Free ebook: Introducing Microsoft SQL Server 2016: Mission-Critical Applications, Deeper Insights, Hyperscale Cloud, Preview Edition

June 3, 2016 update: The final ebook can be downloaded from the SQL Server website. Note: you will be required to complete a form to download the ebook.

Greetings! With Microsoft SQL Server 2016, a variety of new features and enhancements to the data platform deliver breakthrough performance, advanced security, and richer, integrated reporting and analytics capabilities. In this preview ebook, by Stacia Varga, Joseph D’Antoni, and Denny Cherry, we introduce you to several of these changes that you can experience for yourself in Community Technology Preview 3.2 (available for download at We start by introducing three new security features that you can use to protect your data: Always Encrypted, Row-Level Security, and dynamic data masking. Then we describe significant database engine enhancements that enable you to better manage performance and storage: TempDB configuration, query store, and Stretch Database. Last, we review several improvements to Reporting Services, including new data visualizations, support for mobile reports and key performance indicators, and subscription enhancements, to name a few. In each of these areas, we review the key concepts you need to understand before using these features and describe the steps necessary to get started so you can quickly experience the benefits of SQL Server 2016 firsthand.

Today we have two versions of this preview ebook available: an 8.5 x 11 PDF (for easy printing at home) and a smaller PDF optimized for mobile reading. We’ll provide EPUB and MOBI files in January. And in 2016 we’ll publish the complete and final version of this ebook. Watch this blog for it.

Download standard PDF


Download mobile PDF


P.S. Here’s a little bit about the ebook’s talented authors:

Stacia Varga is a consultant, educator, mentor, and writer who has specialized in business- intelligence solutions since 1999. During that time she authored or coauthored several books about BI as Stacia Misner. Her last book was Introducing Microsoft SQL Server 2014 (Microsoft Press, 2014). She has also written articles for SQL Server Magazine and Technet and has produced multiple BI video courses available through Pluralsight. In addition, she has been recognized for her contributions to the technical community as a Microsoft Data Platform MVP since 2011. Stacia provides consulting and custom education services through her company, Data Inspirations; speaks frequently at conferences serving the SQL Server community worldwide; and serves as the chapter leader of her local PASS user group, SQL Server Society of Las Vegas. She holds a BA in social sciences from Washington State University. Stacia writes about her experiences with BI at and tweets as @_StaciaV_.

Joseph D'Antoni is a principal consultant for Denny Cherry and Associates Consulting. He is well versed in SQL Server performance tuning and database infrastructure design, with more than a decade of experience working in both Fortune 500 and smaller firms. Joseph is a frequent speaker at major technical events worldwide. In addition, he blogs about a variety of technology topics at and tweets as @jdanton. Joseph holds a BS in computer information systems from Louisiana Tech and an MBA from North Carolina State University.

Denny Cherry is the owner, founder, and principal consultant for Denny Cherry and Associates Consulting. His primary areas of focus are system architecture, performance tuning, and data replication. Denny has been recognized in the technical community as a Microsoft Data Platform MVP, VMware vExpert, and EMC Elect. He holds certifications for SQL Server from the MCDBA for SQL Server 2000 up through Microsoft Certified Master for SQL Server 2008. He is also a Microsoft Certified Trainer. Denny has written dozens of articles for SQL Server Magazine, Technet, and, among others. In addition, he has authored and coauthored multiple books, including The Basics of Digital Privacy: Simple Tools to Protect Your Personal Information and Your Identity Online (Syngress, 2013) and Securing SQL Server: Protecting Your Database from Attackers, 2nd Edition (Syngress, 2012). Denny speaks at events worldwide, blogs at, and tweets as @mrdenny.