Microsoft To Add Muscle To SQL Server

data warehousing

First announced in July, the DATAllegro deal will allow SQL Server to handle hundreds of terabytes of data, making it a viable option not only for large ecommerce and retail firms, but also for solution providers looking to tap into new and lucrative markets.

DATAllegro's technology will be especially useful for retailers that handle high transaction volumes and need to do near-real time data analysis, said Lee Blackstone, a partner with Atlanta-based Microsoft channel partner and database specialist Blackstone and Cullen.

"This is a positive move, and one that will allow us to compete more on the level with competitors such as Teradata," said Blackstone.

George Brown, CEO of Database Solutions, a Cherry Hill, N.J.-based Microsoft partner, says the move to fortify SQL Server fits with Microsoft's goal of bringing business intelligence to multiple market segments. "The last frontier is the very large scale, and whoever gets there with a product first will succeed," he said.

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SQL Server's business intelligence technology is currently the best value in the marketplace, according to Brown. "These appliances are now built for this type of computing. Given the high demand for queries, and the kind of work we do, the appliance approach is going to be the most effective," he said.

Within the next 12 months, Microsoft plans to roll out a series of Community Technology Previews (CTPs) of SQL Server with DATAllegro's technology baked in, and the software giant plans to launch a final integrated product sometime in the first half of 2010.

At Microsoft's Business Intelligence Conference, to be held from October 6th to 8th in Seattle, Microsoft will offer more concrete details on how it plans to integrate DATAllegro's technology with SQL Server.

Microsoft says it will retain "most of" DATAllegro's employees, including CEO Stuart Frost, and will continue to support existing DATAllegro customers.

Last month, Microsoft rolled out a fully-functional trial version of SQL Server 2008 for evaluation and made it available to Microsoft Developer Network and TechNet subscribers.

In addition to large-scale data warehousing, SQL Server 2008 adds support for policy-based management, auditing, geospatial data and advanced reporting and analysis services.