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* SQL Server AlwaysOn, which Microsoft describes as "a Web-based support and analysis tool that pushes out best practices, helps troubleshoot configuration problems, resolves issues faster, reduces downtime and improves performance."
* Apollo, "a new column-store database technology delivering significantly greater query performance."
* Crescent, "a Web-based, highly interactive data visualization and presentation solution designed to enable business customers to quickly gain meaningful insights from data."
* Juneau, "a single development portal for data and application developers."
Column-store, as opposed to row-oriented systems, is "definitely where the future is," but this is Microsoft's first release with the technology, Saburi says. Using Denali, Saburi says Microsoft was able to cut the query time on some very large databases from eight minutes down to two seconds.
Microsoft's packed SQL Server announcement includes two more bits of news. Customers can now sign up for a beta service code-named "Atlanta," which will let IT pros access analytics that can help them avoid configuration problems and other issues.
Finally, Microsoft also says it will offer an updated Microsoft Certified Master certification program for SQL Server experts that will help these IT pros increase their visibility and "reinforce their value in the market."
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