multi-instance support, and support for backing up and restoring Analysis Services objects and data.
Key Performance Indicators
Key performance indicators (KPIs) provide businesses with the capability to define graphic, customizable business metrics to help generate and track key corporate benchmarks.
Scalability and Performance
Features such as parallel partition processing, creation of remote relational online analytical processing (ROLAP) or hybrid online analytical processing (HOLAP) partitions, distributed partitioned cubes, persisted calculations, and proactive caching greatly improve the scalability and performance of Analysis Services in SQL Server 2005.
Report Builder
Report Builder is a component of SQL Server 2005 Reporting Services that enables business users to create and deploy reports with a user-friendly enterprise data model.
Proactive Caching
Proactive Caching combines MOLAP class query performance with real-time data analysis and eliminates the need to maintain OLAP stores. The Proactive Cache transparently synchronizes and maintains an updated copy of the data organized specifically for high-speed querying and for isolating end-users from overloading the relational databases. The structure of the cache is automatically derived from the Universal Data Model (UDM) structure and can be finely tuned to balance performance with latency of data.
Integration with the Microsoft Office System
Tight integration of SQL Server 2005 with Excel 2007 and Office SharePoint Server 2007 delivers a simple way for information workers to accessing, analyze and collaborate on BI information directly within the tools that they use every day.
For More Information visit:

Feature of SQL SERVER 2008
Activity MonitorWhen troubleshooting a performance issue or monitoring a server in real time, it is common for the DBA to execute a number of scripts or check a number of sources to collect general information about what processes are executing and where the problem may be. SQL Server 2008 Activity Monitor consolidates this information by detailing running and recently executed processes, graphically. The display gives the DBA a high-level view and the ability to drill down on processes and view wait statistics to help understand and resolve problems.
SQL Server Audit
Having the ability to monitor and log events, such as who is accessing objects, what changes occurred, and what time changes occurred, can help the DBA to meet compliance standards for regulatory or organizational security requirements. Gaining insight into the events occurring within their environment can also help the DBA in creating a risk mitigation plan to keep the environment secure.
Within SQL Server 2008 (Enterprise and Developer editions only), SQL Server Audit provides automation that allows the DBA and others to enable, store, and view audits on various server and database components. The feature allows for auditing at a granularity of the server and/or database level.
There are server-level audit action groups, such as:

  • FAILED_LOGIN_GROUP, which tracks failed logins.
  • BACKUP_RESTORE_GROUP, which shows when a database was backed up or restored.
  • DATABASE_CHANGE_GROUP, which audits when a database is created, altered, or dropped.

Backup Compression
This feature has long been a popular request of DBAs for SQL Server. The wait is finally over, and just in time! Many factors, including increased data retention periods and the need to physically store more data have contributed to the recent explosion in database size. Backing up a large database can require a significant time window to be allotted to backup operations and a large amount of disk space allocated for use by the backup file(s).
With SQL Server 2008 backup compression, the backup file is compressed as it is written out, thereby requiring less storage, less disk I/O, and less time. In lab tests conducted with real customer data, we observed in many cases a reduction in the backup file size between 70% and 85%. Testing also revealed around a 45% reduction in the backup and restore time. It is important to note that the additional processing results in higher processor utilization. To help segregate the CPU intensive backup and minimize its effect on other processes, one might consider utilizing another feature mentioned in this paper, Resource Governor.
Central Management Servers
DBAs are frequently responsible for managing not one but many SQL Server instances in their environment. Having the ability to centralize the management and administration of a number of SQL Server instances from a single source can allow the DBA to save significant time and effort. The Central Management Servers implementation, which is accessed via the Registered Servers component in SQL Server Management Studio, allows the DBA to perform a number of administrative tasks on SQL Servers within the environment, from a single management console.
Data Collector and Management Data Warehouse
Performance tuning and troubleshooting are a time-consuming tasks that can require in-depth SQL Server skills and an understanding of database internals. Windows System monitor (Perfmon), SQL Server Profiler, and dynamic management views (DMVs) helped with some of this, but they were often intrusive, laborious to use, or the dispersed data collection methods were cumbersome to easily summarize and interpret.
To provide actionable performance insight, SQL Server 2008 delivers a fully extensible performance data collection and warehouse tool also known as the data collector. The tool includes several out-of-the-box data collection agents, a centralized data repository for storing performance data called management data warehouse, and several precanned reports to present the captured data. The data collector is a scalable tool that can collect and assimilate data from multiple sources such as dynamic management views , Perfmon, Transact-SQL queries, by using a fully customizable data collection frequency. The data collector can be extended to collect data for any measurable attribute of an application. 

Data Compression
The ability to easily manage a database can greatly enhance the opportunity for DBAs to accomplish their regular task lists. As table, index, and file sizes grow and very large databases (VLDBs) become commonplace, the management of data and unwieldy file sizes has become a growing pain point. Also, with more data being queried, the need for large amounts of memory or the necessity to do physical I/O can place a larger burden on DBAs and their organizations. Many times this results in DBAs and organizations securing servers with more memory and/or I/O bandwidth or having to pay a performance penalty.
Data compression, introduced in SQL Server 2008, provides a resolution to help address these problems. Using this feature, a DBA can selectively compress any table, table partition, or index, resulting in a smaller on-disk footprint, smaller memory working-set size, and reduced I/O. The act of compression and decompression will impact CPU; however, this impact is in many cases offset by the gains in I/O savings. Configurations that are bottlenecked on I/O can also see an increase in performance due to compression.
Policy-Based Management
In a number of business scenarios, there is a need to maintain certain configurations or enforce policies either within a specific SQL Server, or many times across a group of SQL Servers. A DBA or organization may require a particular naming convention to be implemented on all user tables or stored procedures that are created, or a required configuration change to be defined across a number of servers in the same manner.
Policy-Based Management (PBM) provides DBAs with a wide variety of options in managing their environment. Policies can be created and checked for compliance. If a target (such as a SQL Server database engine, a database, a table, or an index) is out of compliance, the administrator can automatically reconfigure it to be in compliance. There are also a number of evaluation modes (of which many are automated) that can help the DBA check for policy compliance, log and notify when a policy violation occurs, and even roll back the change to keep in compliance with the policy. For more information about evaluation modes and how they are mapped to facets

Predictable Performance and Concurrency
A significant problem many DBAs face is trying to support SQL Servers with ever-changing workloads, and achieving some level of predictable performance (or minimizing variance in plans and performance). Unexpected query performance, plan changes, and/or general performance issues can come about due to a number of factors, including increased application load running against SQL Server or version upgrades of the database itself. Getting predictable performance from queries or operations run against SQL Server can greatly enhance the DBAs ability to meet and maintain availability, performance, and/or business continuity goals (OLAs or SLAs).
SQL Server 2008 provides a few feature changes that can help provide more predictable performance. In SQL Server 2008, there exist some enhancements to the SQL Server 2005 plan guides (or plan freezing) and a new option to control lock escalation at a table level. Both of these enhancements can provide a more predictable and structured interaction between the application and the database.
Resource Governor
Maintaining a consistent level of service by preventing runaway queries and guaranteeing resources for mission-critical workloads has been a challenge. In the past there was no way of guaranteeing a certain amount of resources to a set of queries and prioritizing the access. All queries had equal access to all the available resources.
SQL Server 2008 introduces a new feature called Resource Governor, which helps address this issue by enabling users to differentiate workloads and allocate resources as they are requested. Resource Governor limits can easily be reconfigured in real time with minimal impact on the workloads that are executing. The allocation of the workload to a resource pool is configurable at the connection level, and the process is completely transparent to the application.

Transparent Data Encryption (TDE)
Security is one of the top concerns of many organizations. There are many different layers to securing one of the most important assets of an organization: its data. In most cases, organizations do well at securing their active data via the use of physical security, firewalls, and tightly controlled access policies. However, when physical medium such as the backup tape or disk on which the data resides is compromised, the above security measures are of no use, because a rouge user can simply restore the database and get full access to the data.
SQL Server 2008 offers a solution to this problem by way of transparent data encryption (TDE). TDE performs real-time I/O encryption and decryption of the data and log files by using a database encryption key (DEK). The DEK is a symmetric key secured by using a certificate stored in the master database of the server, or an asymmetric key protected by an Extensible Key Management (EKM) module.

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