Microsoft Expands Data Platform With SQL Server 2012, New Investments for Managing Any Data, Any Size, Anywhere
Oct. 12, 2011
New technologies will give businesses a universal platform for data management, access and collaboration.

REDMOND, Wash. — Oct. 12, 2011 — Kicking off PASS Summit 2011, Microsoft Corporate Vice President Ted Kummert addressed an audience of more than 5,000 technology professionals to discuss how Microsoft Corp. is evolving its data platform to respond to customer needs. Kummert described how SQL Server 2012, formerly code-named “Denali,” addresses the growing challenges of data and device proliferation by enabling customers to rapidly unlock and extend business insights, both in traditional datacenters and through public and private clouds. Extending on this foundation, Kummert also announced new investments to help customers manage “big data,” including an Apache Hadoop-based distribution for Windows Server and Windows Azure and a strategic partnership with Hortonworks Inc.

“The next frontier is all about uniting the power of the cloud with the power of data to gain insights that simply weren’t possible even just a few years ago,” Kummert said. “Microsoft is committed to making this possible for every organization, and it begins with SQL Server 2012.”

Any Data, Any Size, Anywhere

For more than a decade, Microsoft has been helping customers unlock business insights in data of all sizes and types, beginning with Analysis Services in SQL Server 7.0 and continuing with new SQL Server 2012 capabilities. Furthering this commitment, Microsoft will be working with the Hadoop ecosystem, including core contributors from Hortonworks, to deliver Hadoop-based distributions for Windows Server and Windows Azure that works with industry-leading business intelligence (BI) tools, including Microsoft PowerPivot. A Community Technology Preview (CTP) of the Hadoop-based service for Windows Azure will be available by the end of 2011, and a CTP of the Hadoop-based service for Windows Server will follow in 2012. Microsoft will work closely with the Hadoop community and propose contributions back to the Apache Software Foundation and the Hadoop project.

“Over 80 percent of new data being generated is from unstructured sources,” said Eric Baldeschwieler, CEO, Hortonworks. “We are excited to work with Microsoft to help make Apache Hadoop a compelling platform for storing and processing data. Hortonworks welcomes Microsoft to the Hadoop ecosystem and looks forward to lending our deep domain expertise to help accelerate the delivery of Microsoft’s Apache Hadoop-based solution for Windows Server and service for Windows Azure.”

The company also made available final versions of the Hadoop Connectors for SQL Server and Parallel Data Warehouse. Customers can use these connectors to integrate Hadoop with their existing SQL Server environments to better manage data across all types and forms. More information on the connectors can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27584.

Immersive Experiences Virtually Wherever You Are

With the proliferation of devices in the work place, Kummert provided a look at how Microsoft will evolve its BI offerings with highly interactive and immersive data visualization experiences. He demonstrated Power View, formerly Project “Crescent,” on a variety of devices and showcased how these new capabilities will give users interactive, touch-based experiences with data virtually wherever they are. Power View “touch” capabilities will be available by the end of 2012.

Connecting With the World’s Data

Today Kummert also demonstrated Microsoft code-name “Data Explorer,” a prototype that provides a way for customers to easily discover, enrich and share data to gain competitive advantage in today’s business climate. When combined with Windows Azure MarketPlace, now available in 26 worldwide markets, Data Explorer will help customers realize their data’s full potential. Customers are encouraged to begin testing and to provide feedback when CTPs are made available in the SQL Azure Labs later this year at http://www.SQLAzureLabs.com.

It Starts Today

SQL Server 2012 delivers a powerful new set of capabilities for mission-critical workloads, business intelligence and hybrid IT across traditional datacenters and private and public clouds. Features such as Power View (formerly Project “Crescent,”) and SQL Server Data Tools (formerly “Juneau”) expand the self-service BI capabilities delivered with PowerPivot, and provide an integrated development environment for SQL Server developers. The new ColumnStore Index delivers over 10x data warehouse performance gains. Due out in the first half of 2012, SQL Server 2012 is in the final production stages, with hundreds of customers going into production in CTP3, including Edgenet Inc., Sanofi Pasteur SA, Mediterranean Shipping Co. SA, Pilot Travel Centers LLC and Great Western Bank.

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

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