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SQL Server 2022 Release Date and New Cloud Capabilities

When will SQL Server 2022 be released? Microsoft has already announced the general availability (GA) of SQL Server 2022, the latest release of its flagship database system.

A private preview of SQL Server 2022 was first announced in early November 2021, followed by the SQL Server 2022 public preview in May this year. The GA version was then released on Wednesday, November 16, 2022.

SQL Server 2022 is a significant release that delivers improvements over previous versions, including improved performance, security, and availability. So if you are currently running an older version of SQL Server, now is the time to upgrade. 

Here is an overview of this latest major update, SQL Server 2022 new features and why you should be moving to SQL Server 2022 (16.x). You can also find comprehensive details on what to expect in this new release on the official Microsoft SQL Server Blog.

SQL Server 2022 vs 2019: What’s the Difference?

The most recent major SQL Server release was version 2019, and as always, Microsoft keeps improving the SQL Server engine’s core with each new iteration. 

Nowadays, virtually all SQL Server innovations begin in the Azure cloud before moving to the on-premises editions of the database server. But with this update, new features have been included that will boost the scalability and increase the skills of data professionals. 

SQL Server 2022 vs 2019 Key Differences | ModLogix

The migration path is really brimming with innovative methods for quickly updating your ecosystem and bringing it up to speed with the most recent versions. These new features will help you to convince management to migrate.

What’s New in SQL Server 2022?

The following are just some of the SQL Server 2022 new features that are improved or introduced in SQL Server 2022 (16.x).

1. Business continuity through Azure

The link functionality in Azure SQL Managed Instance and SQL Server 2022 are completely integrated to guarantee uptime. With this new option, you have access to a PaaS environment that is used for disaster recovery/ business continuity and can act as a backup for your primary on-premises SQL Server, making it simple to switch to it in the event that the primary server goes down.

2. Seamless analytics over on-premises operational data

The latest version of SQL Server supports automatic connections to Azure Synapse Link to enable real-time database analytics.

With Synapse Link, analysts can perform near-real-time analysis and perform hybrid transactions and analyses without compromising operational efficiency.

Synapse allows you to combine data from a wide range of sources regardless of size, scale, or format. You can then use Azure Machine Learning, Power BI, or Spark to do advanced analytics on everything. This will have little or no effect on the performance of the source database.

3. Visibility over your entire data ecosystem

Purview, a data governance solution by Microsoft, now integrates with SQL Server 2022 to help you discover data more efficiently, giving you visibility over your entire ecosystem.

As a result of this integration, you can automatically and at no cost scan your on-premises SQL Server to collect data and classify them using built-in and customized tags as well as Microsoft Information Protection sensitivity labels

The Azure Purview console also allows you to configure and control specific access rights and privileges for SQL Server.

4. Achieve your security and compliance goals using the defender for SQL plan

Microsoft SQL Server 2022 provides improved security for your SQL servers using the Defender for SQL plan. 

Defender for SQL plan requires SQL Server Extension for Azure to be activated. It contains functionality for finding and mitigating possible database vulnerabilities as well as monitoring unusual activity that might signal a threat to your database environment.

More information regarding Defender for SQL’s ability to safeguard your whole database estate across on-premises, hybrid, and multi-cloud systems can be found in this Microsoft’s article.

That’s not all. In SQL Server, the new Ledger feature provides a history of how data has been modified over time. This detects when someone has tampered with it and will come in handy for internal and external audits. 

Ledger allows participants to verify the integrity of the centrally housed data.

Asad Khan, director of program management for Microsoft Azure.

This makes it the most secure database over the past 10 years.

5. Performance improvements

SQL Server 2022 now includes a number of performance features and improvements, such as Query Store and Intelligent Query Processing.

SQL Server uses Intelligent Query Processing to create superior execution plans and even multiple execution plans based on the parameters provided at runtime.

Query Store’s read replicas feature and query hints, which improve performance and mitigate issues without requiring real code modifications.

6. Pay As You Go billing model

Besides Azure-connected functionality, this release of SQL Server includes automated technical assessment at no additional charge as well as a Pay-as-you-go (PAYG) billing model for SQL Server via Azure Arc, Microsoft’s cloud and on-premises resource management platform.

This means that on-premises users can now take advantage of cloud-enabled billing for special cases or to manage consumption increases by connecting to Azure Arc, a part of the SQL Server 2022 setup process.

Using SQL Server Pay-as-you-go billing feature, customers can:

  • Choose between perpetual or consumption-based SQL Server licensing.
  • Enjoy improved cost-savings for Enterprise Edition and Standard Edition by eliminating upfront license payments. Customers pay only for what they use.
  • Access consistent billing model for all SQL workloads on any cloud or hybrid deployment, regardless of customer location.

7. Hardware integration

To improve batch mode performance, SQL Server 2022 (16.x) uses new hardware capabilities, particularly the CPUsAVX-512 instruction set.

AVX-512 is a set of instructions that are designed to improve performance when processing large amounts of data. The instructions are used to vectorize operations, meaning that they can be executed on multiple data points simultaneously. 

The performance improvements offered by the AVX-512 instruction set are substantial when compared to older versions. This can dramatically improve performance for certain types of workloads.

An additional feature named Integrated Acceleration & Offloading enables certain SQL Server workloads to be offloaded to hardware devices. For now, it works only with Intel’s QuickAssist Technology (QAT), which allows backups, restores, and compressions to be offloaded. 

8. Data visualization with Polybase

Data virtualization is a key target for Microsoft with SQL Server and this latest version has been designed to make use of Polybase for data visualization

Using Polybase, users can access remote sources, query data across different locations, virtualize data, and use REST APIs, all in SQL Server 2022. With this feature, users will be able to access data from a variety of sources, including Hadoop and other big data systems.

How to Upgrade to SQL Server 2022?

Would you like to leverage the benefits of this new system? Then it’s time you level up. But how do you upgrade to SQL Server 2022?

Any SQL Server instance may be easily upgraded to SQL Server 2022, with the exception of SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2, according to the SQL Server 2022 compatibility levels. You’ll need to do either a migration or a side-by-side upgrade for SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2.

Official SQL Server Support End Dates | ModLogix

One common way to upgrade is by using the installation wizard. This provides a standardized feature tree for upgrading SQL Server components to the most recent version of SQL Server. Before getting started, ensure that you meet the SQL Server 2022 system requirements.

Software requirements for upgrading to SQL Server 2022 | ModLogix

The older version of Microsoft SQL Server will be overwritten and removed from your computer when you upgrade it. It is, therefore, crucial that you back up the databases and other items connected to the old SQL Server instance before upgrading.

For the most part, upgrading to SQL Server 2022 is easy and straightforward if you know what you are doing. Microsoft has also written a detailed step-by-step article on how to achieve this.

If, on the other hand, you are looking to upgrade from SQL Server 2008 and SQL Server 2008 R2 or you are worried about making a mess of your database, then you need our legacy system upgrade services at ModLogix.  

MS SQL Database Upgrade

Moving from MS SQL Database version 14 to 17 improved data accessibility and integrity.

MS SQL Database Upgrade

At ModLogix, we can upgrade your SQL Server to the 2022 version with minimal disruptions to your operations, even migrate MS Access Database to SQL Server. We have a team of experienced professionals who can handle all aspects of the legacy database system migration, from planning to execution. We understand the importance of keeping your business running smoothly, so we’ll work quickly and efficiently to get the job done.

Final Thoughts

The most recent version of SQL Server offers a number of improvements over previous versions, including better performance, security, and availability. 

Unfortunately, a lot of users still use outdated versions of SQL Server, Windows Server, and storage that are no longer supported. If that is your situation, you might be missing out on these important benefits, which can do a lot of harm to your business. 

Thankfully, SQL Server 2022 provides you with even more justification for making the switch.

So what are you waiting for? If you’re ready to upgrade your SQL Server, our team can help. We’ll make sure the upgrade goes smoothly and that your data is safe throughout the process. Contact us today to get started.

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