SQL SERVER 2016 – Early Thoughts and Observations – Notes from the Field #120

SQL SERVER 2016 - Early Thoughts and Observations - Notes from the Field #120 mikel [Note from Pinal]: In this episode of the Notes from the Field series database expert Mike Lawell talks about his thoughts and observation about SQL Server 2016. It is indeed interesting to see that we are at the verge of releasing of SQL Server 2016. I personally feel that time has passed so fast and just a few months ago we were still talking about SQL Server 2016. It is very encouraging to see Microsoft releasing new version of the SQL Server. However, at the same time I am still seeing very low adoption of SQL Server 2014 in the industry. Now is the time to listen from our industry expert. Read the SQL Server 2016 – Early Thoughts and Observations of  Mike in his own words.


Coming up with a topic for this blog post is fairly simple. SQL Server 2016 is due out any day (hopefully) and by the time this blog post is published, it could be on the market. Not holding my breath.

The frenzy is about to begin as SQL Server 2016 is released to the public. Enterprise corporations are beginning to discuss the pros and cons of upgrading or migrating to SQL Server. I’m normally the guy that says wait until SP1 has been out for several months before installing in production. That’s not a bad recommendation, but it is definitely less important with SQL Server 2016 (and 2014).

SQL SERVER 2016 - Early Thoughts and Observations - Notes from the Field #120 thought This time, not so much. Microsoft has changed the method in which they release the Cumulative Updates. Instead of registering to receive the CU as a fix they are now available from the Microsoft Download Center. In the CU kb articles they state:

“Microsoft recommends ongoing, proactive installation of CUs as they become available:

  • SQL Server CUs are certified to the same levels as Service Packs, and should be installed at the same level of confidence.
  • Historical data shows that a significant number of support cases involve an issue that has already been addressed in a released CU.
  • CUs may contain added value over and above hotfixes. This includes supportability, manageability, and reliability updates.

So, Microsoft is now recommending you install the CUs with the same reliability as the service packs. Ok, I’m good with that idea. So now you release the cumulative update into development after a period of time (wait for the early adopters to find the bugs).

Taking that one step further, Microsoft has been using a “cloud first” process where they deploy features to Azure SQL Database first. We’ve seen many features appear in SQL Database then appear in the CTPs for SQL Server 2016. This means to me that the feature has already been in use prior to my normal waiting period.

No this doesn’t mean as soon as SQL Server 2016 is released to the general public that you should install it in production immediately, please wait until you have fully tested it in your development, quality assurance and stage environments before deploying to production. It also doesn’t mean you should continue to wait for 2 years before going down the path of installing in production. You guys know who you are.

Here is the most exciting news for me, at the “Microsoft Data Driven” event we heard about a promotion from Microsoft where free SQL Server licenses are being given away to Companies who migrate away from Oracle to SQL Server 2016.

I know this sounds like a marketing ad, but it’s so sweet that I had to mention it. I know as a SQL Server consultant, I’m going to be extremely busy, helping Oracle customers prepare for the. I’m pretty excited about the fun we’re going to have doing these migrations with the new SQL Server Migration Assistant 7.0.

BTW, you diehard Linux guys… yes, SQL Server is coming to Linux! Time to dust off my Linux book and refresh my skills, I’m going to be busy migrating Oracle to SQL Server on Linux.

If you want to get started with SQL Server with the help of experts, read more over at Fix Your SQL Server.

Reference: Pinal Dave (https://blog.sqlauthority.com)

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