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James is a big data and data warehousing technology specialist at Microsoft. He is a thought leader in the use and application of Big Data technologies, including MPP solutions involving hybrid technologies of relational data, Hadoop, and private and public cloud. Previously he was an independent consultant working as a Data Warehouse/Business Intelligence architect and developer. He is a prior SQL Server MVP with over 30 years of IT experience. James is a popular blogger (JamesSerra.com) and speaker, having presented at dozens of PASS events including the PASS Business Analytics conference and the PASS Summit. He is the author of the book “Reporting with Microsoft SQL Server 2012”. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

SQL Server “Denali”: CTP3 now available!

CTP3 of SQL Server Code Name “Denali” was made available for download this morning. You can download the 32-bit and 64-bit versions here. Official announcement from the SQL Server team blog and the announcement from the Analysis Services and PowerPivot Team Blog. Note that there was not a publically available CTP2. Microsoft went from CTP1 last November to CTP3.

Aaron Bertrand has some install notes and a Installation Walk-Through. Check out the official Microsoft CTP3 release notes.

The Feature Pack for CTP3 can be download here (note the special version of PowerPivot for CTP3). The new version of PowerPivot is 2.0 and Rob Collie has a post about some new features.

The new Project Juneau features are not on the Denali CTP3 “DVD”/Download, but are in a separate web release at http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/data/tools.aspx.

See CTP3 Books Online (read how help is no longer delivered with the software). CTP3 also includes tutorials. Project Crescent is also included in CTP3. See the Project Crescent Overview.

Jamie Thomson has a post about the SSIS enhancements in Denali CTP3, and Microsoft’s Wiki lists What’s New in Master Data Services (MDS) in Denali CTP3.

For technical questions about CTP3, go to the MSDN SQL Server (Pre-release) Forums. The link for feedback specifically for SQL Server (including Denali): https://connect.microsoft.com/sqlserver/feedback.

Also check out Brent Ozar’s CTP3 is Here! Five Things to Know About the Next Version of SQL Server and How to Set Up SQL Server Denali Availability Groups (Brent obviously has been using CTP3 for a while..lucky guy!).

Mark Tabladillo’s post SQL Server Denali CTP3 and Data Mining has installation tips and explains that Microsoft has a “Technology Access Preview” (abbreviated TAP) which allows the lucky few to obtain CTP3 before the public (as well as CTP2 which was not released to the public).

There is a cool new feature in CTP3 called “Product Update”: It integrates the latest product updates with the main product installation so that the main product and its applicable updates are installed at the same time. See Product Update” in SQL Server code-named “Denali.

For more details on Denali, check out my other blog posts:

SQL Server “Denali”: Details on the next version of SSAS

SQL Server “Denali”: SQL Server Developer Tools, codename ‘Juneau”

SQL Server “Denali”: Project Crescent

SQL Server “Denali”

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