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A new life for Microsoft SQL Server

by Paul Andlinger, 2 June 2016
Tags: Microsoft SQL Server

With the general availability of its new SQL Server 2016 in these days, Microsoft gets a lot of attention and pushes SQL Server’s popularity into a region where it has not been for a long time.

It is the first time since we are measuring the popularity of database management systems (yes, we are publishing the ranking since 2012) that Microsoft SQL Server is the winner of a month’s ranking. It achieved this in the current June-ranking by increasing its popularity score by impressive 22.99 points. The next best performer in this month is DB2 (interestingly enough, another RDBMS flagship product) with a gain of 2.61 points.

And indeed, what we are hearing about the improved or new features and capabilities of SQL Server 2016 seems to justify the attention:

  • OLTP performance enhancements by better exploiting hardware resources and more efficiently using in-memory structures.
  • The further enhanced columnstore technology – which was introduced with SQL Server 2012 - allows to run analytical queries over transactional data in real time. With the new version, it is now possible to follow a hybrid storage approach: the creation of traditional non-clustered indexes on a table with a clustered columnstore index.
  • Other improvements are targeted to hardened security, more comprehensive business intelligence and analytics functionality and a tighter integration with Microsofts cloud services (e.g. Microsoft Azure SQL Database).

We will see, whether that trend is continuing and would not be surprised, if Microsoft’s ongoing work to port SQL Server to Linux (with a GA announced for 2017) should have the potential for further popularity gains in future.

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