Microsoft has announced the first service pack for SQL Server 2005, five months after releasing the database software.
SQL Server 2005 Service Pack 1 (SP1) includes a production-ready database mirroring function, designed to sustain continuous availability if the main database crashes. Microsoft said the database mirroring function had been tested by 20 existing users.
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The database mirroring in SP1 complements the existing always-on technologies in SQL Server 2005, such as failover clustering, database snapshots, snapshot isolation and log shipping.
The service pack also offers a new SQL Server Management Studio Express tool. This is a graphical management environment for SQL Server Express Edition and enterprise reporting support for SAP Netweaver Business Intelligence.
Netweaver support is achieved using two new components in SP1: a Microsoft .net data provider for SAP Netweaver Business Intelligence and a new MDX Query Designer.
Microsoft said that the components were designed to help SAP users create and manage reports on information held in any SAP BW datawarehouse.
Paul Flessner, senior vice-president of Microsoft’s data and storage platform division, said, “It has been very gratifying to see the level of excitement, engagement and rapid adoption of SQL Server 2005 by our customers and partners.”
The large volume of feedback had helped the company deliver SP1 quickly, he added.
Microsoft said it would update the SQL Server software approximately every 24 to 36 months to support functions such as continuous availability, automation and end-to-end business insight for better business decisions.
Earlier this month Microsoft acquired ProClarity, a provider of analysis and visualisation technologies that work in association with SQL Server 2005,
Analyst firm Forrester Research said that this acquisition gave users assessing a business intelligence standard another viable option.
“Microsoft has added a credible reporting and analysis front-end product suite to its core business intelligence engine, making this a complete reporting and analysis solution that buyers should add to the shortlist of business intelligence options,” said Forrester analyst Keith Giles in a paper on the acquisition.