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Getting Up To Speed on SQL Server Denali

By Brad McGehee,

By now, you must have heard about the next version of SQL Server, code-named "Denali". If Microsoft follows its typical three-year release cycle, then presumably this latest version of SQL Server will be released late in 2011. The Denali CTP1 (Community Technology Preview) was released this past November at the PASS Community Summit, which means that you've had about three months to download it and start learning how to use it. It also means that you have about eight months or so before it's shipped. So, are you prepared for this new release?

Fortunately, Denali doesn't appear to be a radical departure from SQL Server 2008, so most of its features will be familiar to you. On the other hand, many of the existing features have been tweaked, such as Management Studio, security, T-SQL, SSIS, Full-Text Search, and much more. Besides these enhancements, there are many new features, such as Contained Databases, HADR (High Availability Disaster Recovery), and Column-based Query Accelerator, to name just a few. No matter how you look at it, it will take some dedicated time to learn about and master Denali.

So my question to you is this: How much time have you spent learning about Denali? I'm sure some of you early-adopters have already downloaded the CTP1 and spent many hours exploring its new features. On the other hand, I'm guessing that most of you haven't downloaded the CTP, nor even spent much time reading up on Denali.

Of those of you who have downloaded and explored the CTP, please tell us what you think about it.

For those of you who have yet to spend much time with Denali, how do you plan on getting up to speed on it, and when? Will you try to learn more before it is released, or will you wait until it has shipped?

To get you on your way to learning Denali, you can download the CTP, and read up on additional information.

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