SQL Server 2016: It Just Runs Faster


Does the marketing live up to the hype?  Senior ADM, Paul King shares some perspective from the field.


imageUpgrading between major versions of a product can sometimes be a painful and time consuming task.  Development organizations often have to spend time going over depreciated feature lists to make sure that their applications will still work.  Many times, unless there is a new feature in the latest and greatest version of a product, companies are not compelled to upgrade their applications.

Part of the marketing message around SQL Server 2016 is ‘It Just Runs Faster’.  Sounds great doesn’t it?  Well, I want to tell you that this is one marketing claim that rings true!

My customer was working on an application as a proof of concept.  This was a new application that had a database with very wide tables with very few joins.  While the proof of concept only used about 200GB of data, it was a good sample of the type of data the application would work with.  The application was originally written against SQL Server 2012, the same version of SQL that is powering most of the applications the customer has today.

During testing, they found that some of the queries were taking around 60 seconds to complete.  Not happy with those results, they upgraded from SQL Server 2012 to SQL Server 2016.  With no other application or index changes, the same queries were completing in 30 seconds.  That’s a 50% improvement in query speed!  My customer is now looking to upgrade all of their existing SQL Server 2012 databases to SQL Server 2016.

While every application may not improve this dramatically, it shows that a simple upgrade and test may be well worth it in terms of performance.  If you would like additional information, Bob Ward posted a video of a talk he just gave and Microsoft Ignite: Upgrade to Microsoft SQL Server 2016:  It Just Runs Faster.  In addition, Robert Dorr published a series of posts covering the technical details behind some of these performance improvements.  Learn more here.


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