SQL Server 2012 RTM & Resources Now Available for Download; CTP2 of Apache Hadoop for Windows Azure Coming Soon!

SQL Server 2012 has released to manufacturing (RTM), with an evaluation version available today, and the general availability will start on April 1, announcing the Redmond company.Demonstrating proven capabilities - Hundreds of global, industry-leading customers such as Volvo Car Corporation, Revlon, the Home Shopping Network, Sanofi Pasteur, Klout, and LG Chemical are deploying SQL Server […]

SQL Server 2012 has released to manufacturing (RTM), with an evaluation version available today, and the general availability will start on April 1, announcing the Redmond company.

  • Demonstrating proven capabilities - Hundreds of global, industry-leading customers such as Volvo Car Corporation, Revlon, the Home Shopping Network, Sanofi Pasteur, Klout, and LG Chemical are deploying SQL Server 2012 to manage and analyze data of all sizes and types.
  • Setting new performance records - Microsoft and partners also announced that SQL Server 2012 has demonstrated several new performance benchmarks through partner- and Microsoft-led testing that underscore SQL Server's ability to scale across the enterprise.
  • Highlighting increased ROI - Microsoft has released results from a new Forrester Consulting commissioned Total Economic Impact (TEI) study on the potential benefits of upgrading to SQL Server 2012. The study reports a potential Return on Investment (ROI) of up to 189 percent with a 12-month payback period.

There are two methods available to download and trial Microsoft SQL Server 2012 Evaluation as a DVD image and as self-extracting CAB file.
SQL Server 2012 Evaluation DVD Image: This image file contains X86 and X64 installable versions. You can use this image to burn your own DVD.

  1. Click the download button for the .ISO file in the DOWNLOAD section on this page above
  2. Using your DVD-burning software, select the options to burn a DVD from an .ISO image. When you are prompted for a file to use, select the image file that you downloaded. After burning the DVD, locate and double-click Setup.exe on the DVD to begin the installation.

SQL Server 2012 Evaluation CAB file
  1. Download the following files to a temporary directory on your device:
    • SQLFULL_architecture_language_Lang.box
    • SQLFULL_architecture_language_Install.exe
    • SQLFULL_architecture_language_Core.box
  2. Once the download(s) are complete, double click on the SQLFULL_architecture_language_Install.exe to begin the setup process.

Resource links:

Microsoft also announced plans to release a new, limited preview of the Apache Hadoop-based service for Windows Azure in the first half of 2012. The service is optimized for connectivity with SQL Server 2012 and Microsoft's industry-leading BI tools such as PowerPivot, Power View and Excel.

  • Demonstrating proven capabilities - Hundreds of global, industry-leading customers such as Volvo Car Corporation, Revlon, the Home Shopping Network, Sanofi Pasteur, Klout, and LG Chemical are deploying SQL Server 2012 to manage and analyze data of all sizes and types.
  • Setting new performance records - Microsoft and partners also announced today that SQL Server 2012 has demonstrated several new performance benchmarks through partner- and Microsoft-led testing that underscore SQL Server's ability to scale across the enterprise.
  • Highlighting increased ROI - Microsoft has released results from a new Forrester Consulting commissioned Total Economic Impact (TEI) study on the potential benefits of upgrading to SQL Server 2012. The study reports a potential Return on Investment (ROI) of up to 189 percent with a 12-month payback period.

Apache Hadoop on Windows Azure Roadmap

Microsoft also disclosed new details about offerings that expand its data platform these include:

  • Fast Track for SQL Server 2012 - Fast Track Data Warehouse, a reference architecture designed by Microsoft and its hardware partners, accelerates customer implementation by offering optimal performance out of the box. Fast Track for SQL Server 2012 allows customers to take advantage of the latest generation of servers and storage from industry partners, while also including new features in SQL Server 2012 such as Power View, AlwaysOn and xVelocity. Fast Track will be available for order with SQL Server 2012.
  • SQL Server Parallel Data Warehouse Appliance Update 3 (AU3) - AU3 is a significant milestone for Parallel Data Warehouse (PDW). It includes a software/hardware refresh, feature improvements, and an extension of existing features based on customer feedback. Customers can expect up to 10x performance improvements with AU3. Half-rack appliances are available from Dell today, and HP will offer half-rack appliances by April. All PDW appliances from HP and Dell will include AU3 starting in Q2 of 2012.
  • xVelocity in-memory technologies - xVelocity represents capabilities in SQL Server 2012 that deliver next-generation performance for data warehousing and business intelligence. xVelocity brings together the memory-optimized ColumnStore Index, an in-memory analytics engine, and a new query execution paradigm to increase performance by 10-100x.