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SQL Server Blog


The previous two blogs (here and here) in this series discussed how to evaluate the cost effectiveness of SQL Server and the Microsoft data platform and leveraging the asset of an expert community. As part of that discussion, experts in the data community identified several factors that contribute to the value of the Microsoft platform. Interestingly, the built-in SQL Server capabilities that the experts highlighted are also the keys to addressing the five data challenges facing the industry today: performance and scale, security, business intelligence (BI), big data and analytics, and how to make the best use of the cloud. To show how addressing these challenges with the Microsoft data platform can make organizations more successful for less cost, the next blogs in this series will look at each of these five challenges and how customers are using the Microsoft data platform to make their organizations more successful. You can learn more about how to tackle the top five data management challenges by attending the first webinar in the new Microsoft Data management series, which will be live on October 29, 2015, at 10:00 PST (GMT-7).

Performance and Scale

The first challenge is to ensure your data platform provides outstanding performance and scalability so that you can quickly respond to customers and internal queries and without taxing your systems. SQL Server includes in-memory technology to accelerate mission-critical application performance up to 30x so that you can meet this challenge. In addition, in-memory Columnstore, can result in up to 100x faster query performance.
But what does this technology mean in to you in concrete business terms? Real-world customer stories can demonstrate the business value you can gain by deploying the latest version of SQL Server.

NASDAQ

When it comes to database performance and scale, NASDAQ OMX Group (a leading global provider of trading services, stock exchange technology, and market insight) undisputedly has vast and essential needs. Stanley Orlowski, NASDAQ’s Director of Database Structures, explains, “Just our US Options and Equity data archive handles billions of transactions per day, stores multiple petabytes of online data, and has tables that contain quintillions of records about business transactions.”

With this technology, Orlowski notes, “With SQL Server 2014, we can reduce 250 TB of page-compressed data to 125 TB using in-memory columnstore. After we migrate all of our US data archives to SQL Server 2014, we expect to reduce our storage footprint by half a petabyte. We’ve seen on average a 50 percent reduction in the amount of data that’s physically stored on disk. And not only does it help us save money, but it also helps us more efficiently and effectively deliver data to our consumers.”

Further advantages include reducing maintenance time, decreasing the storage needed by half, and accelerating decision making. You can watch the video of how NASDAQ addressed the performance and scale challenge here and read the story here.

Experience Speaks

When you’re looking at and comparing products, the most trusted resource is feedback from people who have tried the product and can speak from experience. NASDAQ is just one of many SQL Server customers that have benefitted from SQL Server in-memory OLTP and columnstore technology. You can read the facts about other customers such as Dell, which has doubled applications speeds and made transaction processing nine times faster; Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, which has cut query time by 75 percent and experienced dramatic benefits for patients; and Progressive Insurance, which demonstrated quadrupled data performance without upgrading hardware; and more.

Another source of trusted information comes from independent performance and scalability benchmarking. In contrast to data platform vendors that have licensing agreements that forbid benchmark testing, Microsoft confidently participates in industry and partner benchmarking. You can examine and download SQL Server benchmark results here and see the outstanding performance achieved by SQL Server 2014’s updateable in-memory columnstore technology.

The upcoming blogs in this series will discuss the other top five data challenges, security, BI, big data and analytics, and cloud scenarios. In the meantime, be sure to register today for the upcoming webinar to learn more.