SQL Server 2012 Now Generally Available

sql_logoMicrosoft has announced the general availability (GA) of SQL Server 2012 for purchase and download, according to the SQL Server Team blog post SQL Server 2012 is Generally Available.

SQL Server 2012 delivers a powerful new set of capabilities for mission-critical workloads, business intelligence and hybrid IT across traditional datacenters and public and private clouds. ISVs are using these new features in their products:

  • SQL Server AlwaysOn, a new high availability solution delivering increased application availability, lower TCO and ease of use.
  • xVelocity, in-memory technologies significantly boost data warehouse and analytics performance by up to 100x.
  • Power View, a web-based, highly interactive, data visualization and presentation solution designed to enable business users and decision makers to quickly discover meaningful insights from their data.
  • Data integration and management, new and enhanced tools to deliver credible, consistent data to the right users at the right time, including new SQL Server Data Quality Services and enhanced Master Data Services.
  • Enhanced PowerPivot functionalities enable customers to leverage new advanced analytic capabilities and further ease of use while still working within the familiar tools provided by Excel.
  • The new Business Intelligence (BI) Semantic Model provides a single, scalable model for BI applications, from reporting and analysis to dashboards and scorecards.
  • SQL Server Data Tools, a new tool that unifies SQL Server and cloud SQL Azure development for both professional database and application developers.

You can download the latest version of SQL Server 2012 here.

Getting Started with SQL Server 2012

See SQL Server 2012 Overview.

The SQL Server 2012 Developer Training Kit includes technical content designed to help you learn how to develop SQL Server 2012 database and BI solutions.

SQL Server 2012 Virtual Labs enable you to quickly evaluate and test Microsoft's newest products and technologies through a series of guided, hands-on labs that you can complete in 90 minutes or less. There is no complex setup or installation required, and you can use Virtual Labs online immediately, free.

Also, for a deep dive on all things SQL Server 2012, check out the SQL Server 2012 Virtual Launch Event. All content from the Virtual Launch Event will be available until June 30, 2012. The event features 30+ webcasts from SQL Server 2012 experts in addition to a number of other multimedia features from Microsoft partners.

Big Data

The second Preview of our Hadoop-based service for Windows Azure has also been released. Microsoft is expanding capacity of this service by up to 4x to accommodate exceptionally high demand. This preview provides an elastic Hadoop service with more reliability through disaster recovery of the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) NameNode, and support for advanced analytics through Hadoop projects like Mahout.

In addition, it provides actionable insights to everyone through familiar tools like Office, SharePoint and award winning BI tools like PowerPivot and Power View in SQL Server 2012. This preview also enables customers to enrich their data by connecting to data and intelligence outside their firewalls.

Sign up for the latest preview at http://www.hadooponazure.com.

App Compat Testing

If you application works under SQL Server 2008 R2, it will probably work well under SQL Server 2012. But there have been a few breaking changes. Learn more at Guide for How to Test Your Application for Compatibility with SQL Server 2012.


Bruce D. Kyle
ISV Architect Evangelist | Microsoft Corporation

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